Friday, 11 February 2011

Eye Primers

UD Primer Potion, Etude Proof 10, NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base, Kat Von D  High Voltage Eye Primer in Skin, UD Primer Potion in Eden, Kat Von D High Voltage Eye Primer in Smoky & Stellar.

It has been somewhat of a chore, but I've tried a fair few primers now. My main concern is creasing in the inner eye corner. Having oily lids & somewhat hooded eyes has presented a challenge to say the least.

With that in mind, I've decided it's time to compare some of the primers I've tested out. Just ignore the bloody plug lurking in the picture background!

There's a few in the picture, we'll start with those first.

Urban Decay Primer Potion - When I first tried this, it worked like magic. My eyeshadow stayed true to colour, bright & didn't crease. Sadly, it really irritated my eyes. Stinging lids & weeping eyes will wreck your shadow, no matter how good the primer you use. I'm now wondering if they've changed the formula slightly, it no longer seems to have that effect on my lids. However, I don't use this as my everyday primer because I'm worried about those symptoms reoccurring.

Colour - goes on a clearish nude, will work with any shadow at all.
Texture - creamy, dries to a slightly tacky finish. Blendability has struck me as an issue previously. I find using a nude shadow as an all-over wash first, preferrably something like a MAC Veluxe Pearl, helps enormously.
Packaging - Because it was initially only available in the curved tube, you'd end up with a lot of product stuck at the bottom. The only way to get it out is to saw the tube open & scoop out the remainder. There's now a professional size that comes in a squeeze tube. Much more hygienic & less waste.

Not the cheapest of primers but you do get a fair bit for your money's worth. If you have no irritation issues, it's a good choice. Definitely try to get hold of the bigger squeeze tube.

Etude Proof 10 - This is probably the closest to UDPP in terms of texture. It is a thinner texture, so it's probably a better bet for those who find UDPP too drying. Very lighweight to wear, feels like nothing on. Dries slightly less tacky that UDPP but still good enough to get a grip on loose powder. Dirt cheap on eBay.

Colour - another clear nude.
Texture - far better as far as blending goes, never had an issue with this. Creamy & smooth, less tacky than UDPP but still enough to hold shadows on well.
Packaging - clear plastic bottle with doe-foot applicator. The doe-foot seems smaller in comparison to others, a good thing as it makes it harder to over-do your primer application. Will probably have to resort to sawing it open once you get toward the bottom though.

If you don't suffer outrageously oily lids & want something a little less spendy, I can't recommend this primer enough. Even with my problematic lids, I can get a good 8 hours or so before the inner-eye creasing becomes apparent. Even then, it's a tiny amount. Caused me no irritation at all.

NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base - This is a rather pricey option but it's lovely. Out of all the primers I've tried, this has given me the least creasing. No irritation to speak of & feels like nothing on the lids.

Colour - dries completely clear.
Texture - feels creamy upon initial application but dries down to an almost powder finish, which I find helps enormously with particularly oily lids.
Packaging - yet another tube with doe-foot applicator. Whilst its straight shape means you'll be able to get more out, you'll still have to resort to sawing it open to get the very last bit from it. As its one of the more expensive primers, it's worth doing that.

This is probably my favourite primer of all that I've tried. The powder-like texture helps with the oilies and it dries so quickly. I do get a tiny amount of creasing after around 9 hours but it is very minimal. I doubt anyone else would notice. If you have the cash to splurge, this is an excellent primer.

Kat Von D High Voltage Primer - So this doesn't scroll on forever, I'll cover all three shades under this section. Slightly cheaper than UDPP, really pretty designs on the packaging & it's not an awful primer by any means.

Colour - Skin is a matte pale yellow. You could easily throw this on with just a touch of mascara & liner for more casual days. Smoky is matte, I'd say a mid-grey. An excellent base for smoky eyes & because of its colour, applying underneath your eyes is a piece of cake. You can see exactly where it is. Stellar is a shimmery pale pinky whitish shade. Great for adding a glow to shadows.
Texture - all three are creamy but Stellar dries down a little less tacky than Smoky or Skin. Excessively oily-lidded people might want to go easy on this one, the slightest amount is all it takes. Any more than that, it's hello Crease City. Having said that, this makes an absolutely bulletproof smoky eye when used as a base under a MAC Greasepaint Stick & some shadow. Will not budge until you take it off.
Packaging - Tube, doe-foot. But what a beautiful tube it is with its designs all over it. It'll be hard bringing myself to cut this to pieces.

Definitely more for the moderately oily or less. Skin is very similar to UDPP in Eden, both colour & texture-wise. It is slightly less tacky but it dries down looking less matte & drying. The great thing about this primer is, with the three choices available, you're covered for any kind of look you want to do.

Urban Decay Primer Potion in Eden - Quite different from the original UDPP. More matte, less nude. It's an okay primer but it's matte texture will make sparkly shadows look a little more subdued.

Colour - much like the High Voltage primer in Skin. Pale yellow. This probably won't suit those with a darker skin tone. I found I had to be careful with some paler shadows as this could alter how they looked.
Texture - once again, it dries down to a matte finish. Quite tacky so it'll hold on to loose powder well. It creased a fair bit on my inner eyes after a few hours. No fading of shadows though.
Packaging - very similar to the original UDPP tube. You will end up having to saw this open towards the end of the tube. The colour, a matte yellow with purple lid, is quite hideous but you won't mistake it for anything else in your stash.

This worked for me for a while, then I had creasing problems. It'd be fine for putting on a quick face to run some errands but I couldn't rely on it for all day or a big night out. The plus side was absolutely no irritation occurred.

Too Faced Shadow Insurance (not pictured) - This was the primer I bought when I realised that it was the UDPP that caused my eyes to become irritated. At first I was quite taken with it but it let me down.

Colour - dries down to a nude lid.
Texture - very creamy. Stays tacky. Easy to blend over.
Packaging - great squeeze tube.

On paper, this should be a fabulous primer, it ticks all the right boxes. In reality, it was quite a different experience. It was so tacky that not only did in crease on my inner eye, it creased all over my entire lid. My eyeshadow actually migrated into my crease, something that hasn't happened with any other primer. My shadow faded a little too. The squeeze tube was great. The actual product separating so that it spurted out an oily substance first then the primer was not so great. Shaking the tube beforehand didn't always remedy that. I wasted a good bit of product by squeezing it out on to a tissue, so as not to get the oil all over my hands.
There was no irritation for me, but that was its only saving grace.
I was so exasperated with this that I threw away my tube that was still more than half full. Definitely my least favourite of the bunch.

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