Makeup Collection Series | #1 PRIMERS

Monday, February 06, 2017

A few months ago I made the decision to cut down my makeup collection, keeping only the things that I use often and enjoy using. Although I have significantly fewer products I am happier now with my makeup collection than ever before. It can definitely be trimmed down a lot more and I've somehow accumulated a few extra bits and pieces since decluttering. I thought I'd share which products remain in my collection for each category and why I kept them. And also use this as another opportunity to see if there's anything still lurking here that I can get rid of. Oh and I've snuck in my wish list for each category too ;)

N.B. I use recycled Ferrero Rocher boxes for storage and use this as a limit for how many products I can keep for any given category. Generally this works great, in some cases this hasn't worked at all. You'll see...


I personally think everyone should use a makeup primer not only to help makeup perform better based on their skin type - mattifying for oilier skins, hydrating for drier skins - but also to help makeup apply more evenly and last longer too. I have combination/oily skin, with a t-zone that will not be tamed. Generally speaking, even after using a mattifying primer, I still need to blot or powder after a few hours. And, despite being quite oily in places, I actually prefer slightly hydrating primers as my skin is dehydrated too. And after years of seeking a primer to make my giant pores disappear, I've finally realised NO PRIMER will ever be able to do that so I've stopped searching for that anymore. Now I focus on oil control and hydration, with an occasional bout of glow.


Soap & Glory One Heck Of A Blot | post | £10

This is my favourite primer all round, especially in the summer when my skin is oilier than it is now. This light-weight gel-like primer has a lovely emollient texture that is easy to apply and spread over the face without sliding or dragging. It mattifies the skin but feels moisturising at the same time. This makes my makeup last and keeps it looking fresher for longer while unwanted shine is kept at bay. Also, it doesn't sink into my pores like some others I've tried.

This Works In Transit Camera Close-Up | post | £30

And for winter, this has been my favourite because it gives me a smooth matte base to work with while seriously nourishing the skin. This is a moisturiser, mask and primer in one and contains a mix of hyaluronic acid, argan oil, starflower oil and caffeine and smells very refreshing and clean. The more I work this into the skin, the more grippy and matte it becomes. It might be too rich for me in the summer but right now its the perfect balanced primer for me. I have been using it as a moisturiser recently too but I don't think I'd ever waste this product as a mask though.

Laura Mercier Foundation Primer | post | £25

I didn't expect to like this one as much as I did as I'm usually sceptical of hype but the hype is worth it. The fluid gel texture easily glides on all over the skin and becomes slightly tacky making it perfect for gripping onto makeup. This formula is also fortified with antioxidants to help protect the skin while you're wearing makeup which I'm always down for. It's weightless on the skin but makes my makeup look fresher for longer. I reach for this when it's a special occasion because I know I can count on it. I've got a couple of these deluxe samples to use up but I would happily buy a full size of this product.

L'Oréal Lumi Magique| post | £9.99

For a long time I had come to terms with the fact that my oily skin would never be able to handle any makeup that wasn't completely mattifying. Thankfully this primer lets me achieve a glowing-from-within base in a way I never thought possible. This intense white liquid makes my face look radiant in a beautiful way. Once I've applied my foundation over this, my complexion is instantly youthful and I love that it can also be used as a liquid highlighter on the high points of the face too.


Laura Gellar Spackle | £25

This one confuses me because it's almost identical in texture and performance to Benefit The Porefessional, but I really don't feel like that one did much for me. This primer does a decent job at mattifying for a few hours and is able to hold my makeup in place. This one is siliconey and works better to smooth over pores. No primer truly ever makes my pores disappear, despite all the convincing marketing, but this one can minimise their appearance for a while if patted on.

Bobbi Brown Vitamin E Face Base | post | £40

I've been using this longer than any other primer out there, granted I do use this mostly as a moisturiser. Similar to the This Works one, this luscious concoction instantly soothes and hydrates my face. And of course, hydrated skin makes for healthier looking skin and any makeup applied on top looks so much better for it. I use this to prime before makeup when my skin is especially dehydrated otherwise it can make me super greasy because it is a very rich cream. It's got a light uplifting lemon scent that I find comforting.

Nip + Fab | £19.95

This is another siliconey gel but the only difference is that this one takes a while to sink in and if you apply your makeup too quickly it slides around. It actually states on the packaging to let it set for a few minutes. I like the tackiness which makes the makeup adhere better. While I can't say this does anything to help my pores or that it mattifies for significantly longer, what it does well is it keeps my makeup going all day. This isn't one that I think I would repurchase if I'm completely honest.

THE ONES I'M UNSURE ABOUT (and could get rid of)

Cane + Austin Mattifying Primer SPF50 | $56

I'm still getting to grips with this one. It has a very slippery texture and isn't all that pleasant a feeling to apply. It's great knowing there's a whopping helping of sun protection in the formula but the tint is little to none. It's great for me when I'm having a lazy day & I want to know I'm wearing something all over my face. It has a slight tendency to ball up sometimes when rubbing onto the skin or if I place another base product on top. I don't think it's a bad product, but I'm not sure if it's for me. I'll wait to see how we get along in the summer.

Boots Botanics All Bright Balm | post | £5.99

This is another one that allows my oily skin to enjoy some glow without looking greasy. This pink liquid has a fine iridescent shimmer in it that becomes a transparent layer of sheen once blended out. Makeup takes on the sheen when blended on top and while this doesn't help with makeup longevity, it's a great affordable option for a light-reflecting base. Now that I think of it, I haven't used this for a while and probably won't anymore so this can actually go...


Benefit The Porefessional - After all the hype and wanting to believe this would be the primer for me, thankfully I never purchased the full size. I just never found it to do much for me. I need to use these baby samples up soon actually as I've had them a while.

Illamasqua Hydra Veil - I'm enjoying using this under overly drying products and generally under any makeup this winter. Its super hydrating but I can't say I like the weird jelly texture enough to want to purchase a full size.

Studio 10 Miracle Effect Priming Serum - This is meant to be a skincare/makeup prep product all in one. I've yet to try it but I'll admit, I don't expect very much from it.

Pur Correcting Primer - I'm curious to see how this one works on my skin as it's oil-free, silicone-free and contains salicylic acid to clarify the complexion. This is meant to be great at correcting the appearance of uneven skintone and I'm all for that.

Kat Von D Lock-It Featherweight Primer - I've had this sample for ages but I just haven't gotten around to trying it out.

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer - Ironically, I feel like this primer has gotten enough hype over the years that I feel like I've already tried it even though I haven't.


I can't really complain and say I haven't found the primer for me because the ones I love, I truly love and will happily continue to repurchase but a girl can't help but lust over some others that she constantly hears so much about. My wish list consists of one mattifying, one hydrating and one light-reflecting primer:

Too Faced Hangover Primer

Makeup Forever Step 1 Skin Equalizer

Tom Ford Illuminating Primer

Makeup Collection | PRIMERS

Stay tuned for the next installment in my Makeup Collection Series. If you'd like to read more about how I cut down my collection, feel free to read: My 5 Step Journey To A Decluttered Makeup Collection.

Let me know if any of these are ones that you love or hate. What primer is your favourite? I'd love to know.

Sal xxx

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