The Original Beauty Blogger. Often imitated, never duplicated.



Every Saturday Kate brings you the best Sephora has to offer as only an insider can!

This week: Primer Perfection

My parents built their house when I was about 11. My room was painted yellow, which I thought was a big improvement from our old house…where my walls were pink (ages 5-11, so understandable) So by the time I was about …13…the yellow walls, white wicker furniture, and pastel floral Laura Ashley bedding, I was over it. It took me a looooong time to even express my dislike to my parents. So by the time I was a senior the yellow walls (and ugly flat paint) had gotten pretty dingy. It was time to repaint.

I wanted to paint my room red so badly. I had since about….18 months after we moved into the house. I came home from field hockey practice once day.
Mom: The painters are coming tomorrow. What color are we painting your room?
Me: Red
Mom: No way, we are not painting your room red. It’s not happening. Remember what a hard time we had with the study? The red wouldnt’ go on.
Me: You can’t put suede paint on the kind of texturing we have. Why not red?
Mom: Cause I said so. We have to go to Home Depot right now and get the paint. They’re painting the guest room too.
…in the car…
Mom: So did you decide yet?
Me: I don’t know…I really want to paint it red.
Mom: We are not painting it red.
….at Home Depot…
Mom: Do you like this color red? Barn Red or Crimson?
Home Depot Girl: Make sure you get a primer. Any bright color needs a primer to so the paint isn’t seeping directly into the dry-wall.

Moral of the Story: My room is red, mother doesn’t always know best, wear primer-your make-up won’t seep directly into the dry-wall (your face).

Smashbox Photo-Finish Primer: It’s the original, and it’s great. Dimethicone to fill in those lines (like botox with no needles). Water based to hydrate. Grapeseed oil (Vitamins A,C,E – Antioxidants). One of the major benefits of these is all the different formulas. There’s the original clear, Bronzing, SPF15 with Dermaxyl Complex for Anti-aging, Adjust (Green for redness reducing), Blend (apricot for concealing dark circles and other hyperpigmentations (sunspots), and Balance for sallow, yellow skin.

LORAC Aqua-Primer: I recently tried this one and am LOVING it! Made from a crosspolymer instead of dimethicone which can really irritate some uber sensitive people. Its first ingredient is water – HELLO! And it also has hyaluronic acid which is a fabulous humectant (keeps water in). No wonder its called AQUA prime.

Now, the Cadillac (Aston-Martin) of primers these days is that Dr. Perricone Ceramic Skin Smoother – has a very activing Vitamin B complex to help with discolorations and redness. Also has Microspheres to really give that smooth ceramic appearance!

Benefit just came out with their own primer called “That Gal” (It has empire state buildings on the packaging except every time I glance at it it looks like oil rigs. Oh man, am I a Texan or what?). It’s a pink tinted primer to brighten and improve tone. I haven’t tried this one yet because we just got it this week and I haven’t gotten around to opening one up and playing. But I will certainly report back!

Another good option to check out is the Laura Mercier primers. Hers are great because there are three different formulas according to your skin type: Oil-Free, Original, and Hydrating. I really love the feel of the hydrating and I will definitely give it a try this winter when my skin goes into desert mode.

We can’t forget eyes and lips though.

Eye primer: Urban Decay Primer Potion. It doesn’t get any better than this. Sorry, I don’t care. (So cosmetic brands if you’re reading this and you think your eye-primer is better than theirs, which I doubt, send some to Meg (and me!) and put your money on the table!

Lips: I’ve yet to try a lip primer that, you know, worked and didn’t make my lips super super dry. But this is my own personal trick that works like a charm! When I put my moisturizer on, before any of my makeup apply your favorite lip balm (Caudalie lip blam, Chapstick, whatever your poiston). Let it set in and make sure your lips are smooth. Let it sink in while you do your face, and then when you get to your lips (which is the last step for me) Your lips are primed and ready! It works like a charm!

Ladies, what primer has your vote as the best! Am I missing anyone’s Holy Grail?

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