I think I have mentioned it on my blog before that I do not think of myself as a makeup pro. In fact, I am probably quite the opposite. I buy what I think looks good, then don’t divert away from the products unless someone recommends something, or I see something that everyone’s talking about. I am so awful that I actually only started wearing primer about 2 years ago. Can you believe it? It took me up until the grand age of 22 before I realised that primer was a good idea. Over the last two years I have tried quite a few different brands, everything from Rimmel and MaxFactor, through to MAC and Smashbox, and each time my experience is different.
Last year my friend told me that she had seen some articles online where bloggers had been raving about Nivea Post Shave Balm for men. Yes, you heard me right…for men. Apparently bloggers from all over the world were reviewing this moisturising balm as it was a much cheaper alternative to the higher priced high street branded primers. As you can buy this product for only a couple of pounds, I thought I would give it a go. If you didn’t know, primer has the purpose of creating a perfect base layer for your make up. It helps to smooth your skin and for me, it also helps to minimise the appearance of any dry skin under my makeup. Men’s shaving balm also has a similar purpose, as it aims to reduce sensitivity on your skin after shaving by creating a protective smooth layer. So surely it would work perfectly?
My first impressions on my skin:
I wore the men’s shaving balm for a couple of days and was quite pleased with the results. When you put it on your face, it is sticky at first and then dries quite quickly when you blend it in with your fingers. My skin didn’t feel like it had a heavy layer of moisturiser on it, but instead felt like I didn’t really have anything on. You know that feeling when you touch your skin after a facemark and it feels all soft? Well this was a similar feeling. I completely understand why men use it as it must be nice to have a silky smooth face after your shave. The only thing I realised is that, as much as you don’t want to feel like your primer is an obvious layer underneath your makeup, you still want to feel like something is there absorbing it.The makeup test:
Once the balm had dried completely I went in with the makeup. Although I have recently changed my foundation (post to come soon) to something much lighter, when I tried this balm I was using the Clinique Beyond Perfecting Foundation and Concealer. This foundation provides great coverage and looks really lovely, but I found that my skin was feeling quite claustrophobic and I wanted to mix things up a bit. One of the main reasons for wearing primer is that it helps to keep your makeup on for longer, and I definitely notice a difference when wearing it. With the post shave balm I was quite pleasantly surprised as it did keep my makeup in place for quite a while, but I do have to admit that it wasn't as long as some of my other previously used brands. If I was only going out for a couple of hours then I think I would happily wear this as a primer. My issue is that I put my makeup on at 7:30am and then don't really retouch it until 6pm when I am going out after work. I need something that is a little more long lasting, but I wasn't expecting it to last all day as it was only a couple of pounds.Conclusion:
For not very much money this is definitely a great alternative to the high-street or higher end primer products that I have previously bought. Although it does keep your makeup in place for a good couple of hours, the lazy person in me would rather spend more money and ensure that I don't have to worry about my foundation rubbing off with the stresses of daily life. As it is 100ml you do get more in it than the normal primers; however, I did find that you had to use more of the product to cover my whole face. So even though you get more for your money, I think I would probably use it up just as quickly as I would a MAC 50ml prep and prime lotion. I wish someone had suggested this to me as a perfect introduction into makeup and beauty when I was younger! Have you tried the post shave balm as a primer? Let me know your thoughts! CTx