December 19, 2014 | 1234 users online

Primer/ Corrector - Almay - Smart Shade CC Luminous Primer

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rated 3.9(51 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 3.9
  • 74% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.5
  • Price: $$$

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rated 1 of 5 on 12/6/2014 9:40:00 PM More reviews by Gerosee

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Other

Like many others I bought this based on its great reviews ,but ..WTH I'm disappointed the fragrance irritated my skin (sensitive) and I'd noticed a new blemish after every time I'd use this , which is not the first time this has happened with a primer but still it's disappointing and I did give this a good amount of tries but it just wasn't for me, anyone else with the same problems I suggest Mac strobe cream instead

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 11/22/2014 10:51:00 PM More reviews by socalsuperstar

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Blue

I admit, I picked up this product on a whim. That said, I think it is a great buy for the money. I think these products are destined to have a lot of good and bad reviews as our skin tones, textures, other products used, needs etc are all different. It looked like the Benefit illuminating primer and that is what caught my eye. I do not do really silicone like primers because I detest the texture and find that they suffocate my skin and break it out. This had a nice texture. I bought this primarily for day/work use so my makeup would stay in place. It is effective for that. The color cast of the illuminating factor also works well against my light to medium cool toned skin. It makes my skin look more awake. I used my YSL Fusion ink foundation over it today and my True Match over it yesterday. The primer was good under both textures.

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rated 1 of 5 on 11/12/2014 10:37:00 AM More reviews by wheaty

Age: 44-55 Skin: Other, Other, Not Sure Hair: Other, Other, Other Eyes: Other

I don't post reviews often but was looking for a different primer and because of the good reviews, tried this Almay primer. I put it on for the first time this morning and am shocked that it got good reviews. I have light olive combination skin and found that it left a weird shine (not illuminating) on my face. I had the worst time putting on my foundation. It was hard to blend and I felt as if it was dragging. I can't wait to get home to wash this crap off my face. Into the trash this goes!

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rated 1 of 5 top reviewer on 11/11/2014 12:33:00 PM More reviews by cathykl

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Olive, Warm Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

My skin: Combination, clog-prone, dehydration-prone and sensitive to many fragrance ingredients. Warm golden yellow and olive skin, my foundation matches: MUFE HD in #153 Golden Honey, MAC SFF in NC40-42/F&B in C5 or C6, L'Oreal True Match in W6, NARS The Radiant Cream in Barcelona.


+ inexpensive and easy to find in most drugstores
+ comes in a hygienic pump bottle

- physical SPF (which means flashback, especially for anyone of medium or deeper skintones, like myself - this made me look sickly and very pale in photos, with a noticeable difference between my chest/neck and face. . ugh)
- leaves a pinky white sheen which is not really flattering on golden/warm/olive skintones. This is probably best for those with lighter skin, and used in small amounts
- although it is easy to blend, it feels heavy and thick on my skin
- dries to a slightly sticky/tacky finish

As you can tell by my pro's and con's this didn't work well for me. It gave me an unnatural "plasticky" sheen, which looked more weird than luminous. My sister said it looked "metallic" - even when just dabbed onto cheekbones. I much prefer a more hydrating, fluid formula such as Becca's Perfecting.

I also really dislike that Almay decided to slap physical SPF (Zinc Oxide/Titianium Dioxide) into this primer, because as most people have heard over and over again - physical SPF can cause flashback in photos and more importantly, it has to be used liberally to provide the stated SPF (1/4 sp) which means caking on primer to the point of looking like you have a face covered in diaper rash cream. SPF ingredients also tend to break me out or clog my pores. Although the aforementioned Becca also contains SPF, because I use it on top of make-up and in such a small amount, it doesn't bother me (but again, I'd prefer it not be there). The Almay formula would probably have been more lightweight, easy to wear and overall a better product had Almay left out the SPF. . . but I know many like SPF in all products which is why they probably added it. If I ever see them bring out a more peachy-toned primer with no SPF, I'd try it out.

This primer also didn't make my skin look better or more "airbrushed" (which is what I get from other primers such as GA, YSL, even L'Oreals etc) but instead made my look worse, like I was ill or something. The sheen is just very unnatural. This stuff is also drying, which meant after a few hours I could see small cracks in my skin (like dehydration lines) with shimmer in them. Granted, yes they went away completely after removing the primer, but I'd rather not look like shedding snake at work.

Bottom line, I would not repurchase, it's simply not flattering on my skintone and I dislike the formulation. This may be a better choice for those with non-clog/acne/dehydration-prone skin who are on the fair to medium light side with cool to more neutral undertones versus warm.

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rated 1 of 5 on 11/11/2014 10:33:00 AM More reviews by thesojourner

Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I bought this Almay CC luminous primer just last week based on the reviews on this site. It is an affordable product - paid just under $10.00 at Walmart. I liked that it comes in a bottle with a pump. I liked that it has a high SPF. When I went to purchase, there was ONE bottle of this left on the the shelf, and I could tell someone had opened it and 'tried' it, but I bought it anyway.

I wore this on Saturday night for the first time, underneath my L'Oreal True Match. The cc primer did go on smoothly, and did seem to absorb into my skin. It smells a bit like Elmer's glue, but that did not bother me. foundation seemed to go on nicely over this cc primer. So..............went out to dinner with friends for about 5 hours. When I got home and went into the bathroom to clean my face, I was horrified to find that my smile lines were much more pronounced with this primer! It, along with my foundation, appeared to have 'caked' around my my smile lines. i WISH I would have kept the receipt for this, as it would be returned. However, I am thinking maybe to use it on other parts of my face/neck/decolege and NOT on any fine lines, most definately staying away from my mouth area.

I have noticed this with many other primers as well. I thought the purpose of a primer was to give that airbrushed look that I keep hearing about, along with giving foundation staying power. It did seem to keep my foundation and eyeshadow, but settles in lines and gives a cracked, patchy look.

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rated 2 of 5 on 11/8/2014 10:37:00 AM More reviews by ichigo90

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Black

This did not feel or work like a primer at all. I got it because of all the rave reviews but when I used it, it made me look super pale and pink (and i'm a pale person). It also made my foundation look horrible and lighter, it didn't make it last either and made my face super greasy after an hour or two. I won't be buying this again.

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rated 2 of 5 top reviewer on 10/20/2014 11:50:00 AM More reviews by incognito

Age: 36-43 Skin: Dry, Fair, Neutral Hair: Brown, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Hazel

I don't understand this product or all the glowing reviews. I should mention up front that I'm not a fan of primers in general as I don't have a problem with my makeup lasting (so primers are generally a waste of time) and usually the silicone base in them makes my skin all flakey. But I thought I'd try this product anyway because of the SPF and all the claims about luminosity which hey, at 40 I really can't say No to. Well, I am very underwhelmed. The colour of this is SO pale and pink-y that even at NC15, I can barely pull this off. Second, where's the luminosity? Not anywhere on my skin! Third, here in Canada this product is not rated for SPF and I didn't realize that until after I bought it, so I'm not sure if it's same protection as in the US. So overall I think this product was a waste of money. On the plus side, I do like the hygienic and simple pump packaging (though I would prefer plastic to glass), the lack of fragrance (not sure what the reviewer below is referring to... I have a very sensitive nose and usually notice and object to scented stuff), and the fact this doesn't make my skin flakey. This just doesn't.... do anything.

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rated 5 of 5 on 10/19/2014 3:50:00 AM More reviews by Dolly94

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Olive, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I absolutley love this primer, makes my makeup stay for max up to 8 hrs, which is not bad for a drugstore primer. I use it everyday, and do not have any complaints, love the packaging, the size, overall package is good. Love the finish it gives, and the overall fresh look. I will repurchase it again!! 😊

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rated 1 of 5 on 10/16/2014 3:14:00 AM More reviews by Scalata

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Tan, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

No one has mentioned the smell, it's gross. This primer has absolutely no pleasant scent to it. When placing on my face it felt sticky and uncomfortable afterwards, even with foundation. It was as if I had to blot or wash my face because it felt kind of dirty. It definitely does have a pink tint to it & it didn't go well with the yellow undertone I have.
Overall, il stick to my prime & pore less from benefit.

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rated 1 of 5 on 10/7/2014 5:27:00 AM More reviews by Itrain

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Normal, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Grey

this make me break out and also flake ALOT and did not increase wear of my foundation; some even went patchy/sat on top despite both having silicon bases? very strange and I will never buy this again

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