Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Powder Foundation (4W4 and 5W1)

This is by no means a new product from Estee Lauder, but it is one of their best sellers that I don’t hear much about. As far as I can tell, this version of the Double Wear Powder was reformulated sometime around the beginning of 2019. I remember the Estee Lauder counter had the previous version on clearance shortly before I bought this version for the first time. Every counter doesn’t always get the newest releases right on schedule, so please correct me if that timing is wrong.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation Review 4W4 Hazel and 5W1 Bronze
Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation – 4W4 Hazel (left) and 5W1 Bronze (right)

Estee Lauder claims that this powder is soft and weightless, and I definitely agree. It feels like I have nothing on when I wear it alone as a powder foundation. That does translate to less coverage than some people might be looking for given the Double Wear name. This powder was designed to be a buildable multi-use powder, so it does start off as light coverage. Not a lot of powder picks up on the brush, which helps it function well as a setting powder. Getting into the buildable claim, it does build on itself with no issue. You can achieve a medium coverage if you apply it with a brush and apply two layers. If you use the included sponge you can get more coverage, but I don’t think it ever quite gets to the full coverage that the brand claims. The sponge also applies the product heavier, so just one layer gives me medium coverage. A second layer with the sponge does improve the coverage a little, but some of my scars still peak through. But again, it looks heavy applied with the sponge and accentuates texture on me.

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Estee Lauder Double Wear Powder, 4W4 Hazel and 5W1 Bronze**

Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation 4W4 Hazel and 5W1 Bronze Swatches on Medium Dark Skin
Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation – 4W4 Hazel (left) and 5W1 Bronze (right)

As promised, this is a matte product but not overly matte unless you have dry skin like I do. It doesn’t cling to dry spots or texture on initial application but it does look a little powdery. A couple of minutes after application it does settle in and look less dry, but it is definitely still matte. As it wears throughout the day it does start to look drier and my skin texture (especially in drier areas) becomes more apparent. Using the Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter ($44.00)** underneath this when worn as a foundation does help with the dryness. On the downside, it sacrifices the perfected look of the matte finish. It doesn’t look bad, but if you like a matte finish for the benefit of minimizing the look of imperfections, the pairing may disappoint you.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte** vs bareMinerals BarePro** (discontinued formula)

Apparently, the bareMinerals BarePro Foundation** line has been completely reformulated, so you can’t even get this version of the powder anymore. It is still however the powder foundation that I currently own to give a color reference. So I figured I would go ahead and tell you about the formula in case you are able to get your hands on this formulation before the inventory is gone for good. Update February 15, 2022: I have found inventory left at Macy’s if you are interested.**

Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation 4W4 Hazel and 5W1 Bronze and bareMinerals Barepro Powder (pre-2022 formula) Sable 21 Swatches on Medium Dark Skin
bareMinerals Barepro Powder Sable 21 (top) and Estee Lauder Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation 4W4 Hazel (bottom left) and 5W1 Bronze (bottom right)

The Barepro powder** (discontinued) also feels light and weightless but it is medium coverage in one layer (using a brush). Using the included sponge you can get close to full coverage but it does look heavy. The Barepro is more mattifying than the Estee Lauder Double Wear Powder and if you are looking up close you can see it clinging to dryness. This formula does a good job at blurring the appearance of the skin and it luckily looks better as I wear it throughout the day. It is still matte and drier than I would prefer but it does look better after it settles into my skin. This formula also settles slightly into smile lines but it is not bad from a regular viewing distance. I would say this formula is better for normal to oily skin but it does work well for me during the summer. It may not sound like it, but I really like this powder and I’m sad this formula was discontinued. This was my third time purchasing the Barepro powder and I’m glad I got my hands on it before it was gone for good.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Powder Foundation, $46.00**

UPDATE March 22, 2022: Estee Lauder has been relaunching many of its legacy products into sleeker blue compacts. The Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation is the newest product to get the treatment. The new compact is refillable and has gone up in price to $46.00** (up from $43.00). The refills retail for $35.00.** The formula has remained the exact same and you get the same amount of product, this is purely a packaging update. The new shade range however did shrink by 10 shades. My go-to shade (4W4) has been axed from the lineup but they do still have the shade 5W1 which I can also get away with. There are still 31 shades in the range which is still decent. Since this is a relaunch, they have the sales data from the last lineup to know which shades are selling. Not much comfort for those of us that need to find a new shade, but that’s the way it goes. If you’d like to see the new packaging and find out which shades are available you can check out my post by clicking here.

The Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Powder Foundation comes in 41 shades and contains 12 grams of product. To put that in perspective the MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation has 15 grams and retails for $35.00** (click here for swatches). I make that comparison specifically because it is a better powder foundation than the Estee Lauder Double Wear Powder. If you want an actual powder foundation, not only does the MAC powder give more coverage but it also takes less product to get that coverage. Overall, it is a better value for money and it comes in 53 shades.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a setting powder in a skin tone shade, I think this could be a nice option. I don’t notice it being overly drying when applied lightly over my liquid foundations. One thing to keep in mind though is that it is matte. It will mattify the finish of any foundation you wear it with. So if you want a satin or dewy finish, then I’d look elsewhere.

I’m honestly not really sure why the brand decided to group this under the Double Wear branding. While it does last well throughout the day, it is by no means as budge-proof as the Double Wear Liquid Foundation. In my opinion, the Double Wear Matte Powder Foundation is best for normal to oily skin types. While I can get away with it on my dry skin, as the day goes on and it continues to absorb oil it starts to emphasize dryness and texture. If you are looking for a matte, full-coverage powder foundation, I would recommend looking into the MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation instead. I do think this is a nice powder, I just don’t think it is truly full coverage. If you have scars or dark marks to cover, I personally don’t think it’ll be enough.


Thanks for reading. I hope you’re having a relaxing weekend!


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2 thoughts on “Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Powder Foundation (4W4 and 5W1)

  1. The MAC foundation sounds more like my thing. I agree it’s a bit strange that this one would be part of the Double Wear line, kind of like when they came out with the Double Wear Sheer. Kind of opposite of what double wear is known for lol.

    Liked by 1 person

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