Can You layer face primers?

A makeup primer prepares the skin by smoothing out its surface and filling in fine lines and pores. Primers are usually applied before applying foundation as they help create an even base for the rest of your makeup application process. 

But when it comes to layering face primers, do they still work the same way? Or will using them together make your face feel heavy and cakey?

In short, you can layer most face primers. It is possible to target many skin issues by combining multiple primers, and it all depends on your skin type and the look you’re going for. 

In this blog post, we’ll explore the benefits of layering face primers and give you a few tips on how to do it.

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How do you layer different primers?

Start by choosing your primers depending on your skin needs. Primers are different than regular moisturizers and they are used to target many skin concerns. Here are three examples of how you can use two primers at once.

To get a matte and smooth makeup look

layer face primers

With oily skin that has some texture, you can use a mattifying primer and a blurring primer together to make your makeup look smooth.

When these two primers are layered, they can control oil while providing the skin with a smooth and blurred finish.

Mattifying primers like this lightweight and silky base blend easily into the skin. The key is to use a very small amount and dab it gently on the skin using your fingers. Let the primer set for a minute and follow with a smoothing primer on top to get a smooth look. 

This blurring primer has an oil-free formula that applies easily on top of makeup or skincare. It helps to minimize the appearance of pores and fine lines for smooth skin.

After testing this primer on many other mattifying primers, I’ve noticed that it sits well over makeup and doesn’t ball up or separate. Always make sure to use a small amount as a little bit goes a long way with this product.

rimmel stay matte primer

Foundations can separate on the nose, chin, and forehead, so you can apply a mattifying on top of these areas to control oil all day long. 

Many makeup artists also use Milk of magnesia as a primer for oily skin.

It has mattifying properties, and it helps to control oil which gives the skin a matte look all day long.

I use Milk of magnesia as a primer for special occasions, and it does a great job of keeping the skin shine-free.

However, it leaves my skin uneven as I have some texture that I’d like to smooth out, and that’s why I layer it with a smoothing primer on top. 

This combination of primers gives the skin a matte and smooth look that stays put all day long.

Tip: Many smoothing primers can be used on top of the foundation to set the makeup and blur the skin. You can use a mattifying or a blurring primer after foundation to touch up your makeup throughout the day.

Make sure to match your primer and foundation to prevent your makeup from separating on the skin.

For textured and dry skin

dry and rough skin

If you have dry and textured skin, you can use a hydrating primer and follow with a smoothing primer on top.

After applying all of your skincare products, go on with a hydrating primer. Dab the primer gently on the skin by using your fingers and let it sit for a minute or so. Follow by a smoothing primer that helps to blur fine lines and wrinkles.

elf hydrating primer

Alternatively, the smoothing primer may be applied where it is most needed. This means around your mouth, on the smile lines, or on top of large pores.

You can layer a blurring primer with a luminous primer on top to get a radiant look. This technique gives dry skin a smooth and glowy look.

For example, you can apply a thin layer of the benefit porefessional primer to smooth the skin and follow with this dewy primer to add some glow.

For a natural and dewy minimal look, you can apply a smoothing primer and wear a highlighter without foundation.

To color-correct

skin redness

If you have redness, pimples, or hyperpigmentation, you can apply a color-correcting primer to reduce skin discoloration. Depending on your skin type, you can follow with a smoothing or a mattifying primer on top.

Use a green-tinted primer to reduce rosacea on the cheeks or any redness around the corners of the nose.

nyx green primer

For grey spots, use a peach or purple primer.

nyx peach primer
nyx purple primer

Instead of applying the tinted primer to the entire face, you can spot-conceal those areas.

Let the primer set and follow with a smoothing base on top.

If you have dry skin, apply a hydrating primer.

For oily skin, use a mattifying primer and if you have texture or mature skin, go on with a smoothing primer.

Can you use too much face primer?

Using too much face primer can make the foundation look cakey, and it might cause the makeup to separate and look uneven. Also, it might clog the pores and cause breakouts.

There is no need to apply too much primer because you only need a thin layer to cover the entire face. 

Whether you want to use a single primer or you’re combining many primers, make sure to apply a thin layer of each one. The key to getting a flawless makeup look is by reducing the amount of primer you’re using. 

Conclusion on face primers layering

Depending on your skin type, layering makeup primers can give the skin a better look. 

For dry and textured skin, apply a hydrating primer and follow with a smoothing base on the areas where you have fine lines and wrinkles. 

If you have oily skin that looks uneven, choose a mattifying primer that helps control shine throughout the day. Apply a smoothing primer on top to get a blurred look and reduce the look of large pores and fine lines.

thank me later primer

For skin discoloration, use a color correcting primer to target redness or pigmentation. Apply a hydrating or a mattifying primer on top, depending on your skin concerns.

first aid beauty primer

When it comes to layering primers, no one solution fits all. There will be trial and error until you figure out what works best for you. 

With that being said, combining many primers is worth it as it gives the skin a flawless look. 

By choosing the best primer, you can use far less foundation or concealer as it might even out the skin tone with less effort.

Bonus tip: You can also mix your primer with the foundation to get a natural look and make the foundation last longer on the skin.

Related Articles

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Primer Vs Moisturizer

Can you apply primer after foundation?

Can you mix primer and foundation together?

Is primer applied before or after sunscreen?

Can you put 2 primers on your face?

Claire is a beauty enthusiast and lover of all things makeup. Her blog is a resource for makeup tips and tricks, product reviews and beauty tutorials.

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