Don’t get me wrong, I loooove the Urban Decay setting spray, MAC Fix plus etc etc. However, every time I use a higher end setting spray, all I can think is how much money I am spritzing across my face. I mean, the Urban Decay setting spray costs £23.50 – I’m not baller enough for that. It will have to be relegated to special occasion-wear only.
With that in mind, I went on a little hunt in my local Superdrug for the best affordable setting sprays on the market. The rising popularity of setting sprays is such that almost every brand now stocks one. I tried and tested three, and these are my thoughts…
L’Oreal Infallible Fixing Mist
I love the Infallible range and thought of combining their longwearing formula and a setting spray made the little makeup obsessive in me very excited. Despite this, I ended up having mixed feelings about this setting spray.
The most important advice I can give you if you decide to buy this is to shake it. Shake it like you’ve never shaken anything before. Because if you don’t, you will get tiny white specks all over your face.
This is because of the slightly strange formula of this product. There are two different ‘consistencies’ in the bottle – a thicker, white sediment and a clear liquid. If you don’t shake the bottle to combine the two together, the white sediment sitting at the bottom of the bottom is going to become noticeable on your face very quickly. There are ball bearings in the bottle for that very reason, but I found that I still had to shake the bottle very thoroughly in order to mix the two together.
For this reason I didn’t like this spray the first 4 or 5 times I used it. I would spray it all over my face only to realise a couple of minutes later that there was white flecks all over my face and my hair. And once they were on there, they were not going anywhere! I guess that’s a testament to the ‘sticking-power’ of this formula, but is not so great when you have to leave for work in 5 minutes and you’re standing in front of the mirror desperately trying to scratch patches of setting spray off your face!
The spray mechanism on this product is also not great. It isn’t one of those setting sprays that delivers a nice, fine mist all over your face, it’s a bit more of a sharp squirt. This is fine if you hold it far enough away from your face, but ideally that shouldn’t have to be the case. Once it is on your face, it also takes a minute or two to completely dry down. In terms of scent, it smells kind of like soap to me, but it is not a strong or overpowering scent and once it is on your face and dried down you cannot notice it at all.
One thing I did love about this product is that it did a great job at really setting my makeup in place and extending the longevity of it. It didn’t do much for my oiliness, but then it didn’t promise to. As such, every area other then the parts that got oily held really well. My makeup continued to look fresh without feeling overly dried out by the spray.
Overall, I would say that this is an okay option for someone looking for an affordable setting spray. At £7.99 it really is a bargain! However, the poor spray and the fact that you have to shake it so much just to avoid white specks all over your face means it is sadly not top of my list.
Spray – 2/10
Finish – 1/10 for the white flecks, otherwise 6/10
Longevity – 8/10
Rimmel #Insta Fix & Go
First up, can I just say I love the smell of this setting spray – it smells just like watermelon! But don’t worry if you’re not a fan of strong scents; once it has dried down, any scent is undetectable.
Despite its terrible name (can we not put hashtags in product names please Rimmel?), this is a really great setting spray for an amazing price – I picked mine up for just £6.99. It is oil-free, quick drying and can also be used before makeup as a means of priming the face – although I have to say I never use it for this purpose.
It has a really good spray mechanism, a lot better than the L’Oreal one. It produces a fine, evenly distributed mist which dries quickly on your face. So quickly in fact that the first time I tried it I almost used half the bottle as I didn’t believe it was actually touching my face from how fast it dried.
I both loved and hated that about this spray. There’s something weird inside me that kind of likes that wet face application of a setting spray. I think it’s the idea that you can ‘feel’ it working. You can’t really feel anything with this spray!
In terms of longevity, I noticed that it definitely did prolong the wear of my makeup, although it did not ‘lock it in’ for quite as long as the L’Oreal one. When I took it on the go it did an amazing job at refreshing my makeup and giving me that ‘just-applied’ look. However, I would recommend this for a more day-to-day setting spray that is easy on any sensitive skin. You might want to look for a more heavy duty spray for a night out or special occasion – maybe the L’Oreal or the next contender…
Spray – 9/10
Finish – 8/10
Longevity – 6/10
Maybelline Super Stay 24 Makeup-Locking Setting Spray
This is really good affordable setting spray that combines the great spray and ease of use of the Rimmel spray with the staying power of the L’Oreal.
The spray delivers a fine mist that covers the whole face quickly and easily. The product dries down quickly and with no white specks on the face!
One drawback is the smell. To me it has a faint disinfectant/chemically smell. It’s not too strong and goes away once the product is set, but just something to be aware of if you want to try this setting spray out.
In terms of longevity, I would put it on a par with the L’Oreal spray. If I set my makeup with this in the morning, it will pretty much stay put through a hectic day at work (which is a true testament to any setting product!) It does have that slight tightening feeling that some setting sprays can cause as it ‘locks in’ the makeup, but I can overlook that for its makeup prolonging properties!
Spray – 8/10
Finish – 8/10
Longevity – 7/10
If you’re on the lookout for an affordable setting spray, any of these would be worth checking out! Of the three I tried, there was none that I completely did not like. My personal favourite would have to be the Rimmel for day-to-day use to refresh my makeup as I go and the Maybelline for occasions or when my makeup needs to last that little bit longer.
Just a few points that are good to recap – shake the L’Oreal spray really (and I mean really) well before use, remember that the Rimmel spray is more of a spray as you go product to refresh makeup rather than completely setting it in place, and finally, steer clear of the Maybelline setting spray if you are sensitive to smell.
Apart from these details, I would recommend any of these sprays. They are great at locking in your makeup, making it look fresh and truly give the high-end setting sprays a run for their money. These are the kinds of products that make me absolutely love drugstore makeup and restore my faith that affordable can mean amazing!