I think this brush only works (even if it's only a little) if your hair is already detangled and super duper wet. For me, it sped up the drying time a bunch if I (for example) was watching TV and would brush my hair for ten minutes or so. Sounds tedious, but that's how I got it to work for me :)
I would say this is a pretty good matte powder, especially because it is a drugstore option. Personally, I avoid using the applicator that comes with the compact because I have noticed it gets really inconsistent and looks very odd if it's applied heavily and not consistently. I use a brush instead!