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3 Best Primers for Sensitive Skin That Will Transform Your Makeup Game

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Hey there! So, nearly half of us are dealing with sensitive skin, and let's be real, it can be a total pain, especially when you're trying to up your makeup game. But, don't worry! I've got you covered.

I'm here to share three awesome primers made just for sensitive skin. These picks could totally change the way your makeup sits and feels on your face.

Let's dive in and find your skin's new best friend!

e.l.f. Hydrating Face Primer (Vegan & Cruelty-free)

vegan and cruelty free primer

For those with sensitive skin, the e.l.f. Hydrating Face Primer stands out as a top choice due to its vegan and cruelty-free formula, making it a gentle and effective option for your makeup routine. This primer, infused with grape and vitamins A, C, & E, not only fills in pores and fine lines but also works well for acne-prone, combination, and oily skin types. Users have praised its hydrating formula that leaves skin soft and supple, ensuring a flawless and long-lasting makeup application. With a little going a long way, this primer is suitable for dry skin and provides a smooth application for your makeup products. The e.l.f. Hydrating Face Primer isn't only a favorite among users but also offers great value for its price point.

Best For: Those with sensitive skin looking for a gentle and effective vegan and cruelty-free face primer.


  • Infused with grape and vitamins A, C, & E for added skincare benefits.
  • Hydrating formula leaves skin soft and supple, providing a flawless base for makeup.
  • Suitable for acne-prone, combination, and oily skin types, filling in pores and fine lines.


  • Some users may find the scent reminiscent of motor oil.

e.l.f. Power Grip Primer, Gel-Based Hydrating Face Primer – 0.811 Fl Oz

gel based hydrating face primer

With its hydrating gel-based formula and grip-enhancing properties, the e.l.f. Power Grip Primer is a top choice for those seeking a long-lasting makeup base ideal for sensitive skin. This gel-based, hydrating face primer smooths the skin while gripping makeup effectively. Suitable for all skin types and tones, it goes on clear with a translucent finish. Infused with Hyaluronic Acid, the primer moisturizes and preps the skin, improving its overall look and feel. Users with oily/combo skin have hailed it as a holy grail product when combined with other makeup, mentioning its moisturizing and makeup-gripping effects. While some found it initially sticky, they appreciated its effectiveness in holding makeup in place all day without feeling heavy.

Best For: Those with oily or combination skin looking for a long-lasting makeup base with hydrating and grip-enhancing properties.


  • Grips makeup effectively, providing a soft-focus effect and smoother complexion.
  • Enriched with Hyaluronic Acid for added hydration.
  • Ideal for reducing shine, minimizing pores, and creating a flawless base for makeup.


  • Initial stickiness may be a drawback for some users.

Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Primer – 0.33 fl oz – Hydrating & Long-Lasting Makeup Primer

hydrating milk makeup primer

A hydrating and long-lasting makeup primer like Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Primer is ideal for individuals seeking a paraben, silicone, oil, fragrance, and gluten-free option that grips makeup for up to 12 hours. This primer, enriched with blue agave extract, hyaluronic acid, hemp seed extract, niacinamide, and aloe water, hydrates the skin to prevent makeup meltdown and caking. Users have reported longer-lasting makeup even after 12 hours of wear, boosting confidence and providing a flawless look.

To use, pump 1-2 shots onto your hand, blend a thin layer onto clean skin, let it set for a minute, then apply makeup for all-day hold. Some may find it a bit pricey, but the benefits make it worth the investment.

Best For: Individuals looking for a hydrating and long-lasting makeup primer that's free of parabens, silicone, oil, fragrance, and gluten, and provides up to 12 hours of makeup grip.


  • Hydrates skin to prevent makeup meltdown and caking
  • Grips makeup for up to 12 hours, with 100% of users reporting longer-lasting makeup after 12 hours
  • Vegan, cruelty-free, and contains beneficial ingredients like blue agave extract, hyaluronic acid, hemp seed extract, niacinamide, and aloe water


  • May be considered expensive by some users

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Primer for Sensitive Skin

When choosing a primer for sensitive skin, you need to consider skin sensitivity factors, select gentle ingredients, opt for allergen-free formulas, seek soothing solutions, and look for techniques that reduce redness.

It's important to prioritize products that cater to your skin's specific needs and avoid harsh irritants that can trigger reactions. By focusing on these key points, you can find a primer that not only helps your makeup last longer but also nurtures and protects your delicate skin.

Skin Sensitivity Factors

Factors influencing skin sensitivity, such as genetics, environment, allergies, and skin conditions, play a crucial role in selecting the right primer for sensitive skin. Your skin's reaction to various triggers like harsh ingredients, fragrances, dyes, and chemicals in products can vary based on these factors.

Additionally, sensitivity can be heightened by temperature changes, stress, hormonal shifts, and UV exposure. If you have sensitive skin, you might notice symptoms like redness, itching, burning, or dryness in response to these triggers.

To minimize reactions, opt for gentle, hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and non-comedogenic products. Understanding these sensitivity factors can guide you in choosing the best primer that caters to the specific needs of your sensitive skin.

Gentle Ingredients Selection

To ensure your sensitive skin remains calm and healthy, prioritize selecting primers with gentle ingredients like hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, or niacinamide to prevent any potential skin sensitivity reactions. These ingredients are known for their soothing and hydrating properties, making them ideal choices for sensitive skin types.

Avoid harsh chemicals, fragrances, or alcohol in primers, as these can trigger adverse reactions. Look for primers labeled hypoallergenic or specifically formulated for sensitive skin to minimize the risk of irritation. Check for dermatologist-tested or allergy-tested labels on primers to ensure they're safe for your skin.

Consider patch testing a small amount of the primer before full application to check for any adverse reactions and ensure compatibility with your sensitive skin.

Allergen-Free Formulas

For sensitive skin, prioritize selecting primers that are formulated with allergen-free ingredients to minimize the risk of skin sensitivity reactions. Look for primers that are free from common allergens like fragrance, parabens, and essential oils, which can trigger sensitivity in the skin.

Opt for hypoallergenic formulas designed to minimize the risk of allergic reactions, suitable for sensitive skin types. Check for products labeled as non-comedogenic to reduce the likelihood of clogging pores and causing breakouts, ideal for sensitive or acne-prone skin.

Choose primers with soothing ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, or green tea extracts known for their calming and anti-inflammatory properties for sensitive skin. Test a small patch of the primer on your skin before full application to ensure it doesn't cause adverse reactions or irritation, especially for sensitive skin.

Soothing Skin Solutions

When selecting a primer for sensitive skin, prioritize soothing ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, or green tea extracts known for their calming properties. These ingredients can help reduce redness, inflammation, and irritation, making them ideal for sensitive skin.

Avoid harsh chemicals, fragrances, and alcohol in primers as they can trigger reactions in sensitive skin. Opt for primers labeled as hypoallergenic or non-comedogenic to minimize the risk of irritation or breakouts.

Look for hydrating properties in primers to keep sensitive skin moisturized and prevent dryness or flakiness. Before applying the primer all over your face, do a patch test to ensure it doesn't cause any adverse reactions on your sensitive skin.

Redness Reduction Techniques

Consider incorporating a green-tinted primer into your makeup routine to effectively neutralize redness in sensitive skin, promoting a more balanced and even complexion.

Look for primers containing calming ingredients like chamomile or aloe vera to soothe redness and irritation. Opt for fragrance-free options to reduce the risk of sensitivity, especially for redness-prone skin.

Choose primers with SPF to shield sensitive skin from UV rays that can worsen redness. Seek non-comedogenic formulas to prevent pore blockages and further irritation, supporting healthier skin for sensitive types.

Dermatologist-Recommended Options

To ensure optimal care for your sensitive skin, dermatologists recommend prioritizing primers with gentle, non-comedogenic, and hypoallergenic formulas. When choosing a primer, look for options that are free from common irritants like fragrances, parabens, and harsh chemicals.

Opt for products containing soothing ingredients such as aloe vera, chamomile, or hyaluronic acid to calm and protect your sensitive skin. Specifically seek out primers labeled as suitable for sensitive skin to reduce the risk of irritation or allergic reactions. Additionally, check for primers that have undergone sensitivity or allergy testing to ensure they're safe for use on sensitive skin types.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Primers Be Used on All Skin Types, Including Sensitive Skin?

You can trust primers for all skin types, even sensitive ones. They create a smooth canvas for your makeup to shine. Don't fret about irritation; choose gentle formulas for a flawless look every time.

Are There Any Specific Ingredients to Avoid in Primers for Sensitive Skin?

When choosing primers for sensitive skin, avoid ingredients like fragrances, alcohol, and harsh chemicals. Opt for gentle formulas with soothing components like aloe vera and chamomile to prevent irritation and protect your skin.

How Often Should I Apply Primer Before Applying Makeup on Sensitive Skin?

Before applying makeup on sensitive skin, you should use primer daily. Smooth a small amount over your face after moisturizing and before foundation. This helps create a barrier between your skin and makeup, reducing irritation.

Can Primers Help With Skin Conditions Like Rosacea or Eczema?

Primers can assist with skin conditions like rosacea or eczema by providing a barrier between your skin and makeup. They can help to soothe and protect sensitive areas, creating a smooth canvas for your makeup application.

Are There Any Primers Specifically Designed for Sensitive Skin That Also Provide Long-Lasting Makeup Coverage?

When it comes to primers for sensitive skin that offer enduring makeup coverage, you'll be pleased to discover options designed to cater to your needs. Find peace of mind and flawless makeup all day.