Monday, March 4, 2024
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Essence Hydro Hero Primer Review & Swatches

Essence Hydro Hero Primer ($4.99/1.01 oz) is a new facial primer that contains hyaluronic acid and cucumber extract to smooth and provide “48 hours hydration” while allow prepping for makeup. I’m all about moisture. I’m dry and it’s Winter so bring on the hydration. And hey, at $4.99 this seemed a great little budget pickup!

Jump ahead for the review.

I’ve always preferred hydrating primers over matte or silicone ones but a few years ago when gripping primers became a thing I switched out all of my hydrating primers and ended up with tons of stickier, gel facial primers like Dermablend Insta-Grip Jelly Primer 3-in-1 Multi-Tasking Primer, ELF Power Grip Primer, and Milk Hydro Grip Hydrating Makeup Primer! I can honestly say the only real moisturizing primer that remains in my current stash is Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base (and she’s one I’ll never part with! 25% off today at if you need to stock up! No code needed!)!

That being said I’m always curious enough to try something new even though I do prefer gripping primer nowadays which led me to my purchase of the new Essence Hydro Hero Primer. This arrives in a 1.01 oz squeeze tube that’ll set you back $4.99. It also has a needle nose applicator for easy application.

There’s actually nothing to get too excited about here because many of the solid ingredients like Niacinamide and Sodium Hyaluronate are very low on the list meaning you probably won’t benefit too highly from them. That being said it does contain a good deal of hydrating ones like Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Glycerin, and water. It also contains silica that will provide a little oil control. It has a light, cucumber-like fragrance as well which I personally didn’t like but you may find it refreshing! It does contain cucumber juice which may account for the fragrance but it does, also, contain fragrance additives. One thing to note is it does contain a good deal of coconut. I know some people sort of end up breaking out when coconut is around! I happen to be one. I don’t break out really but coconut anything seems to make me itchy. Thankfully, I didn’t experience such with this formula. The formula is a thin, creamy consistency and it does absorb easily. It’s actually loaded up with some very nice hydrating ingredients but on my dry skin, I really didn’t notice much moisture. The moisture it provided was VERY, very light and nowhere as near as what I’d personally need for a good, flawless foundation application. I can tell you right off the bat after application I applied my concealer followed by my foundation and immediately my foundation was adhering to the dryness around my nose and middle cheek area giving it a patchy appearance. I wouldn’t say it extended the wear of my foundation but it isn’t marked as providing longer wear either.

I think this is a nice little budget pick if it turned into a good experience for me. Sadly, it didn’t. I need way more moisture in my primer and this simply didn’t give me that. That being said, oily or combo skin might enjoy it for lightweight moisture and prepping.

Essence Hydro Hero Primer is available now.

Have you tried it?

Where to buy


Essence Hydro Hero Primer is a new, hydrating facial that launched for Spring 2023. This one is a budget-friendly five dollars but it is smaller at 1.01 oz. It really is loaded up with excellent hydrating ingredients and has a light, creamy consistency that absorbs easily and has a cucumber fragrance. Unfortunately, even with all those good ingredients it didn’t quite provide the moisture my dry skin needed. I felt my foundation applied a bit patchy on drier areas of my face (like around my nose and cheeks) and it didn’t provide the smoothest finish I’d get from my other facial primers. I did not notice it extending the wear of my foundation.

Aqua (Water), Silica, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Glycerin, Cetearyl Olivate, Dimethicone, Isoamyl Laurate, Niacinamide, Pentylene Glycol, Sorbitan Olivate, Xylitylglucoside, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Juice, Panthenol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Anhydroxylitol, Propylene Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Xylitol, Allantoin, Betaine, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Juice, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Sulfite, Lactic Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Phosphoric Acid, Citric Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Parfum (Fragrance).


  • Inexpensive.
  • Good packaging.
  • Light, absorbs easily.


  • Not keen on the scent (cucumber).
  • Wasn’t nearly hydrating enough for drier skin.
  • Didn’t extend the wear of the foundation.


Essence Hydro Hero Primer Review might prove a nice, light hydrating facial primer for oily or combo skin!


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