Lots of us have them, and the problem gets worse as we age.
We’re talking about large pores.
How many times have you tried to hide them with makeup that slides off halfway through the day?
What you need is the best pore-minimizing primer. It will tighten the pores and smooth the skin, keeping oil under control.
You’ll be left with a velvety-soft complexion, and your makeup will look fresher for longer.
Now, we realize that some people have large pores with dry skin or combination skin. Therefore, oil-control primers will be too drying. Don’t worry; we’ve included pore minimizers for those situations, also.
- What is a makeup primer?
- How to choose the best primer for your complexion
- The single most important tip for using primer
- Best Pore Minimizing Primer in 2021
- First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Pores Be Gone Matte Primer
- Smashbox Photo Finish Pore-Minimizing Primer
- Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional Pore Minimizing Balm
- tarte Poreless Mattifying Primer
- Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
- Too Faced Cosmetics Primed and Poreless
- Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Pore Refiner Primer
- Radiant Complex Face Primer and Pore Minimizer
- Lancôme La Base Pro Perfecting Make-Up Primer
- e.l.f. Poreless Face Primer
- NARS Pore & Shine Control Primer
- beautyblender THE LEVELER
- Tatcha The Silk Canvas
- Skindinavia Primer Face Makeup Pore-Minimizing Spray
- Dermablend Insta-Grip Jelly Primer, Silicone-Free for Dry Skin, Pore Minimizing
- Milani Prime Correct Face Primer
- NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Pore Filler Primer
- Rimmel Stay Matte Mattifying Primer
- L’Oreal Paris Makeup Infallible Pro Matte-Lock Primer
- Maybelline New York Face Studio Master Prime Primer
- Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer
What is a makeup primer?
Think of a pore-minimizing primer like a primer for paint on a house. It prepares the surface by filling in irregularities and preventing oily spots from ruining the finish.
How to choose the best primer for your complexion
Remember that the best performance comes when both the primer and makeup have the same base. Water-based primer plays well with water-based foundation. Also, silicone-based primer works best with silicone-based makeup.
Otherwise, you might find that the foundation pills up, looks cakey, or won’t blend properly if you mix bases.
How can you tell what’s what? The label on a silicone-based product will have ingredients ending in words like –cone, – siloxane, and –methicone. These will be among the first five on the list.
A water-based product will start with water or “aqua”. Also, many of these will be described as “oil-free”, which is optimal for oily skin and acne-prone complexions. Oil-control primers not only tighten pores, but also absorb excess oil to reduce shine.
Choose the pore minimizing primers that interest you most based on your skin type, whether dry, normal, combination, oily, or sensitive. Then narrow down the selection by looking at additional benefits.
Some primers feature acne medication like salicylic acid. Others gently exfoliate with lactic or glycolic acid or have anti-aging effects.
There are moisturizing primers for dry skin and oil control primers that mattify without looking flat. Then, some primers correct for redness, dark circles, or hyperpigmentation.
Also, consider whether you’d like a primer that can work alone without makeup just to perk up your complexion.
Finally, think about the weather. You may find that the primer that performs well in the winter might not withstand the high heat and humidity of summer. You might have to upgrade to something that mattifies better.
The single most important tip for using primer
If you give your primer at least a minute or more to dry, it should behave as expected.
Best Pore Minimizing Primer in 2021
Now, let’s review the best primers for minimizing large pores.
First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Pores Be Gone Matte Primer
Let’s begin with the best primer for blackheads and acne. It’s formulated for oily skin.
It contains salicylic acid to reduce inflammation and dissolve pore-clogging oil. This helps shrink the pores.
Next, it has fig extract, which is naturally antibacterial to clear up pimples. There are also optical diffusers to blur blemishes.
After that, nordihydroguaiaretic and oleanolic acids minimize oil production.
The result is a velvety matte complexion that makeup will adhere to properly.
What’s more, this brand does not add artificial fragrances, parabens, phthalates, alcohol, synthetic dyes, talc, formaldehyde, animal ingredients, gluten, nuts, or oils. Therefore, the primer is suitable for sensitive skin.
After eight hours of wear, participants in a trial still had good things to say. Ninety percent were pleased with how it minimized the look of their pores, and 95% said their skin had a soft-focus appearance.
Smashbox Photo Finish Pore-Minimizing Primer
Smashbox has developed a waterproof primer for either combination or oily skin. It’s a great pick for humid weather.
One reviewer said that it made her pores disappear and left a soft matte finish. Thankfully, it didn’t seem to cause dryness but left the skin clean and fresh.
What’s also interesting is that the primer promises to “mute warm undertones” and “add depth”. In other words, it’s helpful if your skin tends toward redness.
Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional Pore Minimizing Balm
Here’s an oil-free primer appropriate for all skin types. Customer testing showed that 91% of users confirmed that it made large pores less visible. Also, 93% were pleased with how it extended the wear time of their makeup.
The primer is a transparent gel that some say feels like silk on the face. The airbrush effects include smoothing fine lines and wrinkles.
Wear it by itself if you feel like a no-makeup day.
tarte Poreless Mattifying Primer
Which is the best primer for oily skin? Tarte’s is definitely in the running.
Users rave about how it’s a game-changer, leaving the skin shine-free for up to twelve hours.
It’s waterproof, making it excellent for rainy or humid days. Plus, it has optical blurring technology to disguise pores, acne scars, and fine lines.
Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
Dryness is a big challenge for mature skin. It makes foundation crack and flake. But primer can save the day.
Here’s the best primer for pores and wrinkles. It also color-corrects for redness. It enhances the complexion, leaving it silken.
Moreover, it offers SPF 15 protection to prevent premature aging. The sunscreen comes from minerals, not chemicals.
Happily, the formula contains no nanoparticles, parabens, artificial fragrance, phthalates, oil, gluten, artificial colors, or sulfates. It’s also vegan and cruelty-free.
Too Faced Cosmetics Primed and Poreless
Using this primer daily has long-term benefits. That’s because it rejuvenates the skin, brightening the complexion and fading discoloration.
It contains mulberry extract, similar to hydroquinone that lightens dark spots like acne scars. Then, there’s retinol to resurface the skin, smoothing lines and tightening pores.
But don’t forget essential vitamins A and C or the other natural extracts like camellia (white tea). These make the skin more resilient.
Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Pore Refiner Primer
From Korea comes this popular primer that absorbs excess oil and blurs pores. It resists humidity and sweat so that makeup stays photo-ready. The skin stays powdery fresh.
Be aware that it has a slight tint that matches light skin tones best.
Radiant Complex Face Primer and Pore Minimizer
Here is a creamy primer that controls oil and blurs blemishes. It’s waterproof, plus it reduces oiliness.
Users say a little dab goes a long way. It leaves the skin silken with an improved appearance. Go ahead and enjoy a bare face day.
The formula is paraben-free and vegan.
Lancôme La Base Pro Perfecting Make-Up Primer
This primer is a winner for combination skin and visible pores. It’s oil-free but not drying.
Although it’s translucent, it acts like a makeup artist, smoothing the skin and providing the best canvas possible for makeup.
e.l.f. Poreless Face Primer
Remember to blend your primer onto your neck just like you would foundation. This one lasts all day long, camouflaging pores and boosting the makeup’s performance.
It’s also infused with antioxidants and tea tree, making it helpful for treating acne and preventing premature aging.
We also love that it’s vegan and cruelty-free. This brand doesn’t include parabens, phthalates, and other toxins.
NARS Pore & Shine Control Primer
What if your foundation could last for ten hours or longer without touch-ups? With the NARS primer, it can.
This lightweight liquid resembles lotion because it contains silica to soak up excess oil. It has minerals that provide a soft focus filter effect.
Furthermore, it mattifies like nobody’s business, refining pores at the same time. Oleanolic acid, peptides, and African whitewood balance the complexion.
beautyblender THE LEVELER
If you have combination skin, you might worry about pore minimizing primer, making your cheeks too dry. If that’s the case, apply it only to the T-zone.
This one blends easily and dries quickly, leaving the skin looking natural but better. After all, it’s won the Best of Beauty award from Allure a dozen times.
It’s tinted for light to medium skin tones and perfect for normal to oily skin. It’s suitable for underneath liquid and powder foundations or concealer.
Tatcha The Silk Canvas
Every purchase of this powder primer benefits girls’ education in Asia and Africa through Room to Read.
It’s a skincare product recommended for oily skin by celebrity makeup artists like Jordan Liberty in New York.
It has a creamy texture that feels lightweight and soothing. Meanwhile, it nourishes the skin with Japanese superfoods like algae, green tea, and rice (known as Hadasei-3). They protect against pollutants and reinforce the skin’s natural barrier.
Next, silk powder reduces excess shine, provides a soft-focus for pores, and lets makeup glide into place.
Lastly, pink and gold pearl perfect skin tone. If you were hoping for a more radiant appearance, this primer will take you there.
This is a water-based silicone-free primer appropriate for sensitive, dry, and normal skin types. Here’s an excellent recommendation: it’s used in Hollywood.
It creates a flawless canvas for makeup but can be worn alone. Spritz the mist across your face to even out skin tone, tighten pores, minimize redness, and soothe dry spots. It keeps makeup from cracking or sliding.
The vegan formula is waterproof and heat-resistant. It contains no parabens and was never tested on animals.
Dermablend Insta-Grip Jelly Primer, Silicone-Free for Dry Skin, Pore Minimizing
If you’re familiar with Dermablend, you know that they make outstanding full-coverage makeup. To get wear time up to sixteen hours, they recommend applying setting powder. But you can also extend the makeup’s lifetime to up to twenty-four hours if you use this water-based primer.
Although the sticky surface is not ideal for wearing alone, it’s just right for underneath foundation. It tightens pores and fills in lines, giving you a smooth canvas. Don’t worry about dry cheeks – the primer moisturizes, too.
We’re also happy to report that it’s dermatologist-tested and suitable for sensitive skin. It’s non-acnegenic and free of parabens and phthalates.
Milani Prime Correct Face Primer
Milani started in diversity-rich East LA. They’re all about supporting real people, not supermodels. That’s why their primer comes in either light/medium or medium/dark shades. The slight tint provides optimal color correction and diffusion to minimize pores.
Wear it by itself, or enjoy it under liquid, powder, or cream foundation. The directions suggest waiting five minutes for it to absorb entirely.
NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Pore Filler Primer
Skip the powder and get this oil-free primer instead. It doesn’t need talc to stop excess shine.
It “fills” pores and fine lines for a matte finish. Don’t worry; it doesn’t actually clog the pores, but instead smooths and tightens the skin, blurring their appearance.
All this and more from a brand that’s PETA-certified cruelty-free.
Rimmel Stay Matte Mattifying Primer
Although many people are thrilled about the NYX primer, we think the best pore-minimizing primer drugstore is made by Rimmel. It keeps oiliness under control for up to eight hours yet feels featherweight.
It sets to a velvety finish that minimizes pores without highlighting dry patches. Just be sure to blend it properly, and it will keep those cheeks smooth. That’s why those with combination skin are happy with it, too.
L’Oreal Paris Makeup Infallible Pro Matte-Lock Primer
What’s the best pore minimizing primer if you’re on a budget? Take a look at L’Oreal’s Infallible. It’s oil-free and suitable for normal, combination, and oily skin.
Don’t be alarmed when it comes out white because it dries transparent. Instead of chalky or flat, it mattifies to a natural finish, blurring large pores.
Maybelline New York Face Studio Master Prime Primer
We had a hard time deciding between Maybelline’s top primers for minimizing pores.
First, there’s the New York Studio Master. It’s water-based and preps the skin perfectly.
Moreover, you can choose between versions with sunscreen, color-correction, and other concerns.
But wait till you see the next primer below…
Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer
Maybelline’s Baby Skin will let you forget about wearing makeup. Who needs it when your skin looks and feels this good?
It blurs pores and mattifies yet acts as a moisturizer.
If you can’t decide, at least you can get both of these last two primers for the cost of one of the pricier options.
The solution for minimizing pores starts with your primer. It does the heavy lifting for the rest of your makeup.
Makeup primer will enhance your appearance before you apply foundation or concealer. Then, it makes their job easier throughout the day.
Let us know if we helped you find your new favorite skincare products today.