Avoiding Pancake #31 (A Mineral Powder Review)

I’ve got a lot of respect for Little Richard. I mean, he’s a musical legend. He was fey and fierce back in the Fifties. One of his earliest bands featured James Brown, Billy Preston, and Jimi Hendrix. (That would be an awesome combo to see live! I’d love footage of their recording sessions, just to see James Brown, Little Richard, and Mr. Jimi trying to out-preen each other). As much as I love his music, I have never been a fan of his makeup. It’s a generational thing, I think. My mom and those of her era are big believers in the pancake. There’s this dangerous tendency to overdo with foundation. I personally have never been able to stand the stuff. It’s gloppy, hard to apply, and in climates that are hot and humid (like Miami, where you start sweating the minute you leave the house), it always looks terrible on me. I inevitably break out after I put it on. I could continue, but you get the idea. I hate foundation. And for every person who knows how to use it to enhance their beauty, there are several others who obviously don’t.

Golden Brooks

She looks like she rubbed ash on her face. My problem is, I’ve always had the kind of skin that needs a good cover-up. It’s not like I need Proactiv, but I do get occasional breakouts and having the particular shade of brown skin that I do, that means dark spots. I’ve never had much luck covering them up. I started using the Iman foundation stick on my problem areas, over whatever moisturizer I was wearing that day, but then when I went outside, my face would take on that Big Momma’s House melting-in-the-sun look. Not pretty. My salvation has been mineral powder. I’ve been reading the reviews over at MakeupAlley.com and I realize that mineral powder certainly isn’t for everyone. If you use too much, you can wind up looking like you’re wearing bad kabuki makeup. The important thing is to try a few different varieties before you settle.

Neutrogena Mineral Sheers:~ I thought the packaging was so cute in the store. Then I brought it home, tried to apply it, and realized what BS it was. First I managed to crack the container while trying to follow the instructions (shake the brush for the powder to appear), then I couldn’t get enough powder on the brush, and the damn stuff didn’t cover anything up for me at all. Sad, because I’ve had a lot of success with most of Neutrogena’s products in the past. I won’t give up on us yet, Neutrogena.

I was ready to abandon mineral powder for a while, then I discovered L’Oreal Bare Naturale Mineral Foundation. Thank you, L’Oreal. You make my face look smooth and near-flawless, and somehow manages to minimize the appearance of my large pores. It’s a near miracle, given this infernal weather. When I’m wearing this in the blazing sun, my sweat appears as little beads on my nose that wipe away without ruining my refined look. My advice is to apply your moisturizer first, let it sink in for about seven minutes, then apply. Make sure your face is well lit when you’re putting it on; you want to make sure you’re not overdoing it. Not only does this stuff protect you from the sun (SPF 19), it’s also helped me to keep my oily/combination skin clear and pretty. I only have to do a light touch-up with an oil absorbing sheet in the late afternoon, and it’s August! All this and more for around $15. I really can’t recommend it enough.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. Thank you so much for this! I have very oily skin and dark spots and discoloration as well and have always needed good powder. I am going to try your suggestion ASAP!

  2. Wow! Me and my sister were just talking about pancake #31 and a recent commerical Little Richard appears on. We love him too but he needs to give it up! Lol! I to enjoy Neutrogena’s products and have wanted to try a mineral poweder. I’m going to check out L’Oreal Bare Naturale. Thanks for the advice! :)

  3. for really great all natural mineral powder foundation, you should try bare essentials. it’s the gold standard in a sea of “natural powder” imatators. it has more shades and is great for sensitive skin. the stuff will change your life ^_^ lol!!

  4. Thanks for the add and compliment! I’m going to add you to my links as well! :)

  5. Hi Southpaw! I certainly plan on trying bare essentials. My Sephora catalog came this week, and I always drool over all the stuff I yearn for but really can’t afford. =)

    I tend to do most of my cosmetics shopping at CVS, Walgreens, Sally’s, and Target sad to say. But funny enough, I am going to Sephora today for a special event! I am super excited for this event, so keep reading AfroBella for the scoop (I plan to post something by Sunday hopefully. But already this weekend is looking crazy!). I also plan on wrangling as many product samples as I can for review. I don’t like to pay big bucks for something if I don’t even know if it works or not. Thanks for the suggestion! I have a feeling that if I go Bare Essentials, I won’t ever want to go back.

  6. bella, i’ve been using it for five years and it’s the only foundation that works! it’s a great investment in terms of cost (foundation is $25 and the viel is $19) because it last so long ’cause you don’t have to use so much. i love it because the owner, leslie blogett, makes an effort to have as many shades available for all women. i started using the color dark and realized recently that the warm tan is a better blend for my skin tone. sephora is like a balm to the beauty diva soul hehe. hope you enjoyed it!!

  7. bella,

    just wondering what shade you used in the loreal mineral powder. i bought 2 shades, 468 & 470. did you find your shade too red/orange, because that is a problem i have a lot. any help is appreciated.



  9. First they went after the Communists, and I did not stand up, because I was not a Communist. Then they went after the homosexuals and infirm, and I did not stand up, because I was neither. Then they went after the Jews, and I did not stand up, because I was not a Jew. Then they went after the Catholics, and I did not stand up, because I was Protestant. Finally, they went after me, and there was no one left to stand up for me.

  10. Beachmusic says:
  11. Great write-up, I’m a enormous believer in commenting on blogs and forums to assist the blog authors realize that they have added some thing of value on the world-wide-web!

  12. I’ve always been a fan of mineral makeup — my skin’s oily yet VERY sensitive. I’d tried the Neutrogena one (he!!acious!) and was ok with the L’Oreal one (Bare Minerals is just too expensive AND doesn’t have the right colours for women of colour).

    Last year I read an article about Meow Cosmetics; I liked the idea of there being three different types of coverage and a HUGE range of colours to choose from. When I read that I could get sample sizes, I was sold. I’ve been a convert ever since. I get my mineral makeup (I use the medium coverage) at a decent price and IN MY COLOUR.

    I love L’Oreal, and use SOOOO many of their products. But the Meow folks had me at hello — a makeup addict’s own version of HEAVEN.

  13. Ha Paytes says:

    A formidable share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing somewhat analysis on this. And he in actual fact bought me breakfast as a result of I found it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! But yeah Thnkx for spending the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If potential, as you turn out to be experience, would you mind updating your weblog with extra particulars? It is highly helpful for me. Huge thumb up for this blog post!

  14. soulsistashaka says:

    SHE DOES NOT LOOK ASHY,SHE LOOKS GORGEOUS!! why the heck are black women obsessed with other women’s makeup,its pure jealousy! all the dark foundations i see look like mud,dark chocolate and the color orange mixed together, rather have a light bright face then one that looks like tar.
    th nerve of some black women and their complex
    thumbs down.

  15. I’m truly enjoying the design and layout of your blog. It’s a very easy on the
    eyes which makes it much more enjoyable for me to come here and
    visit more often. Did you hire out a designer to create your theme?

    Excellent work!

  16. Thanks to my father who informed me on the topic of this blog,
    this blog is in fact awesome.


  1. […] I made fun of Little Richard early in my blogging life — I swear, I imagine him like a little angel on my shoulder and telling me, “honey, that’s too much” when I get heavy-handed with my foundation. I’d love to interview him and find out what foundation he’s using these days. I am positive that he’s a liquid foundation fan (I am so not). But who knows — by now he might be using Bare Escentuals. […]

  2. […] is Lil Kim reminding me of Little Richard in this video?  “Pancake 31″ […]

  3. […] in more Pancake 31 foundation and Lottabody setting lotion than your heart could ever desire by clicking through the […]

  4. […] in more Pancake 31 foundation and Lottabody setting lotion than your heart could ever desire by clicking through the […]

  5. […] Hate groups however, like the North Alabama White Citizens Council, worked hard to try to counter Richard’s spreading influence, issuing public warnings against rock and roll’s power to bring races together; but Richard continued to win audiences with his flamboyantly entertainment antics, flicker lights, and Pancake 31 makeup. […]

Speak Your Mind