9 Top Rated Face Primer

Face primers can be worth their weight in gold. They help diminish the appearance of pores, control oil, enhance skin’s dewey appearance, and even allow you to use less makeup. A top rated face primer 2017 can also help keep your makeup going for hours.

With all the primer options out there, however, it can be frustrating to find one that fits your wear needs, style, budget, and skin type. That’s why we’ve created a guide to the top rated face primer (2017-2018).

We’ve included the best face primers overall, as well as the best face primers for oily skin, the best primer that fills in pores, top rated face primers for dry skin, and more!

How We Chose Our Ratings

Accuracy and honest are vital to us in our research for the top rated face primer 2017, so we make sure to carefully compile the most valid reviews and testimonials from actual customers and makeup experts. We’ve gathered the best information from the most reputable sources to provide you data you can feel confident about.

Beautiful young woman applying moisturizing cream to face

Top 9 Best Face Primers

Best Organic Primer: Juice Beauty Phyto-pigments Illuminating Primer

4.5 out of 5 stars

If you struggle with sensitive skin, you’ll love this primer from Juice Beauty. Filled with organic ingredients like coconut oil, jojoba oil, and argan shell powder, this formula is lightweight and gentle.

Reviewers love that it gives their skin a dewy, luminous finish and simultaneously fights wrinkles and other signs of aging with powerful antioxidants Vitamin E and C. This Juice Beauty Illuminating Primer works best with full coverage or medium coverage makeup.

Best Long-Wearing: Smashbox Photo Finish

4.5 out of 5 stars

Nearly three hundred four-star or higher reviewers can’t be wrong! This classic primer from Smashbox has a long and storied history. It goes the distance more than anything else featured today.

It is oil-free and fragrance-free, so if your skin is oily or combination, or sensitive, you’ll appreciate how this formulation doesn’t irritate or worsen your skin. It creates a flawless, velvety base for your makeup, but thanks to gentle ingredients like Vitamin A, green tea, Vitamin E, and grape seed extract, your skin will stay nourished and happy.

Best Pore Eraser: Dr. Brandt Pores No More Pore Refiner

4.5 out of 5 stars

Pores are those large holes that seem to fill our faces, especially as we age. They pit our makeup and keep it from applying smoothly, and they make us look older than we are. Unfortunately, pores can’t be resized, but they can be made to appear smaller.

That’s where Pores No More from Dr. Brandt comes in; this bad boy is a whiz at making pores disappear altogether. It is designed for oily or combination skin and utilizes light diffusing technology from microspheres to keep the eye moving.

It also includes tea tree oil, which has antimicrobial properties, to keep your skin from fostering bacterial growth, and can be used as a touch up over your makeup if necessary.

Best Airbrushed Look: Becca Velvet Blurring Primer Perfecting Base 

4.5 out of 5 stars

Becca Velvet Blurring Primer is beloved for doing exactly–blurring the face’s appearance and making imperfections seem to disappear! Reviewers note that the formula melts into their skin and creates a matte finish for an airbrushed look.

To achieve the airbrushed appearance, Becca utilizes Vitamin C and Vitamin E and sodium hyaluronate. Testers note their skin feels soft and smooth throughout the day, and that their makeup lasted longer and applied more evenly.

Best for Dry or Damaged Skin: Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Face Primer

4.5 out of 5 stars

Too Faced has created an ultra-hydrating product that gives life back to skin that’s dry, tired, dull, or exhausted. The brand uses a combination of coconut water, cutting-edge probiotic technology, and what it calls “skin revivers” to boost skin’s elasticity and hydrating while providing an excellent base for your makeup.

Reviewers rave about this product whether they have dry, oily, or combination skin; some even find they can skip their moisturizer because this is so powerful. It is also free of parabens and can be worn alone or simply under bronzer or blush for a lighter touch.

Best Anti-Aging Primer: It Cosmetics Feel the Moment Anti-Aging Ultra Hydrating Sensory Awakening Primer Serum

4.5 out of 5 stars

This primer from It Cosmetics promises a “sensory experience.” Whether or not that’s the case, we are in love with how this unique serum both revitalizes skin and ups the factor in your makeup game. The list of incredible ingredients is long: caviar extract, niacin, jojoba and avocado oils, hyaluronic acid, and much more!

Reviewers report seeing their skin plump visibly and lines and wrinkles disappear.

Best Combination BB Cream: Bare Minerals Prime Time BB Primer-Cream

4.5 out of 5 stars

We love this BB cream and primer combo from Bare Minerals for its ability to do double duty. This broad spectrum SPF 30 primer is also a BB cream, which means it will work to correct your skin’s imperfections, not just cover them.

This isn’t a heavy foundation, but it will tackle uneven skin tone, discoloration, and pore appearance.

If you prefer less makeup on the daily, this is a great option because it allows you to skip moisturizers, spot treatments, and even foundation for a one and done look!

Most Affordable: e.l.f. Mineral Infused Face Primer

4 out of 5 stars

At less than $6 a bottle, this primer from e.l.f. more than delivers on its affordability promise! We are super impressed with this silicone-based formula and appreciate that it comes in four different colors. The green combats redness, the blue hydrates, the purple brightens dull skin, and the peach adds a radiant glow (none of the colors show on the skin).

Customers describe this primer as soft and matte and love that it barely takes any time at all to set. It’s not going to provide the best coverage or longest lasting wear, but if you want a decent primer at a great price, it’s a fantastic choice!

Best for Oil Control: Rimmel Stay Matte Primer

4 out of 5 stars

Another great drugstore product, this one from Rimmel is affordable and matte. It’s great for somebody who wants excellent oil control while not caking on the primer. You’ll enjoy the lightweight feel and the fact that you can even use it alone, without makeup.

Again, this affordable product won’t go 24 hours, but it will get you a solid six or eight, keeping your makeup in good condition by the end of the workday. It’s also phthalate free and paraben free.

Best SPF Primer: Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer

4 out of 5 stars

What stands out the most about this UK cult favorite is the SPF. You’ll notice it immediately because the primer itself is somewhat white and thick and will take a moment or two to soak into your skin.

Once it does, however, you’ll have the comfort of knowing you’re protecting your skin, even if your foundation or moisturizer isn’t. That said, this primer is best for people with dry skin. If your skin is oily, you probably won’t be happy with this application unless you’re also using powder.

Face Primer Buyer’s Guide

jelly makeup primer

Image via DermaBlend

Primers range dramatically from high-end to inexpensive, from powders to gels to serums, and everything in between. What’s especially unique about today’s products is their ability to do more than just prime the face.

Whether you need your makeup to sit tight for ten or more hours, you need to combat the signs of aging, or you need to fight acne or other skin issues, there’s a primer for you!

The trick, whichever primer you choose, is to make sure you’re applying it correctly. Only apply it to clean, dry skin. If you’re using it over moisturizer or serum, make sure your face has dried completely.

Generally speaking, less is more with primer. Too much can become cakey. You should also experiment with how you apply it: even a drugstore primer can start to look extremely high-end when you use a brush or a beauty blender to press it into your skin, rather than just your fingers.

Finally, make sure your primer has dried completely before applying foundation. You don’t want blotches or splots.

Let’s Get Priming!

Primer is a game-changer for any makeup cabinet, and we’ve rounded up the top rated face primer 2017 for you to choose from! Whether you simply want to help your foundation go the distance or you need extra coverage, it’s an investment worth making.

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