If you have yet to be introduced to the magical world of primer, allow us to lead the way: It’s the key to flawless makeup application and instantly upgrades even mediocre foundation formulas. Whether you’re into the glowy look or want one with a matte finish, there’s something on the market for you. Primers create blurred, perfect-looking skin by filling in pores and fine lines and allowing your face makeup to apply smoothly rather than sinking into your skin. They come in all sizes, finishes and pricepoints — but we have a special place in our hearts for the drugstore set because of their affordability and effectiveness.
This stuff makes sure your makeup doesn’t move — no seriously. If you’re looking for a primer that will change the way your foundation sits on your skin, this is the one. It’s an instant editor fave that keeps you matte all day long.
The Maybelline Baby Skin line is one of our favorites because it really does leave your skin feeling baby-smooth. Great for babes with dry skin, this budget friendly primer has the blurring effect down pat and leaves your skin feeling silky smooth.
A more lotion-y consistency, this primer feels like your fave moisturizer but actually takes your makeup to the next level. When dry, it creates a smooth, matte canvas — perfect for applying your favorite foundation on top.
This cult-fave primer has been likened to nearly every pricey primer in the book and somehow it manages to come out on top. A silky, gel like consistency, it goes on smooth and turns your skin into its best self. And at $6, you can buy a few and not feel bad about it — what are you waiting for?
Everyone who tries this stuff loves it, and it’s no surprise — it belongs to the same brand as the buzzy $7 foundation setting the internet ablaze. With Instagrammable packaging, an affordable pricetag and the support of makeup junkies everywhere, this one is a no brainer.
Sometimes the goal is glow, and this product is great for getting that extra light on your face. You can use it under foundation or as a spot highlight if that’s your thing. You can also mix this with your foundation for a dewy, all over glow.
This fan-fave primer comes in different tints to address popular skin issues like redness while still managing to make your skin look flawless. We love this one because it blurs and illuminates — a combo that can be hard to come by. Maybelline doesn’t make us choose, and for that, we’re forever grateful.
No one wants to look like a cake face when rocking a full face of foundation, and this primer makes sure that never happens. We love this formula for its pore-filling and skin smoothing abilities, and at $5 it doesn’t get much better than this.
About the Author:Tembe Denton-Hurst hails from Brooklyn, NY, but if you ask her, the answer will be much more complicated. She's passionate about YouTube, storytelling and swatching everything she can get her hands on. When the assistant beauty editor isn't brainstorming crazy ideas for makeup.com, she's lurking on Reddit, spending time with her cats Stella and Dakota or asking obvious questions.