ROAD TEST: I trialled 5 setting sprays over 5 days

Do setting sprays really work?

By Erin Cook

For some, using a setting spray is a non-negotiable. Others, however, CBF adding another product to their morning routine. So, in the name of #research, I trialled 5 popular setting sprays over the course of a working week to see if they’re worth the investment.

Until last week, I’d never used a setting spray before. However, I’m open to the idea. Being a full-time beauty writer, and a part-time diva, spending an extra 10 seconds spritzing my face in the morning isn’t really an issue. As the Australian oracle Kath Day-Knight once famously said, “Yes, I am high maintenance, but I think you’ve got to be.”


Product: Mecca Cosmetica All Set Makeup Perfecting Mist, $35.

Verdict: Makeup was still definitely there at the end of the day. Flattering lighting, however, was not.


Product: Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray, $23.

Verdict: Another winner! Blush didn’t last the distance but I’m more concerned about my foundation, anyway. Also has two lids which is great for those people (me) who are prone to losing lids.


Product: MAC Prep + Prime Fix, $32.

Verdict: This one felt really nice and really hydrating for my skin. Personally, I think it’s better suited as a quick spray for when your skin is a little on the dry side.


Product: L'Oréal Paris Infallible Fixing Mist, $24.95.

Verdict: Disclaimer: Thursday was HOT. This setting spray wasn’t my favourite, but wasn’t bad either.


Product: BYS Matte Setting Spray, $9.95.

Verdict: Cheap and cheerful!

Thoughts, feelings, conclusions

I know what you’re probably thinking: “OMG Erin, you look great with or without makeup. Why are you so concerned about plastering it all over your face?” Okay, maybe you aren’t thinking that. Unless you are my mother. In which case, while I have your attention mum, could I please borrow $50? Forgot to budget again.

ANYWAY, it’s worth nothing that this experiment was conducted in the midst of a scorching hot Australian summer. No doubt, results will vary depending on the temperature and your tendency to sweat.

Personally, if I was going to pick one of the products as my #1 setting spray for all of eternity, I would go with the Mecca Cosmetica All Set Makeup Perfecting Mist. It had the most pleasant, lightweight formula of the bunch and was a dream to spray on. ~Loved it.~

On the other hand, if I was going to pick a product purely on its ability to lock my makeup in place, I’d go with the Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. It has a cult following – and for good reason.

However, just between you and I, if you truly do want your full face of makeup to last all day long, you may have to reapply. Setting sprays cannot perform miracles.