Saturday, June 9, 2012

Inventory #11.1C - Eyeshadow Primers

*in the voice of Bob Saget aka older Ted Mosby* Kids, it was December of 2010 when Auntie Lizzie realized she had a huge problem. She had become an eyeshadow primer whore. A few years before that, no one had even heard of shadow primers, but that winter she ended up with six despite hardly ever wearing eye makeup. Luckily, she got a handle on this problem fairly quickly, and a year and a half later, she only had three to deal with. The end.

*blank kids stare*

Haha, no way!

*back to my regular voice* It's been a while since the last inventory post and I thought of doing away with the whole thing since the plan going forward was to reduce my stash to a minimum. Well, reducing is a lot harder than you think. The first round of blog sale was quite successful, after a few kinks at the beginning, and I do have more things to add to it eventually (mostly nail polish that I don't use). I also gave away a lot of makeup to friends and sisters, and as you know I'm doing my damnest to finish using up old things and posting the progress via the empties posts. But the number of things I managed to rack up even while I was taking up the mantle of the Reductionista is astounding. The only way they will stop accruing is if I stop buying new things completely. But that's another topic for another day. Today we are here to discuss eye shadow primers.


As Future Ted narrated earlier, I had about six products that I was using as shadow primers, whether that was the products' purpose or not. This problem actually grew to a stash of eight when (1) I purchased (and subsequently returned) the Naked Palette and obtained the mini size of the UDPP, (2) then the professional size of the UDPP, and (3) this happened.


Since then, I gave/swapped away the Clinique, Benefit, original UDPP and Smashbox and sold the Bobbi Brown. All that remains from the original stash is good old MAC Paint Pot in Soft Ochre. I tried to take a shot that would show the progress I've made with it. The concave is so difficult to capture! I suppose it's not very impressive since 80% of the product still remains in the pot, but I have about 1/5 left in both the mini UDPP and Clinique Pore Minimizer.


I know... you're wondering what the heck a pore minimizer is doing in this pile. I'm having a bit of a WTF moment here, too. I saw that I had it in last year's inventory post but didn't include in any of my new inventories. Then it occurred to me that it might work well as a shadow primer because I frequently use it as a foundation primer.

Here are swatches of each of the three items and I'll describe them briefly further down below:

INDOOR SHOT: Clinique Pore Minimizer (left), MAC Soft Ochre (middle), UDPP (right)

UNDER DIRECT SUNLIGHT: Clinique Pore Minimizer (left), MAC Soft Ochre (middle), UDPP (right)

WITH FLASH: Clinique Pore Minimizer (left), MAC Soft Ochre (middle), UDPP (right)

MAC Paint Pot in Soft Ochre - Technically a cream but one that's on rather dry side. It makes a good base for layering other cream shadows or powder shadows over it. Before the advent of real shadow primers, a lot of people (hi, YouTube "gurus") were using this to set their shadows and that's where I got the notion that a real makeup kit just wasn't complete without a goddamn Paint Pot. People with pale, cool tones prefer Painterly while the yellowish folk like me prefer Soft Ochre. I wish Soft Ochre was a touch darker and yellower, as you can see by the pictures that it ends up looking a little chalky. I only use it when I'm layering other products on top of it as I despise the crusty pale lid look it gives on its own.

Urban Decay Primer Potion (Original) - One of the firsts of the shadow primers, it originally came in the curvy potion packaging with a twisted doe foot wand that gave a lot of grief to a lot of people. It's liquid cream in texture that you pat over the eye and intensifies the colour of eye shadows and effectively locks the shadow in place and keep from creasing. I'm no eye makeup expert and find that it works just fine. But I do have major issues with their packaging. They're poorly made and I find the brand in general to be gimmicky and even a little tacky. That's not to mention the business in China stuff that made the news this week (let's not talk about that here - I don't really care). I decided that I was done with Urban Decay after the packaging bust and so it is. I'm actually in the middle of compiling a list of brands that I don't purchase from for various reasons. UD is now on it.

Clinique Pore Minimizer Instant Perfector in 02 Invisible Deep - I originally got this to use as a pore perfector, when I was convinced that pores needed to be eviscerated or completely covered up. Now I avoid stuff that promises to do stuff to or for your pores. Why are we hating on our pores? We need them! Anyway, this has a matte gel/cream texture that ends up feeling slightly waxy, but it forms a pretty good base to mattify T-zones and is good for spreading all over the face to secure the foundation. I'll probably end up finishing it as a regular primer but tomorrow I'll test it out as a shadow primer as well. It looks like a small tube but it's taking forever to empty!

So, that's my shadow primer stash. How many eyeshadow primers do you have? In the battle of the shadow primers, which would you say is the best of the best?

And speaking of How I Met Your Mother (which I gave up on watching because they are never going to show us the freaking mother), this is the version of Les Miserables that I want to see. I feel like Hollywood missed a golden opportunity here.

30 comments:

  1. LOLOLOL. You're so entertaining Liz! I love love UDPP and Too Faced. It's so hard to pick out what's better, but I swear by Too Faced and UDPP =] I really didn't like the Benefit one, and I've only tried paint pots a couple of times (before the Color Tattoos entered my life =D)

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    1. I've heard good things about TF but haven't tried. That's another brand that doesn't really draw me but maybe eventually!

      I guess it's because I'm not a big shadow wearer that I don't find any of the primers to be particularly deficient. They all seem to be about the same!

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  2. I also stopped watching HIMYM because I was SO ANNOYED about all the false hopes. Plus, it stopped being funny, though I've heard this season may be better? /offtopic

    I really look forward to reading your post on brands you won't buy from! It's so helpful to hear about who I should avoid...and I've heard good things about Paint Pots, though have not yet tried them myself, since I don't wear eyeshadow very often and have a nearly-full TFSI that I want to finish before I buy any other primers (hopefully before I get my PhD, but really, who knows?). And using the Clinique as a shadow primer is a great idea! I hope it works out for you :)

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    1. I only really liked S1 and S2. I kept up with S3 and S4 just to see if they'd drop any big reveals but nope. And it did get less funny and more grating as time went on.

      It's tricky to put out a blacklist of brands because I don't want to seem like a "hater" but we'll see if it happens.

      Haha, I say you throw that TFSI into the air with your graduation hat if you're not done by then!

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  3. This is a great post-I was a dedicated UDPP girl but recently bought a TFSI to use when I finished. I haven't used the Benefit and paint pots could never ever work for me as a primer!!! I may try a primer post myself (eye primer anyway)

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    1. The Paint Pots can be kind of tricky. I always have problems with it if I apply too much. TFSI is more popular than I thought!

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  4. I never found HIMYM funny and I felt like the only lame person in the world who felt that way...hahaha. Oh well.

    UD's on my list now, too, just because why bother? There are so many other brands out there that I'd rather buy from. The end. I like NARS' primer but I'm also working on a Clarins one that I found buried under a crap ton of eyeliners (why yes, that is the scientific term). The things we do. Sigh.

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    1. The show doesn't really find its stride until well into S1 and there are moments when I feel like it's too much of a skit, but S1 and S2 trotted out some good stuff. Swarley, Crazy Eyes, Slap Bet, Robin Sparkles. Then they got lame.

      Yeah, everyone seems to love the NARS. I haven't tried it yet. LOL @ the rediscovered Clarins. Love it when you get scientific.

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  5. It's ok Larie-I don't watch HIMYM either and don't think it's that funny either! ;) Although I have seen one where they're trying to find a burger place and that episode was pretty good. :)

    I can't wear any eye products without primer, but the one I like at the moment is from Tarte.

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    1. I'd put the burger episode as a solid B+ production from them. Their A eps are pretty entertaining but too many fails lately to bother tuning in.

      I'm feeling rather disenchanted with Tarte lately but if you and Danielle like the Tarte, I gotta try...!

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  6. So far in my stash I only have Painterly and UDPP in Eden. I really dislike UDPP in its original formula but Eden makes anything and everything stick. My only beef with it is that it's very yellow and I have to use a darker powder to set it as to not look like an alien! I used to love Painterly, but recently I've noticed my eyeshadow starting to crease earlier throughout the day... and I still have a lot of Painterly left. Might check out NARS next!

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    1. Man, I would so love to see an empty Paint Pot. That person can be Queen of the Empties! Seriously, this pot is going to last me until I'm 40.

      I haven't tried Eden but it did look too yellow for my liking. I think from now on I'll stick with shadow primers that are very close to my skin colour or just colourless.

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  7. I have tried the following:
    Paint pots - do not hold on my lids at all on their own and do nothing for the eyeshadow, even hard to put a powder shadow on top and blend well
    UDPP - it is ok, but the packaging sucks, I also do have the Sin version and absolutely hate the shimmer (but still quite OK as a quick eyeshadow fix on its own for hot days)
    Too Faced Shadow Insurance - makes the colours amazingly more intense, but the staying power is also not that great for me
    Artdeco - a German brand, very good if you can get over the smell (smells like man's aftershave) and the jar packaging
    NYX HD Eyeshadow base - my absolutely favourite, does not bring out an eyeshadow colour that much, but the staying power when blended well (I use Sigma Precision Round brush, P82) is awesome

    And I do have the same opinion on HIMYM. The joke is not funny anymore, if they actually hever show her :( Watched first few episodes with my BF and stopped. The characters are quite boring IMO. I still do like Barney, though.

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    1. Oh, I'm intrigued by the NYX! I think I'll try that next if I ever finish these three.

      I feel like at this point we're never going to be happy with who the mom is. The whole premise of the show is based on this reveal and there is no way they can satisfy us now. I also feel like Ted is getting really lame as the years go by; he was cute while idealistic and young but now I almost feel sorry for the mother who will end up with him!

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  8. That was literally the most awesome video EVER. Jason Segel and Neil Patrick Harris are now officially my heroes! hilarious!

    As far as primers go, Nars' Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base has always been my go to--but I actually tried the UDPP in the travel-size version I got with my Naked Palette and surprisingly loved it! It's a bit thinner and more fluid than the Nars' one and blends out so easily without being overtly silicone-y. I like it! I like it so much that I may have to save a few $ and purchase it when I'm out of my Nars (cuz they both work wonderfully on me, so might as well go with the cheaper of the two. Also, UDPP contains more product than Nars)

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    1. Man, I was dying when I came across that vid. It makes me want to jump in and sing DO YOU HEAR THE PEOPLE SING with them. :)

      I really have no issue with the quality of UDPP itself and would gladly repurchase were it not for their packaging problems. But then there are so many other options now that I do feel the need to branch out. The NARS does seem to be on the pricey side and I'll have to try a sample some day!

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  9. I wonder how they ever get any of the filming done on HIMYM. I would never be able to keep a serious face. Marshall and Barney are basically the only reason I still watch that show. It's not even about the mother anymore.

    Anyhoo, back to the primer topic... I have a few different primers, but surprisingly not a lot! I have UD's Primer Potion, MAC's Soft Ochre (which is technically an eyeshadow base rather than a primer), MAC's Vibrancy Eye Primer, and NARS' Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base (ironically, this is more of a primer than a base...). My favourite is NARS, though. Seriously keeps my eyeshadow creaseless and smudgeproof for at least 12 hours! It's pricey, but totally worth it to me!

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    1. I find Jason Segel kind of gross now, but Marshall the character is the best. :D

      Thanks for the clear-up on base vs. primer. And good to get your opinion on which is best. Oh god, that settles it then: NARS it is. I suppose if I were to spring for one, it'd last me all year or even longer so it might be worth it. But obviously it's going to take a gazillion years to get through what I already have so who cares. Have you ever emptied a Paint Pot? It would be a GLORIOUS sight!

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  10. Ah crap, I had a bunch of things to say and then got distracted by NPH and Jason Segel lol! Love them both :)

    Anyway, eyelid primers, hmm...I think I only have one, the NARS Smudgeproof, which you really should try - it IS great. I never thought to use the Clinique primer as an eyeshadow one, mainly because I'm not sure it impresses me as a primer in general - it smooths out my skin, but as for keeping makeup in place, ummm...nah. But I like your thinking outside the box, Liz :) And you've done well cutting down your stash, hoo-ray!

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    1. LOL! Isn't that clip the best? I thought they were just going to do the back and forth part but when they started talking/singing simultaneously I nearly had a fit.

      If I put that Clinique pore perfector on my nose, it keeps it matte for a few more hours than usual! I was about to toss it until I discovered that. Then I just started using it all over the face and it was fine. So it got rescued from the toss bin and will end up in the empties bag eventually. :)

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  11. I use the NYX eye shadow base in skin tone and love it! To be fair I don't wear much eyeshadow anymore and never really used an eyeshadow primer before this I think. but for the price ($5 or so) its pretty damn gooood!

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    1. So it is NYX in the lower price range and NARS for the higher price. I'm so glad I did this post to get all this great feedback!

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  12. AHAHAHA I love the HIMYM intro!!! I still watch the show and I'm actually glad we don't know who the mother is yet. If we knew then that would call for the end of the show and that can't happen. It can't!

    As for eyeshadow primers, I think 3 is a good number. You've got your pot, your squeeze tube, and an annoyance (UD). Unfortunately, I'm cursed with the number TOO MANY. My favorite is LORAC's Behind The Scenes Primer but I'm itching to try the NARS primer everyone raves about.

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    1. It has to, man. I'm tired of seeing Ted broken-hearted season after season!

      How many is too many? lol LORAC is such a solid brand but doesn't get a lot of love - and now it's gone from the Canadian Sephoras! Boo. :(

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  13. You are so imaginative at coming up with posts that don't have anything to do with buying new products to try. I wish I didn't throw away my Clinique pore minimizer now...I tossed it because it wasn't doing much for my skin besides adding an extra layer to my naturally oil skin...darn it! Back to eyeshadow primers, I think Too Faced Shadow Insurance beats the pants off UDPP. I now use UDPP when I'm doing swatches for my blog and when I have a short day out. So two in all, but as you know, these suckers last forever and you really only need one good one...

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    1. Thanks so much! :)

      You know what? I was also going to throw away the Clinique Pore Minimizer. It was in the empties bag for a while to be tossed, but one day I decided to give it another try and realized it kept the t-zone really matte. Then I tried it all over the face and it seemed fine! It doesn't seem to work as well on top of the foundation, though, which is how a lot of people might be using it. It pilled and bunched up at that point. Well, at least now we know to give a product our best before giving up, right? :)

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  14. I bought the Too Face primer, and I never use that thing. I don't know why I did. Mostly I either use concealer or a cream shadow as a base and that works fantastically. Not to mention it gives dimension to the look.
    I think we've all got conned with these eye shadow bases, they didn't have them in the eighties and nineties and yet women survived. We survived Liz, we survived.

    OK, Les Mis, I am not in love with Anne as Fantine and the rest of the cast seems a little sketchy at best. But whatever, we don't get to cast.

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    1. I don't know... sometimes I look at the pictures from those eras and cringe. Maybe if they had shadow primers... LOL! ;)

      Yeah, I'm slightly wary of Anne as Fantine, too, but will withhold judgment until I see the damn movie. Everyone else looks okay to me (esp. Seyfried as Cosette) but I don't think that Redemayne (sp?) guy looks the part of Marius at all. But he was decent in Pillars of the Earth. The whole production is just too Hollywood for my liking. No fresh faces whatsoever.

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    2. Well it's a theater piece, I wish they had used theater folks.

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    3. Wasn't gonna happen. :(

      So I have seen the Les Mis production a long time ago, with Colm Wilkinson as Valjean but everything else was a huge disappointment, mostly because the rest of the cast turned out to be backups that night and not very good. I feel like even the silly shows like Legally Blonde is nothing short of amazing in New York while Toronto just struggles. Yet the audience here are so easy they give standing ovations to nearly everything! It's frustrating, D, and there's no pleasing either of us.

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