Best Setting Sprays: Top 5 Beauty Products Most Recommended By Experts

Putting together a great makeup look can be tons of fun, from bold eyeshadow to sharp contour. It’s a great way to express yourself with colors and styles that reflect your personality. But of course, if you don’t take the proper measures to lock your look in place, you might find yourself watching your hard work start fading just hours later. That’s where the best setting sprays come in handy, to make sure all your makeup looks stay locked in place all day and all night.

For many people, putting on makeup is one of the few moments in the day where it’s possible to slow down and practice a bit of self-care. In fact, a new survey reveals that Americans only feel relaxed for about 40 minutes a day. The poll asked 2,000 Americans about their self-care habits and shows that while the average respondent only feels relaxed for less than an hour, 47 percent feel even less relaxed than that.

Makeup can also provide a sense of comfort and peace during difficult times. A 2020 survey asking 2,000 American women how they were staying positive and confident during the pandemic reported 51 percent said wearing makeup and changing their looks up helped them to cope with current affairs. The results found that millennial women overwhelmingly utilized this coping mechanism, at 63 percent. Meanwhile, their Gen X counterparts followed closely behind at 54 percent. This sense of control had a direct impact on respondents’ moods as well: 36 percent reported being in better spirits after mixing up their looks.

Whether you have a daily routine you love or you prefer to switch it up with new looks all the time, makeup is a form of self-expression and self-care for many people. And with the right products, you can make sure your look stays looking good all day, rain or shine. Setting sprays are a new favorite way to keep makeup in place, with several products claiming to add hours of extra wear time. But with so many on the market, it can be hard to know which ones will live up to their promises. That’s why StudyFinds did the work for you and searched 10 expert websites for the best of the best setting sprays. This list includes the most frequently recommended products, but be sure to let us know in the comments if you have a favorite we didn’t include!

A woman applying setting spray
A woman applying setting spray (Photo by Kalos Skincare on Unsplash)

The List: Best Setting Sprays, According to Experts


1. Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

If you’re a fan of the classics, this is the setting spray for you. Since its introduction in 2010, Urban Decay’s All Nighter setting spray has been living up to its promises of long-lasting glam. “Urban Decay was among the first to launch a setting spray, and not surprisingly, the brand continues to reign supreme in this makeup category,” notes Byrdie. “Suitable for all skin types, the non-irritating formula plays well over other products, delivering an invisible finish and a natural-looking glow that makes your makeup pop. What’s more, it keeps your glam looking fresh for up to 16 hours.”

Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray
Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

“The best overall setting spray on our list is the iconic Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray, a formula that’s been around since 2010 and is no stranger to accolades. You can expect makeup that looks fresh all day (and night) without fading, smudging, or settling into fine lines,” adds Real Simple. “A pro tip: While the most common way to use this product is as a finishing spray, you can also use it to amp up the pigment of your eyeshadows or to make your foundation waterproof.”

“The Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray is a longtime favorite of Allure editors and makeup artists alike,” says Allure. “The microfine mist lets you dance the night away without worrying about your foundation melting off or your shadow creasing.”

2. Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Set + Refresh Spray

Moisture, moisture, moisture. That’s what Milk Makeup promises with its Hydro Grip Set + Refresh Spray, and reviewers agree that it delivers. “Dry skin types, listen up: Milk Makeup’s Hydro Grip Setting + Refreshing Spray will set makeup without the mattifying (and, sometimes, drying) properties of other setting products,” says Allure. “On top of preventing issues like smudging, caking, and fading, this mist will also treat your skin to a moisturizing blend of hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, hemp seed oil, and moringa seed oil.”

clear spray bottle with blue liquid
Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Set + Refresh Spray

“This might just be social media’s favorite setting spray,” adds Harper’s Bazaar. “Instead of alcohol, it features blue agave extract to ‘grip’ makeup, as well as cannabis seed extract, hyaluronic acid, aloe, and niacinamide for that extra dose of dewy hydration.”

As Byrdie explains, “our tester said that it felt cool on her face and dried quickly into a radiant finish. While the lightweight formula is very hydrating, it didn’t feel overly wet or sticky. Once dry, this skin-friendly setting spray promises to keep your makeup in place for up to 12 hours.” 

3. Anastasia Beverly Hills Dewy Set Setting Spray

Another great pick for dry skin, this Anastasia Beverly Hills spray is a hydrating mist that’s sure to secure your makeup. And if you only have enough room in your makeup bag for one spray, this product can also be used as a primer. “Makeup application can be tricky with dry skin, but this multipurpose mist from Anastasia Beverly Hills offers a simple solution,” says Byrdie. “Dewy Set can be used as a first step to prep your skin, then spritzed on again to set your makeup and refresh it throughout the day.”

clear spray bottle with gold shimmery liquid next to grey box
Anastasia Beverly Hills Dewy Set Setting Spray

“Your makeup skills are something to be proud of, so you’ll want to finish the job off right with a spray like this glowy mist from Anastasia Beverly Hills,” notes People. “This setting spray was one of the best at melting our makeup together and making our skin look smooth as butter, while also bringing the shades of our makeup to life. We noticed an instant boost in hydration and a natural-looking glow when we sprayed this golden mist.”

“Those who want glowy and radiant skin will likely fall head over heels for the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dewy Set Setting Spray,” claims Real Simple. “It’s alcohol-free, making it ideal for dry skin, and it contains moisturizing glycerin and the soothing antioxidant portulaca oleracea extract.”

4. Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional: Super Setter Pore-Minimizing Setting Spray

You may recognize the name of this product as a widely popular primer, and you’d be right. But believe it or not, Benefit is just as useful at the end of your makeup routine as it is at the beginning. “Setting sprays are known to be multi-functional, but this one from Benefit Cosmetics truly does it all,” claims InStyle. “Although the ultra-fine mist feels completely weightless on the face, it shrinks the look of pores, locks makeup in place, and keeps it looking fresh for up to 16 hours. Even after our reviewer put it through extensive waterproof testing, her makeup didn’t budge.”

blue spray bottle next to blue box
Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional: Super Setter Pore-Minimizing Setting Spray

Whether the forecast predicts rain, you’ve got a sweaty gym-sesh planned, or you’re watching a tear-jerking rom-com, the POREfessional will ensure your makeup stays put. “If you need a waterproof formula, The POREfessional has your name on it,” says Byrdie. “This micro-fine mist has a virtually weightless, slightly cooling feel. After she sprayed it on, our tester’s makeup was set with no smudges or smears to speak of.”

You can say goodbye to messy and inconvenient powders, too. As Harper’s Bazaar says, “thanks to its pore-blurring properties, this product offers the soft-focus look of a powder with the ease of a setting spray. Plus, it’s alcohol free, so it won’t dry out skin.”

5. Rare Beauty Always An Optimist 4-in-1 Prime & Set Mist

A newcomer on the beauty scene, Selena Gomez’s Rare Beauty has created some instant beauty favorites. Among that list is this standout spray that serves as a multifunctional 4-in-1 product. “Rare Beauty’s take on setting spray is this multipurpose mist that not only sets your makeup but also hydrates, primes, and refreshes your skin,” explains Byrdie. “After trying it first-hand, we can confirm that it lives up to its claims as a four-in-one formula.”

Rare Beauty Always An Optimist 4-in-1 Prime & Set Mist
Rare Beauty Always An Optimist 4-in-1 Prime & Set Mist (

“It’s rare that a product checks every box, but this setting spray from Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez did just that. This light mist pampered us with its refreshing feeling as it settled onto our skin, as promised with its 4-in-1 technology,” says People. “We noticed that this spray seemed to melt into our foundation and even appeared to shrink the size of our pores, giving us a natural, glowing look. This setting spray is completely waterproof and kept our makeup looking pristine, even after splashing our face with water. There was also minimal transfer to the towel we used to dry off, which was quite impressive.”

“To ensure skin stays calm through all day wear, the formula features a soothing botanical blend of lotus, gardenia and white water lily,” adds InStyle. “Aside from giving her skin a healthy-looking glow, our tester found that it helped lock her foundation onto her skin.”

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This article may contain affiliate links.