How many times have you applied foundation with care — perhaps even with a beautyblender — only to have it crease an cake up around blemishes by the time you apply lipstick? Thus begins the ritual of powdering, reapplying foundation and wiping up smudges before you even get out the door. Don’t let this happen to you. You should always prime your skin to create a smooth, even base. Check out these fabulous primers that will make applying your makeup smooth sailing and create a look that lasts. You’ll even find some skin-perfecting benefits within, making these multitaskers a must-have in your makeup arsenal.
Glossier Priming Moisturizer
$25 at Glossier.com
This lightweight, luscious moisturizer hydrates skin beautifully with hyaluronic acid, shea butter and mushroom extract, protects with antioxidant ingredients like radish root extract and calms redness with tea and honey. (It’s a very classy cream.) It also contains glycerin, a key ingredient in helping your makeup stick. Your skin will instantly look and feel refreshed and nourished, and it doesn’t make your skin feel at all sticky or tacky the way some primers can, making it the perfect all-around cream whether or not you’re planning on wearing makeup.
IPKN Flash Cream Radiant Primer
$28 at Birchbox.com
Skin that seems to radiate light and vitality from within is the holy grail of beauty junkies the world over. This primer magically helps you achieve that natural glow without using a separate highlighter or illuminating product because it contains shimmer pearl powder. You’ll see the difference as soon as you smooth it onto your face and somehow, even after applying foundation, your skin retains that glow. Skin-loving ingredients abound, like soothing rose extract, antioxidant grapeseed extract and antimicrobial purslane extract, which also fights irritation. Oh, and if you thought this primer couldn’t get any better, it also has SPF 15, so you’ll be protected from the sun.
Smashbox Photo Finish Oil Free Foundation Pore-Minimizing Primer
$39 at Sephora
Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Oil
$42 at Sephora
Few things can wreck your foundation application more than a smattering of ginormous pores that can give your skin a weird, mesh-y appearance. Also not cute: dry patches that become even more prevalent when you try to put foundation over them. Luckily Smashbox, whose original Photo Finish primer has gained legendary status, has put two new spins on the iconic product that will make these annoyances a thing of the past. The Pore-Minimizing primer helps prevent large pores from wrecking your foundation game and keeps oil at bay for up to eight hours. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you love the feel of face oils, Smashbox’s primer oil is one to consider, even on days when you’re not putting on makeup. This little wonder contains a whopping 15 plant-based oils, including argan, sweet almond, raspberry and evening primrose, along with vitamin E, so your skin will easily get its daily dose of moisture.
Laura Geller Spackle Cream Under Makeup Primer
$30 at QVC.com
The name, while inelegant, is also totally accurate. Just apply some of this onto your face, and your foundation is locked in for hours. In addition to keeping your makeup on point, you’ll also be treating your skin to soothing aloe vera and antioxidants like ginkgo biloba extract. Spackle is exactly what you need when you’re going all-out with your glam and want to ensure a flawless look well into the night.
Too Faced Hangover Rx Replenishing Face Primer
$32 at Ulta
Perk up tired skin with this excellent primer that smells vaguely of coconut and makes you appear almost impossibly fresh and gorgeous. Seriously, you will be amazed by the difference in your skin. With hydrating, repairing ingredients like coconut water and probiotics, it’s the skin-care version of that hydrating smoothie you’d drink after a long night to get your body feeling right. Like your hangover breakfast, it contains plenty of fat with nourishing olive oil. You also get the benefits of vitamin E and glycerin, so your makeup will stick around all day.