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Eye Primer 101: A Comprehensive Guide

Eye Primer 101: A Comprehensive Guide

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A daytime smokey eye is awesome. A daytime smokey eye that’s smeared and smudged beneath your eyes by lunchtime, however, is not. Like the Pyramids and the Great Wall of China, any great look requires a solid foundation -- and your eyeshadow look needs a good primer to stay put on your eyes. On top of keeping your eye makeup intact, a good eye primer will also boost the color of your shadow, prevent creases, and sometimes even fight aging and moisturize your skin. 


1. Before or after you apply your foundation or concealer (up to you!)

2. Pat on a tiny amount to cover your eyelid with your fingertip or a brush.

3. Wait a few seconds for the primer to dry.

4. Apply your eyeshadow and eyeliner as usual.

Sounds easy, right?

As essential as primers can be to your eye makeup routine, not all primers are created equal -- and on top of this, you’ll find a variety of different types of primers on the market. To help you choose the perfect one, here’s a brief guide to the new tool in your beauty arsenal.


Try this: Elf Eyelid Primer

This is the most common eye primer you’ll find from Youtube makeup tutorials or perusing the beauty aisle -- it’s because the formula goes on clear or tinted to match your skin tone, leaving a completely neutral base for you to build your eyeshadow look.

This is the place to start if you’re a newbie to eye primers -- it’s an invisible but soon-to-be-essential addition to your makeup routine. You won’t see any immediate changes to your look with this one, but what you will notice with a good neutral eye primer is that your eyeshadow and eyeliner will stay put throughout the day, crease and smudge-free. 




Try this: Urban Decay Primer Potion in Eden

If you’re looking for a step up from the basic neutral eye primer, then you might want to opt for a tinted primer. Tinted primers come in a wide variety of shades and finishes and are perhaps the most multi-tasking primers of the bunch -- they can work to bring out the shimmer in a gold eyeshadow or serve as an eyeshadow on their own. If you’re an avid user of liquid eyeliner, a tinted eye primer can look great underneath a cat eye while keeping that feline flick from smudging off your face. 




Try this: Too Faced Shadow Insurance Glitter Glue

Once you’re an eye primer pro, you’ll know that there’s one area where basic eye primers fall short: glitter. If you love to play it up now and then with a dramatic glitter eye look, then it’s worth having a reliable glitter eye primer in your beauty arsenal.

Since glitter shadows typically contain larger particles than your typical eyeshadow, these glitter-specific primers work to prevent the glitter from getting all over your face while still delivering the crease and smudge-preventing benefits of any other basic primer. The formula will usually go on clear or tinted -- not glittery, like the name might lead you to believe -- and works to lock down glittery eyeshadows and loose powder. 



Have a favorite eye primer of your own? Let us know in the comments below!

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