I was very curious, if the claims of the Ulta Mattifying Balm (eliminate shine and minimize pores- hello!) are really true and if this is in fact working. I am the perfect candidate with my shiny T-zone! So, what does it promise? 

Here are the claims:

Ulta's Mattifying Balm is an oil-control mattifying primer that can be applied before or after makeup application to eliminate shine for a long wear, flawless look. This balm provides a matte finish to set makeup and can be used for touch-ups throughout the day. It minimizes the look of pores, eliminates shine, and gives the skin a silky, smooth finish. This purse-friendly compact includes a built in sponge so you can take it with you wherever you go. Can be used before or after application of makeup.

My thoughts:

The consistency of this products is really strange- it feels almost like rubber to smear! LOL! It´s not a powder, not a liquid, it can´t drip or run. It´s really as if it can´t move at all. At first I was very confused, what to do with it and then I read the instructions:


Using the included sponge, dab product gently over makeup. For best results, be sure to dab and not wipe, so as not to smudge your makeup.

Step 1: Swirl the sponge in the balm

Step 2: To absorb oil and eliminate shine, gently pat the formula as needed

Step 3: If applying after makeup application, do not rub in. This can remove your makeup.


Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Dimethicone, Dimethicone / Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Phenoxyethanol, Silica, Isoceteth-10, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tocopheryl Acetate, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Cyclopentasiloxane, Cyclohexasiloxane.

Without the instructions, I would not even have realized that this product includes a sponge and a mirror- I swear: you can absolutely NOT see that this is hidden inside! I saw in a couple reviews on the Ulta website, that many girls say that they have not received the sponge and that there was no mirror: but lift the little pan up, ladies, it´s in there totally secretly hidden. LMAO.

OK, let´s swirl that sponge on the balm and pat it on my nose and on the side of my nose, to see what happens! Oh wow, really! Shine is instantly diminished! GONE! The pores look slightly less defined, I would say. What a surprise. But see for yourself:


However, I find that after a while my regular shine comes back (and with that shine the pores look bigger again too). 

I´ve also tried it on top of makeup, but can´t really recommend this, as you move your foundation around and it really gets tricky to apply- plus you ruin the sponge and the balm will get filthy dirty.

My verdict: 

Well, applied under makeup, you will achieve- and if only for a while- shine free skin with less pronounced pores. Depending on how hot it is, or how active you are, the time it´s working can differ anywhere from 2- 5 hours. The Ulta Mattifying Balm costs $12.50 (right now buy 1 get 1 half of everything from the Ulta store brand), so I feel like it is worth a try if you suffer from super shiny skin or/and large pores.

Do you have a good trick to eliminate shine and big pores?


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