Comparison: Mattes With and Without Primer

primer comparisonAs I mentioned in my Slay Me Looks post, I tried to do a simple smoky eye using Teacher in Tweed and Gypsy Curse, and it just wasn’t working out, despite the colors going well together. I commented about this on Reddit and the always lovely Crimson and Clovher suggested I try it without primer. So I did, and blending became so much easier, and the look looked so much better. I figured it might be useful to someone else to see the difference it can make blending mattes over primer versus without. I don’t have a ton of matte shadows, so I can’t say whether this holds true across the board, but for these two, it definitely made a difference.

Primer comparison 1Primer has become such a staple in my routine that oftentimes I’ll put it on first, even before I decide what shadows I’m using for the day. However, now I think I need to put a little more thought into it and consciously choose whether a look will be better with or without primer. Another redditor has suggested applying a skin colored eyeshadow as a base over my primer to help colors blend more smoothly as well, so I might try that technique as well.

Primer comparison 2As you can see, there are weird patches in the shadow on the left, where it didn’t want to blend out over the primer. On the right, without any primer, the edges are much smoother. My application still isn’t perfect, but it also took so much less time to get it even than it had over primer. I kept my make up entirely the same for the two looks. Teacher in Tweed, an olive brown is on the lid, blended out with Gypsy Curse, a grey-brown. A tiny bit of Dust to Dust, a pale grey-green, is used to highlight under the browbone and in the inner corner. I’m also wearing smudged out dark brown eyeliner. The primer I used was Urban Decay’s Anti-Aging primer potion.

Do you wear a lot of matte eyeshadows? Do you use primer with them? How do they blend for you?

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Notoriously Morbid Slay Me Collection: Looks (Waves 1 and 2)

Slay Me Swatches

Boca Del Infierno, He’s Going Through Changes, Dust to Dust, Quiet Storm, She Names the Stars, Teacher in Tweed / Comic Relief, She’s Got Gidget Hair, The Dating Slayer, Gypsy Curse, Hesitant Heroine, Bloody Awful Poet

Today it’s time for the looks from Notoriously Morbid’s Slay Me collection, Waves 1 and 2. (The swatches are here, if you missed them yesterday.) I’ve already posted two looks that use only Slay Me shadows, a soft lavender grey smoky eye with Quiet Storm and Gypsy Curse and a gothic red and black smoky eye with Boca Del Infierno, Bloody Awful Poet and Gypsy Curse. (Gypsy Curse lends itself to smoky eyes.) And now there’s more Buffy goodness! (Including another smoky eye using Gypsy Curse. What can I say? It’s its thing.)

Comic Relief and She's Got Gidget Hair shadowsLook 1: Comic Relief and She’s Got Gidget Hair

Comic Relief and She's Got Gidget HairComic Relief seems like it would be a super scary orange, but it actually blends out into a surprisingly natural peachy color. I primed my lids like usual, and then applied She’s Got Gidget Hair all over. I put Comic Relief in the outer corner and blended it out and down towards the lashes. I applied dark brown liquid liner with a tiny wing and mascara. I used Comic Relief as my lip color, too! I just patted it onto a waxy lip balm and blended it in with my finger.

Boca Del Infierno liner shadowsLook 2: Boca Del Infierno, He’s Going Through Changes and Quiet Storm

Boca Del Infierno linerI applied He’s Going Through Changes all over my already primed lids, from my lashes to my browbone. Then I mixed Boca Del Infierno with Superstar Serum and applied the paste as very heavy winged liner. I thinned the mixture with a bit more Superstar Serum and applied it to my lower lashline as well, concentrating on the outer corners. Then I used a blending brush to apply Quiet Storm in an arching shape, starting at my inner corners and following the arch of my brow. I blended the peach and lavender together with a clean blending brush. I finished by tightlining my upper lashes with black pencil liner and applying mascara. Hesitant Heroine shadowsLook 3: She Names the Stars, Hesitant Heroine and Bloody Awful Poet, plus The Dating Slayer

Hesitant HeroineSo much matte blue eyeshadow. I primed my lids, then patted She Names the Stars all over my lid, stopping at my crease. I put Hesitant Heroine on a blending brush and worked it into the crease. I used a smudge brush to bring it around the outer corner of my eye and along my lower lashline as well. Then I used a flat, stiff brush to apply Bloody Awful Poet into the lower lashes, angling it up and out at the outer corner, kind of like a cat eye. Then I smudged it into the upper lashes and darkened the outer corner a bit more. I used a clean blending brush to soften the edges of the blue and tidied things up with a q-tip dipped in face lotion (so much fallout!). Last, I curled my lashes and applied mascara. I love that this look is Spike and both his ladies. :)

Hesitant Heroine with the Dating SlayerAfter taking my pictures, I realized that I hadn’t quite applied all the matte blue eyeshadows yet, so I put some of The Dating Slayer on an eyeliner brush and applied it to my tear duct. I’m not sure which version of the look I like better. The blue inner corners are a little weird, but in a kind of neat way.

Teacher in Tweed, Gypsy Curse, Dust to DustLook 4: Gypsy Curse, Teacher in Tweed and Dust to Dust

Teacher in Tweed 2I was having the hardest time with this look, which is ridiculous, because it’s not complicated and the colors go together easily. Then a friend suggested that since they’re mattes I should try it without primer, which I did. It went from being a frustratingly difficult look to one that was super simple. I started by patting Teacher in Tweed onto my bare lids. I used a blending brush to apply Gypsy Curse in the crease and blended out the edges. I also applied some to the lower lashline. I used a small, fluffy angled brush to lightly highlight my browbone and inner corners with Dust to Dust. Then I used a clean belnding brush to blend everything together. I blended a lot, but it still wound up kind of uneven. To finish it off, I used a dark brown pencil liner and smudged it out with a brush. I put up a comparison between the primer and primerless versions of this look, so you can see for yourself the difference it makes.

Bloody Awful Poet and Where the Kids and the Vamps GoLook 5: Where the Kids and the Vamps Go and Bloody Awful Poet

Kids and Vamps

This is kind of cheating, since Where the Kids and the Vamps Go isn’t a regular part of the collection. (It was a gift with purchase color from when the collection was first released.) But I love it, and it looks great by itself, so it gets its own look. This is as easy as can be. I primed my lids and patted Where the Kids and the Vamps Go all over the lid with a fluffy brush, heavier at the outer corners and lighter as I worked towards the inner corners. Then I mixed superstar serum with Bloody Awful Poet and applied it as liner. Mascara and done. So easy!

Slay Me LooksSo there you are. Five different Buffy-themed looks. It’s cheating, but the last one is my favorite. I just love the simplicity of it. Plus everytime I use Bloody Awful Poet, I think of Spike, and Spike is just hands down the best. Which look do you like the best? And if you’re a Buffy fan, who’s your favorite character?