Urban Decay Primer Potion

Keep your shadow on!

Since the best way to enjoy eye shadow longevity is to choose a solid base, this Urban Decay Primer review should set you on your way towards discovering which one's right for you. Urban Decay's primer comes in a tube that looks like a genie's bottle, and it does perform makeup magic!

Urban Decay Primer Review: Holy Grail

If you ever browse through the pages of Makeup Alley's product reviews, you may have stumbled across their collection of Urban Decay Primer reviews. The verdict? It's basically a cult classic. Of nearly 1000 reviewers, 92% said they'd buy this product again.

My personal verdict? I have bought it again. I'm on my second or third tube of this colorless miracle in a sexy lavender tube.

It claims to make shadow:

  • Look more vibrant
  • Last longer,
  • Look smooth
  • Just say no to creasing-even on oily lids.

I've used it:

  • With high and low-end eye shadows
  • Bright colors, dark colors, and neutrals
  • In the morning before work
  • At night before going out
  • Even on the hottest summer days

My eyelids aren't particularly oily, but I tend to be an eye-rubber (allergies!) and eye shadow tends to fade away on me in general without any shadow base. This is the primer I reach for most often, mainly for two reasons: it does what it says, and it doesn't interfere with the color or finish of the shadow I put on top.

Unless I have a major attack of allergies, my shadow is still on at the end of the night, whether I put it on in the morning, or in the evening before going out. The color is still going strong when I wash off my makeup. My shadow has survived Georgia summers with the help of this stuff!


  • The packaging: Urban Decay's primer comes in a slim, curvy lavender tube that's shaped like a genie's bottle. To use the product, you unscrew the silver lid to reveal a long wand with a sponge-tip applicator at the end.
  • The product: The product is a light, creamy color that's invisible on your lids once it dries. It's full of silicones, so it feels silky smooth from the time it touches your lids. It spreads evenly at the touch of your fingertip.

How to Use It

  1. Untwist the cap and pull out the wand
  2. Sweep the wand across your whole lid, from lash line to brow. If you plan to wear shadow under your bottom lashes, put it there too.
  3. Use the pad of your ring finger to smooth it out before it dries.
  4. Allow to dry (about ten seconds).
  5. Apply shadow as usual. For extra vibrancy, "pat" the shadow on rather than sweeping across the lid. Then blend.

Getting More for Your Money

I have to say, the one bad thing about this product is that I feel like the creators of Urban Decay products are trying to trick me into spending more money before it's time. Why? There's more product hiding in that tube when it seems empty!

There's a trick to getting more product out of the bottle before moving on to the next one. Along the rim of the opened bottle, there's a circular plastic piece that can detach from the rest of the packaging. Using tweezers, grab the side, wiggle, and separate the two (but be careful! The first time I did this, I ended up losing my grip on the plastic ring and it went flying across the room). You can toss the plastic ring. It's like another half-bottle of product magically appears!

Comparisons to Similar Products

  • MAC Shadesticks and Paints: Urban Decay's Primer Potion goes on much more smoothly. Shadesticks and Paints do the job, but they tend to be dry and Shadesticks may even tug on the lids. Shadesticks and Paints come in multiple colors and finishes, too, so by layering, you can alter the final outcome of the shadow's appearance.
  • Wet n Wild cream shadows: I tried this in white since I'd read it was a good base for making shadows appear more vibrant. Plus it was cheap. Unfortunately, it made my shadow look gritty and it flaked all over my face over the course of the day.
  • Revlon cream shadows: Not too impressive. They crease.
  • NYX Jumbo Eye Shadow Pencils: I love these, too, but Urban Decay lasts longer without creasing. Combine the two, and your shadow can go longer than the Energizer Bunny. These come in multiple shades, but I've found the white one to help make shadows appear more true to the color in the pan.

Overall, Urban Decay's product is superior to MAC's bases, cream shadows from drugstore lines, and even NYX's pencils. For only $15.00, it's worth a try. You can get it at Ulta or Sephora. You may also order online on the Urban Decay website.

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Urban Decay Primer Potion