I have to admit something really, really shameful: I have never in my life used a face primer. Although our MamásLatinas beauty expert, Johanna Ferreira, has been raving about primer since I met her (she even made it one of her 10 essential items that every Latina must have in her makeup bag!), I've always doubted my need for it. Finally, as we were heading out to dinner a couple of weeks ago, a friend urged me to try her primer--and I instantly became hooked.

I honestly can't believe all of the years I wasted going without primer. What was I thinking?! That's why, when Johanna asked me to test a couple, I immediately jumped on board for our weekly Beauty Save or Splurge? series in order to bring you the truth. What's better: Revlon Photoready Perfecting Primer ($11) versus the Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Foundation Primer ($42)? Let's find out.

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I started with trying Revlon's save-happy primer. It had a creamy, thick texture and was the color of my skin, which I really liked. It went on smooth and, as I applied it to one side of my face first, I could tell that it was helping to prep my skin by minimizing my pores. Immediately after application, my skin looked refreshed and I think I could have even gone without any foundation or powder and still looked great. One of the best things is that it actually made my usually oily forehead, thanks to my combination skin, quite matte even without using my matte pressed powder.

When it came time to try the splurge-worthy Smashbox primer, the water-based texture completely surprised me. It didn't feel at all creamy and I really liked that the foundation primer was oil-free, since that is always a major concern of mine. However, after applying it, I realized that it was lacking in something: the pore-minizing effect of the Revlon. Although my skin still felt great, I didn't have as neat of an effect and definitely needed to apply my foundation right away. However, I did find that it glided on smoothly and lasted longer than the Revlon. The freshness of the water base also made me feel as if I wasn't wearing anything extra, which is also a big plus for me.

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At the end of the day, the face primer that I loved most was Revlon's Photoready Perfecting Primer. Although I felt that the Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Primer was great because it was oil-free and very light (and probably GREAT for summer, when my skin gets super-oily), my main concern with primer is getting enough coverage and minimizing my pores. The Revlon primer definitely made me feel more photo-ready overall and I loved the matte effect on my oily forehead. All in all, I loved the save best overall in today's Beauty Save or Splurge challenge.

Image via Irina Gonzalez

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About the author

Irina Gonzalez is a Staff Writer for MamásLatinas. She loves pop culture, social media, photography and, above all, discovering new places. She's also a foodie eating healthy and learning to enjoy exercise.

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