Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder

by Smashbox  
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Makeup > Powders > Loose Powder
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Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder has a very clever dispenser that’s designed to help negate the mess that occurs with many loose powders. The built-in shaver is meant to give you the perfect amount of powder for each use, with no mess. This is a novel approach, but in fact it doesn’t end up making Halo any more or less messy than any other loose powder. That’s because you will inevitably shave off more powder than you need, and will therefore always have some surplus in the packaging. Dispenser aside, this hugely overpriced powder will do nothing to hydrate skin or help reduce fine lines and wrinkles as Smashbox claims. The first ingredient is mica, a very standard ingredient in many loose powders that provides shine. The “gold” Smashbox brags about in this formulation is nearly last on the ingredient list, a negligible amount at best. Even if it were present at a higher concentration, gold has not been shown anywhere to have benefit for skin, so it’s just useless window dressing. If the high price and common formulation don’t dissuade you from trying Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder, also consider the fact that all but the Fair shade tend toward orange, and the included kabuki brush is too small to allow for even application. For considerably less money you can buy better loose powders from several drugstore and department store lines.

Perhaps one of the most interesting things about Smashbox is that its name refers to the early, accordion-style cameras and that Smashbox is first and foremost a Hollywood-based photography studio. The company's creators, Dean and Davis Factor, have their heritage in makeup—their great-grandfather was the legendary makeup artist Max Factor. However, this seems to be a case where the proverbial apple didn't fall all that close to the tree. It is apparent that Dean and Davis are better at their respective careers as CEO and photographer, respectively, than at creating a cosmetics line. The makeup, which debuted in 1996, began as a collection of trendy and fashion-forward colors coupled with a pleasingly neutral palette of foundations, concealers, and powders. Nowadays, many of the colors are too sheer to register on medium to dark skin tones, shiny products abound, and several of the complexion-enhancing products just don't look as natural on skin as they should. In fact, the foundations and concealers could use some updating; they haven't kept pace with what other makeup artistry lines are launching, and don't demonstrate much longevity under normal conditions, as in day-to-day casual makeup.

Realizing that celebrities sell products better than the product claims themselves, Smashbox steadily capitalizes on its ties to Hollywood and often mentions several famous faces who wear their products. Their counter brochures follow suit, tempting women to sit down with a Smashbox artist to get the star treatment. It's easy to get caught up in the hype, but as a comprehensive line Smashbox doesn't have what it takes to create A-list glamour, at least not if you're looking for cutting-edge textures and finishes.

For more information about Smashbox, now owned by Estee Lauder, call (888) 763-1361 or visit www.smashbox.com.

Member Comments

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  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
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  1. Anonymous
    Reviewed on Sunday, September 29, 2013
    • Value
      3 / 4
    • Recommend
      3 / 4
    • Results
      3 / 4
    Cruelty Free
    • I find it odd that the Cosmetics Cop Review indicates that this product is tested on animals yet Smashbox is listed on Peta's cruelty free list of cosmetics companies. Given how rabid Peta is on this point I'm inclined to believe that it is not tested on animals. What documentation does the author of this review have to indicate that it is?

    Paula's Choice Research Team Response
    Replied on: Monday, September 30, 2013


    Smashbox is a brand that's sold in China, hence they test on animals. As stated on our Animal Testing page: If the company's site claims they do not test on animals but the brand has a China website or is sold by a cosmetics site selling to citizens of mainland China, we consider said brand one that tests on animals [regardless of what PETA does]. The Chinese government requires animal testing on all imported cosmetics. So, a brand that retails there (whether online or in an actual store) must agree to this testing even though they may not test on animals themselves or endorse this practice in any other country.


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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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