Friday, 5 October 2012

Review: Napoleon Perdis Auto Pilot Pre-Foundation Skin Primer


Today I'm reviewing Napoleon Perdis Auto Pilot Pre-Foundation Skin Primer.

Now, the current one being sold in Australia is in gold foil packaging. I don't have this one, but it's the exact same product.
Here's the marketing spiel:
“Not to Prime is a Crime!” - Napoleon Makeup has never had a smoother landing. Get (even more) gorgeous with this gentle, pre-makeup base. Scientifically formulated to allow your makeup to “automatically” glide over the skin, Auto Pilot helps to prime and soothe the complexion for that flawless finish and helps makeup last even longer. Chamomile, Yarrow extract and Vitamin E deliver complexion perfection and instant hydration for all skin types.

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This was my first primer. I got a mini sample with a gift pack last year after I bought up big with their loose eye dusts. I got my full sized version this year- this was before I'd tried the Urban Decay or Smashbox primers.


  • Packaging: It's a sqeeze tube with a screw top. A flip top would be easier to use- it can get a bit annoying having to mess around with the lid and then find it again when you're in a rush.
  • Consistency: It is a runny liquid and it sets clear.
  • Application: This does provide a smooth surface for your makeup. If your skin is cracked/damaged, it can sting a little bit, but otherwise it's quite moisturising- over winter I added it on days I didn't really care about my makeup's longevity just for the moisturising effect. I usually use it over moisturiser with SPF30+ but at night when I don't need the SPF, it's fine to use it on its own without moisturiser. 
  • Effect and Longevity: 
    • It does help makeup last longer, particularly around the nose area. 
    • The effect before you put makeup on is quite dewy but I always use a matte foundation, so that's lost pretty quickly.
    • It doesn't do an amazing job at oil control, so oily girls, you'll still need the blotting papers if you go with this. 
    • It does minimise pores a bit, but it's not a magical eraser. There are other primers (Urban Decay Pore Perfecting Primer is one example) which fill in pores and acne scars a lot better.
    • Even with this primer, my makeup tends to concentrate in my laugh lines. 
      • Yes, I'm in my early 20s and this is happening. No, I'm not looking forward to older age.
  • Cost: This is AUD$55 for 50mL. It retails for USD$39 for 50mL in the US. This is an Australian brand and we're paying more for it than the Americans. Are you kidding me?! It's absurd. I love a lot of Napoleon's products but this kind of thing is unacceptable. There has also been a lot of controversy online alleging that this and Face of Australia Face Base Primer (retails for AUD$11.95) are the exact same thing in different packaging. I haven't personally tried FoA's primer, so I can't say, but I can link you to some blog posts by people who have, and you can make up your own minds. 

Final verdict: B

Auto Pilot Pre-Foundation Primer does a decent job of giving a smooth makeup base and helping your makeup last longer. For the price you're expected to pay for this, I'd expect it to do a lot more.


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