The Best Drugstore Setting Spray to Prevent Makeup Meltdowns, Starting at Just $5

Whether you prefer to wear a full face of makeup or just a light stitch of it, we can all agree that we’d rather have it stay on our skin and not smudged against our phone screens (or face masks), right? One foolproof way to lock your look in place: A light misting of setting spray as soon as you’ve finished applying your makeup.

Luckily it's no longer the case that setting sprays come at a premium. In fact, many of our go-to drugstore brands have quality options that are on par with or even better than some of the pricier formulas we've tried. (And we've tried a LOT of them over the years.)

Alright, let's get to the fun part. Behold the seven best drugstore setting sprays to pick up the next time you head out for more toilet paper and snacks.

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1. E.l.f Illuminating Mist & Set

Best for Dry Skin

This hydrating and illuminating mist was made for those with drier skin types. Loaded with soothing ingredients like aloe, green tea and cucumber (and free of any potentially dehydrating alcohols), it sets your makeup in place while imparting a subtle radiance thanks to the micro-fine, light-reflective particles in the formula. The fact that it’s only five dollars makes it all the better. Tip: When applying, make sure to hold the spray at arm’s length so you get a light, even coat of mist.

2. Nyx Matte Finish Setting Spray

Best for Oil Control

On the other hand, if you’re the type of person who needs to carry blotting sheets with you at all times, you’ll want a setting spray that’s specifically formulated to keep excess shine at bay, like this one from NYX. The Internet darling is a constant bestseller (fun fact: it was the number one setting spray in America, according to last year’s Nielsen report) because of the way it locks in makeup and leaves your skin with the perfect matte finish for hours.

3. L'oréal Paris Makeup Infallible Pro-spray

Freshest Feeling

This makeup artist favorite (Sir John aka Beyoncé’s go-to man uses it) feels super lightweight and refreshing going on. Plus, it keeps your makeup looking just as fresh afterwards. The finish is neither matte nor dewy but what Goldilocks would call just right. A tip for application? Spray it on in an “X” and “T” motion across and down your face. Repeat two to four times depending on how much wear time you’re going for.

4. Maybelline Lasting Fix Makeup Setting Spray

Longest Lasting

This one goes out to all the makeup aficionados who like to take their time with a full-face beat—and any essential workers out there who work long hours and need their makeup to stay on under their PPE. This long-lasting formula keeps your makeup in place for up to 16 hours...or until you wash it off yourself (thoroughly with cleanser). Dermatologist- and allergy-tested, it feels breathable on and prevents makeup transfer without suffocating your skin. Psst, if you have oilier skin, mist this on under and over your makeup for even more mileage.

5. Neutrogena Healthy Skin Radiant Makeup Setting Spray

Best for Mature Skin

More than just a setting spray, this hydrating pick is also packed with peptides and antioxidants to support collagen production (which is crucial for plumping up slack skin) and offering additional protection against free radical damage (aka the nemesis of aging). Plus, the spray itself feels weightless on and leaves your makeup looking fresh all day, almost as if you’ve just applied it. No creasing, fading or patchiness to be found here.

6. Milani Make It Last Prime + Correct + Set Makeup Spray

Best Multitasker

Another fan favorite, Milani’s multitasking spray can be used as a primer and a finishing spray so your makeup not only goes on smoother but stays on longer as well. Either way, your foundation (and concealer and blush and anything else you apply) will stay fresh on your face and not all over the insides of your face mask. We love to spray a little of this onto our eyeshadow brush before application to get more intense pigmentation and prevent any smudging or creasing as the shadow wears.

7. Pacifica Crystal Dew Makeup Setting Spray

Best Natural Formula

For any ingredient conscious folks out there, we’d point you to this crystal-infused spray from Pacifica. This formula is completely vegan and cruelty-free and free of any parabens, phthalates, mineral oil or petroleum. It’s also packed with gentle ingredients like coconut water, vitamin E, grapefruit seed and goji berry extract so it nourishes your skin while extending the wear time of your makeup. We enjoy the refreshing scent and the fact that it has quartz powder in it. (Hey, we’ll take all the magical powers of healing crystals we can get.)

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Beauty Director

Jenny Jin is PureWow’s Beauty Director and is currently based in Los Angeles. Since beginning her journalism career at Real Simple magazine, she has become a human encyclopedia of...