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It looks like my beloved Benefit Stay Don't Stray Eye Primer (review) has a little competition now! The new Air Patrol BB Cream Eyelid Primer is not just another eyelid primer. It promises to lock your shadow in place while protecting your delicate skin from sun damage. I had high hopes for this product so let's see it it met my super high expectations!
Benefit Air Patrol BB Cream Eyelid Primer is housed in a super adorable click-pen with a cute winged cap! The cap is a little hard to take off and put back on, though, and you will need to exert quite a bit of force to make sure the cap is closed all the way down. To use, simply turn the dial at the bottom to dispense the product through the applicator.
The pink applicator is the most interesting part about the product! It's made of ultra soft and flexible texturized silicone. Benefit calls it a CushionCalm tip and claims that it can apply the product without using any stress or pressure. It's supposed to feel even “softer than your pinkie!” and I'll have to agree; it is super soft! :) It's also very easy to clean; simply wipe the tip of excess product before replacing the cap to ensure fresh product upon next dispense. (Note: if left on too long, the cream will dry up and get crusty around the opening, so make sure you clean it after every use!)
The instruction says to use “one click per eye” but as you can see in the picture below, one twist dispenses way too much product even for both eyes. A little truly goes a long way with this one! And while the soft applicator is wonderful on the lids, it's not doing anything much except moving the creamy primer around. I still find myself using my finger to pat and blend.
The primer has a universal light yellow-beige color that offers natural-looking color correction to all skin tones. It brightens up the skin nicely so you can use it alone on the lids and under the eye area to look more fresh and awake. I did not detect any scent nor did I find the product causing irritation on and around my eyes.
Let's talk texture! Well, it's a BB cream so you can expect it to have the same texture and feel as a BB cream! It literally feels like applying a BB cream on your eyes. The primer is thin, spreads and blends easily, and sets to a soft satin finish with a very subtle shine and a slightly tacky feel. It has such unusually light texture for an eye primer and for this, I am loving it so much because it doesn't drag or pull my skin while I'm trying to blend it out. It doesn't dry out on me, either. If you find your current eye primer dries too quickly, hard to blend, or leaves a white smear, I highly recommend you check this one out because it does none of that! I have really been enjoying using it on my lids. :)
Besides the fancy applicator and texture, it has a fancy formula, too! Not only does it prep the lid for a smooth eye makeup application, it also brightens and color corrects so your lid appears more awake and even-toned. And since it's technically a BB cream, it will protect your eyes from damaging sun rays, smoke, and pollutants, too, thanks to its broad spectrum SPF 20 sunscreen (Octinoxate 5.99% and Titanium Dioxide 2.19%) and EnviroDefend complex!
Performance-wise, I find that it does brighten and color correct my eye area nicely. It provides a nice, smoothing base for my eyeshadows and intensify them so they appear more vibrant. The picture below displays how Air Patrol holds up to the other popular eye primers. As you can see, it is able to amp up the pigmentation of the shadow to a level comparable to the others. Additionally, I noticed that Benefit eye primers — both the Air Patrol and Stay Don't Stray — added a slight “warmth” to the shadow, too, since the color appeared visibly more brown compared to the rest. The NARS, MAC, and Urban Decay ones leave the shadow more cooler-toned in comparison.
So yes, I found the Air Patrol to excel at increasing blendability and intensifying the shadow color (both powder and cream) but does it lock down the color as efficiently as the other primers do? Yes! But to a certain extent. I have oily lids so I tested the Air Patrol in both air-conditioned office setting as well as in the outside heat. I found that in the cooler temperature, it held up well and kept my shadow vibrant all day. However, in the heat, it didn't quite keep up and would show signs of creasing after a few hours or so. The shadow would pull into one very fine crease line that I have, not all over the place mind you. Once I reblended it gently with my finger, it stayed put for the rest of the day.
So all in all, Air Patrol is a really nice, easy-to-blend, multitasking eyelid primer that will help keep your shadow looking vibrant while protecting your lids from UV rays. It has a super light and thin texture that I thoroughly enjoy. It doesn't hold up to the more heavy-duty eye primers in extreme heat but for regular office work days, I think it's excellent! Lastly, I also think that if you have dry lids, you will appreciate the formula even more because it is much more moisturizing compared to my other primers! :)