'Ben Nye was a renowned makeup artist for the Hollywood film industry extending over four decades from the 1930s to the early 1980s. He worked for such films as Gone with the Wind (1939), Miracle on 34th Street (1947), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953), The King and I (1956), The Fly (1958), Valley of the Dolls (1967), and Planet of the Apes (1968). As he retired he created the Ben Nye Makeup Company and even to date today his son Dana Nye-CEO continues his distinguished reputation of makeup artistry and the cosmetic line.'
Although the Ben Nye Makeup Company is well used and renowned in the Hollywood industry it's also pretty famous and popular for the supply of TV and Theatrical makeup. The secret is finally being shared among every day makeup routines now, favored by the likes of Mario Dedivanovic and Wayne Goss (that's to us beauty bloggers/vloggers). Mario famously creates Kim K's under eye highlight and contour and Wayne very kindly teaches us how to replicate it!
Let me just warn you though, this is going to be one longggg post! I've done my research quite thoroughly for you ladies because if I'm totally honest I didn't have a clue about these powders, there was just no easy way of getting around them, understanding how to use them, getting a match let alone trying to find a supplier (that is in the UK), another thing I also came across was that these powders are a total hit and awesome product among our lovely darker skin tone ladies because of their matching capabilities...mmm hmmm, how about the rest of us? What are we going to do?
These are the RAGE right now, every blogger and vlogger is going ape shit mad over this awesome powder known as the 'Banana Powder' and lets be honest like or dislike Kim Kardashian there's no denying her makeup is flawless and that contour and under eye highlight? Gimme gimme! So my dear reader I'm sure you have come across this one particular powder known as the 'Ben Nye Banana Powder'? Yes! I thought so, lets get our head around it; No? You better buckle up...
Ben Nye Loose Powders are divided into 2 main categories: Classic & Luxury (Luxury is split into 2 series) which sometimes appear as 3 categories but I worked it out and it's basically just the two.
- CLASSIC TRANSLUCENT POWDERS
- LUXURY POWDERS
- BELLA - for lighter shades
- MOJAVE - for darker shades
They come in 3 sizes:
- 1.5oz/ 42gm sifter bottle
- 3.0oz/ 85gm sifter bottle
- 8oz/ 226gm jar no sifter
Ben Nye Classic Translucent Powders are silky translucent shades that provide a matte finish with just a hint of colour. They retain the intensity of bright and dark shades. Special makeup formula controls perspiration, making this perfect for high energy performers such as clowns or dancers.
Ben Nye Luxury Powders formally known as Visage Poudre Luxury powder and is an ultra neutral powder which provide superior matte and subtle finishing. Often compared to French powders with silky-fine textures. They are micro-milled loose powders in Bella Series for light-medium skintones and the Mojave Series for medium-dark skintones with a hint of colour.
But what's the difference? Both are transparent powders; The Classic Translucent Face Powders are much more opaque and I'd say heavier. The Luxury Face Powders are more finely milled and sheer. This my dears is the BIG DIFFERENCE. The Classic range is used for professional application - think theatrical/performance/movie makeup so you wouldn't want to wear them in real life or everyday (you can if you want); where as the Luxury range is slightly understated making them suitable for special occasions, photo shoots or bridal and even wearable for every day if you apply them correctly and lightly, they therefore give you the staying power, flawlessness and results of a professional application.
CLASSIC TRANSLUCENT FACE POWDERS
Enhance, maintain and build intensity of skin tone.
- Neutral Set Translucent Powder is a colorless powder that blends with all skin tones. It's a must to set bright or dark shades to retain color. Its special formula controls perspiration, making this perfect for high energy performers such as clowns or dancers. No color alterations.
- Super White Powder is Ben Nye’s only non-translucent powder that contains a bright white pigment to brighten White, Geisha, Porcelain, and other very fair shades.
- Fair Translucent Powder is a subtle peach-tone blends naturally with fair, peach and pink skin tones.
- Pretty Pink Translucent Powder warms sallow tones and adds a healthy glow. Translucent pink.
- Topaz Translucent Powder is a subtle shade for olive-brown complexions with golden undertones. Excellent over natural olive and lighter shades of the Sahara Series - neutral brown.
- Coco Tan Translucent Powder is a new improved Shade! Warm olive-tan naturally complements mid-brown complexions.
- Sienna Translucent Powder is a rich, golden-brown shade coordinated beautifully with richer skin tones.Natural over mid to deep Sahara shades.
- Chestnut Translucent Powder translucent warm neutral brown with a golden caramel mahogany tint.
- Sable Translucent Powder is a deep brown with red mahogany tint.
- Ebony Translucent Powder is a darkest deep neutral brown.
LUXURY FACE POWDERS
- BELLA (set foundation, reduce shine and enhance light and medium skin tones translucent with a hint of color.)
- Beige Suede
- Olive Sand
- Dark Cocoa
- Cameo Luxury Face Powder is a translucent pink beige.
- Buff Luxury Face Powder is a translucent beige with pink tones.
- Beige Suede Luxury Face Powder is a translucent beige with brown tones.
- Banana Luxury Face Powder is a translucent beige with yellow tones (the most famous one used).
- Camel Luxury Face Powder is a translucent yellow golden tan.
- Dolce Luxury Face Powder is a translucent orange golden tan.
- Olive Sand Luxury Face Powder is a translucent deep warm tan.
- Clay Luxury Face Powder is a translucent golden deep tan.
- Nutmeg Luxury Face Powder is a translucent golden orange dark tan.
- Dark Cocoa Luxury Face Powder is a translucent warm deep dark tan
MY JOURNEY WITH BEN NYE LOOSE POWDERS
As I mentioned earlier there is huge hype over this thing called Banana Powder; but now that me and you understand Ben Nye Powders as a whole we both know there's more to this story! Banana Powder is basically a Ben Nye Luxury Face Powder and belongs to the Bella Series. I have watched intensely Mario Dedivanovic, Goss Makeup Artist's videos and other tutorials and raves on the Ben Nye BANANA Powder, used to set Kim Kardashians famous under eye concealer and highlight. .
But then I also came across these gorgeous dark skinned flawless beauties who had found Ben Nye powders to set their makeup which actually matched and blended with their skin tones! The variety of shades available has made this product a total hit with beauty bloggers/vloggers. However Banana powder kept appearing as the most popular one which any skin tone could use!
I wanted the same and if I did i'd have to get my paws on the BANANA powder. And so I set out to Guru Makeup Emporium this week in search of BANANA powder. I found it, I bought it and came home Tuesday night pretty excited. I tried it on Wednesday. Dang! Thursday I wasted no time I was back to Guru Makeup Emporium second time in one week to pick up the next raved out Ben Nye powder - Neutral Set Translucent Powder and one other of which is my own choice - Beige Suede to match my skin tone.
After all not only did I want the Banana Powder for my Kim K highlight, I also wanted the Neutral Set for all over to set my makeup. But I even wanted the same powder my fellow beauty guru's were using to set their foundation. And so that's how I ended up with three powders!
Now for reference I am a NC42/43.5 skin tone at MAC. Which means I'm quite tanned and one of the dilemmas I face like some fellow beauties out there is finding a perfect setting powder which doesn't make me look ashy, white cast, dead, zombie, washed out etc you name it. While I love all my setting powders I think they do alter my natural colour slightly and they definitely need a helping hand of bronzer.
This is were Ben Nye powders really come in handy, and why it's so popular is because of their warmth, undertone, pigment and unique formula, they not only provide a range of various colours of powder to suit all skin tones but they match and blend very well. Which is why they are so popular with darker skinned ladies. In particular Banana powder has become the most popular option because it blends so well and suits even the darkest skin tone. That's how the Ben Nye rave all started in the beauty blogosphere.
Neutral Set Colorless Face Powder
In my recent experience this doesn't leave a white cast. It leaves the skin looking flawless, yet appears very natural looking. The skin is smooth, evened out and it also minimizes the appearance of pores. Makeup artists; especially for bridal clients use this as it holds makeup together for longer, controls shine and doesn't alter the colour one bit because of it's translucent property. It's one of the most raved about setting powders now because it blends beautifully from the fairest of complexions to the deepest. It's ability to help control oil/perspiration means it's a dream to wear all day. If you've been to any stage shows watching performers or dancers and ever wondered how they keep their makeup in place without melting this is the holy grail miracle product.
Anyone can use this translucent powder, it's really the best powder out there to set your whole makeup to ensure it stays in place for hours. It basically holds everything together and is especially effective on the T-zone. I wore this powder to set all my makeup on Friday and I could not believe that I got upto 8 hours wear without having to touch up/blot my T-zone. It really does control oil and keeps everything looking matte. If oiliness is something you have a problem with this powder would be very effective at controlling that. I am very impressed and the best thing is when I photographed it I didn't have a white cast! It really made me look flawless.
Banana Luxury Powder
The daddy of them all. Mario D's secret weapon for Kim K's under eye concealer setting and highlight. And it's now nearly everyone's setting powder for under eye concealer regardless of skin colour! The Banana powder is a cult product now because of it's yellow tone, allowing makeup looks to appear more natural looking and brighter for tanned and darker ladies. Not only this but the effect of dark circles, veins in purple, blue, red start to appear and so the yellow in the Banana powder means that when applied it helps brighten up the eye area and provide a neutralizing effect to the dark areas. Quite a cool powder really especially with those dreaded under eye circles.
I used this on Friday to set my under eye concealer. Now we all know how vital it is to set concealer so we don't have creasing or fine lines. Banana powder does just that, leaving a smooth and flawless matte finish. At the same time rather than a bright white spark of a under eye highlight, I got a brightening more mellow natural and tanned looking under eye highlight. The great thing about this particular powder is that the intensity can be built up or kept subtle and that's what I really love about it. The Banana powder also had immense staying power of over eight hours.
It works, it looks good and the yellow in this Banana powder compliments tanned/golden complexions like myself alot. It's popular for a reason!
Beige Suede Luxury Powder
So after I had bought Banana powder for my under eyes and Neutral set for holding it all together I wanted a luxury powder which was closer to the colour of my skin which I could use to set my foundation. Beige Suede is part of the Bella series and it's a perfect match. It may appear lighter but it adapts to my skin colour so well. It's a beige with brown tones and the fact that Luxury powders blend so well made this an even better choice for me.
Because of it being blend-able sheer and a perfect match I can use this alone to set my foundation and I don't even need Neutral set for my everyday makeup routine. Beige Suede is so finely milled and light weight that when applied it quite literally melts into my skin, keeps everything looking matte and flawlessly finished. This too like the other two powders is long wearing and very very natural looking to the point where I actually don't need bronzer to tone down my foundation on days it may be a shade lighter.
(All three in order as above - Left: Blending. Right: Blended)
Here's my looks:
(Banana Powder only under eyes applied very lightly)
(Beige Suede Luxury Powder only to set foundation)
(Banana Luxury Powder applied under eye, set, to highlight & contour. Beige Suede Luxury Powder to set foundation. Neutral Set Colorless Face Powder to set whole makeup)
Now if I'm totally honest my every day makeup look would be the first and second photos, but for special occasions I adore the third/fourth photos because the makeup appears, sets and keeps looking matte, smooth and flawless without fading, melting or getting oily.
So now that I've managed to find Ben Nye powders that work for me I'm going to help you do the same!
If we scroll up to the beginning of the post I mentioned that the Classic Powders are mainly for theatrical/performance makeup uses, while this isn't technically true for the Neutral Set Powder in particular because of it being a translucent option and suitable for anyone and everyday to set makeup, my advice to you would be that go ahead and try out the other Classic Powders (with colour) if you are after and into serious heavy coverage/setting. If you find a shade which I'm sure you will there's absolutely no reason why you cannot use them for yourself! As long as you know how to apply them they will be perfect and flawless.
My other tip is that you can actually mix up the powders together to achieve the look, coverage and colour you want. In all honestly there is so much use of these Classic Powders over on Youtube that it really doesn't make a difference from what I've seen. They are wearable and are being worn. The only notable difference between Classic and Luxury powders is their texture and coverage - one is heavy the other lighter. At the moment I haven't tried a Classic Powder in colour because I haven't been able to test the colours to see what matches me and it's not really that easily available to swatch and buy than the Luxury Powders.
If I can get hold of a Classic Translucent Powder in colour (Topaz which I'm interested in) I will purchase it for that dolled up, heavy and glamorous look! If I could achieve a theatrical long lasting TV movie makeup look at home I'd love to give it a go and if the Classic Powder provides that kind of finish I'm most definitely interested!
The Luxury Powders are by far the most popular range and becoming more and more available. These too are translucent as I mentioned but a lot lighter and sheerer so for everyday they are perfect and much more wearable on a daily basis in comparison to Classic Powders. The fact that these range of popular powders are split into two ranges straight away makes it easier to identify which category ones would be suitable for you. Bella - for lighter to medium skin tones. Mojave for dark to deep skin tones.
Not only are the Luxury Powders are so versatile and unique but the ability they have to blend so brilliantly has meant that any skin tone can pull them off if they want, it comes down to choice and preference, there are no rules and if you really want to get into the swing of things combine, mix and match! From my own experience and playing around with the Luxury Powders I have some basic concepts and idea of what suits who.
In the Bella series: For extremely light/fair complexions with pink tones I would recommend Cameo and Buff, either one of these can be used to set and highlight as you please; Banana would work just fine too applied lightly but for some the yellow may not be so flattering or preference. For medium/olive complexions I would recommend the Banana and Beige Suede, if Banana is too yellow for you then Beige Suede is a great alternative minus the yellow. This doesn't mean you can't experiment with each one!
In the Mojave series: If I'm completely honest this range is targeted for deep tanned and darker complexions therefore providing a wider range of colours in the particular tones of yellow, orange, tan, red and brown. In this range there is absolutely no fair or light coloured options and so for my darker skinned ladies my recommendation would be to find a match that suits you and one which you are happy with. If you are after a under eye highlight from the Bella Series 'Banana' is perfect because the proof is in the pudding this particular powder works on all skin tones! Again this doesn't mean you can't experiment with any of the others from the Bella series.
Ben Nye powders bring warmth to your complexion, stay matte and keep you shine free for hours on end -What you must do always is Blend, Blend Blend, fluffy brush and Blend Blend Blend!
I bought these powders this week and within three days I knew and appreciated all the hype around them. It all started with the Banana Powder, moved onto Neutral Set and now there is a whole range of exciting coloured translucent powders to try out - it is fair to say that yes Banana Powder does suit all skin tones, it's pure genius and it's brilliant It's also great to add that the colour ranges in comparison to regular makeup stores is much more versatile, unique and gives alot more choice to the many skintones around.
The powders all in general apply, look and maintain a smooth, matte and flawless complexion. They are long lasting and wearing, there is definite control of oiliness and shine and from the photographs I must agree everything looks even and photographs beautifully without a white cast in sight and I think that is the vital point for coloured skin ladies that they get a perfect match from their setting powders.
I'm really impressed with the Ben Nye range, in fact I'm head over heels for it! These would be my go to products for special occasions and not something I would feel comfortable using everyday all at the same time because the latter look above was very glamorous. I would however happily apply a subtle under eye highlight with my Banana powder when needed and occasionally use the Beige Suede to set my foundation when I want to look a little more done up. I think the Neutral Set Classic Translucent powder will be my go to powder to control oiliness on my T-zone especially during summer.
The Ben Nye Luxury Face Powder Range is a hit with me, the Classic Translucent Face Powders in the coloured version is what I'm interested in next. The Neutral Colorless Face Powder on a side note from the Classic Powders is perfection.
I would 110% recommend these powders to everyone and yes there is a reason to go bananas over Banana powder (no pun intended!) These Ben Nye powders are extremely cheap in fact you could buy 3 or 4 pots depending on the size for the price of one MAC face Powder, more if compared to high end makeup powders. They retail from around £5.00/$5.00 to about £14.00/$20.00 - they are however difficult to locate but recently becoming easier to purchase. Below I have linked a few websites where you can get them from.
I have no complaints about the powder, my one warning is if your skin can't tolerate talc, stay clear and well away. I really like the bottle, the smaller sizes come with a sifter/shaker dispenser so there is control over how much product to release, the larger bottles however are completely open and I don't like this because I can imagine powder getting everywhere - one knock and it's all over! For me apart from the dispense situation of larger bottles I have no complaints at all, these powders are my holy grail product now I love them and I can tell you now ladies if I keep practicing getting flawless, matte photography looking makeup at home by myself; in the future my wedding makeup artist is going to have a hard time pleasing me!
On a serious note...Try them, they're cheap and they work wonders...
Ben Nye Classic and Luxury Powders are by far the best powders I have come across and I feel it will be so hard to appreciate any other brand since seeing how effective and long wearing these particular products are. I use to think that you get what you pay for and my choice of expensive makeup brands meant I was getting the best quality, while I stay true to that statement in terms of similar high street makeup brands these Ben Nye Powders are by far in a league of their own.
If you have any questions do ask my lovelies, I hope I haven't confused you!