24 Hour Photo Finish Shadow Primer
Last Updated:12.19.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

Before we say anything about the performance of this eyeshadow primer, a note about the 24 hour claim: don't put this to the test! We don't recommend wearing any makeup for 24 hours, as at some point you're going to need to sleep and sleeping in makeup is bad for your skin, not to mention a leading cause of waking up to puffy, red eyes.

What sets this fragrance-free primer apart from others is its texture. While most primers (both for shadows and foundations) are gel-like in nature, this one is more of a thick, waxy balm. That might be off-putting initially, but it begins to "warm up" once you work it between your fingers and get softer, making it easy to apply to eyelids.

The primer does go on smoothly, though the texture remains a bit "sticky" and waxy until it's had about a minute to dry. Apply your shadow before the primer fully sets and you will have a difficult time blending because the shadow will drag across the somewhat tacky surface. Once this has set, you'll have a much easier time applying your shadow, so don't be too hasty.

This primer makes the color intensity of the shadow you're wearing stronger, and it will not budge all day long. We tried to get this to move, even rubbing our finger on our eye design, and it didn't waver – this primer definitely increases shadow wear time with no creasing, fading, or flaking throughout the day.

Just remember – let this set! Once you've made it past the learning curve, you're left with a primer that does what it says, and does it very well.

  • Improves the color intensity of shadows placed over it.
  • Keeps shadow in place all day long – no fading, flaking, or creasing.
  • Enhances eyeshadow application.
  • Fragrance-free, gentle formula.
  • Follow our application suggestions for best results.
  • There's definitely a learning curve to getting this on right.
Brand Overview

Smashbox At-A-Glance

Strengths: A unique Anti-Shine product that is a must-try if you have very oily skin; mostly excellent foundations with a neutral range of shades; improved powder eyeshadows and lip color products; well-constructed makeup brushes.

Weaknesses: A few products that are better in concept than execution.

Perhaps one of the most interesting things about Smashbox is that its name refers to the early, accordion-style cameras and that Smashbox is first and foremost a Hollywood-based photography studio. The company's creators, Dean and Davis Factor, have their heritage in makeup—their great-grandfather was the legendary makeup artist Max Factor. The makeup, which debuted in 1996, began as a collection of trendy and fashion-forward colors coupled with a pleasingly neutral palette of foundations, concealers, and powders. Nowadays, there are exceptional options to choose from, but also some color products that fall short due to too sheer formulas or other issues noted in their respective reviews.

Where Smashbox has lived up to their Hollywood makeup pedigree is with a few standout formulas, including impressive lip products as well as excellent foundations, BB and CC cream options. Of course, the brand is also well-known for their range of makeup primers—whether that’s a necessary step is up for debate—but nevertheless they do offer a few products in this category that are worth considering.

For more information about Smashbox, now owned by Estee Lauder, call (888) 763-1361 or visit www.smashbox.com.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!

The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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Only primer that stands up thru my sweat

I LOVE this eyeshadow primer!!!! I have tried every other 4-star primer, and this is the ONLY one that makes my shadow stay on thru my swear!!! I went dancing, sweat was actually poring over my eyes, and my shadow stayed put!! (I also have VERY oily eyelids, so this primer is great when I'm not sweating :-D ) Just,as others have said, REMEMBER to give it 1 minute to set, and, before that, melt it between your fingers.

Reviewed by
Super smooth

I've used urban decay eyeshadow before and liked it, but when I ran out I replaced it with this eye shadow primer. This one is hands down the better primer. It goes on smoothly and just works so much better.

Reviewed by

I am onto my second tube because I absolutely love this stuff. I tend to have oily skin and so eyeshadows typically crease quite quickly on me. However after starting to use this product, my eyeshadow does not budge at all. I have on occasion fallen asleep with makeup, and I wake up the next morning looking as I did the night before, not even a smudge! Definitely let it dry for a minute before applying eyeshadow for great results!

Reviewed by
Maria Z.
Some people crease

A person claimed to crease. But I gave a sample away to someone who loved it.I don't think everybody knows that you have to make sure it dries and wait 60 seconds before applying shadow.personally Tarte brand works the best for me My lids are so oily the actually feel greasy.

Reviewed by
Annette D.
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