When I started out learning about makeup and how to use it, I stumbled upon this thing called a “primer”. It all made sense, when put in a painting context – you prime your walls, before you apply your paint. It helps the paint stick better, and last longer, and creates a smoother finish. When I had my walls painted, I made sure they put on a primer too! LOL!
But, what d’ya know? That’s what makeup primer does too! We discussed this once right here on the blog, but that was way back in 2012 – a lot has changed in 5 years! Or has it?
If you watch YouTube videos and try to learn about makeup, primer is always used. If you have oily skin, primer is recommended to keep the skin oil-free for longer. If you have visible pores, primer helps create a smooth finish.
Yet, how often do you use a makeup primer? Or rather, do you use any at all? 😀
Personally speaking, I don’t.
I mean, I have them – I’m a beauty junkie remember? I’ve tried most things at least once! 😀 But they aren’t products that I use very often. The primary reason is because the primers I had experience with didn’t sit well with me in terms of texture.
You see, in order to give your skin that smooth texture, fill in the pores and holes and keep oilies at bay, a primer primarily consists of silicones. Lots and lots of silicones. My skin tolerates silicones, but I don’t like the texture. It feels like it’s suffocating my skin.
When I found my Holy Grail sunscreen, I had no more need for a primer. The sunscreen not only protected my skin something wonderful, it also acts like a primer! Or rather, a makeup base.
So, on a day to day basis, that’s what I’d use. My makeup sits well on my sunscreen, and because I don’t have oily skin, it doesn’t slip off throughout the day. I didn’t have a lot of trouble with my foundation and makeup staying put either, and I don’t usually need to look picture perfect all day long 😀 If I look the worse for wear by the evening, it reflects how I feel LOL! 😀
Yet, when the occasion warrants, when I have to put on a good face – e.g. for an event, or for when I want to be sure my makeup stays intact for a few hours. I delve into my stash of primers. For now, I only have 4! Well that’s probably 3 more than most people lol! 😀
- Guerlain Meteorites Base Perfecting Pearls – This is the bottle you see in the first picture. It has the signature Meteorites pink pearls suspended in a gel texture. When you pump it out, the powder breaks up and infuses the gel with the pink iridescence. On skin, I don’t see anything. No shimmer or glitter. It also feels like nothing. It’s like you’re applying a gel on your skin, and it feels lovely and refreshing. I absolutely love it! Yet, despite the invisible feeling on skin, it makes a beautiful primer. Any base I put on it, or even just powder, makes my skin look amazing! Smooth, glowing and importantly, everything stays put for hours. My makeup looks as fresh after lunch as it did when I put it on in the morning. I only have to touch up my lipstick! So this is my go-to primer, when I have to attend (or host) an event, or just whenever I feel like my makeup could do with a little boost. It’s STELLAR!
- Laura Mercier Foundation Primer – This is a long time favourite over the years. It was one of the first primers I ever used, and I like it for the simple reason that it does NOT have a silicone feel. Instead, it feels just like a lotion, absorbing easily, without any sticky or velvety feeling. Yet, it holds my base well, and helps my makeup last. It is a classic and bestselling Laura Mercier product and I can understand why. I’ve actually used up a tube over the years! That’s saying something 🙂
- YSL Touche Eclat Blur Primer – This one was a sample a friend gifted me, because she told me it was her favourite primer ever! While the gel texture with its gold dust suspended in it is reminiscent of the Guerlain Meteorites base, this one feels just like a classic silicone primer. It goes on skin with the velvety feel of silicone. It isn’t unpleasant, and my pores do not feel clogged or suffocated, thank goodness! I don’t notice the illumating effects, but it does help base makeup and makeup in general, stay put better. I’m not sure if I’d buy a full size bottle, because of the texture.
- Clarins Beauty Flash Balm – You can read my review here. This one is absolutely lovely, because it’s actually supposed to be a skincare and can be worn as a mask. So, if you use it as a primer, it’s sort of like wearing a mask all day under your makeup LOL! It holds base beautifully, but unlike the other primers above, it is a little trickier to work with, which is why some people don’t like it. You have to work quickly, as it will set on your skin. So while it’s a cult favourite, there are many who don’t get it either.
I sometimes like wearing a primer under a light BB or CC Cream or tinted moisturiser. For some reason, I feel like it makes your skin look better, especially if the product is very sheer. Perhaps it’s because your skin isn’t oiling up and making an already sheer base look even more sheer? I don’t know. Sometimes, I wear a primer under just powder as well. It helps the powder stick, and it makes your skin look natural, yet better. Interesting! 😀
But for the most part, I eschew wearing primers – in fact I’d forgotten I had these till recently! LOL! 😀
How about you? Are makeup primers a must have in your makeup routine? What are your favourites?
I’d love to know what your favourite makeup primers are. Always game to try something new – beauty junkie remember? 😀