The 12 Setting Sprays That Lock In Makeup on Even Super Slick Skin

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A setting spray is probably one of those makeup products that aren’t a part of your daily routine. Rather, it’s an occasional add-on, something you reach for on special occasions when makeup meltdown is simply not an option. But for those whose complexion veers towards the perpetually slick side, setting sprays could, and should, be a standby staple. Simply put, a few spritzes can mean the difference between a day-long battle with unwanted sheen and complexion perfection. (And really, which would you rather?)

Since not all setting sprays are created equal, there a few key points to remember when choosing one best suited for oily skin. Avoid anything touted as “hydrating” or “moisturizing” or where words such as “dewy” or “luminescent” are involved. Your mission is to mattify, so seek out oil-free spritzes that will tamp down shine and keep unwanted oil at bay. When using one, make it the final step in your makeup routine, the cherry on top of the sundae, as it were. Holding the bottle six to eight inches away from your face (you want to ensure a fine mist hits your skin and not too much liquid), spray in an ‘X’ then ‘T’ shape. This will concentrate most of the product on the areas of your face that tend to get the oiliest.

Try any of the setting sprays for oily skin below and make makeup meltdown a thing of the past.


Best Overall:
NYX Professional Makeup Setting Spray Matte

NYX Professional Makeup Setting Spray, Matte

Buy On Amazon
Buy On Ulta
Buy On Nyxcosmetics.com

Thanks to This $10 Setting Spray, My Oily Skin Stayed Shine-Free All Day

You’ve likely seen this touted somewhere on the Internet; it repeatedly gets tons of online buzz from devoted fans. Lightweight and long-lasting, it leaves the perfect matte finish. Also nice: The formula is completely vegan and cruelty-free, too. The ultra-affordable price is the icing on the cake.

What Our Testers Say

“By mid-day, my forehead and nose are usually pretty oily and I use blot tissue to minimize the shine, but I found that the spray did a good job of keeping my skin fairly matte that I didn’t need to blot my skin until the early evening. Needless to say, I was impressed.” — Khera Alexander, Product Tester





Best Cooling:
Urban Decay De-Slick Oil Control Makeup Setting Spray

Urban Decay De-Slick Oil Control Makeup Setting Spray

Buy On Sephora
Buy On Ulta

Setting sprays may come and go, but this one remains a perpetual fan favorite among Byrdie editors and pro makeup artists alike. Not only does it reduce shine and keep your skin matte (Fun fact: In a study, 85% of participants said it was the longest-lasting oil-control product they’ve ever used), but it also truly locks makeup in place. Credit temperature control technology, which cools it to ensure it doesn’t budge. Cool, indeed.




Best Lightweight:
Skindinavia The Makeup Oil Control Finishing Spray

Skindinavia Makeup Setting Spray

Buy On Amazon

Working to effectively set both powders and liquids in place, this is a staple for many makeup artists who work on film and TV sets (because hot lights are a recipe for makeup meltdown). It works by essentially forming a lightweight film on top of the skin, which slowly evaporates, removing heat with it, to keep products in place. We know, “film” sounds like a recipe for clogged pores, but don’t stress, the product is both non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic.




Best Soothing:
Volition Beauty Oil-Control Mattifying Mist

Volition Beauty Oil-Control Mattifying Mist

Buy On Sephora

For those dealing with the oh-so-fun combo of oily and sensitive skin, this is a major win. Infused with rose water to tamp down redness, it also has an amino acid complex that helps keep your skin’s pH balanced, a major component in the quest for complexion perfection. But yes, it combats oil, too. A humectant powder does the seemingly oxymoronic job of both removing excess oil and simultaneously attracting just the right amount of moisture to the skin. Because matte is good but chalky and cracking is not.




Best Drugstore:
Maybelline Lasting Fix Makeup Setting Spray

Maybelline Lasting Fix Makeup Setting Spray

Buy On Amazon
Buy On Ulta
Buy On Walmart

Once upon a time, not so long ago, you may have been hard-pressed to find an effective setting spray at the drugstore. Happily, that’s not the case anymore. A few quick spritzes of this drugstore staple keeps makeup in place and skin matte all day long, no big spending required.




Best with SPF:
Coola Makeup Setting Spray SPF 30

Cover FX Mattifying Setting Spray

Buy On Ulta

Two superstar ingredients, kaolin clay and ancient African tree bark, work together to leave your complexion totally shine-free. Alcohol-free and quick-drying, it still feels comfortable on the skin. You can use it as a finishing spray, for sure, but you can also mist it on a brush or sponge before applying foundation or concealer to mattify the formula, too.




Best Oil-Absorbing:
Boscia White Charcoal Mattifying Makeup Setting Spray

Rimmel London Stay Matte Fix & Go Primer & Spray

Buy On Amazon

There’s nothing we don’t like about a good multi-tasker, and this is no exception. Bookend your makeup routine with this oil-free mist; the first spritz acts as a primer to prep your complexion, the final spritz seals makeup in place. It’s also infused with cucumber extract to keep skin nice and soft, not to mention rings in at a very wallet-friendly price.




Best Blurring:
Too Faced Peach Mist Mattifying Setting Spray

Too Faced Peach Mist Mattifying Setting Spray

Buy On Sephora

The goal of a mattifying setting spray is to lock in makeup and tamp down shine, but what if it could do even more to leave your skin flawless? This one offers a soft-focus finish that instantly and seamlessly blurs away imperfections. It’s like an Insta filter IRL, but even better, since you get 12 hours of shine control, too. Bonus points for the yummy peach and fig scent. Top tip: Make sure to give it a good shake for a few seconds before spritzing.




Best Long-Wear:
Milani Make It Last 3-in-1 Setting Spray

Buy On Amazon

One of Byrdie editors’ favorite drugstore setting sprays, you can spray this onto skin before or after makeup application (or both). Either way, you get up to a whopping 16 hours of staying power, with no creases, smudges, caking, or creasing in sight.

The 12 Best Drugstore Setting Powders to Top Off Your Makeup Look






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