If you haven’t heard yet Shea Moisture has an entire range of cosmetics now…and first up on my reviews is the Shea Moisture Primer!

Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer
Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer


I’ve had these Shea Moisture products for about a month now so I am finally ready to provide you with a thorough review. A little background info – this makeup line is exclusive to Target and is on gradual release throughout the nation. This primer is at the top end price point wise of the whole collection at $15.99 for 1.7 oz of product. For comparison my all time favorite primer is 1.34 oz for $36.

Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer
Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer


The packaging on the side of the box claims this product is oil free with a special matte formula and says it is specially formulated for oily, sensitive, and acne prone skin.

Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer
Shea Moisture Cosmetics Primer

The texture of this product is like that of a moisturizer, very emollient,  and leaves a noticeable sheen to my face when applied. The texture of the primer kind of threw me off a little bit as I have never tried a primer claiming to be oil free and for oily skin that left my face this shiny even after having the product absorb. This shiny consistency did end up leaving my face pretty shiny after a few hours of wear even with applying setting powder to my T-zone. I felt the shine was more apparent when I used a foundation that was not from this SM line. When used with the Sheer Foundation from Shea Moisture the primer did perform better but again, I was noticeably shiny after around three hours. I think this primer is a great option for those with drier skin than me as it is just around half the price of most higher end primers.

What’s also very interesting I’ll say is that the second ingredient in this primer is Castor Seed OIL. The first sentence in the product blurb above states that this is oil free. The last couple of sentences only make the claim that this is mineral oil free so color me confused. I did some internet hunting and found out that castor seed oil in cosmetics act as humectants when placed on the skin meaning they help keep moisture near the skin…which is an oily girl like me’s nightmare. I typically apply moisturizer/SPF before my makeup primer so the combination of this with any other moisture related product does not leave a matte canvas to begin work on. To compare to my absolute favorite Becca Ever Matte Poreless Priming Perfector my face is completely matte after the primer has had a chance to settle. For me with my oily skin I prefer to start on a completely matte surface because you can bet your bottom dollar that oil is going to show up sooner or later.

So for me I would have to give this product a C. While the ingredients are gentle and they did not irritate my skin I still don’t like the fact that this primer contains an oil when it is advertised as being specially made for acne prone oily skin. I can still use this often – and I do now after this trick I learned from Wayne Goss – but I am more comfortable paying a higher price for a product I don’t have to manipulate to get to work on my skin.

Have you tried this primer yet? Let me know your thoughts below!

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10 years ago

Castor oil is actually good for oily skin, I’ve suffered from it my entire life. Your problem may be with the way you treat your skin. If you try to dry it out too much it will produce more oil to make up for it. You need to try a good moisturizer and castor oil is a natural one. I would reccomemd you try emani primer it’s 100% naturally derived, vegan, minerals cruelty free along with everything in the emani line

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