even though I’m practically over-run by primers and beauty balms right now, I got another to try out from Sephora a few weeks ago. my review is based upon wearing this primer every day for approximately a week (probably a little more). this was a sample that I received as a reward from my Sephora points, so I was excited to try it out!
NARS Radiance-Enhancing Pro-Prime Light-Optimizing Primer is a white cream with medium thickness. it’s thick when you squeeze it out of the tube, but it doesn’t feel thick when applied to the face. in fact, it spreads out quite smoothly to give sheer coverage that feels like nothing at all once it’s dry. before drying, it does feel a bit oily on the face (and fingertips) but it did not look oily and did not make my skin oily at all. since I didn’t break out from it at all and it didn’t make me oily, I’d say that this is a good product for everyday use. it even has broad spectrum sun protection (SPF 15), which is a nice bonus.
as far as the “Radiance-Enhancing” and “Light-Optimizing” properties of the primer, I’d say that NARS delivers. although the cream is white and applies sheer, it does have an opalescence to it. applied to the back of my hand and viewed in florescent overhead lighting (at my office), it appears a little golden and a little purple. when viewed in natural light (outside), it appears more golden. however, when used as a base for my make-up, these colors were no longer as apparent. instead my skin just looked a bit fresher.
I alternated between full face coverage (never on the nose though) and only check coverage. full face coverage was great for days when I’d be hitting the gym after work and would be wearing less make-up over all anyway. it helped to give my skin a glowy, healthy look in these instances. it also gave the same effect when worn alone, but I feel strange going out without at least eyebrows and a little blush…. on days where I wore my standard look, I only applied the primer to my cheeks because I use a matte powder, which would have worked against the primer’s properties. used in this way, it helped capture light on the high areas of my cheeks, like a natural highlighter (used without blush).
overall, I liked this primer; I really liked the versatility of using it with various make-up looks and how healthy it made me look when only wearing a small amount of make-up or none at all. I’ve had a fair amount of success with other NARS cosmetics in the past, so it wasn’t really surprising to me that this would also be a useful product. personally, I would consider it as my first choice as a primer in the future (if I don’t find something even better between now and then), but first I have to use up all these other ones I have! in the meantime, however, you can get one here. $34 seems a little pricey, but you get a full ounce. my sample is only 0.3 oz and I’ve used it at least a dozen times, plus had other people use it and it’s not even half gone. so, a little goes a long way and $34 would probably last at least several months.