How Do I Choose the Best Mineral Primer?

Kathleen Howard

Before applying foundation, mineral primer can be used to create a smooth, even canvas. To choose a mineral makeup primer, look for one that contains natural ingredients instead of fillers and synthetic agents. Also look for a product that will work with your skin type to create an even, long-lasting base. The best mineral primers are those that reduce oil, minimize imperfections, and create a strong base for the rest of your makeup.

Some mineral primers are free of synthetic ingredients.
Some mineral primers are free of synthetic ingredients.

Mineral foundation primer is not always free of synthetic ingredients. The first step in selecting a mineral primer is understanding what ingredients to avoid. Ingredients like artificial dyes, fragrances, phthalates, preservatives and parabens can irritate the skin. Before choosing a primer, take a close look at the ingredient list. If a primer contains synthetic ingredients, including zinc stearate, glycerin or stearic acid, keep looking for a more natural product.

Mineral foundation primers are available in both liquid and powder formulas.
Mineral foundation primers are available in both liquid and powder formulas.

In addition to finding a true mineral product, also look for one that will benefit your specific skin type. Mineral foundation primers are available in both liquid and powder formulas. If you have oily skin, choose a powder or an oil-free liquid primer. Many oil-free primers also contain certain ingredients like kaolin clay that work to absorb excess oil. These formulas are good for people who normally notice their makeup running or smudging throughout the day.

Primer or facial moisturizer is often used under mineral makeup.
Primer or facial moisturizer is often used under mineral makeup.

Dry skin types will typically benefit more from hydrating liquid formulas. Liquid formulas eliminate rough patches and plump the skin to ensure an even makeup application. If a formula is too drying, the skin may end up appearing ashy or rough.

Liquid formulas are also effective in minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. To smooth wrinkles, choose a mineral primer that contains hydrating ingredients like aloe, jojoba seed oil and cocoa butter. Also look for primers that contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which are anti-inflammatory and work as a natural sunscreen. For a smooth appearance, avoid clays and other oil-absorbing ingredients. Makeup primers containing clay will dry the skin and make wrinkles more noticeable.

Mineral primers are also available in tinted and colorless formulas. If you are looking for a product to minimize pores and hold your makeup in place, a colorless formula will help you achieve those goals. Tinted formulas are designed to neutralize uneven pigment. For an extra layer of coverage to minimize sun spots, freckles or acne, look for a tinted mineral primer that matches your skin tone. This will help you hide imperfections and create a more flawless complexion.

People with oily skin should use an oil-free liquid primer.
People with oily skin should use an oil-free liquid primer.

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