When I first tried this a few years ago I didn't find it remotely helpful. It didn't make my VL foundation lay any better or last any longer than necessary, and I didn't feel it improved my base significantly.
However, since then I've moved to a much hotter climate, and found my foundation and powder constantly sliding off my face during the summers. Add sunscreen to the mix and I couldn't keep my makeup looking fresh at all.
I decided to try the Vincent Longo Water Canvas Base again after finding it for only $15 at a beauty store. I used it after my sunscreen had set for a few minutes, and applied a pea-sized amount to each cheek, forehead, chin and nose. It absorbed quickly, and after a few minutes I applied my VL foundation and set with Makeup Forever HD powder and a spritz of Neroli water.
When I first tested the primer, I applied my makeup early in the morning before going to work. I teach at a university and spend much of the day running to the different buildings between classes, so I expected I would have to touch up with some pressed powder throughout the day to stay fresh.
However, after my 3rd class I checked in a bathroom mirror-- my skin looked virtually flawless! Smooth, polished, and glowing, not sweaty or greasy. I taught my last class at around 2:30 and walked home in the heat. I checked in the mirror when I got home; again, flawless.
I love my Vincent Longo foundation, and it seemed like I needed to add the primer to my regular routine to hold my makeup on during the day in this awful desert weather. But the cost of both makes me a little ill-- I've always been more willing to spend on skin care that helps improve flaws as opposed to makeup to cover those flaws; budgeting for almost $90/month was a little more than I could rationalize. But that primer just made me look so perfect.
I decided to test the primer out with a less expensive foundation. My skin is extremely sensitive, though, so I decided to use my Physician's Formula Pressed Mineral Powder instead of a foundation.
I applied sunscreen (Ombrelle Ultra Fluid SPF 60), then Vincent Longo Water Canvas Primer and Physician's Formula Pressed Mineral Powder. Last, I dusted on my Makeup Forever HD Powder and misted with Neroli water.
Once again I toddled off to campus early in the morning, ran between buildings and walked home in the sticky afternoon sun.
The result? Flawless. Glowing. Porcelain. In a word, perfect. The effect of the powder is virtually identical to the foundation when the primer is used. I prefer the feel of my VL foundation-- it's cooling, soothing and silky. But the two products look the same sandwiched (for lack of a better word) between the VL primer and the Makeup Forever powder (or probably any HD finishing powder).
To maintain a glow or more porcelain/dewy finish rather than matte/powdery one, mist some plain water or a hydrosol after applying the powder.
In closing: I've changed my mind about this primer. I don't think it's needed to make the foundation work in a temperate or cool climate, but when it's insanely hot and you're sweating? It's absolutely necessary.
My skin is also very sensitive, but this doesn't make my skin itch or breakout.
I don't understand the bad reviews. This primer is terrific especially if you have sensitive skin prone to redness like I do. This primer does what it says it will do and a little goes a long way. I apply the primer by squeezing a pea size amount onto a dish and using a foundation brush, dab a little of the product at time on my brush and paint it onto my skin. My pores disappear and my Vincent Longo Water Canvas creme to powder foundation goes on like silk. It makes my foundation last longer, all day without caking or break up, and my skin still feels soft and smooth at the end of the day. Unlike many primers I have tried, and believe me, I have tried many, this one does not dry out my face and feels so very comfortable and soothing throughout the day. I highly recommend this despite the price tag.
This product is great. No silicone at all and dries down nicely. You can even use it on your eyelids for eye primer. Everytime I put it on someone they say how cooling it feels.
I bought this to see if it really was vital to improving the wear of my Vincent Longo Water Canvas Foundation.
First of all, that foundation is amazing with nothing under it or with your favorite moisturizer under it (avoid any moisturizers that tend to leave a film on the skin, because the foundation just won't lay well over it, which is a major DUH but, hey, live and learn, I did).
Second, this primer, in my opinion, sucks monkey tails. Seriously, I put it on in the morning after my moisturizer had absorbed, and waited while I did my hair to put my foundation on. It kind of left a bit of a film (I only used the tiniest amount) and kind of peeled a bit when I started to apply the foundation. That made me cranky, so the rest of my experience was colored by that initial moment of angst.
- It peels away a bit. Which is annoying, because IMO a primer create a BETTER finish, not a more troublesome one. Possibly my skin just responds weirdly to things like this. I did try Arcona's Magic White Ice as a moisturizer once and it just caused an itchy film and peeled away from my skin (totally a waste of time, and their customer service is non-existent). So possibly this is just my weird, neutral I-have-a-Russian-Atheist-From-the-Black-Sea-Grandmother-and-a-Neopolitan-Catholic-Grandmother skin that refuses to fall into line with any skin care product that other people's complexions fall in love with...So...potentially the film and the peeling was just because the product was objecting to being on my skin, rather than the other way around.
- It's over-priced. Seriously and for certain, I don't understand how this little tube of what basically feels like glycerin (without the benefits) is really worth more than 2 cents. Given that it also can peel a bit and leaves my skin feeling like it has "something, Do-do-do-DOOO!" on it (and I hates feeling like I have makeup on, precious), I felt as though I was paying for some kind of cosmetic torture device.
- It does absolutely nothing. Seriously, even if you have no adverse reaction (which, on the bright side, it didn't make me break out so...points there!), or filmy peel thing, it doesn't improve the way your makeup lays, and if you're using a cheaper foundation (under $20) and using this to improve it (around $30+) you might as well ditch both and just splurge for VL's Water Canvas Foundation, and don't let anyone tell you you need either their primer or their setting powder (at $40...seriously, Physicians Formula, or any other favorite powder of yours will work just as well if you want a more evening type of look). My mother, who was an esthetician, has always told me that certain things are unnecessary, but marketed to people as though they're vital, and primers are one such product. They don't do anything that your moisturizer shouldn't already be doing for you, and one of their problems is that frequently (unlike a good moisture cream or lotion) they won't absorb, but will just sit on top, and end up causing more problems than they fix.
I give it 2 lippies because other people obviously find it useful, so I can't just say it's god-awful and won't work for anyone. Also, it didn't cause a breakout or reaction, so it potentially won't hurt you to try it. But I would save your pennies and spend on things that likely will give you that "flawless finish": a good foundation and a good moisturizer, because those are really your best bets for perfecting your look, a primer really doesn't do anything those two won't and, at $30, you might as well find more expensive foundation.
absolutely amazing product, gives the smoothest base over healing pimples so concealer doesnt catch to all the dry bits. Feels very cool, watery/siliconey, i have found that the texture of my skin has improved since using this.
Works well, does "even out" skin tone and leave skin smooth. I would buy it again if it wasn't $35 for a tube that is only 2.5 inches tall.
it works okay (some primers make me break out, this one doesnt) but the price for the tiny tube is ridiculous $39.50!
Very average primer: its real strength lies in the moisturizing of your skin to prep it. It definitely helps foundation go on more smoothly, but at the same time, it doesn't do much of a job of keeping it on.
What this product does...
1. Tones down dry spots and pores - but not particularly well
2. Creates a refreshed looking surface
What this product does not do...
1. Keep makeup on longer
2. Keep oily spots at bay
I really thought this would work better. When I tried it in the store, it looked so great and flawless when I used loose powder over it. Then again I used it on the back of my hand--but still, it should work the same on my face, right? It feels kind of slippery on my skin. I haven't noticed much of a difference as far as my makeup lasting longer or staying flawless. I would definately not buy again--the price is not reasonable compared to the size of the tube. I ended up spending 20-something dollars on it from ebay but still it's a lot of money. Smashbox has way better primer.
I have tried a lot of primers. mostly they did nothing and broke me out. not exactly what I was looking for in a primer (or any product). this, on the other hand, makes everything nice and smooth, with out making my skin feel like its got some icky, slimy layer thing going on. it sets my foundation (VL water canvas) perfectly, and keeps my skin shine free all day (even in hot/humid weather). also you need to use such a small amount of this (also unlike other products I've tried), that the price is pretty competative with other primers out there.