A Does-It-All Primer That Won’t Break the Bank

Garnier Primer

We beauty lovers live in a pore-obsessed world. I always laugh at products that claim to eliminate pores because pores themselves are so essential; without them we’d probably overheat and die or something like that.

Even if you don’t like the way your pores look, it’s important to have reasonable expectations of them. It’s reasonable to expect a skincare product to help keep pores clear, thus minimizing their appearance; it’s not reasonable to expect a product to shrink or close your pores. It is reasonable to expect a primer to fill or blur pores; it is not reasonable to expect a primer to make pores disappear.

I try to have reasonable expectations of my pores. I have some clogging across my nose, chin, and t-zone that leads to the occasional breakout and generally persistent icky skin texture. While my skincare routine works on that, I’ve found that a silicone-y primer tends to meet me halfway.

The most beloved silicone-based primer in the beauty world is, of course, Benefit’s POREfessional. And it is good – I just don’t think it’s $36-worth of good.

So I’ve been on the hunt for a nice alternative. Maybelline Baby Skin is good, but recently, I’ve found something better.

Enter Garnier 5 Second Blur. (Is that even the name of this product? Or is it Garnier 5 Second Blur Skin Renew Instant Smoother? There’s so much stuff written on the packaging that I’m not even sure what the product’s name is and what’s descriptive – but that’s beside the point.)

There’s something comforting about skincare companies releasing primer-like products, because I like to think of primer as the bridge between skincare and makeup. This particular product does just that.

It’s a white primer that goes on totally clear – so far, no problems with a white cast left over. It has that slippy-smooth silicone feeling, so if you’re not fond of that, this might not be for you. But it does just what it says on the tin: it blurs uneven skin texture to create a smooth canvas for you to apply makeup.

Or to, you know, not. Another thing I love about this is that makeup application afterwards isn’t mandatory; sometimes I wear this over a moisturizer and leave it at that. I won’t even powder, because the oil-control abilities on this guy are legendary. It’s like a good-skin-day in a bottle.

The packaging recommends a dime-sized amount for application, but I find that a little excessive. The only downside with this product (aside from the abundance of words on the package) is that an overly generous application can make things a bit too slick. Still, use a light hand, and you’re golden.

All that in a generous (30mL) tube…for $15? Thank you, Garnier…



  1. Primers are so expensive nowadays! I have really sensitive skin and they tend to break me out for some reason, so I’m always nervous about shelling out a lot of money for them. Have you noticed any breakouts with this one at all?

  2. You said it has oil control? I have pretty oily skin in my T-zone and have been looking for something to help blur the pores in my cheek area. Would you recommend?

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