Ask IMBB Gang : Difference between Primer and Base

Ask IMBB Gang
Ame asks

What is the difference between a base and a primer? I’ve read bloggers use both in the same context. Also, what would be a good choice for both. I have oily skin and will be using this for both face and eyelids.


28 thoughts on “Ask IMBB Gang : Difference between Primer and Base

  1. I don’t remember which post but Rati had recommended in the comments section somewhere, YSL, Clarins, and MAC Prep + Prime. Maybe somebody can help out with info on these ?:-)

  2. Ohh…just you wait! Today, I am being good to Jomol and amn’t fighting with her..but we can fight with you 😛 😛 😛 JOMOL…where are you when I actually have some work for you????

    1. thanks rads 🙂 for face as anitha just said to get smooth and even skin u do need to prime if u r out for longer time and it could be a/c or rain or no a/c and whtever … so for that a good primer will make ur face stay as it is no sweaty or oiliness or bleading or feathering or discoloration of the foundation or ur makeup..

      which u already bought :(:(:( (this is for me sweetie)

        1. hahahahha me too just checked wow just feel and imagine u have that many chanel’s with u ??? what will happen to me JLO lady ???
          poor hubby he will have to buy me chanel and get the medication done

  3. That was a very good question.

    Primer is for preparation of your skin for makeup. It could be eye primer or face primer.
    In terms of eye primer you use it in the lid to avoid creasing and to get a smooth surface for the eyeshadows. And the same concept for face, you want a smooth surface for the makeup to glide on.
    As the name goes you are priming = preparing.

    Base is a word used in context with eye makeup. For eg. when you do a pink colour eye makeup you might want to have a pink base so that the pink colours show up nicely. So you would first apply the (eye) primer for the usual preparation and then a pink cream base(eg. mac frescopaintpot) and then start filling your eyelids with a pink eyeshadow.

    Base is optional, but primer is a must(both for face and eyes).

    Primer is a must for any skin type. There are specific primers for oily skin. (eg. Laura Mercier Oil-Free Foundation Primer). Not sure about eye primers for oily skin though.
    And as said before base is optional and has no connection with the skin type. Its just to make the colours to popup more.

    Hope that helps.

    1. OMG Anitha, you have really simplified it for me! This info is sure to be useful for others also (lots of people think it’s the same thing). I was so completely confused with all the conflicting info that’s available online.

  4. Hmm…so primers can be called as bases too when used for the face, but primer and base are two separate products with specific purposes when it comes to the use on eyes. Thanks Anitha 🙂 Priming = preparing.

  5. according to me a primer and base are same… they act as a base for your foundation and makeup so that it stays on longer and it even protect your skin…. if talking about eyeshadow base it makes the complexion of your lids even and helps the eyeshadow to stick on properly specially if u are working with powdery or loose eyeshadow… Primer for face reduces the visibility of pours on your face and helps the foundation to spread smoothly…

    for me eyeshadow base is must !!!

  6. hey,
    i’ve never used primer, but after reading a bunch of blogs, indian and international, i believe the difference is that primer is silicone based, so it evens out the texture of the skin as well, as opposed to just evening out the skin tone. also it helps the make up last longer. on stage, we use what we call base/pansticks (which is just full coverage foundation i guess) like derma, krylon or mac studio tech. these need retouching from time to time, so they probably don’t come in the primer category.

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