Can This Eyeshadow Primer Really Make Your Eyeshadow Waterproof?

Can This Eyeshadow Primer Really Make Your Eyeshadow Waterproof?

My all time favourite product from Benefit (and if we’re being honest, one of the few I do actually like) was Benefit’s She Laq – long discontinued makeup sealer that you placed over the top of makeup that acted as a way to make eyeshadow stay in place. I used to use it at times like when I’d go to Center Parcs where I could be in a restaurant one minute, in the pool the next, playing badminton, then back a cafe. It locked makeup in without question and I mainly used to to make sure eyeliner wasn’t running all over my face (heavy eyeliner was compulsory in the UK in 2006).

I was also great on holiday and I had been known in my past (I wouldn’t bother as a secure in my skin 29 year old now) – but it held eyeshadow in place too. When I eventually ran out of that magic potion (it had a crystal ball reader on the front!) I went to purchase and discovered that WTAF, Benefit had rudely taken it off their shelves. I’ve never found anything that’s compared, so when I found this online at Boots I had to give it a whirl.

Proof It! Eye Primer from NYX claims to make your eyeshadow waterproof. An odd name I have to admit, I’m sure they could have gone with splash it, drench it, wet it – proof it is something you do to bread, not to your makeup. But hey, I’ll stop picking on the weird name choice for now.

It’s fairly reasonably priced at £6 a tube, I will say it’s not got the biggest amount of product in – it’s a compact 6ml, so compared to primer potion at 10ml, it’s just over half the size. The formula is very thin and sheer, it’s almost watery in consistency and I find as soon as it has been patted onto the eyelid it seems to sink in and dry quickly. It spreads, but compared to other primers where I tend to need a tiny dot, this one I feel like needs more and I’ll finish it off quicker.

The packaging is slimline and comes with a doe foot applicator which picks up the product easily and allows for quick application to the eye which I spread out over my finger. I’ve been using this for a month or so after I’d finished the Photofocus eye primer from WetNWild – but I can’t say that I’d actually put the waterproof claims to the test, so last week I decided to do that.


I swatched one side of my arm with 4 different shadows from four different brands. I purposefully picked ones with different styles of finishes from foily drier glittery textures, silky metallics and marvellous mattes. I picked shadows from; Natasha Denona, Violet Voss, Colourpop and Jeffree Star (left to right below), all brands which I love the Formula off and I know are reliable when it comes to eyeshadow, I didn’t pick any ones I knew didn’t perform as well as they’re never the ones I reach for. I wanted to know how the waterproof qualities would effect my favourite shadows, since those would be the ones I’m most likely going to wear day-to-day and pool-to-cafe.

The first photo below is the swatches untouched, the left hand side is the side with the primer, the right hand side is the primer-less side. The primer doesn’t visually effect the shadows too much, I found that the Matte Formula went on slightly easier but other than that the shades comparatively had little difference.

The Second Shot I ran my arm under water for a few minutes, as you can see theres no budging from either side. I think this is to be expected with most high quality shadows and haven’t ever found after swatching that shadows tend to wash away, what doesn’t help in pools.etc is that your eyes;
a) tend to have a bit of crinkle and isn’t a big smooth flat surface like an arm
b) you blink! movement disrupts the base and the pigment loosens.

Third shot I ran my finger over the middle of the swatches using the same amount of pressure each time, as you can see the right hand side the shadow dragged far more than the left hand side, where the matte on the end didn’t budge and the other colours were less smudged.

Here we where I ran my hand fairly lightly over the whole swatches, the left hand side it’s much easier to see more defined lines and swatches still in place with much more pigmentation, where as the primerless side is much more faded and the definition has gone in the stripes.

I was planning on leaving my comparison there and I got back to my desk I whipped out some micellar water to wipe it all away, the left hand side didn’t budge easily at all. I ended up deciding to crack out the cleansing oil to get the last of the residue.

I can’t deny that the primer clearly made a difference between the two, but I can’t say that it’s waterproof.Running my arm under the tap showed both of these for 2/3 minutes straight giving them a good thorough soak without any running. But it does lock the eyeshadow in and make the formula more water resistant definitely, I repeated this with another “normal” primer and whilst I found that it helped more than being primer free it wasn’t as good as the NYX one was at standing up against water.

That all being said, it’s not the best primer I don’t think for all day wear – I’ve noticed that whilst I don’t get any creasing through the day, the primer doesn’t seem to fully lock the shadow into place and it can shift around a little. It’s certainly not bad and I’ll happily use it up, and maybe even purchase it again in future – I don’t think that it’s the best for longevity and keeping the blend nice and soft.


Where I think this will come in handy most is for warmer clients, if like me you can have a bit of a sweaty face in warm climates having this as a bit of added insurance I think isn’t a bad thing. If you’re heading somewhere warm this summer, like wearing makeup by the pool or for some reason end up with a wet face from time to time then I’d recommend this. It’s a good price and won’t break the bank too!

You can find it online here at Boots or ASOS here.

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Helpless Whilst Drying

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