10 Best Primers for Large Pores

Looking for the best primer for large pores?

This guide will cover everything you want to know about makeup primers.

The best primers on the market today will use pore minimizing solutions to balance out and obscure your pores so that your skin will look smoother.

Take a quick look at the top 10 primers for large pores below:

Best Primers for Large Pores 2019

theBalm TimeBalm Face Primer
(Editor's Pick)
Up to eight hoursSilicone Check Price
Touch in Sol No Pore Blem PrimerSix hoursSilicone Check Price
Maybelline New York Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser PrimerFour hoursSilicone Check Price
Hourglass Cosmetics Veil Mineral PrimerEight hoursSilicone Check Price
Jane Iredale Smooth Affair Facial Primer and BrightenerFive hoursSilicone-free Check Price
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation PrimerFour to five hoursReduced Silicone Check Price
Thank Me Later PrimerUp to 12 hoursSilicone Check Price
Urban Decay Complexion Primer PotionFourSilicone-free Check Price
Becca Becca ever matte poreless priming perfectorUp to 12 hoursSilicone-free Check Price
Poreless PrimerFour hoursSilicone Check Price

How to Apply Primer?

1) theBalm TimeBalm Face Primer


This product from theBalm is useful because of the fact that’s it’s designed to be very easy to put in your purse or bag so that you can refresh as needed. That being said, you shouldn’t need to refresh often due to the fact that the product can stay on your face for an impressive eight hours.

Despite the fact that this product is silicone-based, it doesn’t feel too tacky when you place it on your face. It uses herbal extracts and antioxidants in order to ensure that your complexion and skin remain even and flawless all day.


  • This is a completely scent-free primer that covers pores.
  • It is completely scent-free and uses some natural ingredients for a smoother feel.
  • The bottle is very compact but provides a fluid ounce of the primer.


  • Some find that this product has a tendency to have a weird-feeling texture.

2) Touch in Sol No Pore Blem Primer


When it comes to texture, this product from Touch in Sol has a silky smooth consistency that is very pleasant on the skin. It uses a pore cover complex to sit atop of your pores and completely smooth them out. This product has a pinkish coloration, but fortunately, this should blend in with most complexions. If you have oilier skin, the sebum catching powder will help keep your face from looking too dewy.


  • The product has a gel consistency, which makes it easy to spread.
  • The product allows your skin to breathe when you use it.
  • It blocks the oils from your pores so that you won’t look shiny.


  • This is a product that tends to have a bit of a scent.
  • Some people can break out as a result of this primer.

3) Maybelline New York Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer


Maybelline is one of the most iconic makeup brands and their pore minimizing Baby Skin works well to cover pores. The product uses a silicone based solution to help prepare your skin for your foundation. It’s called Baby Skin because of how evening it can be for your skin texture; simply put, just a thin layer of the product provides some startling results, even if you have larger pores.


  • This is an instant product that takes very little time before you can apply foundation.
  • This product is considered a pore eraser, and it really does reduce their appearance.


  • Dependent on the skin type, this product can take longer than advertised to dry.

4) Hourglass Cosmetics Veil Mineral Primer


This product stands out due to the fact that it has a built-in SPF 15 additive that will help protect your skin from sun damage. This is very useful for anyone that’s out for an extensive amount of time, and the fact that this product is so easy to apply is definitely a major plus. Hourglass Cosmetics has also included the ability for this product to minimize shine but also help your face reflect light naturally.


  • Once applied, this product makes applying makeup very easy.
  • It has an additive that helps the primer protect your face from UV damage.
  • It has a silky texture that feels very comfortable on the face.


  • It has a tendency to make your face look very pale.
  • It has a tendency to be used up very fast.

5) Jane Iredale Smooth Affair Facial Primer and Brightener


The most interesting ingredient in this Jane Iredale product is grapefruit and apple extract. The product uses this citrus-based ingredient to boost your skin’s natural radiance. The apple extract is also designed to add antioxidants to your skin, which can boost elasticity and smoothen the skin at the base level. This is one of the products in this guide that’s completely silicone-free, which means that it won’t dry the skin or lock in sebum.


  • This doesn’t just smooth over pores, it actually nourishes the skin.
  • This product has a wide variety of natural ingredients; it’s even gluten-free.
  • It works very well with Jane Iredale’s other cosmetics.


  • It doesn’t reduce the appearance of pores as much as a silicone-based product.

6) Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer


Smashbox is one of the more positive pore-minimizing primers out there on the market today. This completely oil-free primer is primarily water-based, which means that it uses very little silicone in its composition. As a result of its unique ingredients, water-based foundations work fairly well with this product. It also has a powdery-style finish that really will make your skin appear matte.


  • If you dab this product on, it is very easy to apply, even when you have foundation.
  • This product can work well over makeup as well as under.


  • For oilier skin, it doesn’t quite last as long as its claimed eight hours.
  • It doesn’t blend as well with powder or cream-based foundations.

7) Thank Me Later Primer


This particular product stands out due to the fact that it’s water-proof. This means that you can use it for a wide variety of activities. It also has mattifying features that will help even out your skin’s texture so that it will look natural and primer-free. Its powdery composition also really helps fill in pores so that your skin will appear luminous and younger for up to an amazing 12 hours.


  • This is a completely cruelty-free product that hasn’t been tested on animals.
  • This product includes no parabens, which is very impressive.
  • Thank Me Later has mattifying ingredients that make your skin look radiant.


  • This is a product that has a tendency to make your skin look a bit pale.

8) Urban Decay Complexion Primer Potion


Not only does Urban Decay reduce the appearance of your pores, but it also will reduce redness and blemishes as well. When applied, the solution is very smooth and has no real fragrance, which is a major plus. Additionally, the product also will reduce the oiliness of most skin types and won’t cause breakouts. When used in conjunction with foundations like Naked Skin, this product has a high degree of lastingness.


  • This is a good product if your skin is prone to acne.
  • It has the ability to really mattify the skin so that it appears natural.


  • For whatever reason, it takes a high amount of this product for good coverage.
  • It has a balmy consistency that’s a bit thick compared to other products.

9) Becca Becca ever matte poreless priming perfector


Becca Becca is a product that also has ingredients that will tighten the skin, so it’s perfect for those that are beginning to wrinkle. The primer components tend to provide a matte, natural-looking texture to your skin, which is perfect for the application of foundation and other types of makeup. This is also a silicone-free product that will keep your skin from trapping acne-causing oils.


  • This primer can last up to 12 hours on your skin.
  • The matte surface that it provides looks excellent and completely obscures pores.
  • The product tends to last a long time since you only need a little.


  • For those with oilier pores, this product may not inhibit oily skin.

10) E.l.f. Poreless Primer


This is another one of those products that have becomes somewhat iconic. E.l.f is specifically designed to reduce the appearance of larger pores, and the bottle is compact enough for a pocket. The formulation is even designed to grant an airbrushed look; in fact, this product can even add a bit of attractive shine to your skin without making it look oily. It even uses natural components like tea tree oil and vitamins A and E.


  • This is a very portable primer that can fit just about anywhere.
  • It has a squeeze top that makes it very easy to apply.
  • The matte look of this primer also makes your skin appear airbrushed.


  • At only .47 ounces, this product doesn’t last long.

Large Pore Primers: A Buyer’s Guide

What is a makeup primer?

A makeup primer is a base that you use to form a foundation for your makeup. This type of product has the ability to cover up imperfections and make the skin appear smoother. Effectively, this primer acts as a kind of binding agent between your skin and makeup.

Is a primer a skincare solution or makeup?

As it turns out, a good primer is kind of a best of both worlds solution. Primer works as a skincare product because it can obscure the appearance of wrinkles and acne scars. It can also reduce the buildup of sebum (oil), which can make your skin appear uneven. It’s also a makeup solution because of the fact that it evens out the skin and makes it appear younger.

When it comes to makeup, what are the problems people face who have larger pores?

When a person has larger pores, they face the issue of unevenness. Pores have a tendency to release sebum and also cause the face to reflect light, which can make the skin look less smooth. Additionally, having larger pores can appear unattractive to some, which is why many use pore minimizing primers to reduce their appearance.

How should a primer be used?

Lightly apply the primer to the entirety of your face; when applying, there’s no need to place a lot on your skin, usually, a little dab is fine. Once it’s on your face, give it a minute or two to dry on the surface.

How should you apply primer to your face?

Typically, you should simply apply a pearl-sized dot to the back of your hand and apply the primer to your face using your fingertips. This usually provides a good coating that will last hours.

Should your skin be dry before applying?

It’s important that any moisturizer or water be completely dried off of the surface of your skin before you apply your primer. That being said, you can moisturize before priming; just make sure that the moisturizer is fully absorbed into your skin before application.

Is primer good for extreme weather situations?

This is actually an area in which primer really stands out. If you live in extreme weather, there’s a tendency for there to be a lot of moisture in the air, which can ruin your makeup. A good primer will work as a life-saver in this situation; your makeup will adhere more easily and you’ll be able to wear it longer.

What type of containers does primer come in?

Typically, you can find primers in three container types:

  • Squeezable containers
  • Sealed glass or plastic jars
  • Squeeze bottles

Typically, it doesn’t matter which product container you select, so it’s up to your own personal judgment.

Can primer that’s good for larger pores be applied with a makeup brush?

In actuality, you can use a makeup brush to apply primer, but due to its consistency, it’s usually much more appropriate to just use your fingers. With your fingers, you’ll have an easier time melding the product into your skin.

Does this type of primer work with all skin tones?

For the most part, the primer can be used for just about any skin tone, but there are tinted primers on the market that can be used if you prefer. In fact, there are even tinted primers for large pores.

What makes a primer that’s designed to minimize the appearance of pores unique?

Pore minimizing primer is specifically designed to deal with problem skin, which means that it’s not just good for large pores; it can usually even handle other skin problems as well.

Are there primers with fragrances?

Some primers do have fragrance, but in general, it’s better to purchase primers that are fragrance-free. This is because additional fragrances add additional chemicals to the mix, which can age your skin and cause breakouts.

Are there primers that are designed to make your face appear more matte?

For the most part, pore minimizing primers are actually designed to make the skin appear more matte and even. It’s through the thin layer of primer that your larger pores are filled, and when the primer is matte, it’ll make your complexion and your skin appear evener.

Why can’t you just use foundation to even out the skin?

Unfortunately, foundation isn’t really designed to go deep into the skin and cover up larger pores. Typically, this material is just a little too thin for this type of work. Instead, foundation used after the application of primer has a tendency to bind much easier than it would on the skin.

Are silicone primers bad for the skin?

There are many silicone-based makeup products on the market, and many of the pore-minimizing products use this to provide smooth skin. While these are very effective, there are some caveats. These include:

  • Silicone can trap acne-causing oils.
  • Cells don’t renew as quickly with silicone-based primers.
  • Silicone can dehydrate the skin.
  • These only really work with silicone-based foundations unless you use a translucent setting powder.

Despite these considerations, silicone-based products are very effective in smoothing out the skin, and many of the caveats are fortunately only temporary.

How do water-based primers work?

Water-based primers are very lightweight and work best with liquid foundations. Some find that these are less effective at filling out and smoothing over large pores.

How long should you wait before you apply makeup over primer?

Typically, it’s a good idea to wait a minute or so before you apply your foundation and makeup.

How long will primer last on the face?

This can vary from product to product, but you can usually fairly easily find makeup primer that will last for about four to five hours. There are even products on the market that last for seven to eight hours at a time.

After applying primer, the foundation seems to just wipe off. What can be done?

This is usually a trait of silicone primers. This happens because the primer is repelling the water in the foundation itself. To prevent this, you can use a translucent powder that will set the foundation and ensure that it won’t just wipe off.

What other types of problem skin can this type of primer help?

This type of primer is adept at hiding wrinkles, acne scarring, blotches, and uneven skin. Usually, a good primer will hide these with just a thin layer applied evenly to the skin.

Wrapping It Up

Finding the right primer for your pores can be difficult, but each of the products that we’ve reviewed in this guide is perfect for making your skin look young and fresh again. The products all work in ways that are designed to smooth out the majority of blemishes, but if these don’t work for your needs, use our frequently asked questions-style buying guide to find the one that will work best for your skin.


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