Favorite makeup Primers

A very good friend of mine ask me for a suggestion of what she should use on her face to prevent it from getting oily shortly after applying her makeup. I effortlessly gave her a few suggestions of my frequently used primers along with telling her how I often use milk of magnesia as a primer. Sounds crazy but it works. Her question subsequently got me thinking, are all primers created equally? A primer by definition is a base product which allows for smooth makeup application while allowing you to wear your makeup for a longer time. There are many types of primers on the market ranging from low to expensive prices. How do you know which one to choose? I thought watching youtube videos would help me choose the best products but this approach proved futile.  I quickly recognized that all youtubers have different products and techniques they swear by. If you follow this concept, you will find yourself wasting money buying the same items they use only to realize that it does not work for you. This is simply because we all have different skin types, therefore what works for your favorite makeup artist may not work for you. Even if you have similar skin types; diet, water intake, skin care routines and your level of physical activity will play a role in how your makeup look after application and how long it will last without having to do a touch-up or reapplication.

The best way to find the primer that works for you is to first know your skin type then decide how you want your foundation to look after application. Buy one that targets the problems specific to you. If you have oily skin you may need a mattifying primer and if you have dry skin you may have to use oil or water based primer to add additional moisture to your skin thus preventing it from becoming dry after applying your makeup. Follow this simple rule when choosing a primer.

  • Do your research before you go shopping. Figure out your budget and check reviews on the various brands that are available. When you have narrowed down to a few that you may potentially like, go shopping, get advice from the in store sale rep, and test the primers before making the purchase. It may be tempting to buy online, however this may not be a good idea when purchasing beauty products you have never used. Save your receipts, in the event you do not like the primer after using it a few times. Some stores allow you to return items if you used less than 25% of its content within a certain period of time.

There are a few primers and techniques I use on a regular basis to eliminate my skin dryness and minimize the pores I have on my nose and cheeks. I’m a makeup enthusiast and not a licensed skin care professional or makeup artist so my reviews are based on my personal experience gained through using them over the years.


  • LOreal Paris Magic Perfecting Base face primer– This was the first primer I bought when I started exploring makeup. Its creamy texture easily glides on the skin and fills pores leaving my skin feeling soft and ready for my foundation. It gives a matte finish and provides for long foundation wear.

  Con. I find that this primer tend to flake under my liquid foundations when it dries. To combat this I lather my face with an adequate amount of moisturizer, then use a pea size amount only on the areas where I have large pores. I never use it with a foundation that also gives a matte finish. I find that the combination of both a mattifying primer and foundation is a recipe for makeup disaster.


  • Rimmel London Lasting finish skin perfecting primer– This primer has also been a staple in my makeup collection. The lightweight formula applies relatively easy to my skin and helps to minimize pores. Its best feature which have been tested and proven is that I get extended wear (8hrs) for my foundation without having to do a touch up.

Con. Your skin my feel a bit clammy after application, you have to wait a few minutes for it to dry before you apply your foundation. I mix it with my Cover FX custom drops or my Bare minerals tinted hydrating gel cream when I want to create a “no-makeup” look.


  • Nyx Pore filler primer. Continuing with the theme of pore fillers this primer gives a satiny smooth finish and creates the perfect canvas for perfectly smooth foundation application. A little goes a long way.

Con. I can only use this primer on areas where I have pores. It does not sit well under matte finish foundations.

  • Milk Makeup Blur stick– If you do not like to use your fingers to apply makeup then this primer is for you. I glide the stick over my problem areas (nose and cheek) then use my beauty blender to buff it into my skin. You instantly see the difference with pore minimization and oil reduction after application.


  • Sephora Beauty Amplifier after Glow Primer and luminizer– Are you ready to get your glow on? This product doubles as a lumizer and primer and I’m totally in love with it. Its gel like texture glides on easily leaving me with smooth glowing skin. I sometimes wear it alone on days when I don’t feel like wearing foundation.


  • Smashbox photo finish foundation primerThis primer is a recent purchase that I find myself reaching for every time I do my makeup. The silky formula creates a velvety smooth finish while filling my pores. My foundation and concealer stay in place whenever I use it as my base. You only need a pea size amount to get the job done.

Using a primer will absolutely help to increase makeup wear, minimize pores and limit a shiny look shortly after you apply your foundation. There is another important step that you can take to create a polished picture perfect look. Use a setting powder or setting spray to keep your makeup in place. The ones I use are in the picture below. Comment below if you want me to do a review on them.

XO Colette


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