Benefit Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer: Keep Your Makeup Intact Day to Night!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Benefit launched its latest product, the Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer, a few weeks back, just in time for the hot and humid weather we have here! And here I am to bring you some details of the product - from what I've tried it seems like a great product, from the cute quirky packaging to the product inside, so yes it is something worth looking at!

Benefit Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer: We're Tick-tocking about it alright!

If you're wondering, "15 hours? How on earth did they decide on that number?", it turns out there's actually a really interesting story behind it. One of the PR ladies at the event explained to me that initially when Benefit developed the primer, they were hoping to be able to market it as an 8-Hour Primer, the idea being that the primer would last through a typical work day. However, during the company's evaluation of the product, they found out that it actually outlasted 8 hours. So they tested it to see if it would last for longer stretches of time, and eventually, they found 15 to be the magic number. Thus, the 15-Hour Primer tagline was born. I don't know about you, but I always love little stories like this - it is always cool to get a peek into the behind-the-scenes action of product development.

benefit stay flawless primer
The Benefit Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer will take you from your day at work to an evening of relaxation.

There is only one colour of the Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer, and this is because the product is colourless. I know you're thinking, "duh!", but initially when I (and a couple of other beauty bloggers) saw the product, we thought that it was actually coloured! In the tube, the product seems like it's coloured a light beige, so it threw us off. But it's actually colourless.

benefit stay flawless primer 1
It looks beige coloured in the tube, but it's actually colourless!

Below you can see a swatch of the product. It failed to impart any colour to my skin, and as you can see from the photo below, this was an extremely heavy swatch. Basically I tried adding one layer of product, saw no colour, so I added more product, and still saw no colour, and so on, until the product was all built up on my skin and shiny. Normally it would have a slightly more velvety, matte finish when dry. But still, no colour. So yes, if you're darker than the shade of beige in the tube, no worries. It won't impart any colour.

benefit stay flawless primer swatch
Swatch of the Benefit Stay Flawless Primer - look ma, no colour!

The packaging of the product is excellent - it comes in a very sensible swivel-up tube, and the tube is pretty big, so if you want your application to stay quick and easy (and don't want to dirty your fingers), it is a good choice. Most primers I've seen come in tubes, pumps, or (yucks) jars, so this is definitely a step up. The fact that it comes in a tube also naturally means that the product is a little harder and more solid than other liquid-like primers. But it doesn't mean that it's hard to blend or oily. It feels pretty smooth on the skin, although the texture still comes across as somewhat sticky and tacky, especially if you've been accustomed to the fluid, watery silicone-heavy-type primers. However, a light application (NOT like the one above on my hand) will leave the primer drying matte on your skin without a sticky feel or detectable shine. All in all, I feel a light, but even, application is the best way to use this product - layering it on too thick will feel heavy and sticky on the skin.

benefit stay flawless primer 1
Love the unique swivel-up packaging.

I also tried a demonstration whereby we applied foundation to two patches on our skin (in this case we used Benefit's own Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow!, which is a liquid foundation). One patch of skin was primed with the Stay Flawless Primer, and the other was not. After both foundations had set, we then wet the skin lightly (the equivalent of doing some sweating on the skin, or getting some moisture on the skin), and pressed a piece of tissue to each of the patches to see how much foundation came off (the equivalent of blotting your skin with tissue after you sweat, I guess). As you can see in the photos below, the tissue on the left showed foundation removal from un-primed skin, but the tissue on the right showed that no foundation was removed at all - in other words, the foundation stayed on the skin despite the skin being misted and pressed with tissue paper!

benefit stay flawless primer test
On the left: Some foundation came off the skin when primer was not used. On the right: No foundation came off the skin when it was primed.

So far, I'm pretty excited about the launch of the Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer, and the demonstration was quite convincing in showing that this product actually works! Perhaps the only drawback I can think of is that for those consumers who are used to the thinner textured liquid-feeling primers, they might take some getting used to the thicker texture of the Stay Flawless Primer. Benefit recommends that the product be used with their Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow! liquid foundation or the Hello Flawless Powder for best results, but it seems to me that you could probably use it for other liquid and powder foundations as well. If you're looking for a convenient primer that is easy to use, and if you don't mind a more solid-textured product, this is worth checking out.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)


  1. Hey there! This primer sounds like it would be great for me. Considering my long work days. Thanks for the review, I'll go check it out.

  2. This stuff looks great! I've been looking for something similar to the primer by Smashbox, without the hefty price tag. This looks like a LOT more product than smashbox provides too! Thanks for posting!

    1. @Steffani: Yes, primers can be tricky to find! For what it's worth though, I don't think the Benefit one will be that similar to the Smashbox one. The Smashbox primer is very silicone heavy, while the Benefit primer is a mix of other emollients and oils. While I do think both are good primers, the feel/texture will probably be different, so it might be a good idea to try before you buy.

  3. Amazing stuff,I love Benefit too:)


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