Beauty Debate: The Pros and Cons of Wearing a Makeup Primer

September 11, 2020
Genesis Rivas
By: Genesis Rivas | by L'Oréal
There are really no rules in the world of makeup, but when I come across someone who does their makeup vastly different than I do, I have questions. Case in point:’s senior social media editor Jillian doesn’t wear makeup primer. I always thought that everyone uses primer before applying their foundation, so naturally, I knew we had to debate it out. Ahead, we each make our cases for and against wearing makeup primer.

The Argument for Wearing Primer 

I have large pores on my nose so applying primer is non-negotiable for me. The alternative is applying makeup on my bare face and watching the inevitable happen — foundation or concealer settling into those pores leaving me with a textured, uneven application. During the summer, when my skin becomes a little more oily and the pores appear more prominent, I like to use the Tula Brighten Up Smoothing Primer Gel. Sometimes I like to apply a small amount even on the days when I don’t wear makeup because it seriously blurs the look of my pores for a smoother-looking complexion. Another reason why I can’t go without applying primer before my complexion products is because it also helps me create a more luminous makeup look. On the areas of my face where I don’t struggle with large pores, I like to go in with the Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Hydrating Primer.   — Genesis, assistant editor

The Argument Against Wearing Primer

Look, I totally get it. Enlarged pores can be so annoying — I have them on my nose and you bet I use all the skin-care products to manage of them. But in my experience, applying primer has never made that much of a difference. Believe me, I’ve tried it all. From putty to gel to liquid, my makeup bag has held plenty of primer formulas, and none of them have stuck for me. Instead, I apply my Lancôme Tonique Confort Re-Hydrating Comforting Toner With Acacia Honey religiously to get the pores at the source. When it comes to gripping my makeup, setting powder and spray just can’t be beat. Give me some Maybelline Fit Me Loose Finishing Powder for under the eyes and Urban Decay All Nighter Ultra Glow Setting Spray and I’m set, even in the summer when I’m the most sweaty and my makeup has the highest risk of melting off. —Jillian, senior social media editor
Design: Hannah Packer

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