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Whether you have ultra-dry skin year-round, during particular seasons, or have been hitting the retinol products a bit too hard (hello, peeling skin), you’re already aware that dealing with chronically dehydrated skin often requires feeding in some extra TLC to keep it feeling glowy — not flaky. There is undoubtedly an expansive array of mattifying, pore-blurring, texture-smoothing, and wear-extending primers to choose from, but finding a complexion-perfecting makeup primer for dry skin types can feel like a bit more of a treasure hunt than an easy find.
While illuminating primers can be a good option, these formulas often lack the same filter-like effects that the velvet matte alternatives offer, making one feel the need to make sacrifices for either minimized pores and makeup that lasts the entire day (but feels dry and tight) or sparkle-infused creams that sure, catch the light beautifully, but do close to nothing when it comes to the task of holding your foundation in place for more than an hour or so.
Fortunately, while they may seem like a scarce commodity, there are some solid and affordably priced makeup primers that will hydrate dry skin without compromising all the skin-enhancing benefits they have to offer (a.k.a. why we take the extra step to apply them under our foundation). Best of all, if you’re not into the shimmer and strobe effect, these hydrating primers give your skin a juicy glow, but look as though you’ve doused your entire face with an opalescent highlighter.
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1. Covergirl Anti-Aging Foundation Primer
This anti-aging primer is a great option for dry skin types that are also prone to clogged pores and breakouts. It’s a non-greasy formula but gives skin a boost of hydration for a smooth and makeup-ready canvas.
2. e.l.f. Hydrating Face Primer
This lightweight primer delivers a boost of hydration to dry skin, without feeling heavy or compromising the wear time of your base. It’s also infused with anti-aging and brightening ingredients, like Vitamin C.
3. NYX HydraTouch Oil Primer
This oil based primer is the ultimate pre-foundation product for dehydrated skin. It delivers a surge of moisture for a glowy result, but doesn’t leave you feeling greasy or overly shiny.
4. Wet n Wild Prime Focus Primer
For a non-greasy, but healthy look glow that delivers sustained hydration to the skin all day long, this affordable formula is the way to go. Plus, how cute is the packaging?
5. E.l.f. Glow Primer Stick
This convenient stick formula is the perfect handbag must-have for those days when you’re doing you’re makeup on the subway or need a quick touch-up after a long day.