With foundation primers being all the rage, and the top "it" item to add to your makeup arsenal, in my experience in working with them on photo shoots, I've found that it really only comes down to two primers that are worth it's weight in gold.
And they're both great in their own ways.
In this corner:
An ultra-fluid lotion formulated with special-effect silicones. Calms and soothes the skin, blots away excess oil, and evens out skin redness. Improves the laydown and application of foundation or powder.
30 ml US$20.00
In working with Mac's Prep+Prime, I've noticed that it's a superior product, but not for what you think. This thin white liquid spreads very evenly over the face, and creates a smooth surface for foundation. It absorbs nicely into the skin, also works great in place of moisturizer for oily skin types. It's also a great product to use on men as well. They think it's moisturizer, and even if you do no foundation on them, it works great at making their skin look smooth and matte.
Once I've applied this and finished the makeup job, I've noticed that it does a great job in keeping shine away. Usually on photo shoots I have to powder and touch up about every 10-15 minutes. Do this for 8 hours and you've got a cakey, gray, ashy looking skin tone that doesn't look that great on camera. Powdering is the kiss of death in a photo shoot and the less I have to do, the better. With Mac's primer, it can be a good 30 minutes into a shoot before I see the need to touch up. And powder touch ups are few and far between for the rest of the shoot.
As far as appearance of foundation, I noticed it doesn't change it, but it just keeps foundation on a little longer, with the bonus keeping the shine away.
Rating: This primer is best for normal to oily skin, and works the best at keeping shine away. Great for men and women.
And in this corner:
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer 0.93 oz
Create the perfect canvas for foundation application with our best-selling PHOTO FINISH FOUNDATION PRIMER. with grapeseed extract to soothe and protect skin, this oil-free, colorless formula fills in fine lines and pores to help skin appear visibly softer with a smooth velvet finish. Use after moisturizer and before foundation for complexion perfection.
Smooth on a layer of primer after you apply your daily moisturizer, or onto clean skin. concentrate on areas that are deeply lined and/or rough in texture. PHOTO FINISH is great to use under the eye, it helps concealer glide on and stay put, it also prevents foundation from ever looking dry and patchy. follow with your favorite FOUNDATION.
When I first worked with this primer, I was thrilled at the texture and feel of it. Silky, smooth. Easy to apply (usually with a foundation brush on the t-zone and blended outwards.) But the best results come when having to use cream, panstick or a thicker foundation. This is where you see the difference. You can actually see the foundation glide on perfectly. And the foundation seems to sit on the surface of the skin, not sink in. Applying foundation with a foundation brush does this as well, but primer first tends to make it even more so. What makes Smashbox's primer so unique is that it not only keeps foundation on longer, but it also provides a smooth and perfect surface to work on, best for mature skin and skin with uneven textures. Create an even texture for foundation and foundation will look even. It also does a perfect job in keeping shine away as well.
Rating: Best for dry-normal skin, mature skin, uneven textured skin.
Elke's Tip: Don't think you have to apply primer everywhere. Unless you really feel you need it, just apply primer where needed. Usually in the t-zone, or around the eyes to soften wrinkles. I only apply everywhere on oily skin, or I've got a long shoot ahead of me and I need foundation looking perfect 6 hours later.
For a more in depth review and great primer tricks, click on my podcast link. Please note this podcast is long (24 minutes) with tons of information, and I apologize for the abrupt cut at the end of the podcast. I hope you enjoy!**
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Other products mentioned in podcast:
Revlon Color Stay Foundation
Clinique SuperFit Foundation
Trucco Skin Tones Foundation
TiGi Loose Powder in Shimmer
For an excellent primer review(s), check out Blogdorfgoodman's blog and her "days of 40 primers".
Have a great holiday weekend!