Monday, 20 January 2014

Take Three: Primers (Seventeen, Benefit, Smashbox)



Hello and a very happy Monday to you all! For today's Take Three I'm looking at primers, which are something I've added into my routine relatively recently.

Up until about six months ago I'd always assumed primers would clog my pores, dry out my skin and generally wreak havoc on my skin. I'd been using the UD Primer Potion under eye shadows for a while but somehow it just didn't click that the same benefits could apply to my face make up, if only I'd take the plunge to try a primer. 

The first one I tried was a Body Shop mattifying primer, which did a pretty good job and since then I've become a true convert and have built up a little collection. They aren't something I use every time I wear make up but if I know it's going to be a long day or I'm likely to get good and sweaty (ie if I have to do any kind of slightly strenuous activity, like moving at all) I always turn to a primer and, luckily, all of the ones I've tried do the job. Some are obviously better than others, though, so I've picked three out of my make up drawers to compare for you today.

Note: The Seventeen and Benefit primers are both full size but the Smashbox pick is the travel size

I'm going to be taking a look at a few different formulas with three primers I'm trying out, as there's so much on offer so I wanted to touch on a few different types of product. My picks for today are the Seventeen Flawless Poreless Primer, Benefit Porefessional and Smashbox Hydrating Primer.

First up, Seventeen Flawless Poreless Primer:


This one has a thick consistency and when I first purchased it I was worried it was going to be too heavy for my skin and would end up drawing attention to my pores rather than hide them. However, once you get the product out of the pan (it can be quite difficult to get the right amount as it is quite a stiff product) you can warm it up in your hands and it takes on a more creamy formula.

It's the usual beiege coloured primer and does give a nice finish but I do find I have to take a little more time to work this one into the skin than I do with some of my other primers. A big plus, though, is that this one keeps my skin looking fresh throughout the day and stops foundation clinging to any dry patches later in the afternoon. I do have some dry skin on my cheeks during the winter so this is a really important one for me.

I've used this one a lot over the last three months and have only hit pan right in the middle, so you definitely get a lot of product for your money and it's a total bargain at £5.99. While I wouldn't necessarily rely on this one for a night out, it's a great option to use during the day.

Second, a favourite among bloggers, the Benefit Porefessional:


I'm a big Benefit fan so I was always keen to try this one out, especially after reading an overwhelming amount of positive reviews on so many different blogs. This one was firmly at the top of my wishlist for 2013 and I finally bought it in October, hooray!

Of course, the packaging as the usual Benefit flair and does add to the enjoyment of using it. Does anyone else get a little burst of happiness from opening a project that looks so damn cute? Maybe it's just me.

Anyway, Porefessional comes in a squeezy tube and is a thick cream (again, the usual tan colour of primer). This is so smooth and when I apply it it makes my skin feel like satin. It creates a smooth, even base which is perfect for your foundation to glide on and create a flawless finish.

This one has real staying power and it's what I spent a long time turning to for any nights out or long days, as I knew my make up wouldn't budge. However! There is one drawback... this isn't 100% if you have dry skin. Even though it creates a lovely, silky finish I do find that it makes me skin a little dehydrated on days when it's already extra dry. I don't think this product particularly dries my skin out, because it's a problem I already have, it just doesn't help to hydrate it - but then again, it's not supposed to. It's the only thing that stops this being the top primer in my stash - and that's only when it's judged against the next offering I'm going to talk about.

Ah - the missing piece in my dry skin saviour routine, the Smashbox Hydrating Primer!

Note: This is only the travel size

I knew I wanted to try one of the Smashbox primers but there were so many to choose from I couldn't decide - until I spotted the hydrating option. My skin definitely feels drier the more make up I put on so if I get all geared up for a night out and have the works on my face I can really feel my skin crying out for a bit of extra hydration. Plus, I really wanted something that would help to remove any dry patches, instead of just hiding them. I'd heard good things about this primer but I wasn't completely convinced until I tried it for myself - at which point I kicked myself for not buying the full size version!

This is the thinnest primer I've used, coming out of the tube as a runny light blue cream. It doesn't have the silky feel that most primers have, it just feels like a thin moisturiser. I apply it all over my face and it sinks straight into my skin, without me needing to blend it or work it in at all. As soon as it's settled in my skin looks radiant, even and ready to face the day!

Make up goes on so nicely over there and it gives an amazing finish. It makes everything look natural and aids with the dewy glow everybody is always after - even heavier foundations appear radiant on top of this. It lasts and lasts all day without my skin drying out at all - and I always notice my skin feeling nice and moisturised after I've used this. It's just an all-round winner!

BONUS:

The Smashbox primer wins this round but I have actually devised my own perfect primer - if I mix a dash of Porefessional into the Smashbox Hydrating primer it creates the ULTIMATE base. 

Benefit Porefessional and Smashbox Hydrating Primer - the Batman and Robin of the primer world.

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