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Laura Mercier Foundation Primer

Just as a painter “primes” a canvas, Foundation Primer – the original – was created by Laura Mercier in 1995 to “prime” the skin.

Key features

  • Creates an even surface first & massage a liberal amount of primer all over the face for a few minutes – massaging the skin is stimulating & healthy for the skin
  • Lightweight, oil free, gel creates an invisible layer that acts as a buffer to outside elements
  • Cooling Foundation Primer in the refrigerator is refreshing for the skin & reduces puffiness
  • This colorless gel leaves makeup looking fresh & colour-true the entire day
  • 1.7 fl. oz./50ml

Honest reviews


A Primer in Time Saves Nine (Beauty Troubles)

Once when I had the honor of meeting the famous Makeup Artist Laura Mercier in person, I asked her what one beauty product she would want if stranded on a desert island. Without hesitation she replied in her beautiful, soft, and very French accent, “Foundation Primer, of course!” This left me curious as to how she chose one product so quickly out of the myriad in her arsenal. Most women choose lipstick, concealer, or mascara; why would Ms. Mercier choose a makeup prep step above all other products — something most women have never even heard of? “Even if you didn’t have foundation to put on top?” I cautiously countered, not wanting to insult her choice. “Of course, my Foundation Primer is more than just a primer. I wear it even when not wearing makeup at all,” she replied sweetly.What is Foundation Primer?Just as an artist woudn’t think of painting on an un-primed canvas, Foundation Primer fills in the little lines and pores, evening the skin tone and texture for a more flawless finish to makeup. Foundation glides on the skin more easily and stays looking fresh longer by creating a silky barrier between skin and foundation. Ideal for all skin types, oilier skins will notice their foundation staying color true throughout the day [the darkening occurs when oils secreted by the skin mix with the makeup and give it a darker look] and are happy this oil-free and pigment-free Primer won’t add an extra layer to makeup. Drier skins will enjoy the benefit Foundation Primer has in sealing in the moisturizer so it won’t evaporate during the day keeping the face soft and radiant as well as preventing talc (a common ingredient in foundation and powder) from drawing much needed oil out of the skin. Foundation Primer also helps prevent the skin from absorbing talc and pigment from foundation and powder — a boon to blemish-prone skin. Did I mention it extends makeup wear? I find I can apply my foundation with Foundation Primer underneath, teach my morning aerobics classes, and my makeup still looks fresh enough to work the rest of the day as a makeup artist under the intense scrutiny all my clients consciously or unconsciously give. Makeup even stays put in hot, humid weather! This product is an absolute must for all my brides.How is Laura’s Foundation Primer more than just a primer?Laura’s primer contains “unique light-reflecting ingredients” which create a “soft-focus appearance.” This soft focus causes fine lines and imperfections to smooth over as well as gives skin a soft, luminous, and healthy looking glow. Not just for under foundation, in fact Laura considers Foundation Primer a must for non-foundation wearers. The same soft focus appearance makes bare skin look beautiful and naturally flawless. Top with a little Loose Setting Powder and you have a smooth and luminous, beautiful and natural, barefaced look.This Primer also has added skin care benefits to improve the skin’s appearance. Potent antioxidants Vitamins A, C, and E help protect skin from the harmful and dramatically aging effects of the environment. Foundation Primer also contains botanicals such as lavender, orange, jasmine, rose, geranium, grape, kiwi and aloe extracts to soothe and refresh the skin. Foundation Primer does not contain sunscreen, however all of Laura’s daytime moisturizers have broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) protection in the form of avobenzone.It’s simple and easy to use:Apply a liberal amount of this lightweight creme-gel on clean skin, after moisturizer. With fingertips, massage all over face, including eyelids, lips and throat (those with sensitive eyes may wish to avoid the eye area). A large pea-sized amount, think garbanzo bean or chick pea, is all you need. If you find you require more, it may be an indication that your skin is dehydrated and you may need to up your moisturizer.Laura Mercier’s #1 Top Makeup Tip:”Place Foundation Primer in the refrigerator, the coolness is extra refreshing and helps reduce puffiness.” (This tip is especially pampering in the summertime.) “Take a few minutes to gently massage into the skin; a light massage is stimulating and healthy for the skin.”

Jacquelyn Central, SC

Ok Foundation Primer

I really wanted to like this product. It did smooth out my skin and the foundation glided right over, the only thing I did not like is it made my skin break out. I have combination skin so maybe that is the problem. I noticed they have a non-oil primer too and I might try that.

Holly Soledad, CA

Smooth Base for Your Makeup

I’m using this primer after switching to it from Laura Geller. I find the Mercier to be non-oily and it provides a good base for other face mkeup. I wish it had a sunscreen in it though.

Tameka Mc Clure, OH

A Worthwhile Added Step

I thought I had tried everything in make-up but after reading about foundation primer thought I might be missing something. I did wonder though if this was really needed. After putting it on in the morning every day for a week now I don’t want to be without it. The primer not only makes a better canvas of the skin for make-up by helping it blend more easily and evenly but make-up stays in place and true to color until you take it off at the end of the day. There’s also a slightly reflective glow that makes skin look younger and healthier. What more can you ask for? It goes on smoothly over my moisturizer with a light consistancy. I think it even locks in the benefits of my moisturizer. My skin tends towards dryness and this together with my moisturizer leave it more radiant and it never gets dry or dull. I also like the idea of a barrier between my skin and my make-up — less foundation or powder clogging the skin. The only thing I would caution is that those with oily skin may become a little too glowing by the end of the day and need a light dusting of powder. I even would if I preferred a matte appearance. When the weather gets humid I probably will. Just when I thought I had everything and looked the best I could with the products I use I ran accross this to further improve my look and found the extra step to be very worthwhile.

Autumn Entriken, PA

Don’t understand the hype about this primer

Frankly this primer did nothing at all to prevent shine or to make my makeup stay longer. It makes no difference at all whether I put it on or not. I would never buy this product again! It’s a huge waste of money! There are much better primers available then this one!

Deanne Branchville, VA

A Good Way to Start the Day

I recently rediscovered Laura Mercier Foundation Primer and it’s now a part of my daily makeup routine. I stopped using it because, at the time, I really needed to streamline my morning and waiting for a primer to dry just didn’t fit my schedule. After a recent makeover at the Laura Mercier counter, the makeup artist showed me how my current foundation looked without primer and then made me up with the primer. It was a noticeable difference and I was sold (again) on the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer. Now I am sure to make time for it in the morning. Laura Mercier’s DescriptionI have combination skin. It tends toward oily in the T-zone, but it’s normal on my cheeks. Laura Mercier Foundation Primer is a creamy white gel that easily rubs into the skin and disappears leaving no trace of color. The gel appears a little thick when squeezed out of the tube, but it’s quite slippery and if you aren’t careful can slide right off of your fingers. Laura Mercier Foundation Primer has a fresh, clean scent.Cleanse your face and apply moisturizer before using the primer. Massage the primer into your moisturized skin just before applying your foundation.I find the primer to be very light on my skin and is does absorb well to create an “invisible layer”. My makeup definitely stays put longer and looks great all day. It does not clog my pores or cause my skin to break out, which is something I did worry about.I’m a huge fan of the Laura Mercier line, currently using three of the four steps to the flawless face: primer, foundation, and powder. I think I may be adding step 3, the concealer, back to my routine in the near future. If your makeup doesn’t last all day, I would definitely recommend that you give Laura Mercier Foundation Primer a try. It’s worked for me.

Hope Mcgrew, NE

very basic primer for hydration

watery non-creamy gel like texture, it’s wonderful though. low price but nothing special, moderate price for such product. Paula’s Choice rates it POOR and not surprise me at all

Pearlie Rockwell, NC