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Are you ready to meet my new (face primer) BFF? I know I've mentioned this product quite a few times already on HelloJaa (1, 2, 3, 4) but today will be a complete review with actual full-sized product and before-and-after photos! :D This primer has been receiving nothing but positive reviews since its launch earlier this year and after 3 months of daily use, I've got to tell you that it is really as good as they say!
Smashbox cosmetics is famous for their face primers so it came as no surprise that their newest product to join the Photo Finish family has already made it to the top 10 best-selling face primers on Sephora as well as one of the Allure Best of Beauty award winners of 2014!
Smashbox Pore Minimizing Photo Finish Foundation Primer comes in the same squeeze tube-style as the rest of the Photo Finish line except the color of the tube is a nice purple pastel. It's hygienic, practical, and functional, so it's a 10 for the packaging.
Similar to the original Photo Finish primer, the new Pore Minimizing version is also loaded with silicones. If your skin is sensitive to them, it's best to try a sample first. I typically cannot stand the silicone-y feeling of most face primers regardless of how smooth and soft they make my skin feel; I can just always feel them sitting on my face and clogging my pores (and in some cases breaking me out).
This new pore-minimizing version, however, has silica in it so it has more of a “powdery” feel rather than full-on “slippery” and this, I can get along with better. Still, due to my acne-prone skin, I try to use it only on the areas where there are visible pores as opposed to slathering it on all over the face and risking the skin's reaction.
The product itself has a flesh-toned color. It comes out of the tube quite thick (thicker than the Benefit POREfessional and Too Faced Primed and Poreless) but it spreads and blends really well into the skin. The flesh-toned color is virtually invisible once it is applied. My pores are noticeably concealed and my skin overall feels smooth and matte instantly. The powdery finish is not too powdery; it still has just a hint of “creaminess” to the touch so that your foundation has something to adhere to.
I find the best way to use this primer is to apply only as necessary on well-moisturized skin using fingertips. Due to the silica content, using too much on dry skin can lead to the product balling up and/or catching every dry patch and flaking off. I have better results when I apply it before or after my foundation but never after powder.
The company claims 8 hours of pore concealing and I agree! It really does a good job at keeping my skin smooth and pore-less throughout my usual work day! My makeup seems to also stays fresh longer than without the primer. I am very satisfied with the result! :)
The product is scent-free, oil-free and supposedly “sweat- and humidity-resistant“, however in my case, it doesn't really perform any better than my other primers when it comes to oil-controlling. My T-zone still gets slightly dewy in the afternoon but at least it's never oily to the point that I feel I have to blot. It doesn't tone down the redness around my nose much, either (it doesn't claim to) but I guess that's more of a concealer's job.
See my skin on the right side? Super smooth, mattified, and pores are much less noticeable compared to the left side where I didn't apply the primer. :)
I can honestly say that this is among the best of the best pore-minimizing primers I've tried to date. It works great as promised, does not break me out, and more importantly, lasts a long time with daily use! I have had my sample tube for almost 3 months now (I only use it around my nose and a little bit on my forehead and chin each time, not all over the face) and I am only just about to finish! I suspect the full-size tube is going to last me a year at least!
So yes, a huge thumbs up from me for the new Smashbox Pore Minimizing Photo Finish Foundation Primer! :)