High End VS. High Street – Perfecting Primers

Hello! Today I will be doing a “battle” between a high end and a high street product. As much as I love spending money on expensive products, it’s always nice to find better products for cheaper. I got the idea to do this post from Kly Talks as she did a post called “Mascara Battle: High Street Vs. High End” (Her blog is amazing, you should go check it out).


The products I have chosen are Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation primer and NYX Angel Veil primer. I know that Smashbox isn’t super high end, but it’s definitely more expensive than most high street brands. The Photo Finish Foundation primer retails for $36 (1oz) and the travel size is $16 (0,5oz) and you can purchase it here. The Angel Veil primer retails for $16 (1,02oz) and you can purchase it here.

In order to make the competition fair, I applied these both on to my face at the same time. I used the Smashbox one on one side and the NYX one on the other. I picked these primers, because both of them promise a perfect-looking base, are silicone-based and both are oil-free.

Application: I used a flat foundation brush by Ecotools to blend these in. The NYX one is white and creamy. It’s easy to blend in with the brush and fingers. It doesn’t feel super silicone-y. The Smashbox one is a thick clear gel-like texture. At first it’s kind of hard to blend, because it’s quite thick. I definitely prefer to use a brush when applying. It warms up once it touches your skin and that gives it a smoother and easier-to-apply texture.

Results: Honestly both of these looked gorgeous. On the NYX side my pores looked a bit smaller than on the other side. My skin felt smooth and soft. The Smashbox one did make my pores look smaller, but not as small as the NYX one. The Smashbox one made my skintone look more even and it hid some of the redness. This side also felt soft and smooth.

Foundation application: I used L’Oreal Infallible 24H-Matte foundation (a favourite that I had forgotten about) with a Beauty Blender-dupe. Both sides applied very smoothly and there were no problems at all. My skin looked very nice and my pores were barely visible. It was hard to tell a difference between the sides, because both of them looked stunning.

NYX Angel Veil on top, Smashbox Photofinish Foundation Primer below.

Through out the day: At this point, it was all about how good it looked through out the day. As someone with super oily skin, I was just waiting to see which one would budge once it met the oils of my skin. Sadly, the Smashbox-side started to get shinier earlier. It was nothing awful, but you could see a difference. I was a bit bummed when I noticed this, I thought that the Smashbox one would be better at keeping my skin matte.

End of the day: Even though my skin was quite oily and shiny, my skin looked really nice upclose on both sides. My foundation still looked nice and I could have easily kept going with just a bit of powder.

Final Results: I have to say that I do prefer the NYX one. It’s $20 cheaper than the Smashbox one and it lasts longer. I do love both of these primers, but I think you get better results with the NYX one. If you do want to splurge on the Smashbox one, go ahead! It’s not an awful one, but just not as good as the NYX primer.


So that’s 1-0 to high street! I’m thinking of doing a whole series, because I love comparing products. And if you have any recommendations for high street eyeshadow primers, let me know!

Thank you for reading

Carina xx

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