Not convinced that makeup primer is really necessary? The following stat just might be enough to completely change your mind.
According to e.l.f. Cosmetics, one of its primers sells every six seconds in the U.S. Why do people choose e.l.f.'s over the other primers in the makeup aisle? The brand has options—20, to be exact—all priced at $15 or under. There's one for every skin type and concern, and they come in an array of formulations including traditional liquids, balms, mists, and even a face mask.
With so many to choose from, it might be hard to know which one is best for primer newbies. I suggest the brand's Poreless Face Primer ($10; Target.com). On top of keeping makeup from sliding off of your face during the day, this primer targets a common skincare hang up: large pores. The gel-like formula fills in pores, fine lines, and wrinkles to smooth your complexion before makeup. Not only will this make applying foundation, concealer, and the like easier, it'll give you the most natural finish. Green tea and vitamins A and E are included in the mix to even texture and nourish and restore dull skin.
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Primer itself is pretty easy to use. Once you've cleansed and dried your skin, simply pump a few drops of it into the palm of your hand and massage it all over your face. When it's set, you can start applying whatever makeup look you're going for that day.
As a beauty editor that's trying to cut down on the number of makeup products I use everyday, I've always skipped primer. But the extra $10 and one minute it takes to apply this primer is worth the soft, photo-filter level finish I get with my concealer when I use it.