This primer confuses me so much!
It is the first primer that I have ever used.
I have an oily t-zone, and prior to trying primer, I would look like a hot mess by 1 or 2pm, cakey from having to powder so often, streaky from my foundation separating and somehow, still oily.
Upon using this primer, I am no longer oily, and I now need to powder my face about 90% less often. My foundation goes considerably less streaky, and only really separates under my nose now which is the most common place for that to happen on anybody. I also feel like it is nice and light on my skin and doesn't clog my pores too much,, and it is also really fast drying.
BUT, and there are a few buts. When I purchased this primer I was told, "oh you only need a tiny microscopic drop and it just covers your whole face." This is very unture, as I have to use about four times the amount I was specified to even get it to move across my skin, and this is after moisturizer (I literally cannot blend foundation at all on top of this primer without moisturizer). It is a very stiff formula. However the amount I was told to use could just have been salesperson lies. Also, you have to move very fast when applying foundation, and you can only apply foundation on top of it with a kabuki (buffing) or stippling brush or it just wont blend. I also find it makes it a little bit tricky to apply some concealers after foundation. I have no issues with powder, brozner or blusher with this primer however I have had liquid highlighter issues with again, blending.
OVERALL, this primer does what it claims and I have never been more matte and my make up has never lasted longer or looked better towards the end of the day, baring in mind though it is the first primer I have tried. However it doesn't glide over your skin easily and make blending a lot more difficult, and applying concealer and liquid highlighter more tricky. I almost feel as though I should try the normal photo finish primer and see if it makes me matte and doesn't clog my pores without the blending issues, but don't want to buy it just a sample -_-. Anyway hope this helps you guys.
Edit: I have owned this for 6 months now and it is my holy grail primer, I have tried 3 others since. I apply it with a synthetic foundation brush either by itself or mixed with MAC's strobe cream. I then apply my Smashbox Studio Skin foundation (mixed with macs fix +) with a beauty blender during the day time or a sigma flat top kabuki at night time. Love it!!!
I have VERY oily skin.. I'm usually an oily mess after an hour or two after wash. Before this primer, i used to blot every 2 hours.
This stuff dries pretty quickly. So there's no "wait 5-10 mins after primer" thing needed. With this primer and MAC's Studio Fix, i stayed looking flawless for about 6 hours. I blotted and then i was good for another 6 hours. That it pretty amazing for me.
The price is a bit expensive $37. I will still be trying different primers and try to find a cheaper one.
Unlike the original SB primer which is silicone based this one is water based. I know some people like it because it is lighter and might be better for oily skin, but I found that It didn't really do anything at all. I didn't get the same smoothing effect from it as i did the original SB primer. I gave it a two because it didn't do anything bad, but it didn't do anything good either.
I really really like this primer. I originally bought the small travel size version that Sephora sells in the little bins near the checkout counter, but as soon as I was done with that one I went back for another. It lasted me a really long time, mind you I rarely use foundation all over my face so a primer is not necessary. I was (and still am) only using it under my eyes before I apply concealor and it has given me amazing results! If you are finding that it doesn't keep your skin looking matte all day, you could always try the urban decay all nighter spray which is primarily designed for that specific reason!
As a reference, I have oily skin, noticeable pores on my nose, small wrinkles under my eyes (nooo!) and sometimes rough, bumpy texture on my forehead. I apply this to my t-zone and very lightly under my eyes after moisturizing and prior to foundation and concealer. This primer provides a smooth canvas for makeup application. I do notice that my makeup looks nicer when I have this on. It also fills in my pores and fine lines under my eyes. Unfortunately, this product does not keep my skin matte all day, like Smashbox claims. It keeps it matte for about 2 hours before oil starts to peak through. Also, the texture of my skin starts to look less smooth after about 5 hours of wear. Since I'm out and about at least 10 hours a day, I wouldn't repurchase this. The price is not worth how long it lasts. Lastly, although this product is marketed to people with oily, acne-prone skin, I think it would work better for people with normal to dry skin.
I have a love hate relationship with this product. So I'm breaking my review down into two - PRODUCT - PACKAGING.
PRODUCT: The product itself is amazing. My make up doesn't budge when I use this and it really is my "go to" primer. Before this I had tried MAC's prep and prime and it broke me out all over my face! This product goes on beautifully is super silky and keeps my face looking nice and matte all day.
PACKAGING: I'm not sure what's going on at Smashbox HQ but the change in packaging is quite annoying and I still don't think they've mastered it. The first one I bought came in a pump type bottle- I didn't really like this as I felt a lot of the product towards the end was wasted and you wouldn't be able to get out - which is annoying considering how pricey this is in Australia $60. Then the packaging changed to a tube which helps get all the product out but I still think you end up wasting a lot of product towards the end - I will say being able to cut the end off the new tube means you can scoop out those last little pits but again you do end up wasting some product. Perhaps a tub form would be better?!
This is the only primer I have used. the first times I used it with a moisturizer for normal skin and this combination did not work for so I stopped using it. It just made my skin look dry. However when I changed to a moist. for dry skin it worked amazing!! I do have kind of dehydrated skin but very acne prone, but after changing moist. and together with this primer my makeup sits perfectly and skin looks smooth and has a perfect "shine". - does not look oily nor dry at all. I would defo buy this again but still curious to try other primers....
I bought this product at Ulta after one of the sales associates recommended it to me when I explained that my skin has a tendency to get oily.
Overall, it does a nice job with controlling the oil on my skin and I don't find myself getting AS oily. That said, I do still get slightly shiny over the course of a few hours. My makeup stays in place nicely (although I usually use it in conjunction with Urban Decay's Naked Skin foundation) and looks good after I get home after a long day. When I take my makeup off at the end of the night, there is A LOT on the towelette and that just proves how well it keeps everything in place. I don't really find the smell of it all that appealing, but that's minor unless you're really into the scents of products you use. I usually use a pea to dime-size amount on my entire face. I found that a little goes a long way!
I would indeed repurchase this product, however next time I need a primer, I may try the original just to see how the two compare.
I must say that this product is divine. At first I was hesitant to buy it because I have tried gazillions of primers like MAC prep+prime, L'oreal and the list goes on. and so far, this combat my oiliness due to the crazy weather here in the Philippines. It's kind of pricey though. I just hope it won't make my skin break out.
When we were in NY, we went on a crazed primer hunt because it was super hot and humid and in the middle of a heat wave, and also Sephora took returns.
So between us we tried basically every primer stocked at Sephora and tested them against the 40 degree weather in NY, being outside all day and going into air con department stores, the subway etc. We would apply in the morning and check it at around midnight.
All 3 of us had different skins and all 3 of us left NY with one primer - this one.
This is not packed with silicone and so it won't irritate most skins. We got the regular version, but I also bought the green colour correcting one as a sample just to try. I don't see a huge benefit with the green one as opposed to the regular one.
I have used this under both liquid and mineral foundation and found that it improves both appearance and longevity.
We all agreed that this primer had the best feel and effect. Its a really light formula and goes on sort of like a moisturiser but then sinks in to nothing. Your skin just feels smooth and ready for makeup! I rub this into eyes as well and no irritation. Definitely didn't notice any clogging and did not cause blemishes!
More about me:
Asian normal skin - tending towards combination in summer
Was acne-prone for years
Foundation preference is to look as yellow as possible, absolutely nil pink
MAC NC-30, Shiseido O60
Sunscreen everyday - alternating between Sofina and Invisible Zinc