Do You Need A Primer?
Is a primer one of those products that is a marketing ploy to make you think that you need one but in actual fact you can get on perfectly well without one? Or is our lives (and our skin) so much better off with them? I've been asking myself this for a long time and for a long time I didn't use one, didn't feel the need to, thought I was being conned if I was to buy one, then I used one and I quite liked it. So, what does all this mean?
Firstly, I first and foremost believe that before you put any makeup on your face, you must get your skincare in order, i.e. cleanse thoroughly, exfoliate if required, appropriate serum and then moisturise (not an easy mission I admit). But once you have mastered the right skincare routine to suits your needs, you will create the perfect base for your makeup which will mean it will also stay put all day. If you reach this wonderful place (after many trials and errors), then I believe that a primer is not needed. Perfect your skin and you will perfect your makeup.
Having said that, I have used a primer and liked it. It's not that I don't like them, I'm just to be convinced that they are essential. If you have certain problem areas, like enlarged pores, they can create a great canvas for which to apply your makeup over. Or if you are getting married or going to a wedding, I would certainly opt for as many layers as possible to give my makeup maximum lasting power. Once I apply a primer to my skin I can tell it is creating a great base/canvas and smoothing out my skin but I can't honestly say that it makes my makeup last any longer than it would without the primer.
There is a primer that I will happily use as and when required and that is one whose main function is to provide a glow to the skin prior to makeup. I don't use these in the normal sense of the word primer, I use them to create extra glow if I want it or need it. These primers I do love! I know you can create points of highlight on your face after you apply makeup, to tops of cheek bones, centre of the nose etc. to provide glow but I like to add an overall subtle glow to my skin. My favourite was Dior Glow Maximiser (until they discontinued it), now I use Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow.
So, to conclude, I believe that unless you have a specific problem area, a primer is not essential, particularly if you have good skin or a good skincare routine that treats your areas of concern. Using a good quality spf (which is a must anyway) will act as a very good base for your makeup (if you have concerns about too many layers, ditch the primer, not the spf). If you want extra glow, however, primers specifically for this can be great.