Cruelty-Free / Eyes / Makeup / Reviews

High End vs Drugstore Primer

Happy Monday! You may have seen me mention on my blog how much I adore Wet n Wild’s Fergie primer. Thing is, I buy my primers one at a time, so I never had the Fergie primer at the same time as a high end one–hence, no proper comparison. Then a few weeks ago, I picked up the Naked3 palette and got complimentary samples of Urban Decay’s primer potion. So I thought, why not compare low end vs high end head to head. Let the battle of the primers begin!

Urban Decay Primer Potion vs Wet n Wild Fergie

When it comes to primers, the #1 most important thing to me is how well my eyeshadow lasts wearing them. With both Urban Decay’s primer potion and the Wet n Wild primer, my eyeshadow stays crease free from the time I put it on in the morning until the time I take it off at night–roughly 14-15 hours.
Verdict: It’s a tie

When it comes to applying primer, technique is the reason many people have problems with Wet n Wild’s. To get this one to work well–and it can work really well– is to apply a very small amount and let it set before applying your eyeshadow. In comparison, I think UD is more user friendly. In addition, I notice that my eyelids feel dryer after applying the WnW compared to the UD.
Verdict: Urban Decay wins this round

As I wrote in my primers vs bases post, the primary job of a primer is not to make your eyeshadow look brighter. It is to make your eyeshadow last. However, since many products do double duty on this front, I decided to add this criteria to the battle. I will say upfront that the Fergie primer does absolutely nothing for the brightness of your eyeshadow. However, I was a little surprised to find that the primer potion does make eyeshadow slightly brighter and truer to its color in the pan. This is so subtle that I didn’t even notice it until I was looking for it.
Verdict: Urban Decay by a hair

Last, but not least, it wouldn’t have been a fair battle unless I included this. Retailing at $4.79, Wet n Wild’s Fergie primer easily defeats Urban Decay’s primer potion, which sells for over 4 times the price at a cool $20.
Verdict: Wet n Wild by a landslide

Final Thoughts:Β Overall, I have to admit that as much as I love Wet n Wild, Urban Decay has the superior formula. However, is it so much better that it justifies the cost? To me, the answer is no. Wet n Wild does just as good a job at making eyeshadows stick. It might not be as intuitive to apply, but it’s equally effective once you know the trick.

So what do you think? Do you own a high end eyeshadow primer? What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments below


46 thoughts on “High End vs Drugstore Primer

  1. I have Smashbox and Bare Minerals primer. I actually have a LOT of the Smashbox shadow primer. Ultimately, if I were buying these myself I’d probably go for Wet n Wild or ELF, but I’ve been really lucky getting primers as gifts with purchase, as parts of sets, or for redeeming points. They’re generally in smaller sizes than a full purchases primer, but I can’t complain!

    • That’s awesome. That’s how I am with mascara. If I were buying it myself, I’d go drugstore, but I get so many samples that I’m set

  2. I love the Urban Decay eye shadow primer! I got some free samples a while ago but I’m trying to make them last as I would never pay full price for them. Your blog is wonderful πŸ™‚

  3. I have tried both high end primers and drugstore and I just can’t justify spending so much on high end when the drugstore ones work just find. I came across these high end primers as trial sizes so I didn’t actually shell out the money for those thank goodness lol.

    • Maybe because primer seems like such a magical product to me, but I had convinced myself before I had ever tried any primer at all that there was no way the drugstore ones would work. So glad I’ve seen the light!

      • Yeah seeing the light saves you some money lol. There are just so many different eye primers out there though and some work great and some not so great whether it be high end or drugstore. πŸ™‚

  4. When it comes to colorless / tintless primer, Too Faced works the best for me (oh samples! How I love thee! πŸ˜‰ ) but I find UD Sin primer works fantastically.
    But oh those price tags! It’s a good thing that a little goes such a long way!

    Great blog! I DO love comparisons… especially high-end vs. drugstore!

  5. I own one from Urban Decay. At first I thought it sucks for the price I’m paying, now it’s so and so as I decided to give it another chance and be more careful when I apply it, put less and wait a little to dry. I got the matte one as my eyelids get oily , it doesn’t last as advertised , after 6 hours I can see my eye shadow creasing but is better than without. I can’t compare it with anything for now but I believe it perfectly works for people with normal or dry skin. I didn’t tried other eye shadow primer to compare it with but I tried the Pro Long wear concealer for MAC as a primer and it worked pretty well. πŸ™‚ Next time I will buy a cheaper one.

  6. I have the Urban Decay primer and love it! Although I have never had to buy one… mine have always run out near Christmas or a birthday so ive always been gifted them! maybe my tune would be different if I had to spend out for one! xxx

  7. I like the Urban Decay primers and also Smashbox do some really good ones. I’ve used the odd drug store one but have never had much success with them.x

    • I didn’t think I would either, but this one worked really well for me. The trick is the use the tiniest bit and then give it a minute or two to completely set before you do your eyeshadow

  8. I love urban decay but I’ll definitely have to try to wet n wild primer because you can’t beat that price! Thanks!

  9. At the moment I use a MAC paintpot as an eyeshadow primer, although I would love to try the Urband Decay Primer Potion! Have you tried any different formula’s of it? Or only the standard one? πŸ™‚

  10. I would definitely rebus the wet n wild primer, I know primer lasts me longer than a foundation does, but of it works good enough, why not continue with us? 😁 thanks for the comparison xx

  11. I use to use Urban Decay Primer Potion for years! I recently stopped and tried others. My Mica Beauty one from my Boxycharm is amazing but it’s a STEEP price tag but for a lot of product it may be worth it full price. I’ve also been using the Bare Minerals 5-in-1 shadow as a base in Linen and Barely Nude. They are $18 a pop and I like these better πŸ™‚

  12. Pingback: Pretty Little Liars Aria Inspired Makeup | Say Hello to Gorgeous

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