Is It A Crime Not to Prime – Some Thoughts on Eye Primer

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Is it Necessary?

I’ve always been a non-believer in primers – face primer, eye primer, lash primer – I thought they were just products cosmetic companies come up with to widen their range and boost total sales. Cough cough, BB creams, CC creams, ZZ creams. Plus, they’re additional steps to any makeup routine, which for someone as lazy as me, I’d much rather skip especially when I’m in a hurry. And yes – for someone who loves makeup, I’m not really one who takes quite a long time applying it. However, during the past few months, I’ve allocated time to put on eye makeup as often as I could. Okay fine, mostly I skipped on the primer. But there were times (especially when I’ll be out for a long time than usual) that I wanted to experiment and see what the difference is with one on. Surprise, surprise, guess what I learned? 4

Essential or Dispensable?

In my personal experience, I didn’t see any major difference when I had primer on or not in terms of longevity. Also, I only realized now that I rarely, almost never see any creasing on my lids no matter what eyeshadow I use. So I always wondered what creasing actually looks like that I even googled it – confirming my initial thoughts that I don’t think any shadow creases on me significantly. I may just be one of those lucky ones who have impenetrable lids or maybe my eyeshadow journey isn’t extensive enough to have encountered the dreaded creasing phenomenon. HOWEVER! I discovered that eye primers are essential and indispensable to those who have oily and/or hooded eyelids that can fade whatever is put on top of them in a blink of an eye (literally!). As well as for eyeshadows that lack pigmentation or are hard to work with (dry, powdery, etc.) because they certainly become more vibrant and more workable when melded with silicone or whatever smoothing ingredient the primer has. I’ve encountered a few non-stellar palettes and eyeshadows that recently made me rethink my initial thoughts on them when I used a primer below.  Just look at this one purple shade from a drugstore brand palette: 3

Primers Need Not Be Expensive

I don’t think that you need expensive primers, hale no. Not that I’ve tried any luxury eye primers, though. Heck, prior to using legit primers, I just used my concealer and it worked for me then. I think the eyeshadow just needs something to cling on to. Also, I thought the Urban Decay Primer Potion was the queen primer of primers, till I compared it to two other primers namely the NYX High Definition Eyeshadow Base and Lorac Behind the Scenes Primer and among the three, it performed the least-spectacular. I also have the NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk which I use as a primer too and I find it works best with the almost non-pigmented shadows. I also use MAC Paint Pot in Painterly especially for when I want a really clean skintone-colored lid base. In ending, can you just take one more look and compare how the unprimed shadow looks on top of the Lorac Primer? All four were swatched once to really show the difference. If that does not convince you to wear primer more often, I don’t know what will. How about longer-lasting, non-fading eye makeup throughout the whole day despite the heat and humidity?

What are your thoughts on eye primer? Or any other primer for that matter? Lash primer, face primer, etc.

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  1. December 10, 2013 / 1:46 am

    I always use Face primer but I very offen forget eye shadow primer because I sometimes think the face primer alone should be enough.. The best primer i have tried so far is the cheap One from essence, a drugstore Brand in Germany.. I have tried urban decay primer potion but noticed nothing extraordinary..
    Eye shadow primer is important but i still dont think it is essential for Daily Basis.. Or maybe i am too Lazy.. 😛

  2. December 10, 2013 / 1:49 am

    Hmmm… With that, my eye primer search is over. I think I’ll settle with elf.

  3. December 10, 2013 / 2:01 am

    I definitely cannot not use any eye primer. Because even with no eye shadow on, my eyelids still crease (hahaha idk how that’s even possible, but ya know, super oily lids tend to do that apparently). I do like the ELF primer though. It’s just Php139 and works just as good as the UD, Too Faced, Tarte and Lorac primers.

  4. December 10, 2013 / 2:26 am

    Hey Shari, I ALWAYS ALWAYS use a primer, because without it nothing lasts all day on me! It could be my eye shape or the fact that my lids are normal-to-oily, but in any case it is indispensable for me. I do use face and lash primers as well. I can probably live without a face primer on most days, but a lash primer? Hellz no :p

  5. December 10, 2013 / 8:44 am

    Ohhhhhhh man I am SO jealous that you don’t need a primer! I’m the exact opposite – I’ve tried almost every primer on the market, especially the popular ones, and none of them work for me. I always get that “creasing” and fading and smudging and sadness 🙁 I love eye makeup because you can use any colours you want. Unfortunately, eyeshadow never stays put on me for long so I don’t wear eye makeup very often.

  6. December 10, 2013 / 10:10 am

    Cannot live without eye primer because my lids crease like crazy. I love face primers, too. I actually have dry skin (from personal experience + diagnosis), but I like using face primers since my makeup just looks better with a primer underneath. It’s not as essential as an eye primer, though. And you know how much I love my eye makeup!

  7. December 10, 2013 / 11:56 am

    Personally, not putting an eye primer makes me insecure. Let’s just say I’ve had my share of creased shadows and smeared eyeliners and I don’t want any of those to happen ever again. Also, primers give me an assurance of long lasting eye makeup which I like because I can’t be bothered to retouch or reapply. So yeah, I’m definitely on Team Primer! 😀

    The primers I always use are UDPP, Too Faced Shadow Insurance, and MAC Painterly. Nyx Jumbo Pencils crease like crazy since they’re so creamy so I tend to apply a proper primer beforehand. 🙂

  8. anne0822
    December 10, 2013 / 11:57 am

    Eye primer is a must for me since I have super duper oily lids! Sayang ang effort kong mag blend ng shadows kung mag crease lang. Hihi..
    Though i try to steer clear of face primers since I always break out when using them.

  9. Inna
    December 11, 2013 / 12:08 am

    I just recently started using a primer- stay don’t strat by benefit and i can see the improvements. My eyemakeup lasts longer but my concealer still needs to be retouched ( dark eye bags and shadows)

    • Inna
      December 11, 2013 / 12:08 am


  10. December 11, 2013 / 4:37 pm

    You’re definitely one of the lucky ones! Everything (except the Ellis Faas cream shadows, love those) creases on me if I don’t prime my lids first. I find UDPP doesn’t ‘boost’ color as much as some other bases out there, but it definitely grips product the best. Nice comparison!

  11. December 12, 2013 / 7:18 am

    I love cream e/s as a base more than primers. Maybelline Color Tattoos are my favorites. 🙂

  12. kara douglas
    December 13, 2013 / 10:17 am

    I’ve been avoiding eye primers for years thinking they were a waste of money but omg how wrong I was, since starting to use them I’ve noticed such an improvement in my makeup. Thank you for this blog post its encouraged me to branch up and sample other primers!x

  13. Sharmaine Sun
    December 13, 2013 / 9:53 pm

    I’ve heard that the ELF and Rimmel primers are pretty good too with an added bonus of being budget friendly =)

  14. December 15, 2013 / 1:23 am

    Wow! I wish I needed to google what creasing looked like, lol! Eyeshadow primer has become an essential for me. I have very oily lids and shadows bunch up along the folds of my lid after only a few hours without it. With it though? My eyeshadow looks 100% perfect even 10-12 hours later! My personal fave is Nars Smudge Proof. It’s $24 USD BUT that little tube has lasted me almost a full YEAR with daily application! One product I’m still not sure of is face primer. It seems to aways make my oily skin OILIER so much SOONER. I typically don’t use it! Thanks for this fun post, chickadee! 🙂

  15. December 15, 2013 / 7:40 am

    i like primers 😀 And i like nars smudgeproof. for face i have so many samples and a handful of primers too but i haven’t used them enough haha. I think the winners for me are clarins (in the pot) and hourglass

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