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Primer/ Corrector - Smashbox - Photo Finish Light

rated 3.4(419 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 3.4
  • 54% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.0
  • Price: $$$$

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rated 3 of 5 on 3/13/2012 4:45:00 PM More reviews by dearlymakeup

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Green

I wanted to like this product. It sounded perfect for my sensitive, acne-prone skin.

I loved the texture of the product and look of my skin a few minutes after applying. I like the lightweight plastic tube it comes in!

Anytime I apply my high-end foundations (Chanel Vitalumiere, Estee Lauder Double Wear Light, MUFE Mat Velvet +, Shiseido Sun Protection Liquid Foundation) on top of this primer I end up with dry patches and a tight feeling across my skin, I have never experienced this when wearing those foundations without this primer. I have also tried skipping any application of light setting powders and this didn't help at all.

I naturally have oily enough skin that foundation tends to seperate a bit after about 5 hrs if I don't wear a primer and setting powder or setting spray. Perhaps the problem is that everything I put on my face now is long-lasting and oil-controlling. Who knows?

What I'm not going to do is buy the full sized version of this primer. I like all of my foundations for different reasons and if they do better without this pricey primer, then I say 'Hooray' to that.

Here's what I wear coverage-wise on a daily basis when there's little humidity and I just sit at a desk for most of the day:
1. ...a variety of primers till I find one I like
2. Vitalumiere Aqua or Shiseido SP Liquid foundation
3. Bobbi B. Stick concealer or Maybelline Dream Lumi Concealer
4.. MUFE Fix and Set spray

I would not suggest this for anyone who already uses a long-lasting or oil-controlling foundation, a foundation with alchohol (sorry Vitalumiere Aqua...you're getting ousted), or a setting spray.

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rated 5 of 5 on 2/28/2012 2:05:00 PM More reviews by iluvsushi

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

I have never used a foundation primer before. I've heard many raves about this product so I was curious and decided to give it a go. I chose the photo finish light primer as I have very oily skin. I'm not fond of the gluey-ish scent but I was amazed at how the primer mattified my face but didn't look drying. It absorbs into my skin and leaves a nice smooth finish. I didn't notice a difference when I applied it before foundation, however I did notice that it helped my foundation last longer. I'd say after 10hrs (for me) it starts to fade but not dramatically. I usually get shiny/oily after 2hrs after applying foundation but when I used this primer it extended an hr or two. I still have to touch-up but no more than two times which is great because I usually have to touch-up my makeup at least 3-4 times a day which is annoying. Overall, I think this is a great investment if you have very oily skin like I do. It is expensive but at the same time you get what you paid for and it's definitely worth getting if you're looking for a new primer.

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rated 4 of 5 on 2/14/2012 10:42:00 AM More reviews by azngirl7979

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm Hair: Brown, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown

I finally got this product after eyeing it for the longest time. I really needed a good primer, but I am also a student with limited funds. So I finally picked up the $10 trial size at Sephora one day.
I absolutely love this! When you first put it on, its really light and is actually kind of.. minty? It cools your face and calms my skin. It makes my face so smooth! its really amazing. I only wish that it had a tad bit more oil control, but this does a decent job.

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rated 4 of 5 on 1/28/2012 2:00:00 PM More reviews by fuudandbits

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I've gone through two or three tubes of the 60ml version of this primer, definitely and my HG. I did however switch it up to the Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating primer this winter as my skin has been acting up with dry patches.

I do however love this primer in the Spring and Summer months, worked amazingly well with Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk foundation (I've since switched my make up routine).The MU did mention there were customers that said it didn't work with MAC Studio Fix Fluid.

I did try a sample size of the original Photo Finish which had more a of a silicon feel which i found to be too oily on my combination skin. Definitely worth a shot if you've got combination / more oily types of skin.

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rated 3 of 5 on 1/14/2012 4:29:00 PM More reviews by sweevey

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Blue

I found this primer to be a nice surprise after I used the regular Smashbox Photo Finish, which didn't do anything for my skin. After I cleanse and moisturise I apply Photo Finish Light to my t-zone, then I apply my foundation. It definitely makes my base last longer throughout the day, I would say after 5-6 hours my base starts to fade. I do get oily after 3-4 hours, so I blot and powder but I don't think this is a big deal.

I wouldn't repurchase as I'm keen to try Smashbox Anti-shine. This is a nice product and definitely better than the original, however I feel I could still find something a little more tailored to my oily skin. It prolongs my foundation wear but doesn't do a major job on keeping me shine free for a great length of time.

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rated 3 of 5 on 1/5/2012 2:39:00 PM More reviews by rachelrainbow

Age: 19-24 Skin: Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Coarse Eyes: Green

I have very oily skin so bought this hoping it would control the oil as promised, however it didn't seem to help whatsoever. Otherwise it is a very good primer in that my foundation applys very easily over it and it keeps my makeup from sliding off. Also when I first started using it, it caused a few painful spots but this calmed down after a few weeks. I've put yes for would I buy it again, but I'm undecided, I'm now using Mac prep and prime spf 50 which controls my oily skin much better however isn't as good for keeping my makeup on, so once this runs out I'll probably try a few different primers but may eventually come back to Smashbox.

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rated 4 of 5 on 12/26/2011 5:22:00 AM More reviews by ssoopphhi

Age: 19-24 Skin: Very Oily, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Blue


This primer is an amazing product available for a price that is expensive but worth it. Mine cost around $60 AU (I had to buy mine off eBay as its not available for purchase in AU), so im sure it costs a fraction of the price at retailing stores. I am a teen with very oil skin and quite a few pimples and I love this product. Its non greasy, it doesn't feel overly chemically, the texture is perfectly creamy and it leaves my skin feeling matte but refreshed/nourished, it truely does create the perfect canvas! Teamed with the perfect light weight, non pore clogging foundation this primer will truely shine and give you gorgeous radiant but non greasy skin! I will definitely be buying this product again and if your unsure you can pick up a sample for Sephora (at least I hear anyway)! Give this product a go, I promise you, you will adore it! xxx

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rated 4 of 5 on 12/18/2011 6:25:00 PM More reviews by LadyxBec

Age: 19-24 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Neutral Hair: Red, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I quite like this - I have tried maybe 3-4 other primers, and this is by far my favourite so far. I did find at first that it did nothing for me, however a little trial and error and I worked out how to apply it correctly and we get along much better :)

The GOOD: leaves my skin feeling lovely and matt, doesn't break me out, the packaging is great, lasts a long time. It does prolong the life of my foundation, and make it go on more smoothly and easily.

The BAD: difficult to find & super expensive in Australia :(. Doesn't control oil as well as I'd like - by lunchtime my T-zone is oily and shiny.

Overall I would re-buy, as it's the best I've tried so far, but I am also looking around for something that better controls oil thoughout the day.

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rated 3 of 5 on 12/3/2011 12:02:00 PM More reviews by jwannano

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

I have this product for about a year.. so I'm almost done with mine (I only use it as eye primer). I hate the packaging.. the cap doesn't help prevent air in. So, I have to take out the dry tip everytime before using the product... what a waste of primer. The product itself isn't the best, I prefer my urban decay primer potion. Overall, not going to repurchase this.

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rated 2 of 5 on 11/20/2011 9:30:00 AM More reviews by judibean

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I am one of those unfortunate souls with large pores on my nose that need to be covered up every day. I bought this with high hopes, but alas, it was not meant to be. It does not cover up (or rather, fill in) the pores at all. When I use it and then put foundation on it, the foundation sinks into the pores, leaving that not-so-hot orange peel dimpled look. It works better on my cheeks, but that is not what I bought it for. I wish I had tried a sample first before buying a whole bottle. I will be trying next the Monistat chafing gel that everyone is raving about.

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