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My thoughts on primers that I have used.

I have extremely oily skin on my T Zone. If I apply foundation and powder on top of moisturizer my skin looks very shiny within an hour. Reapplying powder results in my face looking caked up. The fact that I live in a very hot humid part of the world doesn’t help.  So for me a mattifying primer is critical for my foundation to stay fresh looking, if not all day then at least for a few hours. I also need something to conceal my open pores which look enhanced if I use any blush or bronzer with shimmer or reflects in them.

I have used 3 skin primers so far. They are M.A.C matte gel, M.A.C Prep + Prime skin and the Body Shop Matte It primer. My favorite of these 3 is the M.A.C matte gel. I apply it all over my face with my M.A.C 190 foundation brush. I feel this gives me a more even application and prevents product from being wasted. A pea sized amount of this is enough for all of my face. I focus mostly on my T-zone and blend it outwards to cover my jaw line and hair line. I usually apply liquid foundation on top of this, followed by powder. I find that this primer helps my foundation stay on longer. I don’t need to apply powder for 3-4 hours. It really makes my pores look more refined and my foundation look smoother and more natural. If the weather is humid and hot I skip the moisturizer and just apply this primer to my bare face. If its dry then I apply moisturizer underneath and it works just as well. One draw back I found with this primer is that I experience painful breakouts, especially around my jawline the next day of using this. I have had this happen to me 2-3 times and I have not used it in a while. But despite this I feel it gives the best finish. I will continue to use it and maybe avoid it on my jawline next time.

The Body Shop Matte It primer doesn’t work as well as the M.A.C Matte gel, but its ok if I use it in the winters, when my skin isn’t as oily. I use it by mixing a pea sized amount of this with a pump of my liquid foundation and applying it to my skin with my M.A.C 190 brush. I have tried applying it separately with my fingers and the foundation brush before I apply the foundation on top. But I noticed that the application is much smoother when I mix it with the foundation before. I think this primer does not work well with powder foundations as the result was a cakey look.

The M.A.C Prep + Prime Skin did not work very well for me. This was the first skin primer I ever bought and later found out that it’s not meant for oily skin at all. My experience with this foundation proved this. My face gets oily faster than it would if I weren’t wearing any primer at all. By this I mean within half an hour of application! After that any blush and bronzer I may be wearing literally slides down on my cheeks and generally I start looking very shiny. I would not recommend this primer for anyone with oily skin and/or large open pores. This primer has tiny reflects in it that enhance the appearance of pores.

I hope this was helpful. If you have any questions on this, please do include them in the comments below.

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