The official title of the primer is Smooth Affair Facial Primer and Brightener. When I first saw ‘Brightener’, I may have cringed. I have tried many a brightening primer that was not brightening, it was SPARKLY. I may not be old per se, but I am still too old to be walking around looking like a pre-teen Twilight vampire. I am not sparkly. Please don’t make me sparkly. Thankfully, this is not sparkly.
The texture of it is sort of a cross between a typical silicone-based primer (think Bare Minerals Prime Time primer or Smashbox primer) and a typical non-silicone primer (think Korres Quercetin and Oak primer or Tarte’s ReCreate). Silicone-based primers tend to be a little dry while non-silcone primers tend to feel more like a light moisturizer. This is sort of right in the middle. It has a really nice fluid texture, but is a little thicker than non-silicone primers since it does have silicone in it.
Because it is not as dry as some silicone-based primers, I have been using this alone as a moisturizer and really like it. I find it does have some moisture to it, the perfect amount for my combo skin in the summer. It may not be enough in the winter, but for now it is great.
As for smoothing, this really does work. I can’t really tell the difference of my skin with primer alone (although I never have been able to and never understood how people could), but I notice a big difference with foundation on top of it. I, unfortunately, have large pores on my cheeks and forehead. It’s something I don’t like to talk about. So anything that helps smooth out those pores to appear less noticeable is a definite bonus. I’m happy to report, this does. Does it make them disappear? No. But no primer, no matter how chemical-ridden, has ever done that. But I will take makes them less noticeable.
Above I mentioned this does not make you sparkly, but it does have brightening in the title. Does my skin appear brighter? Kinda….not really. But it does give it a nice dewiness glow. This does not have a matte finish, which I don’t mind. I like when my skin appears to have a glow or dewiness to it, I think it makes my skin look healthy. So if you’d like to call that brightening, feel free. For girls that battle oily skin, you may not want any sort of dewiness, so be warned this does have that effect. I’ve even put powder on top as a test to see how it changes, and I feel like my skin still had a glow under the powder. Impressive!
One thing that is interesting is the smell, its very grapefruit-y. I’m not used to primers having a strong smell to them. I was a bit worried about the grapefruit being so strong, that it would irritate my skin, but nothing so far and I’ve been using it for weeks now.
How does this compare to other primers? Comparable I would say. This smooths out my pores and helps my foundation apply really nicely. One thing I do like, that I think brings it above others I have tried, is the ingredients…
Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Coconut Alkanes (and) Polysilicone 11, Dimethicone/Vinyl, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Dimethicone/PEG-10/15 Crosspolymer, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Pectin, Chlorella Vulgaris/Lupinus Albus Protein Ferment, Maltodextrin, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Bitter Orange) Fruit Extract, Malus Domestica Fruit Cell Culture Extract, Raphanus Sativus (Radish) Root Extract, Lecithin, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Zinc PCA, Sodium Ascorbate, Royal Jelly, Tocopherol, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract (and) Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Xanthan Gum.
So as you can see, the ingredients list is pretty long. Silicones are high up on the list, which helps with the ‘smoothing’ effect.
While it does have some potentially irritating essential oils, they are farther down the list. White Tea, Green Tea, Aloe and protein are high up on the list – which I am happy to see. Then with the grapefruit, orange, and radish – which can be irritating to some but like I said previously, I haven’t experienced anything.
Similar to other Jane Iredale products, the preservative system is a little hidden. I believe it could be the honeysuckle extracts but I can’t be 100% sure. I’m happy not to see parabens or phenoxyethanol though, so I’ll take it!
There are also some interesting ingredients like royal jelly, zinc, vitamin E, and peptides! One that caught my eye as well that is high up on the list is chlorella. I don’t talk about supplements much on the blog but chlorella is really great for you. It’s a green algae you can buy as a powder, I drink it in smoothies. I’ve seen algae before, but not specifically chlorella. So that along with the others I mentioned are great for skin (or theoretically are), so I’m glad to see them in this product. Usually primers are very ho-hum, so the fact that this has some quality stuff, even if some are far down the ingredients list, is pretty cool. Especially since I use this as a moisturizer, it’s nice to know I’m taking care of my skin!
Overall, I’m really loving this primer. Great texture, great ingredients and actually works to smooth out my pores. I’m sold.
Disclosure: A sample was provided to me by Jane Iredale to try. Opinions and the choice to review are 100% my own! I’m not compensated for anything I write.