Looking for a natural primer for oily skin? Alima Pure Smooth + Prime

A great mattifying primer is amazing if you have oily skin.  It provides the skin with a smooth surface that helps foundation look terrific, and it gives makeup the longevity it wouldn’t otherwise have thanks to that extra sebum production.  If I don’t use a good primer it is inevitable that I will end up with faded makeup and a shiny nose.  I’ve been testing Alima Pure Smooth + Prime ($46), a primer for oily skin that has even more going for it than its ability to mattify my shiny nose.

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Alima Pure Smooth + Prime

Alima Pure Smooth + Prime is an all natural primer that doesn’t have any gluten, nuts, fragrance, silicone, parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, phthalates, dimethicone, talc, bismuth oxychloride, or nanoparticles.  What it does have is silica, which is a natural mineral that absorbs excess oil and mattifies the skin.  It also has squalane, which is botanical lipid that comes from olives.  Squalane is the ingredient that makes skin silky and gives that wonderful foundation for your makeup.

I don’t come across many natural primers with no alcohol and no fragrance, so this is exciting.  If you have very oily skin, you will absolutely love this primer.  If you have combination skin like me, you will also love this primer if you use it correctly.  If you have normal or dry skin, you won’t be happy with it…you will find it makes your skin overly dry, which is the opposite of what a good primer should do for you.

Alima Pure Smooth + Prime

I have a very oily t-zone, but the rest of my face is either normal or else too dry.  I use the Alima Pure Smooth + Prime on my forehead, nose and chin only.  I use a separate hydrating primer for my cheeks.  It’s a great combination for me, as the hydrating primer keeps my cheeks looking fresh and the Alima Pure primer keeps my oily areas matte all day long.  Without it, my nose becomes shinier than a new penny in about 45 minutes.  The Alima Pure Smooth + Prime not only keeps me matte, it also keeps my foundation looking luminous and natural – no seeping into pores.

This primer dries down super quick, so you will want to use tiny amounts all over your face for the best coverage.

Alima Pure Smooth + Prime

The drawbacks? even though it is fragrance-free, it still has a slight scent.  It’s the scent a fragrance would cover up – it kind of smells a little medicinal – but it dissipates right away. Also, at $46 it is expensive for a primer.  If you have very oily skin and use it on your whole face, it might run out too soon to justify the price.  For me, since I only cover my t-zone the primer has lasted long enough to average out to about $10 or $11 a month.

I think the Alima Pure Smooth + Prime is a great find.  If you have oily skin and want a mattifying primer that doesn’t have any silicone, bismuth, or talc, this is a fantastic option. You can find it online at alimapure.com and on Amazon. – Lisa

Ingredients:  Salvia Sclarea Flower/Leaf/Stem (Clary Sage) Water, Silica, Glycerin, Polyglyceryl-10 Stearate, Octyldodecanol, Squalane, Polyglyceryl-10 Myristate, Glyceryl Stearate, Aqua, Glyceryl Caprylate, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Sucrose Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Sodium Anisate, Tocopherol, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate.


  1. Lynne B | 8th Aug 19

    This sounds like a primer I’d love to try. The price could be prohibitive for me. It is difficult to find a primer that both smooths my large pores (thanks oily skin) and keeps the shine at bay.

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