Category Archives: Primer

Budget Friendly Eyeshadow Primer From Black Radiance

When it comes to eyeshadow primers some are cult-faves for a reason. They move from being a splurge to being a necessity in spite of price. However, we don’t all want to pay that price and lucky for us budget friendly alternatives to those cult-faves exist.

Black Radiance Perfecting Eye Primer
Black Radiance Perfecting Eye Primer

This is Black Radiance Perfecting Eye Shadow Primer and at $3.99 is worth a shot if the more expensive primers give you sticker shock.

I snagged this from my local Wal-Mart Wednesday morning and it works. It made my eyeshadow more intense. It didn’t crease. It didn’t fade. It also absorbed into my lid rather than just sit on top.

I used the Ulta eyeshadow in Galaxy to test the product. I figured if it can work with a cheaper shadow then the more expensive ones should be fine. One eye was primed while the other one wasn’t. After about four hours the eyeshadow that wasn’t primed started to fade while the other eyeshadow was still intact.

This is my right eye with primer.
This is my right eye with primer.
without black radiance eye primer
This is my left eye without the primer

I kept it on for another hour and had to take it off because I didn’t want to pick up my children sporting unblended and fading eyeshadow. The non-primed eye wiped away easily with a make-up wipe. My primed eye took a little bit more effort so I know that eyeshadow was sticking to the primer.

Overall I’m happy with the purchase. As much I love the expensive products finding something works for a fraction of the price is still great.

Eye Primer by Black Radiance

Will you give Black Radiance Perfecting Eye Shadow Primer a go? What’s your go-to eyeshadow primer?

Black Radiance Perfecting Eye Shadow Primer is available at Wal-Mart, Walgreens and whereever Black Radiance products are sold.


In My #TLCVoxBox: Avon ANEW Complete Renewal Express Wrinkle Smoother

FULL DISCLOSURE: This product and the products pictured in this post were sent to me for free through the Influenster program for review. All opinions are my own.

I received the Avon Anew Reversalist Complete Renewal Express Wrinkle Smoother for free through the Influenster program. It retails for $30 and came in the TLCVoxBox along with some other items. I was excited to get the box and potentially review something I don’t normally use but it turns out I wasn’t able to assess this as much as I would’ve liked. It turns out I don’t need a wrinkle smoother.

Avon ANEW Wrinkle Smoother
Avon ANEW Complete Renewal Express Wrinkle Smoother

I have fine lines on my forehead so that’s where I put it and it just didn’t make that much of a difference for me. I think part of that is because the lines aren’t that prominent in the first place. How can you fix something when it’s okay to begin with? The other problems that it’s made to tackle, crow’s feet and laugh lines, haven’t hit my face (yet) so I wasn’t able test it against them either. Don’t get me wrong, I do have skincare concerns, it’s just not wrinkles.

I wish I could’ve tested this on someone else, but how do you say “Hey, let me use this product on you because I don’t have the wrinkles for it.” That’s not nice. And just because I think you have a skincare concern doesn’t mean that you feel the same.

I did see rave reviews on Avon’s facebook page so it’s working for other people. Feel free to check on the hashtag #AvonANEW  if you think this something you’d like to try.

On a sidenote: It does remind me of Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch which is billed as a primer to fill in fine lines so I’m tempted to revisit this at some point and see if it works in that respect or to conceal pores.

Avon ANEW Wrinkle Smoother

Have you tried any the Avon Anew Reversalist Complete Renewal Express Wrinkle Smoother?

Speak to your Avon Representative for more informantion about ordering this product or visit

Started From A Sample Now We’re Here: NARS Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with samples. On the one hand they’re great for trying out products and if they suck you don’t have to live with buyer’s remorse. On the other hand if you love it you have to deal with the urge to run out and buy it. I ended up having to deal with the latter scenario because I was on a no-buy when I began to use my NARS Cosmetics Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer.

Nars Cosmetics Pro-Prime
Nars Cosmetics Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer $34 (photo courtesy of

The Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer was a 100 point perk from Sephora I received in March when I ordered a couple of Nars Matte Multiples from The full size is $34 dollars so it’s not cheap but I think it’s worth it. Obviously, I didn’t use it immediately because here it is nearly July and I’m just now talking about it. That’s another thing about samples, sometimes they’re easy to forget and they languish somewhere never to be seen again. Luckily, that didn’t happen with this primer.

“NARS exclusive Light Reflecting Complex captures light, instantly optimizing its reflection. Everyday dullness and signs of fatigue fade as skin is infused with vitality. Advanced Optical Technology optically elevates skin’s natural contours, adding shape and definition. Skin looks luminous all day, in any source of light. Light Optimizing Primer glides right on and absorbs instantly, smoothing and evening skin’s surface. ” (from

The various times I wore this primer I found myself not needing to blot as much as I did with other primers. I think my skin is on the extreme end of oily and it’s pretty annoying.  I kept checking my face wondering if I was truly seeing what I was seeing, a face that wasn’t an oil slick, and I wasn’t mistaken.

Since this is billed as a light optimizing primer I wasn’t surprised to see some glitter on my face after rubbing the primer into my skin. The E.L.F. Radiant Glow primer(reviewed here) gave a similar finish, but the amount of Nars primer I squeezed it out was easier to control so I didn’t experience glitter overkill.  Another thing about the Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer vs the Radiant Glow is that this one readily absorbed into my skin while the e.l.f. one just sat on my face.

With a $34 price tag I know this isn’t for everyone, but I think this primer is going to replace the other ones I’ve been using. Sometimes a girl’s gotta splurge on the stuff that works.

I couldn’t resist. LOL

Have you tried the Nars Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer?

Nars Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer is available at Sephora, department stores, Nars Boutiques, and

E.L.F. Studio Mineral Infused Primer (Clear) Review


Elf primer
ELF Mineral Infused Face Primer (Clear) retails for $6

I’ve been putting off this primer review for weeks because I couldn’t figure out how how to describe what was happening with the product. I wanted to be truthful, but it felt like I was going to beat this thing into the ground because initial tests were making me feel like it sucked. I’ve moved away from that, but let’s start at the beginning.

The first thing you’ll notice about ELF’s Mineral Infused Face Primer is the gel-like texture of it. A lot of the primers I’ve tried are lotion-like but this one is not. This isn’t off-putting at first but when I rub my hands together so I can apply it to my face it looks like nothing is on my hands. Part of me is left wondering did it absorb into my hands or is it on my face? That question gets answered by this feeling of something on my skin.

When I touch my face after application I can tell that the texture of my face feels a bit smoother. This is a plus because I know the product is a least on my face. It also signals to me that maybe it is filling my pores. However, I’m not sure how comfortable I am with how it sits on the skin’s surface and how noticeable that feeling is.

As far as after make-up application, it did what primers do on my face. I was matte for a few hours and then I had to occasionally blot. This is a typical for me and my oily skin.

If you’ve made it this far you might be saying this is a bust. You may be imagining blinking “Do Not Buy” signs in your heads. I don’t blame you. Honestly up until now I would think it’s a bust as well but a change in technique saved this product.

If you’ve watched Wayne Goss on Youtube you know he’s clutch with his make-up tips and reviews. If you don’t know about him check him out. With all that said Wanye Goss posts this video last week.

In case you can’t/don’t watch the video the tip Wayne gave was to lightly powder your face after you apply your moisturizer and primer. As backwards as this seems I tried it and it worked like a dream. Essentially powdering the primer alleviated the feeling of it sitting on my face. And afterwards my foundation stayed matte longer and looked better. Now is it the technique or is it the primer? At this point I’m unsure but it doesn’t really matter.

Sometimes it’s about the product and sometimes it’s about the technique you use to apply the product. I’m sure at one time or another you’ve tried something that didn’t work at first but with a tweak here or there the product works for you. This fact is why I say this product isn’t a bust, at least for me.

I thought the technique made my foundation turn out well.
I thought the technique made my foundation turn out well.

Obviously if you’re the kind of person that wants something to work as promised you might be deterred to give this a shot. I get that. But if you try/have tried this and you relate to anything I’ve said about the product give the Wayne Goss tip a shot because throwing a little powder on top of a $6 primer to make it work better seems better than paying $20 or $30 to get the job done.

E.L.F. Studio Mineral Infused Primer can be found where E.L.F. products are sold and online.

e.l.f. Studio Mineral Infused Face Primer(Radiant Glow)

I decided to try a new face primer while on a Target run. I typically use a more expensive brand, but I wanted to see what was out there at a more affordable price. I think options are important in make-up since formulas change and products get discontinued.

Elf Mineral Face Primer Radiant Glow
Elf Studio Mineral Infused Primer retails for $6

I landed on the e.l.f. Mineral Infused Face Primer in Radiant Glow. This was my first time trying an illuminating product so I was a little apprehensive when I pumped the product out to test it on my arm.

Texture-wise it’s very light and airy. It’s more the consistency of a firm mousse when it’s pumped out than a gel or lotion. The color of the product is on the tan side, but it readily absorbs into the skin so the claim it’s for all skin tones is probably true. However, the sparkle in the product that’s left behind is undeniable.

Elf Face Primer Radiant Glow Swatch
Serious sparkle is left behind but it my skin color doesn’t look altered.

For a product that’s called Radiant Glow I was expecting sheen instead of sparkle. The tiny flecks of gold were very evident on my face upon application of the product and immediately after applying my foundation. This effect did seem to go away though and I could tell that my foundation was a bit brighter which was nice. I typically like my foundation matte so this is a decent alternative.

elf my face
This is after a 5 hours so while I had to blot my foundation didn’t slide around.

I’m still unsure if a product with this much sparkle is meant for all over the face. The sparkle makes me think that it should be a highlight instead of a primer. I also wish that it controlled my oil better, but since my face produces lots of oil that seems like a lot to ask. As long as I wear make-up I’m going to have to blot. That’s life I guess.

e.l.f. Studio Mineral Infused Face Primer retails for $6. There are 3 other options(clear, tone adjusting green, and brightening lavender)and they can be found where e.l.f. products are sold and online.
Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Cyclohexasiloxane, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Dimethicone,Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone  Crosspolymer, Silica, Silica Dimethyl  Silylate, Phenoxyethanol       May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI  77492, CI 77499), Manganese Violet (CI 77742), Red 40 Lake (CI  16035), Blue 1 Lake (CI  42090), Ultramarines (CI 77007), Chromium Oxide Greens (CI 77288), Tin Oxide (CI 77861)

Milani Eyeshadow Primer: A Bargain Eyeshadow Primer Alternative?

Milani Eyeshadow Primer $6.39 at CVS
Milani Eyeshadow Primer $6.39 at CVS

I was on the hunt for something new to try so I stopped in CVS and purchased a couple of things. One of those things was Milani Eyeshadow Primer. I’m generally an Urban Decay Primer Potion kind of girl, but I wanted to give this a shot. Drugstore brands have improved a lot so I wanted to see if this primer could compare to a more expensive brand.

I think the Milani Eyeshadow Primer is a legit alternative to UDPP or Too Faced Shadow Insurance. After 8 hours of wear my eyes look basically the same. The product is similar in texture and color to UDPP and TFSI so if you use either one or are on a budget this is worth a shot.  You’ll pay $6.39 for Milani’s primer versus paying anywhere from $12-$24 for UDPP or TFSI depending on size /or brand.

I applied the primer and eyeshadows from the Naked palette around 8:30 am. This is a couple hours after that.
I applied the primer and eyeshadows from the Naked palette around 8:30 am. This is a couple hours after that.
This is about 8 hours after initial application
This is about 8 hours after initial application

Once upon a time finding a drugstore product that was a similar quality to a department store product was wishful thinking. Now this doesn’t mean that they were terrible, but just that you could tell the difference between them. However, as time goes on the drugstore brands are catching up and maybe, just maybe leaving some of the department stores behind. Time will tell though.

Have you tried this primer? If use a more expensive brand do you think you’ll give this one chance?

Milani Eyeshadow Primer can be purchased at most drugstores and