A Girl’s Guide To…. Primers

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By February 27, 2008 11 Comments

A Girl’s Guide To…. Primers

We’re starting a new section here at Beauty Banter… A Girl’s Guide to… It’ll be filled with need to know info on the most important beauty and health issues surrounding us girls. Basically it’s a girl’s guide to being beautiful – from the inside to the outside. And if you wanna print them out or read them all together, simply scroll to the right and click on the label “a girl’s guide.”

Today’s girl’s guide is all about primers!

So, why prime, you ask? Well, a primer does a number of things. It fills in lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores. It also helps to create an even skin tone. It controls oil secretion and shine. And it readies the face for smooth, long lasting make-up application. It’s the perfect base for make-up as it mattifies the skin for an even, luminous effect. Without a primer, make-up would seep into your pores and lines, it would “cake” and within hours, your skin would start to look shiny, like your make-up needs a pick-me-up. So, basically, a primer does just that: it primes the skin for that fake flawless look that we’re all striving to attain.

Smashbox started the primer frenzy when they introduced their now infamous, Photo Finish Foundation Primer. Make-up artists went banana’s over this product that literally “creates a perfect canvas for foundation application… reduces the appearance of fine lines and pores for visibly softer skin.” It aided in flawless skin alone, or under make-up.

Recently, Smashbox has introduced: Photo Finish Primer Light (oil-free), Photo Finish with SPF 15 and Dermaxyl Complex ( an advanced peptide treatment that is supposed to reduce the appearance of wrinkles over time), Photo Finish Bronzing Foundation Primer (same as regular photo finish but with a bronze hue), Photo Finish Color Correcting Foundation Primer (Blend (counteracts discoloration), Balance (brightens dull skin) and Adjust (reduces redness), depending on your individual skin concerns), and, the newest installment, the Hybrid 2 In 1 Luminizing Primer (pictured), from the Green Room Collection. Basically, it’s Artificial Light in the inner tube and Photo Finish in the outer one. And the tube is recyclable!

With all of these new primers on the market, it’s hard to know exactly which one is right for you… I tend to stick with the original. There’s a reason that they are attempting to duplicate it into 8 similar products- because it works!

Another product that works to even skin creating a smooth canvas for make-up application is Clinique’s Pore Minimizer Instant Perfector. I first posted about this product when fellow beauty whore, Alex, reviewed British Vogue’s spring/summer must haves (back in January 07). Apparently, Kate Winslet doesn’t leave home without this product! And I’ve gotta say, I get it. Not only does this product truly produce flawless looking skin, it also de-shines, giving you a matte finish. Foundation slides right on and you’re never oily! This is a must-have product for people with sensitive and/ or oily skin. It’s so gentle and it really works wonders without any fear of break-outs!

I recently tried Cargo’s blu_ray High Definition Oil-Free Mattifier. This primer refines pores, minimizes lines and wrinkles, and creates a flawless look to help control oil and shine throughout the day. It adds a natural glow to your skin that is perfect to wear alone or under make-up. I use it prior to foundation because I want full coverage, but if you don’t need full coverage, this is a great product to use in lieu of a pressed powder as it virtually has the same qualities… sheer coverage with oil control. The company says that this product was formulated for, “use with high-definition film.” Hence, you’re ready for your close-up!

Another interesting product that has hit that market place is the “eye-primer.” Essentially, it’s the same thing as a face primer – allows for a smooth palette for make-up application, fills in lines and wrinkles, and keeps eye make-up on longer. I already doted on Fresh’s Anise Wrinkle Eraser (read post HERE), but Paula Dorf also makes an that’s pretty amazing! It’s a “light-textured cream that smoothes and neutralizes the eyelid so eye color looks true and stays on.” And no matter what tone your skin is, this is a neutral base that works on everyone!

So, that’s the skinny on primers — with a few of my favorites mentioned. Do you have a favorite PRIMER? Tell us and we’ll include it in the post!

Also, check back periodically as I test new primers that deserve a mention in the Girl’s Guide to Primers!


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Beauty Banter was launched in July of 2006 as a comprehensive beauty blog covering trends, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and weekly must-haves. Beauty Banter has a reputation of being on the cutting edge of emerging trends and product launches so our readers are always the first to know what’s hot and what’s just not.