Guest Swatcher: Primer Comparison

I’m delighted to introduce today’s guest swatcher, Katie from My Lips But Better. My Lips But Better is all about makeup that flatters and enhances your natural features, so you look like the best version of yourself (which is my own personal goal when I wear makeup).

It’s pure coincidence that Katie offered to swatch and compare primers in a week that I was using the giveaway question to ask about primers — but what a great coincidence! Here are her swatches and review:
primer, Too Faced, Sephora, Urban Decay, UDPP, Shadow Insurance, TFSI, MAC, Prep and Prime
primer, Too Faced, Sephora, Urban Decay, UDPP, Shadow Insurance, TFSI, MAC, Prep and Prime

Sephora Eye Primer: I don’t particularly like the brush applicator because you can’t tell how much product you’re getting. I really dislike that it comes in such an unnatural color because it shows through the shadows and changes how they look. This primer really grabs onto the shadow when you first apply, but doesn’t hold onto it for long. Rating: C

MAC Prep + Prime Eye in Light: Comes in a pot, which allows you to control how much product you’re getting. It looks yellow on my arm, but on the eye that helps cover any bluish discoloration from veins. There are several other colors for people with darker skintones. I can actually use this as a concealer and an eye primer. Bonus: lasts forever! Mine is over a year old and still extremely creamy. Didn’t hold onto the color as well as the last two primers, but also didn’t affect the shadow texture very much. Rating: B

Urban Decay Primer Potion: I like that it’s nearly transparent and seems to blend into my skin; however I don’t like how hard it is to blend shadows when I use this primer. Dealbreaker: the cute packaging is completely dysfunctional. The doe foot applicator is pretty useless for your eyelid and doesn’t get nearly all the product out of the tube. Some choose to cut their packages open and scoop out the product, but I don’t think it’s worth the trouble. Rating: B

Too Faced Shadow Insurance: Transparent and blends into the skin very well. Comes in a nice squeeze tube that allows you to control how much product you’re getting. I find it’s easy to blend shadows over this within a minute or two of applying. Changed the texture of the shadows slightly, but kept colors vibrant. Rating: A

No Primer: Clearly, using any of these primers makes color more vibrant and longer-lasting than no primer at all.

primer, Too Faced, Sephora, Urban Decay, UDPP, Shadow Insurance, TFSI, MAC, Prep and Prime
primer, Too Faced, Sephora, Urban Decay, UDPP, Shadow Insurance, TFSI, MAC, Prep and Prime
primer, Too Faced, Sephora, Urban Decay, UDPP, Shadow Insurance, TFSI, MAC, Prep and Prime

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12 Responses to “Guest Swatcher: Primer Comparison”

  • Carmen Kofoed says:

    This is great! Thanks for the this very well-done comparison.

  • Dubi says:

    I can add that the SmashBox eye primer is not very good either. Barely get half a day before shadow starts to crease. My fav is the UDPP but hate the packaging. Will defn have to try the TFSI. Thanks for the write up.

  • Diane C. says:

    I seriously cannot understand why Urban Decay has not come out with a better package for Primer Potion. There are so many YouTube videos and blog entries about how to cut this baby open and scoop out all the primer that’s left once the wand fails. Come on UD, are you really that stubborn or just oblivious?

  • priya says:

    thanx 4 this post ! too faced is my all time fave !

  • Irene says:

    Nice comparison especially true of how they bring out the eye colors but the arm test isn’t definitive. There are so many oils that can appear on your lids that the only way to really know how it will perform would be to try them out yourself. I’ve tried liners that stay when I swatch but when I bought some to use on my eyes, the just don’t stay and some of the ones that lasted the least performed better on my eyes.

  • You’re welcome!

    @Irene Thanks for the suggestion! I considered that, but decided this would be good for now. I think I’ll do another writeup in the future with arm swatches, eye swatches, and more brands. It’ll take me a while to track down samples though!

  • blusherine says:

    Great post and very useful, thank you very much! I love the direct comparison on the arms!

  • elaina says:

    wow thank you for such a well done comparison!! this makes me want to pull out my Too Faced Shadow Insurance again. I sort of push it to the side since its not my favorite brand.

  • DJ says:

    It is DEFINITELY worth cutting open the UDPP tube and getting the remainder out. There is A LOT in there!

  • Gabriela says:

    Great review!!! Thanks :)

  • jemma says:

    I use MAC paint pot (in painterly) as my eye primer – has anyone else tried this? I would love to see it in a comparison against the too faced and UD primer :)

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