Because sometimes our base needs a little help…

Primer is one of those tricky products that can seem a bit pointless if you don’t have the right one for your skin type. If you’re going to add an extra step to your makeup routine, it had better be worth it.

To that end, we’ve rounded up six makeup bases that we’ve found to be worth the extra effort. By all means, try a sample of these first, but these recommendations don’t come lightly. Consider your skin type, and read on.

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Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer (US$54, Dhs198



This isn’t the easiest product to get your hands on here in the UAE (you’re looking at approximately Dhs100 for shipping whether you order from the Hourglass site or Net-A-Porter) but we promise it’s worth it. This product has an airy, light feel that belies its efficacy – it feels like nothing, but deals with fine lines, redness and iffy texture like little else we’ve tried. Better yet, it’s vegan and has SPF15. Grab it at duty free or go in with a friend on an online order. One caveat: it has a slightly white cast, so don’t overdo it or you’ll look a bit ghostly.

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer (Dhs175)


The original and one of the best. This oil-free formulation has been beloved by the shiny-faced among us for 15 years – that’s right, if this product was a person, it would be halfway through high school. Smashbox’s whole deal is making skin look great in photos, and this primer is notable for its imperfection-blurring properties. If you’re ever annoyed by visible pores, give this a go.

Benefit The Porefessional (Dhs245)


Speaking of pores, if you’d like to eliminate the very suggestion of them from your visage, this is your option. You’ll end up mannequin-smooth, and you’ll stay that way for hours and hours. This product means it. Another plus? The universal tint on The Porefessional means it won’t turn you white.

MAC Prep + Prime Natural Radiance (Dhs206


Another good primer if you’re concerned about ending up with a funny cast to your foundation is this offering from MAC. Available in a yellow and pink tint, this is a classic for when you’re feeling a bit under the weather and want a bit of a boost. You’ll look alive and your foundation will last longer. Who’s mad about that?

Becca Backlight Priming Filter (Dhs174


This is the makeup equivalent of one of those light-up selfie cases Kim Kardashian was promoting a year or so ago. Sure, one product can’t fake the effects of perfect lighting, but it can get most of the way there. You need to try this if your issue tends to be dryness and a dull finish to your base – it will sort you out. The texture is similar to Becca’s Shimmering Skin Perfectors, but a little creamier and more moisturising.

Cover FX Calming Primer (Dhs163

cover fx

Redness your worry? If you’re sensitive of skin, this primer might be your new favourite. As the name promises, it’s super calming and gentle, and it even works to sooth any spots you might have. Make sure you give it a minute to work before you put your foundation on.

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Images: Getty, supplied