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Making pressed powders

If you want to make your own pressed-powder makeup, using just a few ingredients, you can!

Pressed powders are less messy than loose ones, also their colors are more intense and they tend to have a little better staying power on the skin.

To make a pressed powder, you will need:
  • Some kind of powder to press (some blend that you have created for eye shadow, foundation or blush)
  • A binder of some kind (recipes below)
  • Something to press into (you can press into a small jar, or in to a compact or a cosmetic tin)
  • Something to press with (you can use your thumbs, a coin, or something more sophisticated which you make up.
Binder recipes can be very simple. Here are three:
  • 2 parts dimethicone, 2 parts fractionated coconut oil, 1 part jojoba oil
  • 1 part dimethicone, 1 part fractionated coconut oil
  • 1 part dimethicone, 1 part jojoba oil, 2 parts alcohol.
Simply shake the binder in a bottle and then either squeeze or spray it onto your loose powders. Then stir or mix together. I like to put everything in a plastic bag and mush it around.

You will use about 10-15% binder to 85-90% color. Said another way, 1/2 teaspoon binder to 1 tablespoon powder. You want the powder to be damp and pressable.

Once the ingredients are mixed together, spoon them into their container and press. I suggest you cover the surface of the powder with some plastic wrap and then press with something firm such as your fingers, or a coin wrapped in plastic. If you really get into it, you can come up with your own devices using c-clamps and other hardware.

Kaila Westerman
TKB Trading, LLC
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Wendy - November 25, 2017

Hello, thank you SO much for this post! I ha e searched far and wide for more binder recipes and they are so hard to come by…(if you ever have more please share) if I remember right there may have been one other post on this but since I can’t find it I may be wrong.
ANYWAYS, my question is with these base formulas do you still use alcohol to “wet” the product? Most recipes say to use a press base with alcohol etc, so is that the case here? Thanks again for all the help I’m absolutely obsessed with your site!

Jessica Brown - October 11, 2017

Thank you! This was very helpful to me. I use FCO and dimethicone. But I really had no idea as to the ratio I should be using. And I’ve wasted a lot of color trying to figure it out. I still am trying to figure out the right dry powder base ratio. But this was helpful. I also think I’ve been adding too much liquid binder maybe as my products have little payoff. It’s like they are to smudge proof……

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