make up fix

DIY~Fix Broken Pressed Powder Makeup

So I have this wonderful little container of blush I love.  While putting away my makeup it slipped out of my hands…then hit my bathroom counter… bounced off the counter and hit a drawer…ricocheted off the drawer, twirled in the air a few times…and smashed onto my tile bathroom floor.  (All while I was standing there just staring in awe).

I’m sure you have all done this at least once.  You drop your pressed make up then say a little prayer to yourself that it somehow is okay before you pick it up.  But it never is, instead, a million tiny little pieces are there waiting. If you even attempt to open it there is a huge mess on your hands, counter, any makeup bag, etc.  At this point I usually throw it away and will be bummed for a few days.  Or I attempt to still use what I can of it before it makes too much of a mess, then end up throwing it away anyway when I get too annoyed.  Waste of makeup &  money.

This happened to me before going to school last week. Luckily my friend gave me some advice on how to fix it.  I had heard of people fixing cracked makeup before but had never really given it too much thought because it seemed next to impossible to me.  I gave it a try anyway.  If this happens I highly suggest trying this before throwing it away!  Plus, if you are just going to throw it away anyway it doesn’t hurt because you have nothing to lose. I looked for some videos online of how to do this and while there are many of them, I did not find a source to site since they are all the same but different at the same time.  (What a headache)

At this point you have two options for your makeup: 1. Turn cracked makeup into a loose powder version of same product.  May need to use a different container depending on what size container held the broken makeup.  OR   2. Use a little rubbing alcohol to make cracked makeup good as new!  (I went with option #2)  Something  to consider with either option is if your container broke along with the makeup you will definitely need a new one. (Simply reuse an old container, or pick one up at Michael’s or Target)


Things you are going to need:

  • Rubbing alcohol (Highest percentage possible; 90% +)
  • A few tissues
  • Cracked make up & Container
  • Something small to break up / mix powder  (I used a wooden cuticle stick; a toothpick or knife would work as well)
  • An eyedropper makes this so much easier but it will still work without one
  • Something to cover surface working on (I used a large napkin)



Wash hands, cuticle stick,  and working area. Dry completely.  Be careful to not touch powder too much with bare hands because oil and dirt from fingers will get into makeup and possibly ruin it.

Place napkin on work surface to keep your mess in one area; you can throw it away when done so it is easy clean up.  Open container of makeup and break up powder into fine pieces using cuticle stick or like item so there are no large chucks.  Push all pieces into center of container trying to get all pieces on lid and edges if possible.



Rubbing alcohol is going to be added into powder to make it wet so it can be mixed.  Fill cap of alcohol bottle with rubbing alcohol.  This is where an eyedropper really comes in handy.  I did not have an eyedropper so I poured rubbing alcohol from the cap into my blush.  It is a little messy but still works.  Add rubbing alcohol slowly and mix as you go; do not make large pools of alcohol.  Less tends to be more in these situations; you can always add more alcohol but cannot take it away as easily so use sparingly.  I only needed about a cap full of alcohol.  If there is too much you are going to have to wait for the product to dry and alcohol to evaporate before trying again.

Use cuticle stick to mix powder and rubbing alcohol around until it is an even consistency. It should look creamy with no chucks or bumps when finished.

When I pulled my cuticle stick out there was a bump from where I removed it.  (You can see it in picture to the right) Lightly tap container on a hard surface counter to even out product to achieve a smooth finish.  Let sit to dry; do not place container cap on when drying.

(^^I’m a little messy, sorry!)

Check back in a few hours.  Product should be starting to look like normal pressed makeup because the rubbing alcohol is evaporating.  Lightly touch surface of product with finger; it should feel slightly damp to touch but your finger should not sink, and only a little makeup should come off on your finger.  If it is too damp let dry longer; if it is ready then proceed to next step.

Using a tissue, cover your fingers and gently press down on powder to pack into container.  (See photos above)

You can wrap a coin or similar shaped object in tissue to press with if desired better.  I used my fingers and a tissue, so I could have a better feel for how I was shaping my makeup.  Press around outside and move inside, making sure to be firm but gentle; do not move makeup or crack when are pressing.  If makeup moves be careful to put it back into place.   If it moves too much or cracks, you are going to have to wait for it to dry completely and then start the whole process over. Once done pressing, clean up container of excess make up and allow to dry overnight before trying to use it.

And you’re done!  No more sad broken makeup!

My favorite blush usable once again!

Tip: I read if you are traveling or keep your makeup in a bag or purse; put a small cotton ball, cotton pad, or folded up tissue in your pressed powered container on top of makeup in-between it and container’s lid.  This will absorb shock that may happen when you bump or drop it next time. ( For the life of me cannot remember I read this though, sorry!)


32 thoughts on “DIY~Fix Broken Pressed Powder Makeup

    • Reagan, it does work with eye shadow too, I tried it with an old dark color eye shadow I broke and got the same results

    • As far as I know only rubbing alcohol works because it evaporates quickly and doesn’t harm the makeup. I have never tired hydrogen peroxide so I’m not sure.

      • I would assume peroxide will not have the same effect because of the way it foams. Also, alcohol naturally has a “drying” effect. I would worry that peroxide won’t set the make up properly. This is a great tip and it makes so much sense!! Thank you for sharing! If someone decides to try this with peroxide, I would maybe try it on something you won’t be too upset to lose or something on the cheaper side so you can replace it without feeling bad about it! Please let us all know if peroxide works as well! Thanks again to the original pinner for this tip! I can’t wait to try it on the next eyeshadow I break! It always seems to happen to my favorite ones!!

  1. it works, I had to travel the next day and my fave blush was broken up and I didn’t have any alcohol around, so I used mouthwash instead – most of them have an alcohol content and it totally worked!

  2. Maybe a dumb question, but: Just wondering if this is safe to use on your face since it contains rubbing alcohol?

    • Not a dumb question at all. It is safe to use on your skin because the rubbing alcohol evaporates, leaving the powder pressed together. Just like if you spill rubbing alcohol it will evaporate off your skin

  3. Hi there!

    This is a fantastic tutorial, thank you very much! I was quite excited since I drop my dratted compact all the time… then it occurred to me that I could use this to make a pressed powder match my skin better.

    Had a (new) pressed powder that was a bit too light, scraped it out into a metal bowl, added a bit of a darker powder that i found on supersale, mixed them to dust together, made some slight adjustments to get the right colour and then followed your tutorial. Very quickly spooned the goop back into the compact and tapped a few times, scraped the rest of the bowl into a little container to keep as loose powder.

    Worked AMAZINGLY well. And now my powder matches me perfectly. No problems with cracking, powder texture and application are just like before. Lovelovelove it. Thank you! ^_^

    • The alcohol evaporates from the powder as the powder dries, leaving it the same as when you buy it. I’ve never experienced any dryness on my face and I use my fixed powders almost daily. You do have to wait for the makeup to dry before using so all the alcohol will be gone.

  4. I tried this using hydrogen peroxide and it actually worked when you first drop it on it forms this weird bubble type thing and doesnt mix but i just used a tissue to pat it into the powder and form it to shape! so far it is working nicely

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