Top 18 Best Non-Comedogenic Primers for Acne-Prone Skin

Find your holy grail with this award-winning selection of non-comedogenic primers. The highest-rated and best-selling in the industry, formulated for different skin types. With pro make-up tips to create the perfect base!

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Create a Smooth, Flawless Base while Preventing Clogged Pores

Growing up with oily and acne-prone skin, I felt like every makeup brand broke me out.

The frustration of looking into the mirror and discovering a new pimple is horrible.

That feeling of desperation when trying to cover them all up though, is even worse.[1] (Yes, we’ve all been there.)

This perpetuates a vicious cycle that leads to acne and sensitized skin.

Our goal today is to break this cycle and do it right this time, from skincare to makeup.

Prevention is always better than cure.

Using high-quality, non-acnegenic products is one of the keys to preventing uncontrollable breakouts.[3]

In makeup, that starts with the best non comedogenic primers for acne prone skin.

Non-comedogenic or non-acnegenic means the product is void of ingredients that can facilitate comedones or clogged pores.[5]

There’s a laundry list of primers out there, but we’ve curated only the best non-comedogenic primers. We based this on our experience of the product, its efficacy, and other consumer reviews.

Primers can even be a hybrid of skincare and makeup. Special formulations can also benefit our skin and address other issues.

Check the “Best For” line to see which is most compatible with your skin.

Expert Tips & Tricks: How to Buy & Use Primers for Acne-Prone Skin

by Samantha Welch, Esthetician & Make-up Artist

Primers are the closest makeup product to sit on your skin.

They form a protective barrier and help you create a flawless base. They fill up large pores, and smooth uneven texture, wrinkles, and fine lines.

Primers also adds longevity to makeup and radiance to color cosmetics.

If you have acne-prone skin, all your products must be non-comedogenic.

But even the best face primers can't perform if you aren't using them correctly.

Here are a few tips and tricks for buying and using primers if you have acne-prone skin:

  1. If you have oily skin, use the right face wash to avoid the early production of sebum.
  2. Clear out any build-up of dry, dead skin. This will prevent uneven, patchy foundation. The easiest way is to use physical exfoliation using cotton pads and AHA toners.
  3. Those with large pores must unclog them first to keep oils at bay. A shiny surface reflects light and accentuates uneven textures. A matte finish, however, can give your skin a smoother base.
  4. Use a non-comedogenic moisturizer beneath your primer and wait to let it absorb fully. If your primer mixes with your moisturizer, it can pill and break up. Use something with oil control and a matte finish, like La Roche-Posay's Effaclar Mat Moisturizer.
  5. The only way to create refined skin for large pores is to mash it down until it disappears. Makeup artist tip—push it down with a rolling motion to avoid pilling. Yes, you're literally filling in those gaps. A silicone primer is best for this job.
  6. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but you should always try combining products with the same baseSilicone primers blends well with silicone foundations. Water-based primers, with water-based foundations. Silicones tend to repel water, so combining the two can result in a patchy application.
  7. Do not rub your primerRubbing can cause it to pill. Just press and pat gently with your fingers until you’ve filled all your pores. The heat from your fingers will melt and blend it nicely.
  8. Be careful not to use too much primer. It will pill again, and you'll waste a lot of product. A pea-size is the average amount.
  9. Remember, not every product will work for every person. Trial and error is still the most effective way to know which works best for you.

Buying Cheat Sheet: Our Makeup Artist & Esthetician's Top Choices

Colorescience – Mattifying Face Primer SPF 20

Our esthetician's choice for the #1 non-comedogenic primer. Corrective, perfecting, and protective all in one.

Clarins – Beauty Flash Balm

Made from 96% natural origin ingredients. A multi-award-winning 3-in-1 primer. One of Clarin’s best-selling products, with one unit sold every 20 minutes worldwide.

Clarins – Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch Primer

An award-winning makeup primer. Glides onto skin & leaves an ultra-light, breathable veil. Smoothes away pores, fine lines, & wrinkles.

Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré, Face Cream, & Makeup Primer
Embryolisse – Lait-Crème Concentré, Face Cream, & Makeup Primer

An award-winning, 6-in-1 multi-function nourishing moisturizer & primer. This product is the swiss army knife of makeup artists and has been a global best-seller since 1950.

Murad – Invisiblur Perfecting Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 30 | PA+++

A 3-in-1 powerhouse makeup primer backed by science: protects, blurs, and primes for 12 hours.

Dermalogica – AGE Smart Skinperfect Primer SPF 30

A multifunctional makeup primer with sunscreen & anti-aging. Gives your skin a velvety finish and a luminous glow.

Elizabeth Arden – Flawless Start Instant Perfecting Primer

A award-winning primer with triple-blurring complex & light-diffusing technology. Creates an even-toned, retouched appearance.

jane iredale – Smooth Affair® Mattifying Face Primer

From the brand that pioneered clean beauty. Helps balance oil, deliver antioxidants, support skin elasticity, & instantly mattifies. Leaves a soft matte finish.

La Roche-Posay – Anthelios Anti-Aging Primer with SPF 50 Sunscreen

Formulated with Cell-Ox Shield® technology: broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection with antioxidants. Visibly blurs & protects for younger-looking skin.

LORAC – Dewy Canvas Prep Moisturizer + Primer

An antioxidant-rich, lightweight gel cream. Made from a uniquely crafted blend of intensely hydrating ingredients. Has a silky texture that leaves skin with a healthy radiance.

Dermablend – Insta-Grip Jelly Face Primer

A 3-in-1 multitasker that locks in makeup for up to 24-hours. Moisturizes instantly & tightens the skin for better foundation application. Its 100% clear jelly texture was developed for all skin tones, types, & conditions.

Dermablend – Poresaver™ Matte Makeup Primer

Instantly minimizes the appearance of pores. Mattifies oily skin & extends makeup wear for up to 24-hours. A lightweight gel that never clogs pores. Gives a soft-to-touch skin feel.

Tatcha – THE SILK CANVAS Filter Finish Protective Primer

A multi-tasking makeup-perfecting primer. Anti-aging & skin-protecting. Non-sensitizing & dermatologist-tested for all skin types.

MILK – Pore Eclipse Mattifying + Blurring Primer

A lightweight water cream primer that's 90% natural. Has pore-minimizing skincare benefits, shine control, filtered finish, & clean ingredients. Locks your makeup for up to 12 hours.

TULA SKIN CARE – Brighten Up Smoothing Primer Gel

Boost your skin's brightness & soothe any irritation with this Yuzu-infused primer gel. It bursts onto the skin, creating an instant cooling & refreshing sensation.

BareMinerals Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer for Acne-Prone Skin
BareMinerals – Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer for Acne-Prone Skin

A vegan face primer that calms & nourishes the skin. Mattifies & purifies pores. Neutralizes visible redness & optimizes the skin’s defenses against bacteria.

First Aid Beauty – Coconut Skin Smoothie Priming Moisturizer

A 2-in-1 vegan moisturizer & primer combo. Hydrates & primes your skin for a natural, dewy radiance.

Benefit’s the POREfessional Face Primer
Benefit – the POREfessional Face Primer

An iconic bestseller that instantly blurs skin & minimizes large pores. Silky-smooth with a translucent finish.

Esthetician's Choice:
The Best Non Comedogenic Primers for Acne-Prone Skin

We've curated the best non comedogenic makeup primers for acne-prone skin.

This award-winning selection is the best-selling and highest-rated in the beauty industry.

All products listed are explicitly labeled non comedogenic.

Make sure to choose the primer that’s best suited for your skin type and skin issues.

Colorescience – Mattifying Face Primer SPF 20

Colorescience – Mattifying Face Primer SPF 20

BEST FOR: Oily, Sensitive, & Acne-Prone Skin

Our Review:

This new and improved formula from Colorscience performs above and beyond for oily, blemish-prone skin.

Outstanding Results for Oily & Acne-Prone Skin

This primer is skin-perfecting upon application. It instantly reduces the appearance of large pores, evens out your skin tone, and leaves a silky finish.

It controls shine with its mattifying base and works gently to correct blemishes. Plant extracts provide antioxidants to soothe and calm your skin.

Gives a Flawless Finish

The Colorescience Mattifying Face Primer has a whipped texture that glides on like a dream. It comes in a universal nude shade that melts into your skin for a seamless finish.

Makeup & Skincare in One

This primer also has a laundry list of skincare benefits that improve your skin the longer you use it.

  • Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5 — helps improve texture and skin firmness[6]
  • Hydrolized Rice Protein — improves moisture and smooths skin
  • Salicyclic Acid — helps remove excess oil
  • Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract — calms your skin and protects it against harmful pollutants
  • Jojoba Seed Oil & Esters — conditions and hydrates the skin, locks in moisture
  • Oat Kernel Protein — smoothens and softens your skin’s texture
  • Green Tea Leaf Extract — is an antioxidant that soothes the skin and protects it from environmental aggressors

Anti-aging UV Protection

The Colorescience Mattifying Face Primer also protects your skin from the harmful, photoaging rays of the sun.

Their new formula boosts its non-nano titanium dioxide from 2.8% to 5% for additional protection. The non-nano zinc oxide is also adjusted from 5.3% to 4.5% to improve previous issues with white casting.

Its improved UVA/UVB defense rating of PA+++ broad-spectrum 20 SPF has made the shortlist of recommended sunscreens by the Skin Cancer Foundation. All the brand's primers carry the daily-use seal.

All-Day Defense

The Colorescience Mattifying Face Primer is also water-resistant and sweat-resistant for up to 40 minutes.

You can stay out without worrying about sun damage, oil production, or sweat as you go about your day.


This primer is corrective, perfecting, and protective all in one.

Video: Skin Mattifying Primer – How to Use


Clarins – Beauty Flash Balm

BEST FOR: Combination, Dry, Normal, Oily; Tired & dull skin

Winner: Best in Beauty Icon, Readers Choice. Woman & Home Best in Beauty. Best Instant Skin Perfector, Woman’s Own Ageless Beauty Awards. Featured in The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible.

Our Review:

Nothing attests to superior quality like the test of time. And Clarin's iconic radiance booster has been a global best-seller for over 40 years.

Skincare-Makeup Hybrid

The Beauty Flash Balm is a multi-purpose primer that doubles as a day cream and an instant face mask. It contains 96% ingredients of natural origin, including plant extracts and antioxidants that nourish and protect the skin.

The improved, moisture-rich formula also visibly tightens and smooths, as well as provides gentle exfoliation for long-term skin-softening benefits.

Key Ingredients:

  • Organic Acerola seed extract – Energizes the skin to reduce signs of stress.
  • Nopal Flower extract – Stimulates exfoliation to remove dead skin cells that dull the skin.
  • Organic Aloe Vera extract – Provides deep hydration
  • Organic Oat Sugars – Effectively tightens and tones the skin.
  • Clarins' Anti-Pollution Complex – Protects the skin from indoor and outdoor pollution, including skin-aging blue light from electronics

Video: Why We're Excited To Try Clarins Beauty Flash Balm

This primer is the ultimate refresher to help eliminate signs of fatigue. 

It's full of radiance-boosting ingredients, which make it easy to perk up tired skin and give it a natural, healthy-looking finish. Unlike illuminating primers that can be too glittery or sparkly, the Beauty Flash Balm delivers a sophisticated, subtle glow.

You can use it under a lightweight foundation or concealer, and you'll be able to see the radiance underneath. 

You can also apply it over makeup for a quick pick-me-up to fight the effects of skin-dulling pollution, stress, and lack of sleep at any time of the day.

Texture & Scent

This primer has a sensorial, creamy texture that melts into the skin and leaves a fresh matte finish. 

It's also infused with aromatics like Bergamot, Freesia, Rose, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang, Musk, and Sandalwood.

Video: Instant Beauty Collection | Clarins Masterclass

Clarins – Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types; Fine lines & Deep wrinkles, Pores

Winner: BELLA's Beauty Awards – Unrivaled Results

Our Review:

This award-winning primer has a wrinkle-smoothing formula that leaves a soft veil over the skin’s surface.

It contains blurring, soft-focus pigments to conceal fine lines, pores, wrinkles, and other imperfections.

It has an ultra-light texture that melts into your skin but neither weighs down nor clogs your pores. Your skin becomes even and flawless, ready for your foundation.

In line with Clarin's expertise, the Perfecting Touch is formulated with potent botanicals that deliver skincare benefits.

  • Vitamin E – protects the skin.
  • Acacia Micro-pearls – temporarily refine skin and fill in fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Pink Pearl Pigments – Optically minimizes fine lines and wrinkles by blurring or softening the skin’s appearance.

You can use it alone, under, or mixed with your foundation.

Video: Best-selling Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch

Video: How to apply a skin-smoothing base | Clarins


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Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré, Face Cream, & Makeup Primer

Embryolisse – Lait-Crème Concentré, Face Cream, & Makeup Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, especially dry, dehydrated, & combination skin

Winner: 2022 NewBeauty – Award Winner. EH! Best of Beauty Awards 2022 – Best Primer (Makeup). Beauty Insider MY – Best Face Makeup 2022 – Sub-Category: Best Primer; Readers' Choice Award.

Our Review:

French beauty brand Embyolisse and their award-winning Lait-Crème Concentré have been global best-sellers for over 70 years.

And nothing vouches more for a formula than one that has stood the test of time.

It's so popular one is sold every 5 seconds worldwide.

A Cult Favorite

The Lait Crème Concentré is a shelf staple sold by millions to dermatologists and makeup artists. You'll always see it backstage at fashion week.

Celebrities have dubbed this product the “swiss army knife of skincare.”

Video: Embryolisse – How it all began

Clean Beauty

This multi-function primer has nourishing and moisturizing properties that come from Natural Origin ingredients.

This means it was extracted using Green Chemistry, and not through petrol like most products.

Key Ingredients:

  • Shea butter is an excellent emollient that delivers essential fatty acids to repair the lipid barrier and increase elasticity.[8]
  • Soy proteins tone and firm your skin to help diminish fine lines[9]
  • Aloe vera & beeswax work together to soothe irritation or any redness[10]

It leaves your skin plump and revitalized, alleviating any discomfort from dryness.

The Embryolisse Lait Crème Concentré is non comedogenic.

Incredible Versatility

This product improves skin quality for makeup application and functions as a remover if you need to change looks quickly.

You can use it to rehydrate the skin to fight off jetlag, as an overnight cream mask, and as a primer to improve your overall complexion.

You can even use this as an after-shave.

The Lait-Crème Concentré also mixes incredibly well with other makeup. You can turn any cream foundation into a liquid and liquid foundation into a tinted moisturizer.

Mixing it with powder makes it creamier and helps apply highlighter or eyeshadows more consistently.

See makeup artist tips below for other pro ways to use the Lait-Crème Concentré.

Video: How to Use Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentrate by Makeup Artist Angie Di Battista

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Murad – Invisiblur Perfecting Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 30 | PA+++

BEST FOR: All skin types, including Sensitive Skin

Our Review:

3-in-1 powerhouse makeup primer that’s backed by science: it protects, blurs, and primes for 12 hours.

This face primer gives an instant 30% reduction in the appearance of pores*. It goes on the skin to seal fine lines for a smooth finish.

The Murad – Invisiblur Perfecting Shield is a non pore clogging primer has a gel-like texture and applies like velvet. One drop goes a long way. Perfect for those no-makeup days.

That’s not to say it doesn’t compliment your color cosmetics. Blush and eyeshadows wear longer and stay true for 12 hours.

It also has an innovative blend of skin benefits:

  • Soft-Focus Complex — blurs imperfections to improve texture and even out skin tone.
  • Extracts from Sunflower, Barley, and Cucumber — improve your skin’s ability to preserve hydration.
  • Mushroom Peptides — help repair your skin’s resilience and combat visible signs of skin aging.

An invisible SPF technology provides you with sun protection without giving you that infamous white cast.

Video: Invisiblur Perfecting Shield – Murad

The Murad – Invisiblur Perfecting Shield is formulated without: Formaldehyde, Petrolatum/Petroleum, Sulfates, Mineral Oil, Parabens, Animal-Derived Ingredients, Oxybenzone, Gluten

A non-comedogenic primer that doesn’t clog pores. Cruelty-free.

Video: Murad Invisiblur Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 30.1 oz on QVC

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Dermalogica – Skinperfect Primer SPF30

BEST FOR: All skin types, Dullness, Fine lines & Wrinkles, Loss of firmness & Elasticity, Uneven texture

Our Review:

This is a multifunctional product—your last step of skincare and your first step of makeup.

The Dermalogica Skin Perfect a makeup primer, sunscreen, and anti-aging in one.

Video: SkinPerfect Primer SPF30

It enhances the appearance and duration of your makeup, conditions your skin, treats the signs of aging, and provides broad-spectrum defense against UVA and UVB rays.

  • Pearl powder and natural earth minerals provide a neutral tint to help balance skin tone and enhance luminosity.
  • Multiple peptides stimulate collagen production, helping to reduce wrinkles and improve skin firmness.
  • It also contains silicones combined with soy protein to even out skin texture and improve your skin tone.

It feels velvety, and it glides effortlessly on the skin.

It will have your makeup last longer and give your skin a soft-focus effect.

Video: Dermalogica's Skin Perfect Primer SPF30

Elizabeth Arden – Flawless Start Instant Perfecting Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types; Issues with skin texture

Winner: IMAGE Beauty Awards

Our Review:

A product that you’ll find in most professional make-up artists’ arsenal–and with very good reason.

This pore-minimizing primer features a triple-blurring complex with light-diffusing technology that immediately blurs pores and fine lines to create an immaculate canvas for the rest of your makeup.

From experience, this one makes you Insta-ready in a flash.

The Elizabeth Arden's Flawless Start Perfecting Primer works very well for skin with texture issues.

The formulation also contains longwear polymers, which are a balance of emollients to keep your skin moisturized and give you a radiant glow.

Its unique time-released skin-balancing technology helps control shine while locking in moisture throughout the day.

This primer is silky, lightweight, oil-free, and non-comedogenic, all essential in keeping any potential breakouts at bay as it doesn’t clog pores.

All the above combined can give you an even-toned, retouched appearance instantly.

Alternatives: Same product, reformulated for different skin types and conditions

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jane iredale – Smooth Affair® Mattifying Face Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, especially dry, dehydrated, & combination skin

Our Review:

The newly reformulated Smooth Affair® Mattifying Face Primer is specially formulated for oily and acne-prone skin.

It helps balance oil production, mattifies your skin, and reduces the visibility of pores and fine wrinkles for a smooth, flawless base.

The Skincare Makeup

Best known as “the skincare makeup,” Jane Iredale was the first to supply the beauty industry with high-performance makeup infused with topical skincare.

They work with leading plastic surgeons and dermatologists to create skin-loving formulas for all skin tones, skin conditions, and types.

Clean Beauty

The brand features powerful natural ingredients that are non-comedogenic, anti-inflammatory, calming, and soothing for the skin.

The Smooth Affair® Mattifying Face Primer has botanicals that focus on creating a balance of oil and water on your skin to prevent sebum overproduction.

It also has anti-aging properties that promote skin elasticity and antioxidants that protect against UV damage.

Key Ingredients:

  • Red Algae Extract – helps regulate sebum production and supports the skin's natural oil-moisture ratio; it gives a smooth and visibly matte appearance.
  • Hibiscus Back Extract – Prevents water loss; Promotes skin elasticity and your skin's repair process for a lifted, youthful appearance.
  • Rose Geranium Leaf Extract – A powerful antioxidant that protects and repairs UV damage

All in all, it’s an outstanding primer and one of the best non-comedogenic primers under clean beauty for oily and acne-prone skin.

Video: How to Apply Smooth Affair Mattifying Face Primer

Video: Jane Iredale Mattifying Face Primer | Let’s try it!

Alternatives: Same product, reformulated for different skin types and conditions

La Roche-Posay – Anthelios Anti-Aging Primer with SPF 50 Sunscreen

BEST FOR: All skin types; Photo-protection from Sun damage; Sensitive skin; Wrinkles, fine lines

Our Review:

Our list continues with another multi-purpose primer, this time from dermatologist-favorite La Roche-Posay.

This French brand is known for their medical-grade products created specifically for skin concerns like sensitivity, acne, dryness, and rosacea.

They've reformulated their signature Anthelios sunscreen into a face primer that instantly blurs visible signs of aging and provides long-term skin protection.

Video: Anthelios 50 Daily Anti-Aging Primer with Sunscreen

Key Ingredients:

  • Cell-Ox Shield® Technology – A core antioxidant technology in the Anthelios sun care line. It combines photostable UVA/UVB filters to provide broad-spectrum protection and potent antioxidant defense.
  • Senna Alata – An extract from a tropical herb that protects skin cells in the epidermis from the sun's harmful free radicals.[1]
  • La Roche-Posay Prebiotic Thermal Water – A unique natural antioxidant rich in selenium[2]
  • Ceramide-3 – A skin-identical lipid that helps retain moisture and maintain a healthy skin barrier[3]
  • Niacinamide – A soothing water-soluble vitamin known for its restorative properties[4]
  • Glycerin – An excellent humectant derived from vegetable sources. It hydrates the skin by absorbing water from its surroundings.[5]
  • Dimethicone – A silicone-based polymer applied to the skin as a moisturizer to prevent water loss.
  • Silica – A powder containing spherical beads that gives a smooth feel and a soft-focus effect. It is lightweight and absorbs a considerable amount of oil from the skin.

The La Roche-Posay Anthelios Anti-Aging Primer has the weight of a night cream but is easily absorbed and doesn’t leave a white cast.

This dermatologist recommended primer is cosmetically elegant, especially for a sunscreen with five active ingredients.

Video: PRIMER with SPF 50 – Anthelios 50 Sunscreen Primer Hides Wrinkles – Review Tutorial

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LORAC – Dewy Canvas Prep Moisturizer + Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, especially Dry & Dehydrated Skin; Uneven complexion; Redness

Our Review:

Indie beauty brand LORAC is known for their high-quality, pigment-packed formulas that use skin-friendly ingredients.

Their line is a favorite among professional makeup artists and A-list celebrities who deal with skin irritations and acne breakouts on set.

The LORAC Dewy Canvas Prep Moisturizer + Primer has gentle and soothing ingredients that deliver professional cosmetic performance without compromising skin health.

It's a lightweight formula infused with an exceptional blend of intensely hydrating ingredients that nourish and prep your skin for makeup.

Key Ingredients:

  • Shea Butter, Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate, and Lotus Flower – This unique moisturizer blend makes your skin soft, supple, and dewy.
  • Jade Mineral Powder – Evens skin tone and reduces the appearance of redness.
  • Aloe Vera Extract – Soothes and hydrates while also cooling the skin.

The LORAC Dewy Canvas Prep Moisturizer + Primer  balances and neutralizes your complexion while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

It has a silky texture that primes the skin for a healthy-looking glow.

This antioxidant-rich gel-cream moisturizer gives a dewy, airbrushed finish.

Dermablend – Insta-Grip Jelly Face Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, Longwear & full coverage makeup, Acne-prone skin

Our Review:

Fortified with panthenol (Vitamin B5) and cork extract, this powerful 3-in-1 multitasking primer helps grip makeup for 24-hour wear.

It has a unique jelly texture that doubles as an instant facial moisturizer. It also delivers a subtle skin-tightening effect for any texture issues.

All this makes for a better makeup application and longer wear.

Video: Insta-Grip™ Jelly Makeup Primer | Dermablend Professional

In our opinion, this makes it one of the best primers for acne prone skin. Having a solid grip on foundation and concealer means fewer touch-ups on spots and blemishes throughout the day. This is crucial for those battling acne.[2]

You can sweat through a concert, and have your makeup stick!

The Dermablend Insta-Grip Jelly Face Primer is also quick-absorbing, formulated with plant extracts and glycerin to moisturize, smoothen, and tighten skin.

The silicone-free jelly texture dries to a natural finish and creates a fresh, natural canvas.

Video: Insta-Grip™ Jelly Makeup Primer | Dermablend Professional

Dermablend – Poresaver™ Matte Makeup Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, Normal to Oily skin with large pores, Acne-prone skin

Our Review:

This brand-new release from Dermablend is one of the best mattifying, non comedogenic primers for large pores and oily skin.

It instantly reduces the appearance of large pores and gives the skin a matte finish.

This lightweight gel has been formulated with only 6 ingredients to avoid any major irritants. It absorbs excess oil as well without drying the skin.

The Dermablend Poresaver Primer also extends makeup for up to 24 hours, leaving the skin smooth to the touch.

You can apply this the ways: under makeup as usual, alone, or mixed with your favorite foundation.

Video: Poresaver™ Matte Makeup Primer | Makeup Tutorial | Dermablend Professional

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Tatcha – THE SILK CANVAS Filter Finish Protective Primer

BEST FOR: All skin types, Uneven texture, Pores, Fine lines, and Wrinkles

Our Review:

Another incredible multi-tasker with myriad benefits to your skin and makeup application.

True to its namesake, the Tatcha Silk Canvas has silk extracts that instantly reduce the appearance of pores and fine lines to create an impeccable makeup base.

  • Gold and pink pearls give you a healthy and even-toned complexion.
  • Silk powder goes on evenly, lessens shine, and gives the skin a soft-focus finish. This also helps with the longevity of your makeup.
  • An array of botanicals helps protect your skin by acting as a shield from pollution and environmental stress. This mechanism also assists in preventing clogged pores and breakouts.
  • It also has natural active ingredients and supports the skin’s barrier to support it against future aggressors. This helps prevent wrinkles and damaged skin.

Tatcha is known for its proprietary anti-aging blend of Japanese superfoods called Hadasei-3™. Sure enough, it’s also included in their primer. It’s a mix of green tea, algae, and rice that helps visibly repair skin.

Suitable for the face, lips, and eyes.

Video: TATCHA Silk Canvas Pre-Makeup Balm Auto-Delivery on QVC

Alternatives: Same product, reformulated for different skin types and conditions

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MILK – Pore Eclipse Mattifying + Blurring Primer

BEST FOR: Normal, Combination, & Oily skin

Our Review:

MILK Makeup is a cruelty-free, clean brand that made waves on social media with their award-winning Hydro Grip Primer.

Their latest release controls shine, hydrates, locks your makeup for up to 12 hours, and blurs pores.

The Pore Eclipse Mattifying + Blurring Primer is a 90% natural water cream primer that is a makeup-skincare hybrid.

It’s formulated with ingredients that have long-term skincare benefits.

This is great for oily skin and anyone who wants to achieve more even-looking skin in the long run.


Key Ingredients:

  • Niacinamide – a hero ingredient that helps minimize the appearance of pores, provides additional moisture and helps improve skin texture.
  • Bakuchiol – a popular natural alternative to retinol, a topical vitamin A that helps smooth skin texture, treat acne, and minimize fine lines
  • Lentil extract – helps control shine and acts like microfine particles that soak up oil all day long.
  • Moonstone – helps calm the skin.
  • Blurring microspheres – gives a natural soft-focus, matte finish throughout the day without causing a harsh drying effect.

Additionally, this can smooth out any healing blemishes or dry patches and fill in pores without clogging them.

This silicone-free makeup primer uses a formula that feels incredibly breathable, light, and refreshingly cool when applied.

It’s infused with natural orange blossom and chamomile for a subtle, soothing scent.

There are two primers in their current line. They all grip makeup and smoothen the skin at their core but are reformulated to address different skin concerns.

  1. MILK Hydro Grip Primer – Award-winning hydrating primer for normal to dry skin.
  2. MILK Pore Eclipse Mattifying + Blurring Primer – For normal, combination, and oily skin

TULA SKIN CARE – Brighten Up Smoothing Primer Gel

BEST FOR: All skin types, especially Oily & Acne-Prone Skin

Our Review:

Innovative Probiotic Extracts

Probiotic extracts are a breakthrough innovation in skincare. It helps nourish, soothe, and hydrate skin to improve its balance and calm irritation.

At the forefront of clinical testing and scientific research is TULA, with their line of skincare products powered by superfoods, prebiotics & probiotic extracts.

Their proprietary S6Pro Complex™ is developed to provide six clinically proven benefits, including restoring, nourishing, soothing, strengthening, improving, and protecting all skin types.

Video: Dr. Roshini Raj discusses the benefits of probiotic skincare

Formulated for Dull, Blemished Skin

We've chosen the Brighten Up Smoothing Primer Gel as one of the best for acne-prone skin as it has ingredients that help calm and soothe blemish-prone skin.

  • Probiotic Extracts – Improve smoothness of skin and calm irritation
  • Yuzu – Brightens the skin for a more radiant appearance
  • Willowherb – Provides soothing relief for blemish-prone skin

This silicone-free face priming gel packed with yuzu delivers brighter-looking skin.

The non-comedogenic formula grips makeup without clogging pores and bursts onto the skin to make it instantly cool and refreshing.

Extensive Product Testing

To ensure high-quality, high-performance cruelty-free products, they only partner with ingredient suppliers who adhere to the industry's strictest standards.

All TULA products undergo comprehensive testing beyond dermatologist testing. This includes stability, microbiology, irritation (safety for all skin types), toxicology, and clinical claims.

They also have collections tailored to specific concerns like acne, sensitivity, and anti-aging.

BareMinerals Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer for Acne-Prone Skin

BareMinerals – Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer for Acne-Prone Skin

BEST FOR: Oily & Acne-prone skin, Redness, Large pores, Dry Flakes

Our Review:

Makeup and skincare in one. This mattifying primer is specially formulated for calming, covering, and preventing adult acne.

It’s part of a skin-clearing clean makeup regimen that is the first of its kind.

It's where a makeup routine resolves to contain current breakouts, prevent future ones, and maintain the skin’s essential moisture (something that we lose as we grow older).

This lightweight gel-lotion is clinically proven to improve skin hydration both instantly and after 12 hours.*

Key Ingredients:

  • Green mineral pigments help neutralize any redness**, while chamomile & arnica help calm and nourish the skin.
  • An anti-blemish mineral blend of zinc, sulfur, and kaolin clay synergize to purify the pores. It’s also clinically proven to mattify the skin both instantly and over time.*
  • Phytosphingosine fortifies the skin’s defenses against bacteria.[4]

All this while providing an effective canvas for even makeup application.

bareMineral’s skin-clearing makeup routine includes:

Video: Acne Makeup Routine with Blemish Remedy Face Primer from bareMinerals

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First Aid Beauty – Coconut Skin Smoothie Priming Moisturizer

BEST FOR: Dryness, Dehydrated skin, Pores, Dull skin, Uneven skin tone & texture

Winner: Allure Best of Beauty Award

Our Review:

If you are acne-prone but also have dehydrated or dry skin (caused by medication, unbalanced skin, or even the weather!), finding a non comedogenic primer that isn’t matte or oil-absorbing can be tricky.

This 2-in-1 primer-moisturizer meets this unique skincare need with rave reviews. It’s formulated with hydrating coconut water and superfood ingredients rich in electrolytes, vital proteins, and minerals.

This priming moisturizer hydrates and smoothens in one step while blurring pores and other imperfections. It grips makeup to make it long-lasting throughout the day.

Key Ingredients:

  • Coconut Water – nutrient-rich water that helps hydrate and revitalize skin with electrolytes, enzymes, antioxidants, and phytonutrients
  • Quinoa Protein – a superfood with high levels of complete proteins to help repair, protect, and strengthen the skin
  • Mineral Blend – a blend of copper, magnesium, zinc, iron, and silica to support skin health
  • Micro-pearls – finely-milled minerals that reflect light and give a luminous effect

Micro-pearls also give a subtle, dewy luminosity that, combined with hydrated skin, gives off a beautiful, healthy-looking glow.

Benefit’s the POREfessional Face Primer

Benefit – the POREfessional Face Primer

BEST FOR: Normal to Combination skin

Awards: #1 best-selling Prestige Face Primer in the US by the U.S. Prestige Beauty Total Department Specialty

Our Review:

This is a cult classic, pore minimizing primer that can be found in almost every makeup kit. It’s a lightweight balm that glides and sinks into the skin.

The Benefit POREfessional Face Primer also has vitamin E, which is an anti-aging ingredient that helps fight free radicals to keep your skin young.

This pore filling primer has a slight tint but should complement all skin tones. It can be used over and under makeup. This is also one of best primers for acne scars.

The finish also gives a natural matte look and can be used to shrink pores to even out the texture on your face. Some reviews claim it makes their skin look airbrushed!

This product works best for normal to combination skin.

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Frequently Asked Questions


  1. Gallitano, S. M., & Berson, D. S. (2017). How Acne Bumps Cause the Blues: The Influence of Acne Vulgaris on Self-Esteem. International journal of women's dermatology4(1), 12–17.
  2. Seité, S., Deshayes, P., Dréno, B., Misery, L., Reygagne, P., Saiag, P., Stengel, F., Roguedas-Contios, A., & Rougier, A. (2012). Interest of corrective makeup in the management of patients in dermatology. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 5, 123–128.
  3. Singh, Sanjay, Baldeep Kaur Mann, and Narendra K. Tiwary. “Acne cosmetica revisited: a case-control study shows a dose-dependent inverse association between overall cosmetic use and post-adolescent acne.” Dermatology 226.4 (2013): 337-341.
  4. Choi HK, Cho YH, Lee EO, Kim JW, Park CS. Phytosphingosine enhances moisture level in human skin barrier through stimulation of the filaggrin biosynthesis and degradation leading to NMF formation. Arch Dermatol Res. 2017 Dec;309(10):795-803. doi: 10.1007/s00403-017-1782-8. Epub 2017 Sep 21. PMID: 28936777.
  5. Fulton Jr, J. E., et al. “Non-comedogenic cosmetics.” Cutis 17.2 (1976): 344-5.
  6. Diehl, C. “Peptides in cosmeceuticals.” Украинский журнал дерматологии, венерологии, косметологии 1 (2019): 28-35.


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Michelle Evans
Michelle Evans is an esthetician specializing in skincare and hair removal. Her battle with acne throughout her 20's has fueled a lifelong passion for health & beauty. “Knowledge is a gift and you have the opportunity to educate and empower with it.” Michelle believes that everyone should be able to look and feel their best.