My love for beauty really developed in college, which couldn't be worse timing, because I was pretty broke. I couldn't afford the more expensive brands, but I was fine with a makeup bag packed with drugstore products. Luckily for me, E.L.F. Cosmetics was just gaining popularity and had recently been picked up by Target. They carried everything from eye shadows and lipsticks, to foundation and the best drugstore primer I'd ever used. My entire makeup routine back them must've ran me about $25, and it must've been my resilient 20-year-old skin, but my makeup always looked amazing.
Now that I've graduated to a career (one in beauty nonetheless), and have an unlimited supply of high-end products, I still reach for the primer that got me through finals years ago. E.L.F's Poreless Face Primer ($6; Elf Cosmetics) gives my skin a subtle blur and even fills those annoying pores on my nose. Plus, it helps my makeup stay on forever. Since my days of scraping together change for makeup, E.L.F. Cosmetics has added tons of new primers to its lineup. The original even now comes in a bunch of different shades designed to give you the best looking skin of your life (including a purple one that brightens your skin, a green one that eliminates redness, and another that hydrates dry skin). Here's a peek inside my primer drawer, and there's my college favorite.
So, when a rep for the brand reached out to me and told me that one E.L.F. primer sells every six seconds, I wasn't all that surprised. However, It's admittedly been a while since I've shopped on E.L.F. Cosmetics' website — in college, I'd wait up until midnight for sales, like Black Friday, and stock up on a ton of products for cheap — so I was shocked at how much the primer selection has grown. Aside from the OG face primer I've been using for years now, there are tons of new and innovative primers offered by the brand. Here are some of the coolest primer offerings by E.L.F. Cosmetics.
A spinoff of my favorite E.L.F. face primer, the Prep & Hydrate Balm Makeup Primer ($8; Elf Cosmetics) hydrates skin, which makes your foundation look flawless and flake-free. It's packed with shea butter, cocoa, aloe, and grape to hydrate skin and the stick makes it perfect for travel and on-the-go touchups.
Perfect for the makeup junkie who wants their foundation to stay on forever, the Lock On Foundation Glue ($8; Elf Cosmetics) grips your makeup and never lets it go. The silicone-free primer starts out tacky — let it dry for 30 seconds before applying foundation. It's like superglue for your makeup, hence the name.
I get super oily, so this HD Mattifying Balm ($3; Elf Cosmetics) is a godsend. Apply it to your T-zone before foundation with a sponge and press it deep into your pores to keep skin matte all day. If you like Benefit Cosmetics's Dr. Feelgood Balm ($32; Sephora), you'll love this $3 option.
If you're really bad at applying sunscreen — shame on you, but I get it — choosing a primer that protects your skin and makes your foundation look bomb is just the motivation you need. This Beauty Shield SPF 50 Skin Shielding Primer ($12; Elf Cosmetics) not only reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles before you apply makeup, it also contains antioxidants that fight environmental aggressors like UV rays and airborne pollutants.
If you love sheet masks and have an affinity for primers, here's where all your beauty dreams come true. E.L.F.'s Primer Sheet Mask ($2; Elf Cosmetics) minimizes the appearance of pores, brightens skin, and preps for makeup application. Wear it for five minutes before applying makeup, and the vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin B3 in it will make your foundation look incredible.