Top Ten Beauty: Complexion Primer Under $30

As women age, the skin on our faces tends to look more blotchy, and pores appear bigger. Yet we still want to look just as polished and flawless as we did in our younger years, without wearing more makeup. One of the answers to this age old problem is primer. Complexion primer is a beauty product that helps to smooth out the skin, blur the pores, and help even out tone. A good primer helps you look smoother, with less makeup. It’s easy to apply, moisturizing, and light. I tested several different complexion primers, from very expensive to downright cheap. Here are my top ten complexion primer picks.


Tarte Clean Slate
, $27 (Sephora.com)

This product comes in a clear liquid solution, and it goes on light as air, and feels like silk. Like some other complexion primers, Clean Slate is silicone-based and has a soothing blend of avocado, echinacea, rosemary, and hibiscus oils. While it’s very moisturizing as a primer, you must allow it to dry completely before applying your foundation. Tarte Clean Slate helps the foundation go on smoothly and stay on without caking.

Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch, $26 (Sephora.com)

Wow. One of the best buys in complexion primer on the market for the price, Clarins Instant Smooth is nourishing, and feels like velvet to the skin. It contains special acacia micro pearls to help with enlarged pore issues. I don’t know what micro pearls are, but they sure do work. Instant Smooth also does the best job of the list in line-filling, which is important if you’re just starting to see those fine lines around your eyes like I am. An all around great complexion primer.

Sephora Skin Smoothing Makeup Base, $22 (Sephora.com)

This product comes in a clear gel, which I like to keep in the fridge to make it feel even better going on in the morning. It does wonders for evening up tone, and not giving your face that oily sheen. It really does make a difference when you use Sephora complexion primer before your foundation.

Urban Decay Primer Potion, $14 (Amazon.com)

While Urban Decay primer is a great price, keep in mind it comes in a teeny tiny bottle. It is designed specifically for use on and around the eyes, to help eye makeup stay put, and look flawless. It does a great job of that, but does not come in clear. It is one shade of nude, which may not work for everyone. My favorite aspect of this complexion/eye primer is that it makes your eyes completely crease-proof.

Philosophy The Present Skin Perfector, $25 (Amazon.com)

Advertised as a complexion primer to “lay down a second skin to smooth out imperfections, fine lines, and irregularities”, Benefit The Present is a complexion primer that anyone would love, especially those with blotchy or bumpy skin. It’s also a great pre-makeup moisturizer for those with very dry skin, and is effective in preventing acne breakouts. I find this primer indispensible in the wintertime when my skin is at it’s worst.

Bare Escentuals bare-Vitamins Skin Revver-Upper, $20 (Sephora.com)

Long name, extremely good complexion primer. Lightweight and full of vitamins, Bare Escentuals gives your face a fresh, healthy feeling all day. It does a great job keeping acne at bay as well.

Paul and Joe Protective Foundation Primer Spf 30, $25 (Amazon.com)

I love the added benefit that this product has, of an Spf 30. We do so much to damage our skin during the year, with stress, sweat, wind, and pollution. It’s a really good thing to have a sunscreen built into our favorite beauty products, and plenty of the standard makeup products have sunscreen. This is the first complexion primer to have added sunscreen protection.
It is also a wonderfully moisturizing primer that just feels good on your face, either alone or under makeup.

Bourjois Lovely Pary Luminous Base, $20 (Amazon.com)

This is a complexion primer that feels great, and makes your face glow. You can wear it under makeup as a primer, over it for added glow, or all by itself. It’s a versatile complexion primer that you can take anywhere, and it’ll make you look more beautiful than you already do.

Be Professional Velvet Veil, $16 (Amazon.com)

This exquisite complexion primer is light as air, and makes your skin look and feel miraculously smooth. It can also be smoothed onto your hair for a silky no flyaway look. I love that! Velvet Veil has no oily feel to it, and your skin just soaks it right up as if it’s been waiting for it. A truly lovely complexion primer.

Benefit Dr. Feelgood, $26 (Amazon.com, Sephora.com)

Benefit’s complexion primer is luxurious going on, and feels so good on the skin. It is by far my favorite of the list. The price is great, it comes in a cute little tin, has vitamins C and E, and can be worn all by itself on those days when you aren’t in the mood for makeup. Even by itself it smoothes out your skin, making it look healthy and sexy. Benefit Dr. Feelgood is a wonderful complexion primer!

There you have it ladies, my top ten picks for complexion primer under $30. There are also alot of great primer products on the market now that cost more, but why pay more? You can get truly amazing beauty products at a price that won’t make you scowl. Complexion primer is a product that I believe every woman can benefit from, as we all have little issues with our faces that we’d like to hide. Don’t hide it! Smooth it out, and then flaunt it! I truly wish every woman could feel great with less makeup on, and feel comfortable enough with themselves to let their natural beauty come out. Complexion primer is not a fix-all, and it won’t turn you into a supermodel. But who needs supermodels anyway? Every one of us has something special.

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