I'm constantly looking for ways to get the most out of my foundation. I want great coverage which will last all day without me having to worry about it either melting off my face or surrendering to oil. Sometimes we either downplay the importance of prep, or overcomplicate it. Lotions and potions alike, I've found a combination which provides the basis for my makeup every single day. Plus it only takes a handful of extra seconds and doesn't leave me with too much to think about.
I don't know what I used to do without a good primer. I don't use them all the time, but heavily rely on them when I want to make sure that my makeup stays in place for as long as possible. I have two favourites, each achieving something completely different from the other. Benefit's The Porefessional has always been a feature, but only recently have I rediscovered just how good it is. The Maybelline Baby Skin primer is a good alternative for those who don't want to take the plunge and splurge, although I personally dislike the silicone formula in comparison to Benefit's much creamier texture.
Laura Mercier's Foundation Primer in 'Oil Free' is completely different to that of Benefit. Not only is it highly moisturising but it's liquid formula melts into the skin, providing a lovely dewy base before foundation, acting not only as a primer, but a moisturiser as well. It's perfect for those summer months when you need something light and moisturising whilst helping the longevity of your makeup to fight the warmer weather.
L'Occitaine is a brand I've never really had the chance to experience. I've had my sights set on the Ultra Matter fluid for a while now but couldn't justify the £29.00 for something from a brand which I'd never tried. The smell is beautiful, lemony and fresh, and once dry it really does matify the skin, especially if, like me, when the warmer weather hits your one big grease-ball. A little goes a very long way, and I only use it on those days where I'm particularly oily, so the amount of time you get out of the product does act to justify the price... a little!
In the summer I try to have as many 'no-makeup' makeup days as possible, but when I do want to go all out, these are three great features in my bathroom cupboards.