Urban Decay Primers-Self Adjusting, Optical Illusion, Urban Defense: Review

Urban Decay just came out with four new primers-Bright & Tight, De-Slick, Optical Illusion, Self-Adjusting and a sunscreen Urban Defense. I grabbed Optical Illusion, Self-Adjusting and Urban Defense. They all come in clear plastic tall bottles with gunmetal caps with an airless pump. They are all $34 for 1 oz. De-Slick wasn’t for me as I don’t have oily skin. Bright & Tight was the one I waned the most, but it got recalled before it made it to stores for some allergic reactions. It will come back out once it’s reshipped. I did see a bottle to test at Sephora the other day and it’s a light gel serum style with a pink shimmer, it looks very good.

Urban Defense details per Nordstrom: A completely clear sunscreen that feels amazing, won’t interfere with your makeup and smoothes your complexion for better application.

Urban Defense Complexion Primer by Urban Decay will put an end to your search for a sunscreen that you’ll actually want to put on. Those with oily skin will be blown away—finally, sun protection that doesn’t feel like a mask! Tired of searching for a sunscreen that would protect her skin without leaving any stickiness or white cast, Wende Zomnir decided to create her own. Like a force field, this crystal-clear primer feels like nothing you’ve ever tried and protects your skin from whatever the day throws at you. SPF 30 guards against the sun, and UD’s invisible-on-the-skin formula doesn’t leave a trace. Urban Defense not only protects, but also primes and smoothes skin as it minimizes the look of pores—so makeup applies better and lasts all day. This hydrating gel formula contains conditioning ingredients like sesame seed extract, tomato fruit extract, squalane and bisabolol (derived from the Brazilian candeia tree).

Ingredients: Isododecane, Isohexadecane, Dimethicone/Bis-Isobutyl PPG-20 Crosspolymer, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Caprylyl Methicone, Silica Silylate, Bisabolol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Squalane, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Solanum Lycopersicum (Tomato) Fruit Extract, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Extract, Tocopherol. 

I thought this one was a sunscreen only, but it has a silky gel texture almost like a primer. I love that’s it’s only SPF 30 as you don’t need higher than that for an average day. This is absolutely a clear sunscreen. No white cast. It’s a chemical sunscreen so if you avoid chemical sunscreens and only use physical then this isn’t for you. It has a silky light texture that slightly mattifies the skin and really does work as a primer too. It wasn’t greasy and I didn’t get any irritation or breakouts from it. If you like clear silky primers without silicone and wants to try clear sunscreen then this is a great buy, two steps in one.

Optical Illusion details per Nordstrom: Instantly blur flaws and smooth out your skin with Optical Illusion Complexion Primer by Urban Decay, a primer that reduces fine lines and makes pores seem to vanish—for a gorgeous, porcelain-like texture—and ensures your makeup not only goes on better, but also lasts longer.

This velvety soft, lightweight primer has a slight pink tint to illuminate skin pre-makeup, but dries down to a translucent, matte finish. Like the name suggests, Optical Illusion creates an optical veil of scattered light, giving skin a soft-focus effect. The result is a beautiful, airbrushed finish. UD’s cushy formula provides just enough glide to fill in lines for a smoothed-out complexion, and dries down to the perfect powdery finish. It contains optical blurring pigments for beautifully perfected skin. A luxurious blend of argan, rosehip and meadowfoam seed oils provides moisturizing and antioxidant benefits while vitamin E conditions.

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Silica, Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate Benzoate, Glycerin, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Limnanthes Alba Seed Oil / Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Polyglyceryl-3 Diisostearate, Dimethiconol, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Glyceryl Caprylate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Aqua / Water, Hydroxyapatite, Sodium Olivoyl Glutamate, Phenoxyethanol, Propylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin. [+/- (May Contain/Peut contenir): Mica, CI 77891 / Titanium Dioxide, CI 77491 / Iron Oxides]. 

This is a thick, velvety silicone primer that has a light pink tint and goes to a satin matte finish. This is a pretty typical style primer, lots of companies make something similar to this. It wasn’t unique in any aspect. It’s got a heavier feel to it because of the silicone. It does give a soft focus feel and a smooth blurring effect. This is a bit too heavy for me as I live in the heat and humidity, so winter only primer. This would be good for someone who has dry skin. Those with oily skin or who live in hot/humid regions may want to test it out first.     

Self-Adjusting details per Nordstrom: A color-correcting formula that features encapsulated pigments that actually adjust to your skin tone, creating the perfect soft-focus effect so flaws seem to disappear and makes your makeup last all day.

Blend your way to perfectly blurred skin! Micro-encapsulated beads of pigment are suspended in the formula and burst on your skin, adapting to your skin tone as you apply. This high-tech formula even fills in fine lines, minimizes pores and controls shine. Lightweight yet velvety, Self-Adjusting Complexion Primer dries down to a beautifully perfected matte finish.

Ingredients: Isododecane, Dimethicone, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Polyester-1, Aqua/Water, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Methicone, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tocopherol.[+/- (May Contain/Peut contenir): CI 77891/Titanium Dioxide, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499/Iron Oxides, Mica]. 

This one is a white base primer with a velvet/silky lightweight feel. It has very tiny purple beads in it that burst on application and blend in with the primer. It’s a bit too light colored for my light medium NC25-27 skin tone. While it does blend in for the most part it leaves a little bit of a paler effect, a touch of a ‘sunscreen white cast’ feel. I have yet to figure out exactly what those purple beads do. I know it says adapt to your skin tone, but I still get a paler finish with it, even though the white does go away some after it sets. This primer feels a lot like Hourglass Mineral Primer if you’ve tried that. It’s silky, mattifying, dries down and controls oil. Good for combination/oily skin. It’s also good for summer, it was almost too drying for me during winter even here in Texas. This sets pretty matte in feel so if you need matte try this.   

You can see the beads better when I spread it out thinner.

Overall, my favorite is the Urban Defense. The other two were OK for me, not my favorite primers even though they’re good. I can see the sunscreen and Bright & Tight, when it gets released again, being my top two. They’re all a hit for Urban Decay as there’s now a wide range of primers for a variety of needs and skin types.

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