Rock it or Knock it? Smashbox Primer Oil Review

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Thanks to work, I feel like it’s been an eternity since I blogged. I absolutely love teaching history, but I also work as an admin assistant, and by the time I get home each night, I’m too tired to blog. Let’s fix that with a review on one of the most hyped-up beauty items of the year: the new Smashbox Primer Oil. This has been on everyone’s beauty radar for months as a product that sounds too good to be true–a luxury face oil that adds radiance while smoothing lines and boosts hydration while prepping skin for foundation. I was intrigued by the idea of using an oil as a primer, but the price of $42 always made me hesitate. This winter though, my previously combo skin has changed dramatically to being parched and dry, and I finally splurged on this in an attempt to rehydrate my skin.

This oil contains many ingredients that are supposedly great for any skintype, including rosehip oil, tamanu oil, safflower oil, and numerous antioxidants. It’s a light golden color with a flowery fragrance, and it does go on feeling quite light. In fact…too light. When I first applied it, I warmed two drops in my palms, as per the instructions, and pressed them into my facial skin. Not only did my face turn red, but it also still felt dry as the Salt Lake Desert. I applied three more drops and tried to ignore how tight my face felt as I applied my foundation. True enough, my foundation did go on wonderfully smoothly, and I loved the way the oil made it look more like skin. But…my face felt so dry. For an hour, my foundation looked good, then it started getting patchy, and by the third hour, most of it had simply dissolved–and I could barely move my face it felt so dehydrated.

But I was determined to make it work. For a week I wore the oil to bed at night, hoping that a whole teaspoon of it would finally give me the hydration it promised. It didn’t. I continued to use the oil as a primer that week as well, and every day my face felt so dry I had to borrow vaseline from the preschool class at work to smear around my nose and mouth to keep my skin from cracking. Every day my foundation looked patchy and dry, and by that sunday, the oil had also given me a face full of pimples. Yikes.

As much as I wanted to like this primer oil, it just did not work on me at all. I know lots of women who swear by it, but if you have very dry, acne-prone skin, I would stay far away from it. It was simply not hydrating at all, it irritated my skin, and I’m still trying to get rid of all the whiteheads it caused. I love facial oils, but something in this one did not agree with my skin at all.  I ended up returning it. Sorry, Smashbox, but this is not rock ‘n’ rouge approved!