Proper make-up artist make-up seems to be having a moment. Whether a result of everyone being in front of a camera far more often now thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones (writing that sentence made me sound 100, didn’t it?), or simply because we now have more access to experts than ever, consumers can’t be fobbed off anymore with ‘at home’ make-up – we want make-up to perform better and last longer.
And why not? Given the ludicrous money that changes hands at make-up counters across the globe, it seems patently obvious to me that make-up is a serious source of joy to many and is therefore to be taken seriously.
The latest surge of interest has been in eyelid primers. While not new by any means, they’re currently immensely popular because they: a) make shadow go on more smoothly; b) make shadow last far longer, and c) provide a more uniform canvas that allows the ‘true’ colour of shadow to show.
Here are my favourites //
l to r / Nars, Benefit, Laura Mercier, Urban Decay and Trish McEvoy
NARS PRO PRIME SMUDGE PROOF EYESHADOW BASE / My go-to as it’s totally see-through once dry so eyeshadows perform better, but little personality traits like veins or moles aren’t erased.
BENEFIT AIR PATROL PRIMER / I mentioned this one here, but here’s a recap: it primes eyelids nicely, leaving a subtle wash of beige (fine if you fall under the pale to caramel remit, not so much if your skin is any darker). The SPF 20 gets a big thumbs up from me, but the nozzle is messy and pointless, so just use your fingers.
LAURA MERCIER EYE BASICS in Flax / This is a touch less fluid than the Benefit Air Patrol, but otherwise has a similar effect. It also provides a bit of skincare designed to keep redness and dryness at bay, so I’d say get the Benefit if you’re due to be in bright sunlight and the Laura Mercier if you’re not.
URBAN DECAY EYESHADOW PRIMER POTION in Minor Sin / I’ve become a little addicted to this spruced up version of the original Primer Potion – once blended it looks like a sheeny shadow that only needs the addition of a lick of mascara to make an eye pop.
TRISH MCEVOY EYE BASE ESSENTIALS in Bare / This one’s the most serious of all the primers in my arsenal. Once slicked on, it dries to a matte, opaque finish and will not budge. If you have discolouration or want to lighten your eyelid to make a colour pop, get your hands on this.