Make Your Own Translucent Face Powder

Recently I keep seeing this idea for making your own Translucent Face Powder popping up on Pinterest. It’s intriguing to say the least!

It turns out, you can BUY the very popular Mineral Veil for $20.00 from bareEscentuals, OR for about .05 cents worth of ingredients that you probably already have in your cupboards right now, you can make your own!

I’m personally pretty excited about this because I have always used some type of translucent powder and the prices can be ridiculous!

But it really does put the “finishing” touch” on your whole makeup application…so I’ve always “bit the bullet” and “paid the price for beauty”.  :-)

Some of the other benefits of using a “finishing” powder include:

  • Minimizes pores and fine lines.
  • Absorbs oils to keep your skin looking fresh and clean
  • Prolongs wear of Foundation, Lipcolor, and Eyecolor
  • Can also be worn on bare skin for a fresh, feather-light finish
  • Works beautifully for all skin tones and types

Cara at is the one who figured all this out for us. (Thanks Cara!)

Here is her recipe/formula:

1/2 Tablespoon Cornstarch

1 Teaspoon Baby Powder (talc)


Talcum powder is made from talc, a mineral made up mainly of the elements magnesium, silicon, and oxygen. As a powder, it absorbs moisture well and helps cut down on friction, making it useful for keeping skin dry and helping to prevent rashes. It is widely used in cosmetic products such as baby powder and adult body and facial powders, as well as in a number of other consumer products.

In its natural form, some talc may contain asbestos, a substance known to cause cancers in and around the lungs when inhaled (see our document, Asbestos). All home-use talcum products in the United States have been asbestos-free since the 1970s.

(If you are still worried about using talc, just leave it out, it will work without it.)

Optional:  1/8 Teaspoon Powder Foundation ( if you want to add a touch of color)


Stir all ingredients together and store in a used (and washed) powder container or a mint tin. Apply with powder brush.

Love it!  So simple and inexpensive!

Since I had all of the ingredients on hand (all 2 of them!) ….I decided to try it out. I opted to add the optional 1/8 teaspoon of powder foundation because my uber fair skin can use all the color I can get. :-)   I’m still rather dumb-founded when I think about how much money I have spent on powders in the past…when this worked every bit as good! I really hate that. lol. But I won’t dwell on it because what’s done is done and we can’t change the past.

But you can be sure I won’t be buying any more expensive powders! (Or even INexpensive ones!)  Why should I?  This literally costs PENNIES to make AND free of fillers! A WIN-WIN to be sure!

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  1. Amy says

    I switched to the cornstarch version of baby powder a few years ago after learning of the cancer link, so wouldn’t that kind be safe to sub in here? I love everything about this idea, though, and happen to be almost out of Mineral Veil so I can’t wait to try it!

  2. Stace says

    I have used cornstarch for over three decades on my uber white skin. I started while I actually worked for a major department store make up company. It was hard to find loose powder light enough for my skin. I have tried it on a few clients, but found it ghostly on those with darker pigments. The addition of a bit of color would be great.

  3. Jamie says

    I made this it works great! I used 1/4 tsp of colored powder to actually make it a face powder and add more color, the 1/8 just wasn’t enough for me color wise

  4. says

    I Agree with the baby powder issue-It should not be used on your skin, or near your lungs.Its not just the talc in it, but the other chemicals and fragrences used in it. You can make rice powder by fine grinding organic rice into a powder in a food processor and use that to replace the babypowder, or leave the baby powder out all together.

    • Fina says

      Accept sadly, I just read the most rice contains arsenic. They are working on reducing this problem, but for now I think it might be just as bad as any other chemical cosmetic. I am going to try cornstarch (on lady had luck with tapioca starch too), and failing this I will buy arrowroot powder.

    • Fina says

      Accept sadly, I just read that most rice contains arsenic. They are working on reducing this problem, but for now I think it might be just as bad as any other chemical cosmetic. I am going to try cornstarch (one lady had luck with tapioca starch too), and failing this I will buy arrowroot powder.

  5. valerie says

    I definitely will be trying this one out. I need to get the ingredients though which shouldn’t be that hard to come by. I am hooked on your blog and have tried several of your ideas…thank you!

  6. Mary says

    This is what I’ve been doing for years! If I want some color, I use a light bronzer or a similar color of blush on parts of my face.

    I personally wouldn’t worry about the baby powder. Not only is it a small amount, but it has the cornstarch to weigh it down. And unless you are using a dramatic movie scene, you probably won’t create much dust using this day to day. If you shake the brush, do it down at your side and you won’t inhale the dust from that.

  7. Melissa says

    You can leave out the talc if you’re uncomfortable using it. Cosmetic-grade talc was deemed safe by the FDA, but many cosmetic companies are getting on the bandwagon and disincluding it from their products. The actual Mineral Veil is mostly just cornstarch anyway; it uses zinc stearate to repel water and improve the texture of the product, magnesium stearate to prevent clumping and sticking to the packaging, and iron oxide to provide pigment.

      • N says

        Iron oxide is a lab created pigment. The original iron oxides are comprised of minerals but are deemed unsafe and cannot be purchased. The stuff you buy is lab created.

  8. Autumn Green says

    Hi Jill
    I read an article the other day about this and like you I have spent a ton of money on the mineral makeup. The one I read said just to use cornstarch. I haven’t yet because I still have some that I paid 20 bucks for…do you sense the bitterness??? lol

    Anyway, I WILL be using cornstarch from here on. Any ideas on making the foundation?

    I love your posts. Can’t wait to see what’s new everyday. Thanks so much for all your wonderful advice and tips!

    Autumn Green

    • Amanda says

      I exsclusively use a similar formula! For color I added cocoa powder to the cornstarch until it reached the right color for my skin. I created a second batch that is darker (more cocoa powder) to use as bronzer. With this and a good store bought concealer I feel my face looks great! (And I have acne prone skin…) I love it. Also, no funny smells. My husband has disliked the smell of every other foundation/powder I’ve used. I still use store bought eye products and blush.

      • Ana says

        Hi! I just saw this post, and as wonderful as it sounds I am a little concerned because I have acne prone skin too! Doesn’t the cornstarch clog your pores? Have you had this problem at all?

  9. Sade says

    Hi Jill,
    I was intrigued by home made face powder! I hate to be a wet blanket, but Baby Powder (Talc) is closely related to Asbestos and can cause cancer. Baby Powder is no longer allowed in Hospitals, for adults as well as newborns. It is considered a respiratory irritant at the very least, but evidence shows that it causes lung cancer when particles are inhaled and can cause ovarian/uterine cancer when applied to groin area. I would be cautious if using it-by not inhaling when applying it to your face.

    I wonder if Rice Powder could be substituted for the Baby Powder? Probably wouldn’t be as inexpensive ‘tho.
    I love your posts and can’t wait to read them each day! I don’t even wait to get an email that you’ve posted, I just go straight to your site when I wake up :).

    Your Biggest Fan, Sade.

    • Fina says

      I just got done reading that most all of our rice contains arsenic, and currently the FDA is working on trying to lower this, but given that fact I think rice powder may be as bad for your skin (the 3rd kidney) as the retail chemical powders. Just a thought.