Best Primer For Large Pores

Best Primer For Large Pores In 2020

You wouldn't paint a piece of furniture without priming the wood first. By the same logic, you shouldn't apply foundation without priming the skin first, especially if you have large or visible pores. Here's everything you need to know about primers and concealing large pores.

Why Should I Use A Primer?

Whether you have large pores or not, everyone can benefit from a makeup primer. While this product wasn't all that popular a decade ago, it's become an integral part of most women's makeup applications.

A primer is a product, typically silicone-based, that creates a layer between your skin and your makeup. While primers are often lauded for helping to keep foundation and makeup in place all day, they have other benefits beyond that.

They help to lock any skincare products you may have used in place; Michelle Phan famously introduced her viewers to the technique of using a primer to lock skincare products in place in this video.

Primer creates this strong barrier between your skin and your makeup; it has the added benefit of preventing you from breaking out due to the products you apply. While most foundations taut themselves as being non-comedogenic, any product that gets into the pores has the potential to cause inflammation or blemishes.​

When it comes to large pores, primers are especially important, as they fill in the pores and create an even surface. To return to the analogy of painting furniture from the beginning of this guide, one of the reasons you prep furniture with a primer is to fill in any ridges or irregularities in the wood. The same principle does apply here. Watch beauty guru Elessa Jade explain below.​

​As Elessa discusses, primers can occasionally have some skincare benefits as well. Some primers feature anti-acne or anti-dryness ingredients and some even have SPF.

Priming Large Pores

In our guide on foundations for large pores, we highlighted some of the reasons why people get large pores in the first place. Sadly, it's almost impossible to reduce the size of large pores with skincare significantly.

While you might have seen tips such as splashing the face with cold water, it's a myth that pores open and close. Using a toner or treatment product with BHA or AHA can help somewhat, but for the most part, the best way to conceal large pores is with smart makeup techniques.

​While many people apply primer with their fingers, the best technique is actually to apply it with a foundation brush. There are a few reasons why applying primer with the fingers isn't ideal.

First, you're trying to create a smooth base when you apply primer. The best way to do this is with a brush, as it allows you to work in evenly distributed, smooth strokes. Second, a primer is often used to create a matte surface and reduce the amount of oil on the face, since oil can cause makeup to budge and travel.

Since you have oil on your fingers, even if your hands are clean, they're not the ideal tool for applying a product meant to reduce oil. YouTuber Smashin Beauty explains all of this in her guide to primers.

Preventing Large Pores

In our guide to finding the right foundation for large pores, we discussed the best methods for trying to control large pores, including which toners to use. While there's not much you can do to take care of the large pores you already have; there are some steps you can take to prevent new ones from forming.

First and foremost, avoid harsh cleansers and don't use bar soaps. Removing your makeup at night is essential since large pores are technically clogged pores that are filled with oil and debris. Dr. Dray, a dermatologist who vlogs about skin care, explains this in her video about enlarged pores.

As Dr. Dray states, it's essential that you avoid cosmetics that aren't non-comedogenic. That's why all of the products on this list fit the bill and won't cause blemishes or further pore enlargements.

However, no matter what products you're using, remember to always wash your face at night, especially on the days you've worn makeup. Any substance can become comedogenic if left on the skin for too long.

​Now that you're informed about large pores let's look at the best five primers for reducing large pores, evening out the complexion and prepping your skin for a flawless foundation application.


APIEU Start Up Pore Primer

APIEU Start Up Pore Primer

​K-Beauty fans, rejoice, as this list contains a few Korean brands. Our first primer for concealing visible pores is the APIEU Start Up Pore Primer, a Korean import designed to give skin a soft baby texture and ready it for the application of foundation or BB cream.

This primer leaves skin feather-soft and also has a hint of color, designed to even out the skin tone. It's hypoallergenic, which means that it's ideal for even sensitive skin types. It has a light, almost fluffy texture and is designed for daily wear in mind.


  • Super light, making it perfect for daily wear
  • Leaves skin baby soft
  • Adds a touch of color to even out the skin tone
  • The holographic packaging makes it an adorable addition to any vanity


  • The light hint of color will do nothing for darker skin types
  • While this primer leaves skin soft, it doesn't leave it completely matte. Oily skin types might find that this doesn't give them the dryness they need
  • It's great for daily wear, but those who are looking for something that's sweat or stage light-proof might want to look elsewhere

DHC Velvet Skin Coat

DHC Velvet Skin Coat

If you prefer your makeup to have elements of skincare, then you'll adore the DHC Velvet Skin Coat. This product serves two functions. It can be used to prime the skin beautifully before a makeup application, or it can be used as the final step of a skincare routine to lock everything in place.

It's a darling of makeup artists, who love how it lives up to its "velvety" descriptor. The product is a gel but turns powdery when applied to the skin, helping to create a soft but matte finish.

Although it will prevent foundation from traveling on oily skin, it won't create dry patches or flakiness on normal and dry skin types.​


  • Leaves skin feeling velvety smooth
  • Translucent, making it perfect for any skin color
  • A cult classic beauty product
  • Controls oil without drying out the skin


  • Those with extremely dry skin might want to steer clear since this product dries down to a powdery texture
  • Those who like a bit of color in their base will be disappointed by the product's translucence

Aritaum Pore Master Sebum Control Primer

Aritaum Pore Master Sebum Control Primer

​The second Korean primer on our list, the Aritaum Pore Master Sebum Control Primer has the skin-loving ingredients and the adorable packaging that people have come to expect from K-Beauty products.

"Sebum control" is a fancy way of saying that the product controls oil, giving the skin a very matte finish and making it perfect for the hot summer months.

The product is a mineral-based gel, which means that it's safe for sensitive skin types. It has a hint of color, which means that it helps to even out redness and discoloration before foundation has even been applied.


  • Its mineral formula is light and breathable
  • Controls oil beautifully, even on hot days
  • Has a touch of color to help even out the skin tone


  • Again, dark skin tones will be disappointed by the touch of light, ivory color. K-Beauty products are great skincare-wise, but not so great when it comes to diversity of shades
  • This product is scented, something that very sensitive skin types may want to steer clear of

Benefit The POREfessional Face Primer

Benefit The POREfessional Face Primer

​The Benefit The POREfessional Face Primer has been a favorite of makeup gurus on Instagram for quite some time now. It has a somewhat balmy texture, containing color to help even out the skin tone.

It's meant to be used very sparingly and only in areas where pores are visible. It contains Vitamin E, which both moisturizes the skin and encourages cell turnover.

It's currently the best-selling primer in the country, frequently taking the top spot on "best of" lists. Fans swear that this primer fills enlarged pores, something that many primers claim to do but do not.


  • A favorite of makeup gurus and artists
  • Slightly tinted to even out the skin tone
  • Truly fills in the pores, thanks to its balm-like texture


  • While it certainly fills in the pores beautifully, it doesn't create the best finish for makeup, which is why many use this to fill the pores then a second primer for creating a matte base
  • Meant to be used quite sparingly, and it you over-apply, it can make the skin slightly greasy

Smashbox Cosmetics Photo Finish Foundation Primer - Pore Minimizing

Smashbox Cosmetics Photo Finish Foundation Primer - Pore Minimizing

​The original Smashbox Photo Finish Primer is considered to be the ultimate pick for creating a matte, smooth base for makeup. However, the product was problematic for oily and acne skin types, as it was known to cause breakouts.

The Pore Minimizing version is a tweaked version of the original, meant to be suitable for acne-prone skin and those with visible pores. It won't clog or cause blemishes, but it still has the powerhouse effects of the original.

No matter how humid the weather or how sweaty you get, this primer will ensure that your makeup stays in place and that your skin remains free of oil.


  • The most heavy duty primer on this list
  • Creates an incredibly matte, smooth surface on which to apply foundation
  • Ensures that makeup stays locked in place, no matter the weather or circumstances


  • This is an incredibly heavy product. Unlike other primers that melt into the skin, this sits atop the skin
  • While it's great for special events, it's quite heavy for daily wear
  • Not the best at filling in pores; rather, the product just creates a smooth base atop pores

In Conclusion

​The reason that large pores are such a pain is that it's just about impossible to shrink them with skincare. However, the magic of makeup allows us to hide our visible pores from the world.

There's perhaps no product more important for concealing large pores than a primer. It is during this step that the pores are filled, and a smooth base is created, giving the illusion of an even and pore-free complexion.

​All of these primers have their pros and cons. However, when it comes to the top choice of primer for large pores, we have to declare the DHC Velvet Skin Coat the winner.

It does the two things we want in a primer for large pores, which is to not only reduce the visibility of pores but to create a smooth application on which to apply foundation. We also love that it can double as a final step in a skincare routine to lock in all of our nightly products.

​There might not be a permanent solution to large pores, but with a little makeup magic, it's easy to hide your pores from the world. Just always remember to remove your makeup at night, especially if visible pores are an issue for you.

When you're applying multiple layers of primer, foundation, and powder, it's essential that all of that is removed at night so that your skin can breathe and heal.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top