Does part of your makeup melt off by the middle of the day? Then you need the best primer for combination skin. They reduce the shine in your T-zone, plus a whole lot more.
The best primers turn your face into a flawless canvas for makeup. They conceal pores, fill in lines, and help your foundation adhere and last longer.
To help you find the right base for your makeup, we hand-picked the best primers for combination skin. We hope our reviews help you find just what you need.
Best Primers for Combination Skin in 2023
1. DHC Velvet Skin Coat
DHC’s Velvet Skin Coat is a powdery gel that resurfaces your face, neck, or hands. Professional makeup artists use this primer because it makes the skin silky smooth. It contains oil-absorbing silica and it’s ready for your foundation right after you apply it.
2. DHC Clarifying Pore Cover Base
Put a dead stop to oily skin with this DHC primer. It instantly makes pores look smaller. Then, with regular use, it actually shrinks them.
3. Clinique Super Universal Face Primer Dry Combination to Oily Skin
Clinique’s Universal Face Primer suits any skin type. It’s free of oils, parabens, fragrances, and phthalates. While you wear it, it corrects discoloration and blurs pores. Note that Clinique also makes specific color-correcting primers, too.
4. Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Pore Refiner Primer
The Dr. Brandt primer camouflages pores, lines, and even wrinkles. Throughout the day it reduces oil production to keep your makeup in place so your face looks matte, but not flat. The powdery finish resists both high humidity and sweat.
5. L’Oreal Paris Makeup Infallible Pro Matte-Lock Longwear Mattifying Face Primer
The L’Oreal Makeup Pro Matte-Lock Primer won’t clog your pores but it will hide them. It manages oil all day long with a transparent, breathable formula. If you don’t feel like wearing makeup but you still want to stop the shine, you can wear this primer by itself without makeup.
6. Rimmel Stay Matte Primer
Rimmel’s Stay Matte is inexpensive but it works for up to eight hours. It stops the shine and disguises your pores. Match it with Rimmel’s mattifying foundation for even better results.
7. Murad Oil-Control Mattifier with SPF 45 PA++ –
The Murad Mattifier is proven to control oil for up to eight hours. But it doesn’t just reduce oiliness. It helps clear up acne and even moisturizes the skin. If you don’t feel like wearing makeup, put on this primer because it even has sunscreen.
8. SOZGE Oil Free Mattifying Primer
Sozge Mattifying Primer makes your skin velvety smooth all day long. It hides acne blemishes as well as wrinkles, making it a solid choice if you’re over 40. Just as important, it’s free of parabens and artificial fragrances.
9. NYX Cosmetics Hydra Touch Primer
NYX primer doubles as a foundation. It’s specifically designed to take good care of acne-prone, sensitive, and oily skin. Users say their face looks dewy fresh and their makeup lasts longer when they use this product.
10. e.l.f. Brightening Lavender Face Primer
e.l.f. Brightening Lavender Face Primer creates an airbrushed look on your skin. Once you apply it, your face will feel and look smoother than before. As a bonus, the inclusion of lavender oil makes it antibacterial.
11. Philosophy Supernatural Poreless/Flawless Tinted Primer
If you struggle to hide large pores, try the Supernatural tinted primer. It smoothes over fine lines, too. And it contains sunscreen which makes it similar to a lightweight BB cream.
12. bareMinerals Original Prime Time Foundation Primer
bareMinerals’s Prime Time reduces oiliness with silica and retextures your skin with silicone. It’s especially effective on eyelids to prevent eyeshadow from melting or creasing. Moreover, it battles signs of aging with antioxidants.
13. L’Oreal Paris Makeup Magic Lumi Light Infusing Makeup Primer
The Magic Lumi primer from L’Oreal adapts to any skin type. It blurs pores and wrinkles alike. Plus, it provides enough shimmer to give you a bright, refreshed appearance without the need for other makeup.
14. Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional Pro Balm Face Primer Pore Minimizer
Apply the POREfessional pore minimizer over moisturizer or even over foundation. It works just the same to perfect your skin. This means that it can rescue your makeup if it starts to fade in the middle of the day. You won’t have to reapply the foundation. Just pat on a little Pro Balm over the top.
15. stila One Step Correct
stila’s One Step Correct provides multiple benefits in one package. Instead of needing to apply one primer to correct color and another to minimize pores, this one does it all. It stops redness, brightens up dull skin, and fades age spots. Of course, it reduces shine, too.
16. jane iredale Smooth Affair Facial Primer and Brightener
Jane Iredale’s Smooth Affair was created especially for oily skin. But it won’t emphasize dry patches. Instead, it makes skin radiant while it reverses wrinkles with tea extract.
17. smashbox – Photo Finish Primer The Original Smooth and Blur
The Photo Finish gel primer will make your skin feel like silk. It disguises all sorts of flaws and keeps your makeup going for hours longer. But if you have extra oily skin, try the next one below.
18. smashbox – Photo Finish Primer Minimize Pores
Smashbox keeps you ready for the camera. Their pore minimizing primer works well enough that Allure gave it a Best of Beauty award. Although you can wear this formula no matter what your skin type, it’s excellent for combination skin.
Underneath the satin finish, peptides and vitamin C reverse signs of aging. Light diffusers disguise imperfections, too. Additionally, you won’t have to worry about artificial fragrances, parabens, phthalates, or talc.
19. Glory Cosmetics Airbrush Away Primer
If your combination skin isn’t too oily, try the Airbrush Away Primer. It smoothes fine lines by plumping your skin with hyaluronic acid. This resolves those dry spots on your cheeks where makeup tends to flake.
20. Maybelline Makeup Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Face Makeup Primer
Try the Baby Skin Primer from Maybelline to make yourself look instantly younger. It blurs pores and lines and sets to a matte finish. The effects of the fragrance-free formula last all day.
21. Dermalogica Skinperfect Primer SPF 30 Broad Spectrum
Dermalogica made their Skinperfect primer to stand up to a busy day. The radiant finish comes from a translucent tint plus sunscreen. But the formula lacks irritants like parabens, artificial dyes, and fragrances.
22. Estee Lauder Illuminating Perfecting Primer Normal/Combination Skin
Este Lauder’s Illuminating Primer contains microscopic reflective particles that camouflage imperfections. It makes skin look instantaneously fresher and younger. Meanwhile, rice bran extract, Shea butter, and vitamin E soothe away dryness.
23. Elf 83408 Blemish Control Primer Clear
If you have acne-prone skin, use the blemish control primer from e.l.f. It fights breakouts and inflammation with salicylic acid, tea tree oil, and vitamin E.
24. Elizabeth Mott Thank Me Later Face Primer
The Elizabeth Moth Thank Me Later face primer stands out as a top-selling product. Its shine-reducing effect lasts for at least eight hours.
25. L’Oréal Paris Makeup Studio Secrets Professional Magic Perfecting Base
L’Oreal’s Studio Secrets Perfecting Base is available in three versions. One reduces redness while the other two brighten tired faces depending on the skin tone. It’s powerful enough to wear it alone or enjoyed under foundation.
26. NxN Flash Matte Pore Refining Primer
The NxN primer combines Java tea leaf, licorice root, and grape seed to nourish the skin. Not only does it minimize pores and evens skin tone, but it makes the skin radiant and ready for makeup. It’s free of parabens and tested by dermatologists to be safe.
27. [Touch in Sol] No Pore Blem Primer
It sounds a little gross but this primer contains “sebum catching powder.” What that means for you is less oiliness throughout the day. The formula also provides collagen and green tea extract to firm up your face.
28. Revlon PhotoReady Perfecting Primer
Appropriate for all skin types, the PhotoReady Perfecting Primer from Revlon creates an airbrushed effect. It has a slight pink tint that brightens your tone. In addition, the High Definition Filter Technology diffuses light to camouflage problem spots.
29. NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Angel Veil Skin Perfecting Primer
NYX ensures that your face is the perfect canvas for your foundation. It minimizes shine and makes your skin feel silky soft.
30. Too Faced Prime and Poreless Pure Oil-Free Skin Smoothing Face Primer
Opinions seem divided on this primer. Those who love it appreciate the fact that it’s free of parabens and other irritants. Others say that it didn’t hide their pores as much as they hoped.
31. LORAC Light Source Illuminating 3 in 1 Primer
LORAC light source immediately brings glow and life to your skin. Also, protects your makeup all through the day. This is a three in one illuminating primer and very easy to apply.
LORAC light source can be used in three ways. 1. It can be used on your face as a primer underneath make up. 2. Mix with your moisturizer or foundation. 3. Implement on your makeup to decorate and emphasize your look. This primer is free from paraben. The quantity of the product is 1.01 fl. oz.
32. LORAC POREfection Mattifying Face Primer
The POREfection primer uses salicylic acid to fight oiliness and shrink pores. It also contains antioxidants to help your skin stay young.
How to choose the best primer
As you can see, there are a wide variety of primers for combination skin. Since most of them focus on reducing shine, they solve the problem of helping your makeup last longer. So what else is important?
Some mattifying primers offer a lot more than oil control. For example, a few contain light-reflecting ingredients to camouflage blemishes before you even put on makeup.
Others contain a little tint and sunscreen which make them a convenient option for a no-makeup day.
You’re also going to find primers that not only hide wrinkles but diminish them over time.
So how do you know which primer is best for your style of makeup? You might decide to go with one from a brand you already use. Many times applying primer from the same brand as your makeup foundation means the two products work better together.
Or you might want to try something new. In that case, look for perks like acne-fighting ingredients or a paraben-free formula.
In any case, it’s fun to discover a primer that makes you look great all by itself. Unless you have sensitive skin, feel free to experiment as many primers aren’t all that expensive.
You can manage that oily T-zone with one of the best primers for combination skin. They create a matte finish to help your makeup last longer without fading or melting. Then, you’ll find they offer several additional benefits like hiding imperfections and making your face radiant.
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