The Ordinary High-Adherence Silicone Primer In Depth Review

Buckle up, it's a long one.

This post contains affiliate links. 

Let’s talk turkey on The Ordinary High-Adherence Silicone Primer. I’d been waiting for this one to come back in stock on The Ordinary website for so long that I ended up finding it in a shop first. I had started off first with the High-Spreadability Fluid Primer months ago, because it was in stock mostly. And, I figured, it had to be at least decent because everything else was, you know? Anyway it’s nice and all but no really my ideal primer. It’s much better suited to people with a drier skin texture that need a little more slip to their makeup. 

Wear Test

I, on the other hand, am trying to hold my makeup onto my face as hard as I can. 

I can always (always) tell the difference when I don’t wear a primer so I went ham on this review and did a wear test just using the primer on one half of my face to see the difference. It was interesting, I’ll say that. You can see the whole video on my YouTube channel if you are so inclined.

What really surprised me when I did the wear test is that there wasn’t a significant difference to how my skin looked right when I put on my foundation. I don’t know why but I really expected the primer to make my foundation look a bit more matte or something? If anything it made it just a hair more dewy. But, to the average non-judgy eye you’d never notice a difference unless I said something about it. 

The real difference came around as the day wore on and the unprimed side of my face got patchy and weird looking. 

The primed side? Much better. It wasn’t like night and day where one side of my makeup was perfect or anything but it was a difference that I felt was, you know, good. I didn’t use any powder, I didn’t blot, and I didn’t use a makeup setting spray like I ordinary would on my regular day to day keep my makeup stuck to my face fest. So, with that in mind, my overall makeup look wasn’t stunning by the end of the day, but at least it was still there, right?

The Specifics

Let’s get into the super specifics. This primer is cheap as hell. Like you know how ELF, and NYX started selling drugstore primers? I’m not a fan of the couple I’ve tried so far and those were more expensive. This clocks in at a mere $4.90 for a full 30 ml on the Deciem site. Which, um, is basically nothing, let's be real. I think because I bought it in a shop I probably paid a bit more for it, but I don’t believe it broke the $10 and that was in a tiny boutique in New York. 

The primer is alcohol free, oil free, nut free (???), vegan, and cruelty free to boot. It has silicones, obviously, and water too but that makes sense as it is indeed a silicone-y liquid. 

I compared it in my wear test video as something between a super slippy Smashbox primer and the dry texture of something like the Hourglass mineral primer. Both primers, I should note, I’m not a huge fan of. But, I guess you can put them together and make a silky textured but not oily and slippy feeling primer for just five bucks. Unbelievable. 

The Claims

Let’s take a walk through what Deciem says about this primer. They say:

“This formula uses advanced adaptive silicones to act as a matte, hydrating, blurring primer for makeup that looks higher in definition and adheres for longer. The formula can also be used alone as a non-greasy hydrator that reduces the look of pores and of imperfections.”

Lots to unpack here. Let’s start first with their hydrating claim. I just can’t imagine anyone using this specifically as a hydrating primer. The fluid primer? Yes, go for it. But this one? Not so much. It’s hydrating in the way that it isn’t drying but it’s also not like it’s a dedicated moisturizer. 

Ok. Blurring, sure. I’ll give it that. It's not as blurring as a specifically blurring primer but it does blur things out a bit.

Next qualm is that it’s matte. Nuh uh. I found that this primer, although it gives a velvety matte blur to your face on it’s own, under makeup it can make things look more dewy. So, like, directly the opposite of that. I personally don’t mind as I’m not a huge fan of matte foundation anymore. But, it’s the thought that counts right? I don’t want you to tell me that it’s a mattifying primer and have it make my foundation look a hair more dewy. 

It definitely can have your makeup adhere longer so it is good for doing it’s most basic job well. At five bucks a pop The Ordinary High-Adherence Silicone Primer is 100% a good choice to have in your makeup arsenal but maybe not the game changer I was expecting.