Trying out the Tatcha Liquid Silk Canvas Primer

I have been a big fan of the Tatcha Silk Canvas primer for a while. It is a balm type primer and in addition to making my makeup last longer and look great, it also makes my skin feel good both while wearing it and after removal. With my last Tatcha order I received a sample of the Liquid version of this primer and I tried it out. As the sample was a foil packet, the product was enough to interest me, but not enough to let me know if I would actually enjoy this primer for a longer period of time.

Plus with foil packets I find my use is never how I would normally use it. Sometimes I over use a product because I don’t want to make a mess with an open foil packet. Plus they are a bit unwieldy so sometimes product is just wasted. Luckily for me, Tatcha has this primer in a travel size. Since I also wanted to try out the Silk Powder for longer than the foil packet allowed I also picked up the travel size of the loose powder. But that is another story.

primer applied where it is most needed

This was an interesting primer to use. I couldn’t help but compare it to the balm style. Which is both understandable and a little silly. The silly part is that balms should be compared to balms and liquids to liquid. The understandable part is that they are from the same brand and are pretty much the same product in different formats.

This primer has the same scent as the balm version which is a slightly floral, slightly skin care kind of scent. It is light and it fades out fairly quickly so it isn’t much of an issue for the scent minded. I think the scent is slightly lighter in the liquid version than the balm, but that could also be a factor of format. when you open the balm, the entire pan is exposed and scent wafts up, whereas with the pump you only smell the scent of the small amount you pump out of the bottle.

I found one pump was enough for me. since my largest pores are my noes and cheeks I tend to apply the most product there and then blend outwards towards other areas. Also my nose is where I tend to lose makeup first so a little extra primer keeps it more in sync with the rest of the wear on my face.

primer blended out. slightly mattifying in nature

It is quite liquid when dispensed. It isn’t runny but it is liquid. I knew it was because it is a liquid primer, but the scent hit me first and my brain thought of the other primer so it seemed surprising at first. What was interesting was that once applied, it simply smoothed over the face like a slightly lighter version of the balm. It almost stiffened up with air and skin contact.

It was almost like they made it just liquid enough to be able to smoothly come out of the pump before it did it’s best to turn from liquid to balm. It didn’t quite get there but it did it’s best.

So how did the Tatcha Liquid Silk Canvas perform?

Beautifully. It is a great product. It performed just as well as the balm version. It applied easily, made my makeup last longer and made my skin feel great. To be honest, the only real difference I found between the two is the fact that one is a solid and the other is a liquid. They are both fabulous products and if you are looking to choose between them then the only thing you need to think about is whether or not you prefer your primer in liquid or balm format. The liquid is quick and easy to grab in the mornings when you are rushed, but if you are traveling the balm won’t spill because it is a solid. There are benefits to both so it is just going to come down to personal preference. I will still use the travel size off and on because I am curious to see how long it will last. After two weeks of dedicated use it is still more than halfway full. I will add it into rotation and use every last drop before a refill is purchased.


Primed for that Unicorn Glow

I love primers. I know I have talked about them a lot. Perhaps i spent too much time with the oil paints but i do love the idea of prepping the canvas of my face before applying the paint of my makeup. For me a good primer can take out some of the redness or unevenness of the skin tone so that you have to use less concealer. It can help blur out the look of pores and it can extend the life of the rest of my makeup.

For me using a good primer means I have to use less concealer and less foundation, which helps those products last longer in the bottle. It also keeps the makeup on my face lighter and in many cases it enhances the look of the foundation. If it is an overly matte foundation, put an illuminating primer underneath. Love the foundation but know it has a tendency to dry you out? how about a highlighting primer. Notice that this particular foundation has the habit of sinking into fine lies towards the end of the day? Why not go with a porefilling primer underneath?

please ignore the multitude of bug bites. I sprayed everything with bug spray except my hands before I went watering in the garden.

A good primer can not only even out your skin tone and get you ready for the rest of your makeup but it can form a power couple with your foundation making good products even better. Of course it can also go horribly wrong if a couple is just not meant to be.

This particular primer is the Unicorn Glow Long Wear Primer. It is…”Formulated with skin loving ingredients, this nourishing primer instantly creates a smooth glowing canvas for flawless long-lasting make up while providing coverage for fine lines and pores.”

My version is a sample sized tube that I think was paired with something else I ordered from IPSY a while back. I think I specifically ordered the other item and then just put this in the drawer because it was a duo. I took it out of the drawer as I am attempting to use up a lot of my sample sized products and see if they are worth picking up as a full size. I suspected this would only last a few days. However the tube was chock-a-block full and not a lot of product is needed for each application. In fact you shouldn’t use too much of this.

When dispensed the primer looks really light and I was concerned the color would be light on the skin. The color fades away as you blend it out across the skin. I chose to use the small dots across the face for my application of this because it helped ensure i didn’t apply too much. The Unicorn Glow Primer is a thinner consistency than many primers, almost the level of a water cream. Maybe slightly thicker. if used sparingly it blended in beautifully and looked great. It had a slightly sticky texture which I like for holding on to makeup longer. Apply too much product and it takes a while to absorb and can look a little oily. So when applying start sparingly and then add more on the spots you think might need more attention.

It did a pretty decent job of minimizing fine lines. It wasn’t the best for pore filling, but the fine lines it really seemed to work well in covering, especially the ones around my eyes. It is slightly hydrating but despite the name Unicorn Glow, it is not a glowy/dewy/illuminating primer. I didn’t have a problem with any of the foundations i paired it with and will happily keep this tube in rotation until it is empty. which may take a lot longer than I anticipated. Just remember to give it a minute to settle in (which is good advice for almost every primer) and it will work well covering up fine lines. This Unicorn Glow Long Wear primer retails for $12 and I will definitely consider picking up a full sized tube when i next look to buy primers.

Outshine The Rest Shop Now

Using the Rodial Glass Primer

If you’ve read my posts for any length of time you know that I am a huge fan of primers. Perhaps it is a hold over from my art days but I like the thought of prepping the canvas before applying the paint. Or my face before the makeup.

In general I go for pore filling primers. The older I get the more I find that the blurring and pore filling primers not only blur and fill pores, but they conceal the fine lines that my skin care is currently battling to defend against.

I also find that primers can do a lot more. an illuminating primer can give you a lit from within glow or it can add depth and dimension to a matte foundation, making it look less mask like and more like real skin. Some primers have skincare benefits to them now so I like to think of it as an extra layer of protection between the skin and potentially pore clogging makeup.

This is the Glass Primer from Rodial

Discover a radiant glow with Rodial’s Glass Primer, a sheer formula that promotes a flawless, glass-skin effect. Boasting ultra-hydrating ingredients, the primer utilises light-scattering technology, packed with microscopic glow spheres to help illuminate the complexion.

The lightweight formula is enriched with crambe abyssinica seed oil, seeking to leave the complexion feeling supple and soft. A multi-tasking hero, the nourishing primer can be worn beneath makeup or alone for a healthy-looking glow.


First off for those wondering crambe abyssinica seed oil …

is both hydrating and protective, with a velvety, non-greasy texture. An active lubricant and emollient, it is a natural alternative to mineral oils and silicones, promoting soft skin and a protective barrier to prevent skin dryness. For hair – it restores shine and gloss, conditions hair and reduces breakages.

Botani Website

I’m okay with skin softening benefits. I’m not entirely certain what the light scattering technology is but I know how it looks on the skin. We’ll get to that in a second.

When dispensed the primer is a light tan. The tan fades so it can be worn by all skin tones. what is more prevalent than it’s color is the scent. It is a very menthol scented primer. There is no getting around it. It smells like menthol. It is strong when you first apply it and even though it fades a little as you wear it, all day you will turn around and catch a faint scent of menthol. It is with you as long as this product is with you.

The right side of the picture has the primer on it but the left side does not (I put primer on half my face – a little more than half on my nose) The light source is directly in front of me it is much more visible on my cheeks than it is anywhere else if you are looking to zoom in.

On the skin it gives you a bit of a rainbow hue. I am guessing this is the light scattering technology at work. It feels nourishing. It is brightening and there is some pore blurring. It is mostly brightening.

While it claims it can be worn alone, I would at least put some powder over it. When worn under a foundation it just gives a soft glow to the skin. Without foundation, it has an odd rainbow look to it that I just can’t get past.

I do like this but when I wear it, I generally avoid highlighters as they are relatively pointless. The primer keeps light focused on the high points of the face. There is no need to add a highlighter if you are after a subtle glow-y look. If you want a brighter section it is easier to add just a tiny drop of this primer over the foundation in the high points of your face instead of reaching for a separate highlighter. However I may feel that way because I don’t have a highlighter that has the same tones as this primer, so I felt that not only was the highlighter excessive, but is sort of clashed with the primers highlighting tones. If you have a highlighter that is in the blue/purple range, it might work out better for you. The straight up silvery highlights as well as the more gold toned ones just looked wrong with this primer.

So in my opinion it would be better to just use a smidge of this primer in lieu of highlighter if you need a highlight. I personally thought that the primer was enough. It caught the light where I wanted it to in just the right ways.

In general I really did enjoy this Rodial Glass Skin Primer and will continue using it. My one issue is the scent. The menthol is strong and it lasts as long as the product lasts. Since this primer lasts all day (and was really good at extending the length of time my makeup could be worn) that means a full day of menthol. I never really got used to that during my trial. While it is a good product, I will have to see how often I reach for it now that the trial is through and how often I decide not to use it just because of the scent before I can decide if i would repurchase. If you are looking for an illuminating primer that does not look greasy and lasts all day, this would be a good one to try out. Just be aware of the menthol scent.

Let’s talke about the Lorac Light Source 3-in-1 primer

Recently I have been trying out the Lorac Light Source 3-in-1 Illuminating Primer. For me, this was a little out of my comfort zone. For any of you who have read my posts for any length of time may realize, the dewy, glowy look is not really for me.

I like the depth a good illuminating primer can give to a matte foundation and I do like a little bit of glow to my skin. But there will always come a point for me where the dewy look goes too far and glow just looks like grease.

However I am always willing to try new things and on occasion I do like the lift that an illuminating primer can give to the skin. Plus I realized that while I love the eyeshadow formula from Lorac and I really enjoy their lipsticks, I had never tried any of their face products. since I have liked what I have tried, I thought it time to branch out with the brand.

I don’t know if anyone else does that but I have this tendency to mentally pair brands with products so I’ll think of one brand as ‘the lipstick company’ or another as the company whose face masks I like and not think to look at their other products. In my head Lorac is ‘the eyeshadow company’. I had one of their pro palettes that I used down to pan. it was quite disreputable (and expired) when I finally let it go.

So, to the Lorac Primer. It is a 3 in 1 product. It is a Face Primer, an illuminating additive and a highlighter. I did get the shade Dusk rather than the translucent. I simply thought the golden tones would play better with my skin. And I was right, they worked really well. The gold suited my skin and provided me with a good glowy look. Even before I added foundation and other products on to it, the glow wasn’t too much. I looked brighter but i didn’t look greasy or wet.

for all over under the foundation, dot on the skin, then blend

It is however a slightly wet formula and after applying you need to let it sit a moment and settle into position on your skin before applying your foundation, otherwise it will just mix in with your foundation. While there is nothing wrong with it mixing, and I actually did add a drop to my foundation instead of using it as a primer a few times. It is just a different look. I tried it as a highlighter over the foundation and it wasn’t bad, but I have far better liquid highlighters. This is an under the foundation subtle glow rather than a true liquid highlighter.

just the Lorac Light Source on the skin

while i liked it mixed in for an over all glow, I tended to use it on the high points of my face. It turned out like a subtle under the foundation highlighter. which to be honest I really enjoyed. It was more subtle than a dramatic highlighter and looked more natural, as though my skin was just looking good and had good lighting.

I was actually quite impressed with the glow.

While this primer did have blurring elements, I tend to prefer a more pore filling primer. This was not pore filling. The blurring was nice, but not really enough. I think that in the future I will end up using this more like an under the foundation highlighter, applying little drops over a pore filling primer and using it in small amounts on my cheekbones and nose as a subtle highlight. i find this especially nice as it worked equally well under full coverage foundations and tinted moisturizers. Which means I can get use out of this primer year round, just more as an illuminator and less as a primer.

Shop Lorac, Today!

Testing out the Figs& Rouge Blurring Primer

This primer came to me in a recent Glossy box and I was thrilled for several reasons. First off, it is a full sized item and I am always happy when Glossy Box has full sized items. Second it was a makeup item and not a skin care item. Third, you know I love Primers. And finally fourth I heard of Figs and Rouge before but never tried anything from the brand, and i am always happy to find new brands that i want to use.

I have to also say that the pink and gold just looks really pretty as well, especially with the thin font they used. Very classy.

But as we all know, it is not just about the packaging. (Although this one’s packaging didn’t hurt.) Since it was new to me, I poked around on the website before I started to use it, trying to find out what I should expect.

Satin Soft Blurring Primer. Fixes Foundation & Finishes complexion for complete Matte Perfection

+ Micro-blurring silicone free formula blurs imperfections & banishes shine.

+ Liquid blotting ‘Finishing’ Complex, absorbs excess oil for sheer Matte Correction.

+ Smooths skin & ‘Fixes’ foundation to keep complexion freshly flawless.

+ Pore minimising & Anti-blemish action reduces skin impurities & breakouts with daily wear


Marshmallow Roots Extract: With a unique & natural anti-inflammatory & antibacterial action. Marshmallow Root keeps skin energised & flawless.

Arctic Cloudberry extract: Packed with Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids & with vitamins C, E and A. This skin loving powerhouse ingredient helps soften & condition.

Hyaluronic Acid: Skin wonder ingredient (HA) Perfectly plumps & maintains moisture levels throughout the day.

Beta Hydroxy Acid: (BHA) Naturally clears congested skin, reduces breakouts & unclogs pores for a clearer & refreshed complexion.

Figs and Rouge website

I know that is a lot for a primer. And maybe I was a bit hasty in saying it wasn’t skin care. And it does have a lot of claims. So lets break it down.. First off I only used this about two weks so there aren’t going to be any major skin magic reveals. However I didn’t have any real breakouts while using it so I can say it didn’t clog the pores.

Just the primer on bare skin, applies wet but dries/absorbs quickly

The first thing that you have to realize when using this primer is that it is a very wet formula. Before you use it, shake it up to make sure it mixes in the tube correctly. Basically treat it like you would an oil foundation from Kosas and just shake it really well before using.

Normally I apply a primer to the back of my hand and then use my fingers to dip into it and apply it to my skin in dots before blending it in. That ways I know it is evenly distributed. I could not do that with this primer. I had to dispense it into the palm of my hand and then rub my hands together as though I was applying a moisturizer. It is a very wet formula.

However it does dry down really well if given a minute. And you really need to give it that minute. It is not a primer to reach for it you are racing to get out the door. Once it dries it is fine. It pretty much disappears into the skin like a serum.

While I felt that it did okay in the blurring department, it wasn’t the best blurring primer I’ve tried. It also has a very strong scent. I am about 90% certain that scent is the Marshmallow root. Mostly because it reminds me of smelling marshmallow root at a health food store my mother used to take me to when I was a kid. I always sniffed the bin containing the root thinking it would smell like marshmallows and it never did. The scent is not unpleasant but it is strong and it does linger for a bit.

To be completely honest I think this products strength is in it’s skincare ingredients. My skin liked the way it felt but each time I used it, the primer felt more like a pre makeup serum than an actual primer. In truth I may actually try using that. I think my skin did benefit from this primer, but it didn’t have the pore filling, pore blurring strength that I wanted. I may actually give this a test as a pre-makeup serum and use a primer over it to see if that works out. that will be an additional test. For now I can say that my skin had fewer clogs and in the past two weeks my skin has looked really good.

As a primer, this Figs & Rouge blurring primer falls into a mediocre category. I’ll test it further as skincare to make certain and to see if it is really worth a purchase. However if evaluating it as a primer it does fall short. The skincare benefits may cause me to change my mind and purchase it for a different purpose, but i wouldn’t buy this as a primer if I was expecting a high level of pore blurring. That just isn’t it’s strong suit. It tries to straddle the line between makeup and skincare, but it just doesn’t quite pull it off. As a primer, this is a no for me. There may however be some redemption in the skincare department. So for now it stays on the dressing table and begins a second round of testing. Stay tuned to see how it performs in test number two.

Spring Into Clean Skin Campaign – Shop Curated Bundles

Reviewing the Glamglow Mattifying 6 Acid Clarifying Primer

For a little over a week I have been using the Glamglow Supermattify 6 Acid Clarifying Primer.  I picked it up because it looked interesting.  It is a putty primer in what is basically an oversized compact.  It has a gray tint to the primer in the pan, primarily due to the charcoal in the primer and I wondered how the gray tint would work with the skin during application.  Plus, in the summer oil control is kind of a sought after element. So I thought I would give it a try.

According to the Glam Glow Website, this $42 primer is…

A lightweight oil-control primer for acne-prone skin that instantly mattifies and helps keep shine in check all day, so makeup looks on point.

All day oil control, Minimizes and blurs pores, and Hydrates

The Super 6 Acid Blend helps keep the complexion clear. The Charcoal and Oil-balancing clay provide instant and all-day shine control, absorbs excess oils and blurs skin imperfections. And the hyaluronic acid delivers a dose of weightless all-day hydration while helping makeup look fresh.

the compact

All of the claims sound like ones I would enjoy.  My skin loves Hyaluronic acid and alsways does well when it is involved, and given the heat and humidity here anything oil control that won’t break me out is a plus.  And so I tried the primer out.  I used it with several different foundations and foundation products ranging from medium coverage to tinted moisturizer.  While I do have a full coverage foundation ibn my collection, this time of year I never reach for it and quite frankly I forgot it was there until I finished testing out the primer.

First off, this primer is a putty primer and has the same consistency as a putty primer.  The gray disappears into the skin once you apply it so it doesn’t make your skin look gray.  However I did notice that I had to put the primer everywhere.  Typically I apply primer in my t-zone making certain that my nose and under the eyes are covered as well as the chin.  Then I blend it out towards the edges of my face.  I figure if the product mostly covers the areas where my pores show the most then I can live with it not covering every millimeter of skin. 

This is a great way to use a product like the ELF Putty Primer. It gets the job done and doesn’t use a ton of product.  In addition to using the product longer, it means I only use the product I needed.  With the Glam Glow the primer didn’t seem to go as far and I ended up using more.  It had good pore blurring capacity if it wasn’t blended out a lot, but as it blended out it lost a lot of that blurring effect.  The best way to apply it was to tap it into place more than blending it out.  As a result it used a lot more product. 

product at the end of the trial

You can see in the image how much product ended up being used in roughly nine days of use. That being said, once it was in place, it worked well.  My pores were blurred in the places I wanted it blurred and oil was definitely controlled. 

However I did notice that the foundation I used mattered.  Wearing a matte foundation with this product tended to make me look too dry.  However the primer worked really well with any product that has a slight glow effect to it.  For example the QMS Active Glow Tinted Moisturizer.  It is actually a really good formula that works well with my skin, but because it has a slight shine to it, I tend to reach for it in the cooler months when I need to brighten up my skin.  In the summer time it can just make me look a little greasy.

By putting the mattifying primer underneath, it actually toned down some of the shine so that I did look slightly glowy rather than greasy.  It simply is too mattifying under a matte foundation.

If you look in the ingredients list you will see it is a silicone based primer (as opposed to a water or oil one) so pair up your products accordingly for best results.  Remember silicone goes with silicone and can break down more easily if you try to pair it with water. In addition, look for non-mattifying foundations.

primer under a glowy foundation product at the end of the day

I did notice that my skin was a little drier after several days of using this primer so that is something to watch out for.  My skin tends to balance in the murky world sometimes ineptly referred to as Normal.  Which means that in the summer I lean towards oily but am not super oily and in the winter I lean towards dry but am not usually super dry.  I am at my oiliest now in my skin zone rotation and I think that I am just on the edge of being able to use this product.  If my skin were any drier then I think I would have problems with it.  I think if I had more oily skin, I would love it more. 

I suspect that once summer ends, I will have to put this primer in the drawer and leave it there for the winter. Once my skin starts transitioning in the autumn, this primer will simply dry me out too much.  For the summer though, it does what it claims.  It mattifies, it blurs pores and it didn’t cause any blemishes. Just remember, you might need more product than you originally thought and you will need to pat it into place more than blend it out. 

For the final question, would I buy this Glamglow Primer again?  I doubt it.  It works well but it is a product that I can only use in one season.  Given how much product needs to be used it would probably be used up in a season so that it wouldn’t hang around, but it is a bit pricy for such limited use.  If I had year round oily skin, I could see myself repurchasing it.  I have several really good primers that work well at blurring out pores that I can use year round and just give an extra pat of powder to when I get a little shiny mid-day. 

Would I use this again?  Definitely.  It is a good product, for me however it isn’t going to become a staple makeup item.

Huda Beauty

Marc Jacobs Under (cover) Blurring Coconut Face Primer

For the last two weeks I have been using the Marc Jacobs Under(cover) Blurring Coconut Face primer. You know I love a good primer. And most of you know that I am very scent oriented. Many of you may recall that I find the scent of coconut to be okay, but not super fabulous. well that isn’t entirely true. I like the scent of actual coconuts and I don’t have any issues with the coconut water based products because any coconut scent in them is light and natural. The coconut I have issues with is the faux overly sweet coconut scent that many coconut scented products seem to have.

It makes me feel like i am smearing coconut cream pie on my face.

Like I’m in a bad 1950s comedy sketch.

While there might be some amusement in that, it isn’t a feeling I want daily.

nozzle detail

And with this Marc Jacobs Primer I didn’t get it. I’ll admit, I was afraid I would. It’s why despite seeing many Marc Jacobs items in Boxypop up I haven’t picked them up. Recently all of the ones appearing have had the word coconut in the name. Even though I tend to adore Marc Jacobs products, it was the coconut that prevented me from swooping in. The coconut in this was light and fresh and faded almost immediately.

I could smell it when I opened the tube and when I first dispensed it onto my hand but once it was on my hand the scent went away almost immediately. Most of the time, I could forget the coconut if I wanted. I know that those coconut lovers out there might be disappointed, but this is good news for those of us who either don’t care for coconut saturation or who are scent sensitive.

Don’t let the coconut in the name deter you.

But as important as it is, scent is not everything. This is after all a primer, not a perfume.

So what is the target goal of this primer? well according to Marc Jacobs…

Product (far too much to use in one sitting)

Under(cover) Blurring Coconut Face Primer acts like a perfecting filter for your skin while extending makeup wear with the nourishing feel of coconut. It glides on effortlessly to blur the look of imperfections and smooth away the look of pores and fine lines.

It controls shine without making skin feel dry or overly matte. This multi-use primer creates a perfectly prepped canvas for foundation, helping it to apply smoothly and blend easily. It can also be worn alone for a soft-focus, healthy look on no-makeup makeup days. With its smoothing, lightweight formula with 5 forms of coconut, it is ideal for priming normal to oily skin types. The universal shade is invisible and looks undetectably flawless with no chalky, white cast on all skin tones.


Marc Jacobs Website

The product looks whitish when first dispensed but as soon as applied it goes invisible. I had no visible residue on my skin from it. It is a very slippy primer and if you look in the ingredients list you do see our good buddies the Cones first in line on the list. This is most definitely a silicone primer. And it feels like one.

To me this isn’t a bad thing, you just have to remember the basics.

no white cast or chalky look

First, like goes with like. I only used silicone and oil based foundations while testing it. I don’t have too many water based foundations in my collection at the moment but I did give them a pass while testing this primer out. There is no reason to set a product up for failure.

Second, a little goes a long way. I know there is a lot of product on my hand in the photo, but that is for illustrative purposes only. Less than half of that is what you need, or at least what I needed. If you use too much your foundation just sort of slides right off regardless of what foundation you use. A little is your friend, a lot does nothing but waste product.

Finally third, don’t rush the product. Apply your primer and then give it a minute to settle down and get comfortable. Don’t rush it. If you do then it mixes with your foundation and it doesn’t work a well as it could.

And quite frankly this primer is a pretty good one. It worked well for me during my test and it is one I will reach for frequently. I am about to test out a new foundation so i will be rotating my primers through that, but I will be coming back to it. This is not the most pore filling primer I have, however it does do a good job at blurring out some of the appearance of pores and does help mattify the skin without drying it out. Also because it is colorless it is pretty much invisible and doesn’t affect the color of my foundation. In the summer time I often use darker primers to help out slightly light foundations.

Now because it is a clear primer, it is not going to cover dark spots or hide redness in any way. That is not what it is does. It is also not on it’s list of claims. What it claims to do, it does. And it does it well. I was very pleased with its performance and will be reaching for this Marc Jacobs Under(cover) blurring perfecting primer in the future. It has earned a place in my dressing table, even with the coconut.

If you are interested, Marc Jacobs is currently having a sitewide sale. 30% off in fact. I am a big fan of their makeup items. This primer and the bronzer products I highly recommend. I also enjoy their liquid lip glosses and eyeshadows. Their shadow formula is well pigmented and never applies patchy, at least not in the ones I’ve used. I wasn’t a fan of their Youthquake Moisturizer, but the makeup I highly recommend. And while I haven’t tried it yet, they have a new caffeine infused foundation that I so want to try out. I have heard fabulous things about their foundations in the past so I have high hopes for the new one.

Marc Jacobs Beauty


Trying out Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat Blur Primer

In the April Macy’s Beauty box there was a sample of the Yves Saint Laurent Touch Eclat Blur primer. Personally i was thrilled to see it. I think everyone and their neighbor knows by this point that I love primers. A while back this particular primer seemed to be the darling of everyone. It was featured on makeup reviews and collections, people reviewed and raved about it.

But then silence.

I don’t know if the reviews came out around the product’s release or if it there was a domino effect of reviews and once one person reviewed it everyone decided they had to as well. But after the furor, silence.

It is easy to see why they would want to review it. Have you seen the full bottle? I know I have the small sample size pictured here and it really doesn’t do it justice. The links will take you to the site and well lit photos of the full sized bottle so you can see it in all it’s glory if you like. (I am not an affiliate and I get nothing from those links, in case you were wondering, they are just links to the product page for those who want more official info).

There is just something about gold flakes suspended in a clear medium that just looks amazing.

It also made me want it, even just to look at.

The wand applicator

Oddly the gold flakes were also what made me cautions about buying it. Well that and the price. This YSL Primer retails for $52.

And I had no desire to go around with gold flakes coating my face. Admittedly, it made me think of the old stories of Incan Kings or priests decorating themselves with gold dust and then diving into sacred lakes. At least I think that’s the story. I quickly realized that should I be gold and glittery I would just look like a bad extra for a Twilight film.

Luckily, neither occurred and the gold flakes weren’t a concern.

Now, I have been lucky enough to try a few YSL makeup products before and I really did love them. The lipstick in particular I remember using down until there was only a nub left and I had to use a brush to get the last dregs of the pruct out. I think the last use was merely a bare wash of color and a memory. It was a particularly flattering shade of red and I still dream about it. I also tried a small sample of the Touche Eclat Foundation and really enjoyed it. It was only enough product for two uses but it was a fantastic foundation both times I tried it. Despite these ventures, I am not all that familiar with the YSL product line. So let’s take a bit of a closer look.

Touche Elcat Blur Primer preps skin for foundation application, creating an improved, refined appearance: pores seem to be minimized, skin texture feels smoother, and skin tone is more even. It’s enriched with four nourishing oils—corn oil, apricot kernel oil, passiflora oil, and rice bran oil—to leave skin feeling incredibly soft without a greasy residue. Packed with blur technology, this universal primer provides a subtle, golden shimmer for ultimate luminosity.


Yves Saint Laurent Website

As you can see, very high up on the ingredients list you can see our good buddy dimethicone crosspolymer which means that this is definitely a silicone based primer. As a consequence, I chose silicone based foundations this week. As we all remember, like goes with like. I didn’t see a reason to set the primer up for failure but trying to pair it with a water based foundation.

While the primer does go on feeling a little slippy, a lot of the slippiness fades as the primer settles. I know the temptation when getting ready is to apply your primer and go straight into your foundation. Don’t. Your primer, whichever primer you are using, needs a minute to settle. If you rush the process it will just sort of mix with the foundation and you won’t get the coverage you were expecting. So give it it’s minute to settle in. The add foundation.

I will say I did like this primer on my skin. It felt really nice. I had no adverse reactions. Even though there are four oils, my skin did not feel oily. My skin tends to ride that strange balance line irritatingly called normal which means that whether I lean oily or dry depends on the season. Right now I am coming out of the driest season for my skin. I am edging out of dry as the humidity levels climb. Knowing my skin, I think that the only time I might have an issue with this primer is in high summer when I am at my oiliest and the humidity level in my area is 80% minimum each day. Other than that section of time where my skin isn’t happy with many products, I think I would be fine to use this primer.

While that is a bit specifice, how a product works for you does depend on your skin. To broaden it generally I would say that unless you had really oily skin, you probably wouldn’t have issues with this primer.

No primer on the left, just primer on the right.

It doesn’t make the face glitter. However I did see some evening out and a bit of a glow going on which was nice. There was a small reduction in the visibility of my pores, but i think I am just more accustomed to seeing more pore filling primers on my face. I really did like the blurring effect of this primer.

The primer sat well on the skin and it worked well with all of the foundations I used with it. I did find that in most of them it actually extended the life of my foundation by a few hours. Which is definitely not a bad thing. In short this primer did everything it claimed and then just a little bit more.

It was all things considered, a very good primer. My one issue with it was the applicator wand. It is pictured in this post, as I was trying to show the product. However it is important to remember that the full size comes with a pump and not the wand.

I don’t like the wand for applying because to apply you either have to have the wand in contact with your hands or with the skin of your face. while I wash both before applying makeup, the wand still makes it easier to contaminate than a pump would. As I said the full size doesn’t have this. However since the sample does, I am probably going to work on using it up sooner rather than rotating it evenly with my other primers. I really wish i could keep it longer, but that wand makes me nervous about what could mix in with the product and I’d rather just use it up.

Like I said before it is a good product. It is also a pricy one. Can you get other primers that do something similar? Yes. I have several blurring primers in my collection at this very moment, some of them even clear. None with the gold flakes though. This is a luxury product. If you are looking to splurge on a luxury item, then i would say that this Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat Blur Primer is a good one to splurge on.

It does everything it claims to do and does it well. It feels great on the skin, has almost no fragrance to it and looks gorgeous in the packaging. having a full sized bottle of this primer sitting on my dressing table would be lovely. And when I next splurge on a luxury item, this may be the one I go for. It might be a toss up between the Touche Eclat Primer and the foundation from the same line as they are both lovely and on my list for spurge purchases. The end result is that this YSL Touche Eclat Blur Primer is certainly a product i would enjoy using as much as I enjoy looking at.

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Going Beyond the Veil with Illamasqua

The Illamasqua beyond the Veil Primer

In general I like primers.  Okay, let me correct that. I adore primers.  I think it is a holdover from my painting days.  I there is just something about the thought of a properly prepared canvas that just makes me think all is right with the world. 

Even on days when I only wear powder and skip the foundation, I reach for primer first.  It is just a habit.  I have noticed that as I’ve gotten older, primer has been much more of a staple in preparing the canvas of my face for makeup application.  Over time my pores seem to have enlarged and there are so many fine lines that just need a little bit of filling before the foundation goes over them.  For this primer is my go to product.

Sample on the left, full size on the right

Typically I also like the brand Illamasqua.  I think at this point powder and foundation are the only two products from them that I haven’t actually tried.  For me their products always work really well.  And In case you were wondering, both of their powder and foundations are on my list of products to try.

So when the new Illamasqua primer, Beyond the Veil, appeared in my Look Fantastic Box I was thrilled.  This was also the Look Fantastic Box I accidentally ordered twice, so I ended up with two samples of this primer. The second is still sealed in its little box.  The first went into my makeup bag this week. First off, I love the look of the jars. There is just something really pleasing about the shape of them.

comparing the products

Now I have used the Hydra Veil Primer from Illamasqua repeatedly.  I tried it first in the sample size and then moved on to the full size (which is now in my dressing table). I really like it.  The difference between the Hydra Veil and the beyond the Veil primers is that Beyond the Veil has Illamasqua’s Beyond Powder blended in.

(I know it gets a little confusing but the links in that paragraph will take you to each individual product so you can see them all separately in more professionally lit photos. Because of the products themselves photographing them was really hard to do. They reflected light in really crazy ways.)

I was very curious as to how this world work.  Would it eliminate the need for powder?  Would the primer be more concealing? Or more powdery? What about texture? So many questions. Let’s find some answers.

First there is a difference in coloring.  The Hydra Veil Primer has no color to it whatsoever. It is a clear jelly like substance.  I always have fun playing with it when I take it out.  I love that once you scoop out a little bit of the formula it leaves a little chunk of jelly missing, but by the time you’ve applied it to your face, the surface of the container has smoothed out again so that it looks like none was taken.  It’s a little thing, but it always makes me feel like I am opening a new product every time I open it.

The Beyond the Veil has the same tendencies but it is a beige color.  The color goes away or blends into the skin, when applied, but in the jar, I can’t lie, it looks more like an overly set, and possibly split, custard because of the color.  There is something slightly off putting about the color and about scooping it out.  It reacts the same way as the clear version, but somehow with the color I always find myself sort of making the icky face at it.

Childish I know, but there it is.

The original is completely liquified by the heat of your hands. The Beyond the Veil melts a little but not all the way down to liquid. It is more of a thin paste. It is thinner than other primers, almost a foundation like consistency.   Once that happens I am fine with the color.  It is just the initial scooping out of the jar that gets me. It is fine once it is out of the jar. Despite the slight change in texture, and not melting to a complete liquid, it applies like the original primer, however it is a slightly dryer formula. 

The Hydra Veil is a very wet formula.  When you apply it, you need a moment to let it dry and set.  Personally I don’t mind it as I tend to apply my powder directly over it and then put foundation on top.  I find this gives me an excellent base.  As the Hydra Veil dries down it becomes slightly sticky and locks the powder into place giving me a fantastic matte base that doesn’t look powdery.

I thought there was the possibility that with the powder blended in, the Beyond the Veil might eliminate the need for powder. It does not. It is less wet than the Hydra Veil and dries down a little more quickly because of it.  It also dries to the same slightly sticky consistency that the regular Beyond the Veil Primer reaches.  I still applied my powder over it and then moved on to foundation.

No primer on the left, primer on the right

What the Beyond the Veil does is it helps over redness and minor blemishes better than the regular Hydra Veil because of its tint.  Because of this I found myself using less concealer this week as I worked my way through the primer. Because of the wet shine in the above photos, I’m not sure how much of the covering aspect it shows. It didn’t affect my use of powder, but I really only needed the concealer under my eyes and on my lids to prep them for eyeshadow. 

The week of use ended up using up my sample size of primer. I do have a second one and I will be using that at some point in the future. Over all I really did like using the Beyond the Veil Primer this week.  It did well eliminating redness and minor sunspots, letting me skip the concealer for face application, it dried down relatively quickly and locked my powder and foundation into place really well.  It is not pore filling but it is slightly sticky and keeps everything set and does a good job of preventing the product overlaying it from settling into fine lines. The above pictures may not look dramatic, but it did wear really well and help out the other makeup products I used this week.

The only drawback I can see is that color in the jar.  Getting it out of the jar is really unappealing.  Once out it is fine and it is a good product to use, it is just that initial jump. Perhaps it would look different in the full size, I don’t know.

While I will still lean more towards using the regular Hydra Veil, I have to say on days where I have a lot of redness that I want to conceal I would have no problem reaching for this hydrating primer.  I might not look into the jar when I scoop it out, but I will certainly use it.

Going Beyond the Veil with an Illamasqua Primer

As we all know, I love primers.  While a lot of my primers are silicone based, this Illamasqua Hydra Veil is water based, which means that I tend to use it with a different sort of foundation.  This week’s foundation was the Pretty Vulgar Cool AF Lava Water foundation.  I adore the foundation and this primer works really well with it. 

According to the product page…

Part hydrator, part primer, Hydra Veil instantly hydrates and smooths skin through a self-levelling, futuristic clear gel. Microalgae, Vitamin C and B3 work together to help maintain skins hydration levels, creating a healthy looking, balanced finish. Plant extracts also provide a calming and refreshing feeling, leaving skin fully prepped to apply your chosen foundation.

Prior to foundation application, use the spoon provided to apply one scoop of Hydra Veil to the palm of your hand. Using the Foundation or Highlighter Brush, gently brush the product from your hand and apply all over the face, right up to the lash line until the product is fully absorbed

Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Peg-240/Hdi Copolymer Bis-Decyltetradeceth-20 Ether, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Niacinamide, Ethylhexylglycerin, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Alcohol, 3-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid, Disodium Edta, Parfum (Fragrance), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Sodium Phosphate, Acmella Oleracea Extract, Potassium Laurate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Bht, Haematococcus Pluvialis Extract, Tocopherol, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Limonene


I’ll admit, it took me a while to figure out that was a spoon attached to the inner lid.  I thought it was a decorative handle.  It does work as a decorative handle though, but really, you need to use it to scoop the primer out. 

When you scoop it out it looks like clear jelly. But almost instantly it starts to liquefy in your palm.  When it does, a flat foundation brush is your best bet for applying it where you want.  It goes on smoothly and while it is clear it does smooth out pores. 

Just remember to use a clean foundation brush and to use a different foundation brush from the one you intend to use to apply your foundation.  The primer does liquefy so the brush (and your face) take a moment to dry down. If you use a previously used foundation brush, you will end up with old foundation on streaking your face as the primer moistens it and the brush releases it. Even if clean the brush will be all wet and needs to dry before using it to apply foundation.  If you don’t have a spare flat foundation brush, then just use your hands to apply.

I tend not to use this under tinted moisturizers, but more under actual foundations.  The illamasqua smooths things out, but it is clear and doesn’t cover anything as it is clear. 

A little goes a long way and despite its pore filling tendencies and excellent performance, I tend to only reach for this primer in the cooler months when my skin is dry.  When my skin is dry, this foundation is fantastic.  It keeps other products from looking dry on my face and extends the length of my foundation.  Just remember the golden rule with primer, like goes with like. 

If you use a water based primer, go with a water based foundation.  Likewise if going with a silicone based primer go with a silicone based foundation. There are exceptions of course, but this matchy matchy combo prevents a lot of compatibility issues and products work better if they aren’t in a cage fight with each other at the same time you want them to look good on your skin

There are two things to remember when using this primer. The first is that it is more or less a liquid once your body heat touches it, so you need to take a moment and let the primer dry down on your face.  I know you should always give your primer a moment to settle in and lock into place before adding foundation, but it is even more imperative that you give this primer it’s moment to settle. If you don’t it will mix a bit wth your foundation and while it will still work it won’t be as pore filling and smoothing as it could be. 

The second thing to remember is not to use too much.  This is definitely a product where less is more. The picture of it in my hand is about double, if not more, than what you should apply.  I always forget how little I need the first time I go back to this primer and then end up wasting half of the product I took out.

Needs to take a moment to dry down (the sun was at a strange angle so I was trying to avoid glare)

I know it is strange to say but, I love the fact that I can use this primer for a long time and each time I dip in, the product looks untouched because the gel melts back together to form a smooth surface.  Generally it melts back together by the time I’ve finished applying it on my face and have rinsed the spoon off.

It’s also why I only use the spoon to get it out because any inclusions don’t remain just on the surface but can sink within and contaminate the whole thing. In addition it is a beautiful jar that I kind of like having on display.  If you are a member of Look Fantastic and receive their Beauty Box each month I believe this is the primer that is going to be in the box. 

It is a sample size whereas this is the full sized version, but you end up using so little of this primer that even the travel size will last a surprisingly long time. I’ve had the sample size before, which is why I picked up the full sized version and it seemed like it was never going to run out.  I think part of that is the fact that it always looks smooth and brand new when you open it, so it is the bottomless pit of primer. Personally I am glad that it lasts so long and this winter I will be reaching for this Illamasqua primer more often.

Incidentally Pretty Vulgar is having a Mystery Box Deal going on right now 5 products for $55 (retail value of $138). Just click on the banner ad and it will take you right to it. Their Cool AF Lava Water Foundation and Feathers Mascara are two of my favorites.

Pretty Vulgar Make up