The Power of Primers

Posted on: 8th August, 2018

Category: Inside Out Beauty

Contributor: Sherna Malone

Skincare and beauty expert Sherna Malone shares her knowledge and expertise of all things beauty – from skin care do’s and don’ts to the latest products out there.

Summer is a wonderful time but having to contend with melting makeup isn’t and during the recent heatwave, many people got in touch with me regarding their makeup and how the heat and their foundation were not exactly playing ball! While I may have been a primer sceptic once, only in that it was another step in my morning makeup routine, now I wouldn’t be without. It is a complete makeup game changer. The key to a good primer though is to pick the right one for your skin type and skin goals and today they are more specialised than ever, with focused formulas to combat your every complexion woe. For me, a primer is one of those beauty products that combines both the benefits of skincare and cosmetics and you certainly won’t regret the few extra seconds it takes to apply one.

While primer’s main goal is to make your makeup last a very long time, essentially, they act like a magic wand, erasing imperfections and filling in any large pores, fine lines and uneven texture. They also mattify oily areas and prevent shine, correct areas of redness, dullness and discolouration and they can add an extra boost of hydration to dry skins, leaving you with a perfected base that is ready for the rest of your makeup. The newest generation of primers can also contain SPF and ingredients that promise to make skin healthier.

The key ingredient is silicone, a colourless water-repelling substance that acts like a base coat for your skin and feels like silk yet doesn’t interfere with the rest of your makeup or block the pores, making it a great option for most skin types. When applying your chosen primer, avoid rubbing or massaging the product in too much and instead smooth it over the skin in long sweeping motions and leave it to set for a few minutes before continuing with the rest of your routine. This technique will ensure that the primer does its job properly and creates the best base for your foundation.

So, if you think primers may seem superfluous, give them a try, the right one should ensure your makeup can comfortably sit on your face all day without the need for touch ups or if the weather returns, rolling down your face! Plus, on days when a foundation isn’t necessary, primers can simply give your skin a lovely boost.

Here are a few worth checking out:


The primer range from Clarins is without doubt the prettiest collection of primers around.  Available in six shades, each primer tackles a different skin problem from diminishing redness to boosting radiance. Organic sea lily provides 24-hour hydration and Clarins unique Anti-Pollution Complex protects the skin from environmental aggressors.

Benefit POREfessional

This is a much thicker primer (similar to a balm texture) and will quickly minimise the appearance of pores and fine lines. Best for smoothing, if skin texture and large pores are your bugbear, you need this in your makeup arsenal. Use a small amount, just where you need it.

MAC Prep & Prime Skin Base

A lightweight gel lotion that evens out skin redness and tone while adding radiance. If you like the smoothing effect of primers but find POREfessional too heavy for you, this is a good in-between.

Nars Pore & Shine Control Primer

This oil-free primer from NARS really does what it says on the tin and is perfect for oily skin. When applied, it instantly smoothes skin for a more refined finish. Laura Mercier oil free foundation primer is another great one for oily skins.

Urban Decay Environmental Protection Complexion Primer SPF30

This skin smoothing primer is designed to reduce the look of pores whilst providing sun protection. It is also enriched with tomato fruit extract to brighten for a more even skin tone. Fast-absorbing, the gel formula is invisible on the skin and doesn’t leave any residue.

L’Oréal Paris Lumi Magique Primer

This is great multi-tasker and has a lovely pearlescent glow. If you suffer from dry skin it’s a great hydrating primer. Can we be worn underneath your makeup for a glowy finish or dab on cheekbones and just at the top of the cupid’s bow when you’ve finished your makeup for a natural looking highlight.

e.l.f Mineral Infused Face Primer

This versatile mineral primer creates a smooth flawless canvas for your foundation. It has a lovely weightless silky formula, developed to combat against excess oil, flaky dryness, enlarged pores, and fine lines. Suitable for all skin types. This primer fills in fine lines and refines your complexion.

The Ordinary High-Adherence Silicone Primer is formulated with advanced, adaptive silicones. Mattifying yet hydrating, it is a high-performance budget priced primer that can be worn alone or under make up to blur imperfections and create an airbrushed finish.

As always, if you have any skincare concerns you would like to ask me about, please email You can also follow me on Instagram and Facebook

If you would like to begin your journey to healthy beautiful skin, I am available by appointment in Solace Holistic Centre Clonakilty where I offer bespoke Murad Facial Treatments and Skincare Consultations – all details of this and my next Tween & Teen Workshops are on the website


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