May 17, 2012

Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum Review and Swatches

There aren’t a ton of products that really grab my attention. It’s hard getting excited about beauty some times when I see a ton of repetitive ideas plus combine Musings of a Muse with my own obsessive beauty junkie ways and it’s understandable that occasionally I go into beauty burn out mode.

But sometimes something wonderful runs across my desk and I proceed to dance around and crow at the glory of it all. Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum is that some kind of wonderful for me.

I haven’t been this excited about a primer since Make Up For Ever introduced HD Elixir.

Facts is facts, this is expensive stuff but worth every single penny.

You NEED it.

Ok, let’s just let it all hang out here, this stuff is crazy stupid awesome.

This is a rich, highly concentrated, intensely hydrating serum. It not only treats skin, with incredibly visible results, but it preps skin for makeup and long wear as well!

I’m not sure how well sensitive and oily skin will take to this but dry skin will absolutely, positively adore it. I’m skeptical that oily skin will enjoy it since it has an oily/serum hybrid formula that might be a little too hydrating for such a skin type and sensitive skin might not love the essential oils in the mix which also provide a stronger lavender scent to the blend. I found the scent pleasant, relaxing, and very soothing but it is strong so if you’re a sensitive you might want to do a little sniff test prior to a purchase.

I want to call it a serum but it’s more of an oil to me. The formula has a thick, oily texture that absorbs easily into skin and leaves behind super hydrated skin with a soft, smooth finish.

A tiny amount will refine and re-texture drier skin creating this incredibly smooth, soft, even layer for makeup to adhere to. In all my makeup years I don’t think I’ve ever had such an amazing canvas as this created to apply my makeup onto. Soft, smooth, a baby’s behind comes to mind! Although my skin isn’t showing a terrible amount of aging as of yet it is dull and I feel like I’m starting to see the signs of smile lines on either sides of my cheeks/mouth area. This instantly gives skin a boast so skin appears more younger, glowing if you will and eases dullness for a brighter appearance in a single application.

The “28” in the name refers to the key ingredients in the formula which include 14 essential oils, 10 lipid-rich plant oils, and four vitamins.

Essential Oils:

  • Lavender (revitalizing, healing)
  • Geranium (balancing)
  • Rose Geranium (balancing, tonic)
  • Vanilla (relaxing, soothing)
  • Clove (anti-acne, scarring)
  • Orange Peel (anti-aging, toning)
  • Amyris (anti-aging, regenerative)
  • Lemon Peel (brightening, refreshing)
  • Petitgrain (anti-acne, balancing)
  • Eucalyptus (healing, calming)
  • Rosemary Leaf (toning, de-congesting)
  • Bois de Rose (moisturizing, anti-aging)
  • Cedar Leaf (healing, softening)
  • Ylang Ylang (balancing, moisturizing)

Lipid-Rich Plant Oils

  • Jojoba (antioxidant)
  • Rose Hips Seed (anti-aging)
  • Evening Primrose (moisturizing)
  • Hazelnut (firming)
  • Borage Seed (moisturizing)
  • Kukui Nut (emollient, moisturizing)
  • Sweet Almond (anti-aging)
  • Green Tea (moisturizing)
  • Olive (balancing)
  • Cherry Pit (conditioning)

Four Vitamins

  • A (anti-aging)
  • B5 (regenerative, moisturizing)
  • C (antioxidant)
  • E (moisturizing)

Hourglass recommends using with their Veil Mineral Primer for long lasting makeup wear however, on its own, it seems to do just fine. My foundation wear seemed to be extended by at least three hours as well as my blush. My entire face just looked a lot less tired as the day progressed and my makeup looked flawless, as if I just applied it.

Overall, it’s possible the makeup gods poured heaven into a bottle here because Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum can do no wrong, only make things right and perfectly flawless. I do recommend it for those with drier skin as I think such a skin type will find it the most beneficial.

Heaven must be missing a primer because Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum is here with me right now!

You NEED to at the very least try this.

It’s $65 for a 1 oz which is a good deal of money to dish out but I do dare say it is worth every single red penny.

I absolutely loved it.

Muse Approved for purchase.

This is headed on the HG (holy grail) list.

Tried it?

Do share!

Would love to hear your thoughts on it.

Hourglass No 28 Primer Serum is available at Sephora,, and

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Cait

    Oh this looks amazing. I wish they had it in the little $17
    size like the regular primer though. $65 is a little much for my broke grad school butt right now lol.

    • the Muse

      it’s expensive, I agree! maybe in the future they’ll offer it in the smaller size…! I hear some folks got a sample at sephora if you really want to give it a whirl ;D

  • Cj

    I don’t know about this, all those oils got me wary lol. Plus their regular primer works amazingly for me so I don’t wanna risk it lol. But if they ever come out with a smaller size or a sampler I’d probably give it a try 🙂

    • the Muse

      mister where you been? imma miss you so hard! it’s gorgeousssssssss for dry skin ;-D loves it!

      • Cj

        Sorry bout that! JC took over and started playing Guild Wars 2 :/ Boys and their games. 😛

        • the Muse

          lmao! love it ;-D Diablo 3 and Max Payne 3 here, I was up until near 3 am with Max Payne *head desk* tired, soooo tired….!

  • Caitlin

    I’m with CJ and her wariness–I can see at least six essential oils right off the bat that are irritants (and thus bad for any skin, but especially for sensitive skin like mine). Also, that clear glass won’t keep the vitamin A stable, so that’s pretty much a worthless addition. In spite of your glowing review (and skin!), I’m pretty skeptical of this being worth the price tag…

    • the Muse

      his wariness caitlin ;-D CJ is a lovely boy! I agree, the essential oils seem like a killer for sensitive skin that’s why I mentioned it in my review, def seems like a break out waiting to happen! I’m terribly dry and dull though and my skin soaked it up in a major way ;-D I likey!

  • Sara Elisabeth

    You’ve convinced me that I need this, but I’ll have to wait for Sephora F&F sale to try this.

  • Shayne A

    Musey, I got the little sample that Sephora offered & tried it two days in a row. Now, I must preface this by saying that I have abominably oily skin. I usually forget my Boscia blotting papers & have to use one of those seat protectors in the bathroom. (Gawd they make amazing blotting papers!) But anyway, I digress. When I use the protectors at 9:30, by the time I’m finished you can see thru the thing I’m already that oily! So when I used this, while it brightened my skin (and also made me look less tired), my face was oily by the time I got to work both days, which is 6:30am. I’m sure for drier skins it is an absolute HG primer, but for us oily skins ladies, I have to say it’s a no-go. It smells fantastic, though!!

  • Laura H

    Oh no ! I had totally written this off because of the price but it looks like I’ll be buying it now !
    Not to mention I just got a 10% off VIB coupon… $$$ 😀

  • Stephanie

    You can get a free deluxe sample from Sephora online with any purchase right now. The code is prime28. I just got mine yesterday. Don’t know how long the code is good for though!

  • Comrade Garlic

    I was so tempted to buy this when the ever so lovely Josh put some on my hand. But with summer coming up and living in a swamp I decided against it. I’m waiting for winter.

  • Susan

    Love this stuff! 🙂 Got a deluxe sample from Sephora and bought the full size! I have sensitive combination skin and this stuff works great for my dry patches and doesn’t break me out. Probably the best primer ever. Although I thought that about the Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer until I tried this one, lol.

    • the Muse

      susan feel the same way, never experienced a primer like this. outside of MUFE elixir, which wowed me, this is my new go to! worth every penny!

  • Jillybean

    heads up all – there’s a code for a deluxe sample with purchase on the sephora website – PRIME28. doesn’t say a minimum either! glad I read this review first though – doesn’t sound like it’ll go well with my oily skin!

    • kimkats

      Oh crap… Now I need to buy something at…. 😀

  • kimkats

    Wow – that sounds amazing, but I have to say, I’m a little put off by their suggestion that you use this AND the mineral primer together!! Um, guyz, I don’t have that kinda $$ to slap on my kisser even before I put on makeup! Not to mention that – well, that’s just a lot of stuff on your face. I think I’d start to feel smothered in it…
    I will see if I can score a sample of it next time I’m at sephora tho – it should be a lovely moisturizer on its own, esp. in the colder fall/winter months. It would be a great buy for the F&F sale, like Sara said!

  • Christine

    Muse, do you actually *have* a HG list somewhere on this blog? I would love to see that! And I couldn’t find one in search or tags…

    • the Muse

      i don’t christine but I have a fab fabs category which features some of my favorite products.

  • Coco

    How do you compare this with korres primer? Which one is better for dry skin?