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getting primed for long and busy days

DOES primer really make a difference to how your make-up looks? Yes, of course, it really does – and especially if you've got a long or really busy day ahead of you.

The best primers also serve to minimise the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, which is just the best thing ever.

BENEFIT Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer, €35.50, HHHII This one has a tint to it, which I found worrying but it goes on clear, which I then deemed pointless. It feels silky and smooth, but didn't really feel like it was there, which a primer ought to, but to the correct degree. This didn't – stick with POREfessional, the brand's super-amazing primer.

LANCOME La Base La Pro Perfecting Make Up Primer Smoothing Effect, €34.50, HHHHI This feels like it is there, to the correct degree. It's a clear gel, which is an interesting texture and it glides on like silk. It takes that wee bit longer to dry, which I am feeling fussed about. I'll be talking about the brand's superior foundation, Teint Visionnaire, in two weeks time – a perfect duo.

SISLEY Instant Perfect, €44, HHHII Well, this is silky smooth. Too much, in fact – it's like rubbing angel feathers all over your face. The tube is very, very small, for its relative expensiveness. I didn't get much joy in the long run. A special occasion primer? Maybe, maybe not.

GARNIER 5Sec Perfect Blur Smoothing Perfecting Primer, €19.99, HHHHH Sheer perfection in a tube. It has the texture of the more expensive brands, the value of the less expensive brands and an effectiveness all on its own. I want Garnier to make this into a body lotion. This is the starting point for a good face day and every foundation I used over this was all the better for it. Love it. I've asked it to marry me, but it is being coy.

CLINIQUE Superprimer Universal Face Primer, €27, HHIII

Not mad about the texture of this, which feels like slightly runny moisturiser. Clinique have a whole new stable of primers, with one to colour correct and one to reduce redness. I didn't feel this benefited my maquillage, so I won't be reaching for it in future.