hydrating primers on rotation

As the seasons come and go, so do my primers. I don’t need them in the warmer months; the humidity in the air does enough for my makeup to look and feel decent throughout the day. My dry skin only gets drier when autumn hits though, so I stick to hydrating primers in my routine. I don’t prefer silicones in my primers because of the texture, and luckily all three of these are silicone-free!

( top to bottom: ren perfect canvas skin finishing serum, too faced hangover replenishing skin primer, becca backlight priming filter )

Ren Perfect Canvas Skin Finishing Serum | When it comes to primers, this doesn’t feel like one! As the name implies, it’s serum-like and has a dropper instead of the usual pump or tube. I was a little hesitant at first since it’s not balmy or creamy like the other primers I’ve tried. It has a much tackier finish than I’m used to, but it’s also lightweight. It doesn’t feel like I’m adding another layer upon layers of skincare. I did an ad on Instagram for this, but I’m not paid to talk about it elsewhere. That being said, it’s on the pricier end at $55 a bottle, and I’m not sure if I’d buy it with my own money. The bottle is matte and scuffs easily, so you better take those photos sooner than later!

Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Skin Primer | Perhaps I have a soft side for this primer, since it’s the first one I fell in love with. This is your basic hydrating primer, without any frills or gimmicks (though to be fair, it’s marketed in a pretty gimmicky way that boasts coconut water and probiotics in the ingredients). It has a light consistency, similar to a watery or gel cream. The slight tackiness provides a great base for makeup, and has a natural dewiness to it. I’ve purchased this time and time again and it’s one of those products I constantly go back to.

Becca Backlight Priming Filter | Becca always does well when it comes to skin, and their Backlight Priming Filter is (sort of) no exception. It gives off a radiant, lit from within glow thanks to the shimmers infused in the formula. This sounds like the beginning of a rave review, but it unfortunately ends here. It tends to pill if I already have a few layers of skincare on, which my skin benefits from. I only really use this for days that I’m doing makeup for fun at home, when I don’t need a layer of sunscreen. A lot of people seem to love this, though – so maybe it’s just me!

What are some of your favorite primers?

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  • I really want to try the Too Faced Hangover primer. I’ve heard amazing things about it & I love hydrating products. x

    • Aw, I wish you were close enough for me to ship a little jar of it to you! It’s one of my favorites and staples for sure.

  • I keep seeing the REN one all over instagram too, especially with everyone promoting it 😉 I like REN as a skincare brand, wonder how this one fares… it does sound a lil pricey though! I have a small size of the Becca one, and I think it’s working pretty well! I’m pretty bad at using primers cause I don’t wear makeup on weekdays and on weekends I don’t like putting on too many layers either, ha.

    I am eyeing up the Nourish skin shimmer/primer though…

    Cherie ✿

    • Yeah, it was a bit weird seeing Ren come out with a primer since they’re a skincare brand! Funnily enough I only put makeup on for Instagram, and I usually take it off after I take photos LOL unless I have somewhere to be after!

  • I know nothing about primers so this is so helpful for me! Definitely liking the sound of the Too Faced primer, sounds amazing!

    Anika |

    • The TF primer is a tried and true favorite of mine, and it seems like almost a cult favorite in the beauty community!

  • Sam

    I hear a lot of dry skin people swear by that too faced primer! Makes me want to try it, but I have a lot of primers, and I don’t think my skin or makeup really needs one so I just want to finish up what I have and maybe skip it for a while. I have the becca one too, and I’ve also notices it pills like crazy. I loved it when I first got it, but when I started experimenting around with it more, it’s just… not my favorite. It’s nice, but probably not something to repurchase (so thanks ulta, because I only paid half price). Everyone’s raving about the embryolisse lait creme concentre though, so I want to get that since it’s not really a “primer”, technically it’s a moisturizer.

    sam / My Beauty Cloud

    • I’m another one hehe! Ugh, it kinda breaks my heart that Ulta has a much better rewards program than Sephora does lol, especially since Sephora has free shipping for vib rouge or if you pay the $10 yearly fee. I’ve heard of that embryolisse primer/moisturizer, a lot of makeup artists swear by it!

      • Sam

        plus the SALES ulta has! The ones they do monthly with 50% off is i n s a n e. but seriously, same, I wish sephora had a better rewards program because whenever I’m looking for something, I always check sephora first

  • I have dry skin and I LOVE the Too Faced Hangover and the BECCA primers! The Too Faced one feels amazing but I don’t know that it makes a difference in terms of it being long lasting. And then the BECCA one really smooths out my face and makes me look like I’m wearing an IG filter.


    • I’ve noticed makeup goes on smoother with the TF primer but I’m not sure of the longevity either. I don’t have a lot of problems with my makeup staying on throughout the day to begin with – or maybe I don’t care enough haha.

  • Emily

    I tend to stick to only one primer throughout the year – I never really think about switching to a more hydrating one during colder weather though it makes perfect sense! I do love the L’Oreal Paris Infallible primer though!

    Musings & More

    • Oooh, I had no idea loreal had a primer! I don’t buy a lot of drugstore products just because it’s so hard to test or swatch them. For some reason I have the idea that anything in the drugstore should be <$10 and I'm horrified when I find that it's like, close to $20 😛

  • I prefer Marc Jacobs Coconut Hydrating primer more than Too Faced Rx Hangover which did little for me. I have that Becca primer too, I like it but it can go overboard easily. I think I will pick up the First Light primer soon, tried a sample and it’s better than the original.

    Shireen⎜Reflection of SanityBurberry Beauty Giveaway

    • I remember when the MJ primer came out, everyone was wondering how it compared to the TF one! I have no idea how they actually compared though, especially since I’m not wowed by new releases that quickly. I love me that glow so I kinda like going overboard haha!

  • I’ve found that with enough hydration during my skincare routine, I no longer need a hydrating primer and can get away with a regular primer, my current favorite being the YSL touché eclat one. However I did try the Laura Mercier hydrating primer several years ago and really liked that as well, some people say it can even double as a moisturizer!

    Jenny // Geeky Posh

    • Oh, I remember the LM primer too! It was one of my favorites back in the day, though I don’t know why I didn’t continue purchasing it after it ran out. Honestly I think my skin just likes the extra hydration from these primers!

  • I love the too faced Rx! It’s the only primer that I use, because it’s the only one besides benefit porefessinal that I’ve tried that doesn’t break my face out. I’ve heard good things about that becca one too!

    • I’ve tried porefessional as a sample and I didn’t like it at all! Though, maybe it’s because my pores are tiny and don’t actually need filling in haha. The TF one seems like a classic staple!

  • It’s not the first time that I’ve read a good review about the Too Faced primer. I really should give it a go one of these days especially since I haven’t found “the one (primer)” yet.

    • It’s so good – for me, it was love at first try! Primers can be tricky since everyone has different skin concerns, I hope you find your holy grail soon!

  • That’s a shame the Becca primer doesn’t work that well for you! I haven’t tried it myself as I have oily skin so hydrating/glowy primers aren’t really necessary for me, but I hear lots of good things about it so it’s always interesting to hear why someone doesn’t get along with it so well. I had a sample of the Too Faced primer a while back and while it’s nice to use and kind of feels like a moisturiser, it didn’t work out for me because hydration isn’t really my issue, haha. But I can totally see it working for drier skin so I understand why it’s so popular. Although I totally agree that the marketing about the coconut water and probiotics is pretty gimmickey, but if the product works then that’s the most important thing.

    • Yeah, I find it so interesting when people don’t like the products I like or vice versa. I’ve heard some people use the TF primer straight up as a moisturizer – I wish I could do that! Along the same note, I tried the glossier priming moisturizer but haaaated it. Mine was really smelly! I’ve seen a few reviews saying that theirs were smelly too, and others that didn’t mention the smell at all, so I’m kind of wondering if I just got a dud.

  • I am looking forward to trying these products soon!

    StyleSprinter Blog by Katya Bychkova

  • aahh i was eyeing that becca primer for quite a while since many reviews said great for people with dull skin. i piled up my skincare too because my skin is so dry huhu. might should just try hangover primer then. i am so curious because people says it’s really hydrating *-*

    • The Becca one has such a nice glow I swear!!! I think you’ll like the TF one since you have dry skin too, I just add a bit of liquid highlight to make it ~extra glowy~ 😀

  • Love the Hangover primer. I got a sample and I really like it… but I don’t know if it actually makes that much of a difference??
    Morgan | Hyacinth Girl

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