Applying a primer requires an extra step, but it keeps your makeup looking fresh—no creasing, feathering, or fading—all day. Here, seven editor-tested winners that are worth your time.
For Eyes: e.l.f. Eyeshadow Primer
If your eye shadow smudges or creases, try this inexpensive solution. Before applying your eye makeup, swipe the primer onto your lids to help lock in whatever you layer over it. And, with vitamins A, C, and E, the delicate skin on your eyelid will get some anti-aging perks too. In two shades (sheer and blush).
To buy: $3, elfcosmetics.com.
For Oily Skin: Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer
If your T-zone resembles an oil slick every afternoon, this cream was made for you. Smooth it on (you can spot treat your oily parts or use it all over) prior to applying your base. It'll help blur pores and imperfections, plus give your concealer and foundation longevity.
To buy: $6, target.com.
For Lashes: Clinique Lash Building Primer
Before brushing on your mascara, coat lashes with this conditioner—it contains a polymer that keeps mascara flakes from falling onto your cheeks. Bonus: The ophthalmologist-tested formula is moisturizing to give brittle lashes a boost.
To buy: $15.50, sephora.com.
For Sensitive Skin: Smashbox Photo Finish Color Correcting Foundation Primer
If redness is your top concern, prepping your skin with a green-tinted primer will help even out and calm your complexion. Packed with antioxidants, vitamins A and E, and botanicals like soy and lemongrass, this oil-free primer neutralizes ruddiness and helps fill in fine lines.
To buy: $16, sephora.com.
All-In-One: Urban Decay Ultimate Ozone Multipurpose Primer Pencil
In a portable, chubby stick form, this multitasking primer goes on clear and helps hide zits, prevents lipstick from feathering, and fills in fine lines. Stash it in your makeup bag and dab it on before applying makeup—it'll keep whatever you put on top of it in place. The creamy texture contains jojoba oil so it doesn't dry cakey or feel thick.
To buy: $16, macys.com.
For Lips: Too Faced Lip Insurance Lip Primer
Layer this clear, creamy treatment under lipstick or gloss. It provides a smooth base so color glides on evenly. Plus, it prevents you from having to reapply after drinking coffee or eating lunch.
To buy: $20, toofaced.com.
For Dull Skin: Lune+Aster RealGlow Primer
The contents of this tube helps your makeup glide on like butter and ensures it lasts longer, but it also boasts skincare benefits: licorice extract helps brighten dark spots, while apple seed extract serves as a protective antioxidant. Best of all, the silky cream contains light diffusers so your skin has a luminous glow. Wear it alone or under a tinted moisturizer.
To buy: $30, bluemercury.com.