The primer is one of the best-kept beauty secrets that can make all the difference when it comes to makeup that looks great from dusk till dawn (or the other way around!). The primer prepares your skin and creates a solid base for the makeup. As a result, the makeup lasts longer.
You might tend to believe that another makeup product is just too much for your morning (or evening!) routine. However, once you have tried a primer once, you will see the difference, and it will be hard (if not impossible) to give it up afterward.
Let’s have a look at what could be the best non-comedogenic primer for you!
Best Non-Comedogenic Primers: Our Top 9 Picks
1. Best Overall: Rimmel Stay Matte Primer
- Best makeup primer that smooths skin
- Pore refining properties
- No more shine
- Can be used under makeup or as a standalone
- Mattifying properties
This primer has an ultra-light formula that can minimize the aspect of the dilated pores. At the same time, it is efficient in controlling the sebum level for up to 8 hours. It creates a delicate and matte finish. And one of the reasons why you should try this product is that it doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. Rimmel Stay Matte Primer leaves the skin refreshed and so very smooth.
- Volume: 30 ml (1 fl oz)
- Skin perfecting
- Ultra lightweight formula
- Controls shine for up to 8 hours
- Never feels greasy or heavy
- The best option with an anti-shine effect
- Ultra-light texture
- Pore refining effect
This is an option for those looking for a mattifying effect, but also great if you have enlarged pores. It leaves the skin ready to receive makeup and ensures long-lasting results. Among the benefits of using this product, we have the anti-shine properties and reducing the visibility of other skin imperfections.
- MAKE IT MATTE! The Catrice Prime & Fine Pore Refining Anti-Shine Base minimizes unwanted shine and visibly refines your pores.
- LIGHTWEIGHT: This lightweight, oil-free liquid primer spreads evenly for simple & quick application without feeling heavy.
- PERFECTLY PRIMED: Skin is left feeling smooth, mattified, and ready for makeup application!
- Vegan, paraben free, alcohol free, perfume free, oil free, & uses sustainable palm oil.
- CRUELTY FREE: Catrice Cosmetics is certified and acknowledged by PETA as a cruelty-free brand. We do not test any of our products on animals.
- Best choice for an oil and talc-free product
- Formula infused with vitamins
- Minimize pores
- Controls shine
This product from NYX Professional Makeup is ideal if you haven’t used this kind of product before. You will fall in love with it within seconds and also understand the magic of a good primer. It provides a matte finish and is great for oily skin. It has a pore-filling action, so no more imperfections on your face when using this product! You will also be impressed with the differences you will notice in terms of skin consistency.
- PORE FILLER: Oil & talc-free, this vitamin E-infused primer helps minimize the appearance of pores, kills shine & preps your complexion for a smooth makeup application. It's a go-to face primer for achieving matte makeup looks with oily skin.
- ALL ABOUT THAT SMOOTH BASE: Conceal pores with this sleek, silky formula prior to applying your favorite foundations, concealers, powders or bronzer and enjoy prolonged makeup wear.
- FACE FROM FOUNDATION TO FINISH: Complete your makeup with our full line of face products to aid in color-correction & coverage from blush, bronzer, foundations & contouring concealer to palettes powders & setting sprays.
- CRUELTY FREE COSMETICS: We believe animals belong in our arms—not in a lab. All of our makeup is PETA certified cruelty-free. We don't test any of our products on animals.
- DISCOVER NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP: Try all our pro makeup & beauty products, from eyeshadow palette, liquid eyeliner & eyeliner pencils, mascara & false lashes to lipstick, lip gloss, foundation, primer, blush, bronzer, highlighters, brushes & more
- Best product with skin-perfecting technology
- Creates the perfect canvas to apply makeup
- Suitable for all skin types
- Keeps makeup in place throughout the day
This is one of the products that you can use for day wear, evening wear, but also special occasions. It can hide skin imperfections, including pigmentation spots. With innovative technology, it works on a topical level, minimizing pores and giving a matte finish.
- Smooths and perfects skin to create a picture perfect canvas for makeup
- High Definition Filter Technology reflects and diffuses light to create a flawless, airbrushed look
- Lightweight, pink tinted formula brightens skin and softens the appearance of imperfections
- Oil free, talc free, fragrance free and paraben free
- Works on all skin types to help your makeup stay in place all day long
- The best product to be used instead of foundation
- Formula infused with vitamins
- Creates a flawless base for makeup
- Acts as a skin conditioner
- Can create a professional look
This product from e.l.f. can reduce the appearance of enlarged pores and the shine associated with excessive sebum production. Using this product, you can get an airbrushed effect, which is absolutely amazing both for your professional meetings and your Instagram pics.
It contains vitamins and anti-aging ingredients to restore the skin’s firmness and freshness. Great product for a matte finish and long-lasting makeup.
- Transforms your face into a flawless, smooth canvas, ready for makeup application that lasts all day.
- Formula infused with grape, Vitamins A, C and E to help boost complexion and hydrate your skin.
- Blend evenly on face and allow to dry before applying makeup.
- Perfect for all skin types.
- Cruelty-free, vegan and 100% free from Phthalates, Parabens, Nonylphenol, Ethoxylates, Triclosan, Triclocarban, and Hydroquinone.
- The best option for a wrinkle filling effect product
- Dries quickly after the application
- Can keep your makeup looking fresh all day long
- Smoothing effect
Probably one of the best primers for acne-prone skin comes from Lancome, a brand with a long history behind. It promises a lovely smoothing effect, while also refining the texture of the skin. It helps prevent foundation caking in the wrinkles, so a good product for mature skin too.
- Lancome La Base Pro Perfecting Makeup Primer Smoothing Effect Oil Free
- Size: 0.8oz / 25ml
- Best choice if you want smoother than ever skin
- Balmy formula
- Can be used under makeup or alone
- Suitable for all skin types
- Contains a vitamin E derivative
Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional Pro Balm Face Primer Pore Minimizer is a very popular choice for people in the beauty industry. And all for a good reason! This product is best applied with the fingers as the heat of the body can make it warmer and the application easier.
Apply a small amount of product only on problem areas and dab it into the skin.
- Quickly minimize the appearance of pores and fine lines for smoother-than-smooth skin.
- Apply this silky, lightweight balm alone, under or over makeup.
- The translucent formula contains a vitamin E derivative known to protect skin.
- Compliments All Skin Tones.
- Among the best primers that deliver instant results in terms of skin texture
- Lightweight formula
- Dermatologist tested
- Flawless matte finish
- Suitable for all skin types
L’Oréal Studio Secrets Professional Magic Perfecting Base has a silky, smooth formula that can restore the texture of your skin while also minimizing fine lines and other skin imperfections. So, if you are looking for that perfect matte finish and instant results, this might be the product for you.
Keep in mind that this primer has an illuminating effect and can be worn even without foundation or other makeup on.
- Instant smoothing results that perfect skin texture, instantly and all day with a unified matte finish that's flawless
- The silky, lightweight formula glides onto skin and minimizes the look of pores and fine lines
- Suitable for all skin types
- Dermatologist tested; non-comedogenic
- Best primer for a satin finish
- Absorbs excess oil
- Lightweight formula
- Minimizes pores and fine lines
Another product from NYX Professional Makeup, the Angel Veil can soften and smooth the skin for a fresh and dewy appearance. The mattifying effect is more delicate, so this is a great product to apply all over your skin, preferably using your fingertips.
- LIGHTWEIGHT SKIN PERFECTING PRIMER: This super silky, satin primer features a light and fresh formula creating a comfortable cushion on your skin to enhance makeup application for a flawless finish
- SMOOTH SATIN FINISH: The formula creates a smooth uniform satin finished canvas that minimizes shine and makes application flawless. Your skin will feel like it's been touched by an angel
- FACE FROM FOUNDATION TO FINISH: Complete your makeup look with our full line of NYX Professional Makeup face products to aid in color-correction and coverage from blush, bronzer, foundations and contouring concealer to palettes and powders
- CRUELTY FREE COSMETICS: We believe animals belong in our arms, not in a lab. All of our makeup is certified and acknowledged by PETA as a cruelty free brand. We don't test any of our products on animals
- DISCOVER NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP: Try all of our professional makeup and beauty products today, from eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara & false lashes to lipstick, foundation, primer, blush, bronzer, brushes and more
Non-Comedogenic Primers: Guide & FAQ
The primer can have different textures and different active ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid, for example, or others that target minimizing fine lines and wrinkles and large pores.
It would be best if you always used this product on clean, dry skin that was adequately moisturized. So, in your beauty routine, the primer comes after the cleanser, toner, and an SPF moisturizer.
The primer prepares the skin so you can achieve a perfect foundation using your favorite products. More than this, this product is the ideal product to use if you want to get firmer skin and make fine lines less visible. It is also a great choice if you have acne-prone skin as it can reduce the appearance of large pores.
How to apply the primer on your skin?
Probably the easiest method to apply the primer is using the tips of your fingers. Use the same gestures as you would use to apply the moisturizer. This way, you make sure the ingredients in the primer penetrate the skin.
However, if you decide to use the primer only on limited areas (such as the T-zone to minimize large pores), you might find it more comfortable to use a brush. The same type of brush you use for the concealer is recommended.
Do you really need to use a primer?
If you are dealing with skin imperfections associated with oily skin such as large pores, fine lines, or acne-prone skin, the primer might be a must-have for you. The primer can smooth and even the skin tone, so your makeup looks better and can last longer.
Depending on different skin types, you can choose between different primers with one or multiple active ingredients. It is important to know that this product is not only recommended for people with oily skin, but also for other skin types such as dry skin. In this case, the foundation primer can make your makeup resistant to different weather conditions.
Did you know that you can even swim with the makeup primer? Of course, make sure it says “waterproof” on the label!
Do primers clog pores?
Large pores are an aesthetic concern, and there is no doubt about it. And clogged pores can become a real issue, especially if you have sensitive skin, as they might get infected. It is not uncommon for acne-prone skin to have large pores that need deep cleansing regularly.
Just like it is the case with any other skincare products, some primers can, unfortunately, clog pores. This is the reason why it is always important to avoid comedogenic ingredients in your makeup primer. The best makeup primers are, of course, non-comedogenic.
Keep in mind that the best application technique when you have large pores is dabbing, not rubbing. And keep it light and in a thin layer.
What is the best primer for acne-prone skin?
If you know your skin type, this should make it easier for you to choose the right ingredients for your skincare and makeup products. For acne-prone skin, it is better to choose a water-based primer that can mattify the skin and help you get rid of the excess sebum. NYX PROFESSIONAL Angel Veil Skin Perfecting Primer could be a good option in this case.
Are silicone primers bad for acne?
Oily and combination skin is often characterized by enlarged pores and excess of shine, especially at the level of the T-zone. Among the issues associated with these skin types is the rapid oxidation of the foundation. And this is the reason why it is a good idea to use a silicone primer before applying makeup.
The silicone primer can even the skin tone, minimize enlarged pores, and give you a matte finish. If you are choosing a silicone primer, there is no need to apply it all over the face. All you have to do is just to dab or tap it on the area with enlarged pores to fill them in.
And the good news is that you can use the primer alone and no other makeup products and your skin will look just great. However, keep in mind that the primer is not a treatment for enlarged pores, just a method to make them less visible.
Is primer bad for your skin?
This is a frequently asked question nowadays. The primer could be bad for your skin if you are using low-quality products or products with ingredients that are not suitable for your skin type. If you have sensitive skin, it is even more important to pay attention to the makeup ingredients you choose.
But a good makeup primer could minimize the appearance of dilated pores while hydrating the skin and keeping it protected from the UV rays. Some primers can even have a skin tone color correction function, which is really great if you have pigmentation spots.
One thing to keep in mind when it comes to applying the primer is that less is actually more. Always apply the primer after an SPF moisturizer in the mornings and wait until the product is completely absorbed into the skin. If you are worried about the T-zone, you can apply more primer there, but otherwise, make sure you’re applying just a very thin layer. It will be enough!
Among the best drugstore primers for oily skin, we can recommend Rimmel Stay Matte Primer. But if you want to get the best pics for your social media accounts, you might want to go for Revlon Photoready Perfecting Primer. e.l.f. Hydrating Face Primer is one of the most recommended primers and a great option if you really want a perfect looking complexion with minimum efforts involved.