March 13, 2023 8 min read

Do you ever wonder what a makeup primer is and why this is an essential step in every celebrity makeup artist's daily beauty routine?


If you want your makeup to grip onto your skin and stay on without smudging or melting all through the day even in humid temperatures, then a makeup primer is what you need.


We know a lot of beauty products promise the absolute best, flawless long-lasting makeup, but add a primer to it and you get double the benefits.


Primers are not only an essential part of your makeup, but they also help protect your skin's barrier from the harsh chemicals that may be contained in some of these makeup products.


Some face primers can even double as part of your skin prep. 



What is Makeup Primer & Do You Need to Wear Primer?


Primers are base products that you put on your skin before you apply your makeup to help achieve a more even application and long-lasting wear all day.


Think of how nail primer is used on nails to smooth out cracked surfaces and provide an even base for the paint to adhere to.


That's exactly what makeup primers do for your skin. They act as a smooth canvas for your makeup ensuring that your makeup last longer.


Makeup primers come in various forms as gel, cream, or liquid, and can be used anywhere on the face like the eyelids, lashes, and lips. Their primary function is to provide an even base for your makeup to sit properly and stay on for much longer than it usually would so you can achieve a flawless makeup.


But that's not all. Additional benefits of primers include:


1: Function as moisturizers, color correctors, oil control, and illuminators, and some are even infused with SPF as skin protection from harmful UV rays.

2: Primers can also help minimize the appearance of pores and extend your makeup's wearing power.

3: If you have little patience for applying your makeup in the morning or especially when you're in a rush, a primer like this saves you time because you're basically skipping three steps in just one application which is why it should always be in your makeup bag.


Now that's what I call multitasking!


But with all these amazing benefits, so many people are yet to incorporate primers into their routines.

But that's understandable because although primers are wonderful, using the wrong type of primer for your skin during your makeup application or applying it wrongly can leave your makeup looking messy, blotchy, or cakey.


So now, to answer the question, do you really need to apply primer?


The simple and straight answer is yes if you plan on wearing your makeup for more than 3 hours.


Here's why.


1: For special events like weddings, birthday parties, awards, or gala nights, you'll need to look your absolute best.


This means applying a full face of makeup with layers of products and a primer will ensure that your skin can breathe underneath those layers of makeup while holding it all together so that it doesn't smudge or move.


2: In certain seasons like summer, the hot temperature makes it a struggle for your eye makeup to stay in place all day throughout the day.


3: You may find your eyeshadow fading and your mascara melting under the heat. That could be your sign to start using a primer.


4: If you also have skin issues like acne, fine lines, discoloration, and rough or bumpy skin, applying a primer can smooth and even out your skin for a more flawless finish.


5: And for someone who has an even skin tone and prefers little to no makeup at all, then you can probably skip the primer and opt for a moisturizer that's best suited for your skin type.


But here's my professional advice, never skip the primer. Primers are an essential part of any makeup look whether you're rocking a full face beat or just a few dabs of BB cream.


Plus you can rock them even without makeup to give your skin that smooth velvety feeling which also has some skincare benefits.


Either way, you can rarely go wrong with a makeup primer, all you need to do is learn how to apply it the right way.



How Do You Apply Face Primer?


Now that you're convinced that adding a primer when applying makeup is more beneficial than you imagined, it's time to learn the proper way to apply your primer for maximum benefits.


  • Start by getting the right type of primer that caters to your beauty needs. Once you've found your ideal primer, now it's time to apply.

  • First, you need to prep your skin properly, which means cleansing with a gentle cleanser, followed by a toner, moisturizer, and SPF.

  • Then wait a few minutes before applying the primer. You can use your fingertips, a flat brush, or a beauty sponge to do this.

  • Start from the center of your face and work your way outwards, while focusing on the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) and make sure to avoid under the eyes.

  • After applying, give your primer a minute or two to dry down before you go in with foundation or concealer.


Another way to ensure you're applying your primer the right way is to always use a small amount.


A dime or nickel size amount is more than enough to cover the entire face and make sure it's well blended. Try using your fingertips to spread the primer, as opposed to a flat brush. That way, it blends in and is easily absorbed into the skin.


But if you're not comfortable using your hands, using a clean damp beauty sponge is your next best option.


Also, keep in mind that the type of primer you're using must complement your skin type. For example, a hydrating face primer is best suited for people with dry skin and a mattifying primer is great for oily/combination skin.

And don't forget to follow up with the same type of foundation for the best results.



How To Pick The Right Primer For Your Skin



There are so many primers out there to choose from and finding the right primer for your skin may seem a bit confusing.


But not anymore. Understanding the various types of makeup primers and their functions will help you in choosing the right one for your skin and beauty needs and avoid making the biggest primer mistakes.


Let's take a look at them!



1 . Mattifying Face Primer


If you have oily skin types, then you probably struggle with shine on your T-zone or your makeup sliding off by mid-day due to the excess build-up of oil on your face. To prolong the wear of your foundation, you'll need a mattifying primer preferably the gel-based type like the Milk Hydro Grip Primer. These types of matte primer help by balancing out excess oil, thereby reducing shine and creating a smooth base for makeup to stick to all day.


2 . Hydrating Face Primer


Hydrating primers are infused with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and antioxidants to help to trap moisture in the skin, making them ideal for people with dry skin. Avoid using a silicone-based primer if you have dry skin.


3 . Colour-Correcting Primer


Color-correcting primers are specially formulated to counteract skin discoloration. For example, green primers are used to balance out redness in the skin, blue primers are used to correct yellow or sallow tones, and peach-colored primers are used to even out dark spots that result from sun exposure or aging.



4 . Blurring Primers


Blurring primers are ideal for mature skin because they have the smoothing effect of a mattifying primer that helps in reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while at the same time keeping the skin hydrated for a more youthful glow.



5 . Illuminating Primers


Go for an illuminating primer if you're looking to create a dewy makeup look at stills that look like skin. The illuminating properties of this primer have a way of peeping through your foundation to give you that radiant glow, adding life and dimension to your face. You can also rock this primer without makeup. Just apply it on the high points of your face ( brow bone, nose, cupid's bow, and cheekbones) to get that 'glow from within' effect. Plus they're great for dry skin.



6 . Pore Minimizing Primer


If you struggle to cover your large pores, acne, and rough or bumpy skin, then a pore-minimizing primer is what you need. This type of primer also doubles as a mattifying primer and is great for oily and combination skin. It will help blur out the acne-prone skin while getting rid of the greasiness and shine.


7 . Anti-Aging Primer


Anti-aging primers contain healthy anti-ageing ingredients that help to repair and protect the skin and over time improve skin texture and tone.


8 . Eyeshadow Primer


If you want to avoid eyeshadow fallouts, make your colors pop, and prevent creasing, an eyeshadow primer is what you need. It prevents the skin's oil from breaking down the makeup while keeping your eyelids smooth and even textured for better eyeshadow and eyeliner application. To apply an eyeshadow primer, take a tiny amount with a brush, your fingers, or a sponge, tap it into your eyelids, then go ahead and apply your favorite color of eyeshadow.


9 . Mascara Primer


If your mascara always turns out clumpy or bleeds out during the day, try using a mascara primer. To apply, start by curling your lashes, then using a wand, sweep the primer from the base to the tip of your lashes and immediately apply your favorite mascara before the primer dries down. Do this one eye at a time and you'll see just how long and luscious your lashes will look. Another benefit of mascara primers is that some formulas are made with nourishing ingredients that lengthen and add volume to your lashes over time.



10 . Lip Primer


If you're someone who struggles with dry lips and cracked lipstick, you'd love the effects of using a lip primer. Lip primers create that smooth base for your lips color to hold onto and last much longer without smudging. You can rock your lip primer under a bold or nude lip. The application can be a bit different depending on the packaging. If it comes in a tube or with a wand, you can apply it directly to your lips but if it's in a pot, it is more likely to have a thicker consistency. In that case, make sure to apply lip primer with your fingertips and not a brush so you don't struggle to clean the brush afterward.






Final Thoughts


There's no doubt that makeup primers are an essential part of any great makeup look. But if you're still wondering whether or not you need a makeup primer, just honestly assess the overall look, feel, and finish of your makeup.


If you're not satisfied with the texture, visible pores, or excess shine peeking through your makeup during the day, then you probably need to add a primer as an additional step to your makeup routine while priming your skin for makeup.


Remember, a little goes a long way, always blend properly and wait for it to dry down before going in with your foundation.


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