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Updated on October 13, 2023

Overview

What they are

These products are both vegan, cruelty-free, and reef safe face primers. They have a total of 2 ingredients in common

Cool Features

They both contain Vitamin E

Suited For

They're both likely to be good for anti aging, brightening skin and scar healing

Free From

They both do not contain any harsh alcohols, common allergens, parabens or sulfates

What's Inside

They both contain silicones

We independently verify ingredients, and our claims are backed by peer-reviewed research. Spot a product that needs an update? Let us know.

NYX Cosmetics Marshmellow Smoothing Primer
e.l.f. cosmetics Hydrating Face Primer
e.l.f. cosmetics Hydrating Face Primer
Face Primer
American Brand United States

Ingredient Info

Click any item below to learn more and see relevant ingredients

At a glance

Click on any of the items below to learn more

Notable Ingredients

Benefits

Concerns

Notable Ingredients

Benefits

Concerns

Ingredients Side-by-side

found in both products
Marshmellow Smoothing Primer
Water Skin Conditioning, Solvent

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

Butylene Glycol Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
1 / 0

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Glycerin Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting
0 / 0 Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
2 Benefits

Glycerin is already naturally found in your skin. It helps moisturize and protect your skin.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Butyrospermum Parkii Butter Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconMay worsen Oily Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Helps hydrate Dry SkinHelps hydrate Dry Skin Icon 2 Concerns

Butyrospermum Parkii Butter is a plant lipid from the fruit of the Shea Tree. It is an effective skin hydrator and emollient.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Decyl Cocoate Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Decyl Cocoate isn't fungal acne safe.

Unknown Full details ->
Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate Emulsifying
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate is created from the diester of stearic acid and the condensation product of methylglucose and Polyglycerin-3.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Caprylyl Methicone Skin Conditioning
Silicon Icon
SiliconSilicon Icon

Caprylyl Methicone is a type of silicone.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Dicaprylyl Carbonate Emollient, Skin Conditioning

Dicaprylyl Carbonate comes from carbonic acid and caprylyl alcohol, a fatty alcohol. It is an emollient and gives skin a velvet feel. The sources of Dicaprylyl Carbonate may be synthetic or from animals.

Di-C12-13 Alkyl Malate Emollient, Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Di-C12-13 Alkyl Malate.

Unknown Full details ->
1,2-Hexanediol Skin Conditioning, Solvent

1,2-Hexanediol is a multi-tasker ingredient. It acts as a preservative to increase shelf-life and can aid other preservatives in preventing microbe growth. 1,2-Hexanediol also helps the skin retain moisture as a humectant.

Polymethylsilsesquioxane
Silicon Icon
SiliconSilicon Icon

Polymethylsilsesquioxane is a silicone used as a film forming agent.

Disliked Full details ->
Althaea Officinalis Root Extract Skin Conditioning

Althaea Officinalis Root Extract is from a plant called the Marsh Mallow plant. This plant is indigenous to Europe, West Asia, and North Africa.

Chlorella Vulgaris Extract Skin Conditioning

Chlorella Vulgaris Extract comes from the microalga, Chlorella vulgaris. It is hydrating and contains antioxidants. Studies also show Chlorella Vulgaris may help in rebuilding collagen and elastin.

Stearic Acid Cleansing, Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
2-3 / 0 May worsen Oily Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
2 Concerns

Stearic Acid is a fatty acid. It is an emollient, emulsifier, and texture enhancer.

2-3 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Potassium Cetyl Phosphate Emulsifying

Potassium Cetyl Phosphate is the potassium salt of a mixture. This mixture consists of the esters from phosphoricacid and cetyl alcohol.

Sorbitan Sesquioleate Emulsifying
0-1 / 0 Bad for Acne Prone Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
2 Concerns

Sorbitan Sesquioleate is derived from sorbitol and oleic acid. It is an emulsifier and prevents ingredients from separating.

0-1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Carbomer Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming
1 / 0

Carbomer is a polymer of acrylic acid. Its main role is to create gel consistency within products.

1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Disliked Full details ->
Glucose Humectant

Glucose is a simple sugar and is the most important source of energy in all organisms.

Fructooligosaccharides Humectant, Skin Conditioning

Fructooligosaccharides is an alternative sweetener. It is often derived from the blue agave plant.

Fructose Humectant

Fructose is fruit/plant sugar. It can be found in apples, figs, and honey.

Glyceryl Caprylate Emollient, Emulsifying

Glyceryl Caprylate comes from glycerin and caprylic acid, a fatty acid from coconut.

Triethoxycaprylylsilane

Triethoxycaprylylsilane is a silicone used to bind and stabilize ingredients.

Disliked Full details ->
Sodium Polyacrylate Absorbent, Emollient, Emulsion Stabilising

Sodium Polyacrylate is the sodium salt of polyacrylic acid.

Sodium Polyacrylate Starch Absorbent, Emulsion Stabilising

We don't have a description for Sodium Polyacrylate Starch.

Unknown Full details ->
Palmitic Acid Emollient, Emulsifying
2 / 0 May worsen Oily Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
2 Concerns

Palmitic Acid is a fatty acid found in our skin. In cosmetics, it is usually derived from palm oil. It is a cleanser, emollient, and emulsifier.

2 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Tromethamine Buffering, Masking

Tromethamine is an aliphatic compound. An aliphatic compound is an organic compound with open-chained carbon atoms. It is synthetically created. Tromethamine is used to balance pH and improve texture.

Aluminum Hydroxide Emollient, Humectant, Skin Protecting

Aluminum Hydroxide is a form of aluminum. It can be naturally found in nature as the mineral gibbsite. In cosmetics, Aluminum Hydroxide is used as a colorant, pH adjuster, and absorbent.

Disliked Full details ->
Citric Acid Buffering, Masking
AHA IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
AHAAHA Icon 4 Benefits 2 Concerns

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

Disliked Full details ->
Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate

Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate is used to help stabilize a product.

Xanthan Gum Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming

Xanthan gum is used as a stabilizer and thickener within cosmetic products. It helps give products a sticky, thick feeling - preventing them from being too runny.

Disliked Full details ->
Synthetic Fluorphlogopite

Synthetic Fluorphlogopite is the synthethic version of mica. It consists of fluorine, aluminum and silicate.

Ethylhexylglycerin Skin Conditioning

Ethylhexylglycerin (we can't pronounce this either) is commonly used as a preservative and skin softener. It is derived from glyceryl.

Polyglyceryl-2 Diisostearate Emulsifying
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Polyglyceryl-2 Diisostearate isn't fungal acne safe.

Disliked Full details ->
Cetyl Alcohol Emollient, Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising
2 / 2 Fatty Alcohol Icon
Fatty AlcoholFatty Alcohol Icon

Cetyl Alcohol is a fatty alcohol. Fatty Alcohols are most often used as an emollient or to thicken a product.

2 Com. / 2 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Tocopherol Antioxidant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
0-3 / 0-3 Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation Icon
Vitamin EVitamin E Icon AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon 4 Benefits May cause irritationMay cause irritation Icon

Tocopherol (also known as Vitamin E) is a common antioxidant used to help protect the skin from free-radicals and strengthen the skin barrier. It's also fat soluble - this means our skin is great at absorbing it.

0-3 Com. / 0-3 Irr.
Tocopheryl Acetate Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0 Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps brighten skin Icon
Vitamin EVitamin E Icon AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon Helps brighten skinHelps brighten skin Icon

Tocopheryl Acetate is AKA Vitamin E. It is an antioxidant and protects your skin from free radicals. Free radicals damage the skin by breaking down collagen.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Phenoxyethanol Preservative
Preservative Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent germ and microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

Very Disliked Full details ->
CI 77491 Cosmetic Colorant

Ci 77491 is also hydrated iron III oxide. It's sole purpose is to give a red/pink hue to products.

CI 77891 Cosmetic Colorant

Ci 77891 is a white pigment from Titanium dioxide. It is naturally found in minerals such as rutile and ilmenite.

Disliked Full details ->
Parfum Masking, Perfuming
Fragrance IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
FragranceFragrance Icon 2 Concerns

Parfum is a catch-all term for an ingredient or more that is used to give aroma to products. Parfum, or fragrance, can be a blend of hundreds of chemicals or plant oils. This means every product with "fragrance" or "Parfum" in the ingredients list is a different mixture.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Hydrating Face Primer
Dimethicone Emollient, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting
1 / 0 Silicon Icon
SiliconSilicon Icon

Dimethicone is a silicone used for making products smooth and silky. It also has the added benefit of sealing in hydration. The amount of dimethicone found in beauty products is considered safe and non-comedogenic, meaning it won't clog pores.

1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Tridecyl Trimellitate Emollient, Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Tridecyl Trimellitate.

Unknown Full details ->
Dimethicone Crosspolymer Emulsion Stabilising

Dimethicone Crosspolymer is a silicone created by modifying dimethicone with hydrocarbon side chains. Due to its large size, it does not penetrate skin. It is considered non-occlusive.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Vitis Vinifera Seed Oil Emollient, Skin Conditioning
2-3 / 0 Oil IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
OilOil Icon Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Vitis Vinifera Seed Oil comes from the grape vine. Grape seeds are a byproduct of creating grape juice or wine.

2-3 Com. / 0 Irr.
Phenoxyethanol Preservative
Preservative Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent germ and microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Caprylyl Glycol Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning

Caprylyl Glycol is a humectant and emollient, meaning it attracts and preserves moisture.

Retinyl Palmitate Skin Conditioning
1-3 / 1-3 Retinoid IconGood for Oily Skin IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps fight Acne IconCan worsen Dry Skin IconMay cause irritation IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
RetinoidRetinoid Icon 7 Benefits 3 Concerns

Retinyl palmitate is a form of retinoid. Retinoids are the superstar class of anti-aging ingredients that include tretinoin and retinol.

1-3 Com. / 1-3 Irr.
Tocopheryl Acetate Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0 Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps brighten skin Icon
Vitamin EVitamin E Icon AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon Helps brighten skinHelps brighten skin Icon

Tocopheryl Acetate is AKA Vitamin E. It is an antioxidant and protects your skin from free radicals. Free radicals damage the skin by breaking down collagen.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Ascorbyl Palmitate Antioxidant, Masking
2 / 0 Vitamin C IconAntioxidant IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Vitamin CVitamin C Icon AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon 6 Benefits Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Ascorbyl Palmitate is created by combining pure Vitamin C and palmitic acid. It is an antioxidant and helps reduce hyperpigmentation.

2 Com. / 0 Irr.
Disliked Full details ->
Silica Dimethyl Silylate Emollient, Emulsion Stabilising

This silica is mainly used to thicken oils and suspend particles in oils. It is not water soluble.

Very Disliked Full details ->

Ingredients Explained

These ingredients are found in both products.

Ingredients higher up in an ingredient list are typically present in a larger amount.

Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
Liked

Tocopheryl Acetate is AKA Vitamin E. It is an antioxidant and protects your skin from free radicals. Free radicals damage the skin by breaking down collagen.

One study found using Tocopheryl Acetate with Vitamin C decreased the number of sunburned cells.

Tocopheryl Acetate is commonly found in both skincare and dietary supplements.

Learn more about Tocopheryl Acetate
Preservative
Very Disliked

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent germ and microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

It's often used in formulations along with Caprylyl Glycol to preserve the shelf life of products.

Ingredient Ratings

Here's what our community thinks of the ingredients in these two products.

Marshmellow Smoothing Primer
13
7
17
3
liked
mixed
disliked
not rated
Hydrating Face Primer
2
2
5
1
liked
mixed
disliked
not rated

When to use

4 Routines
50% use in am
50% use in pm
100% use every day
5 Routines
80% use in am
20% use in pm
80% use every day

Reviews

Here's what our community thinks

NYX Cosmetics Marshmellow Smoothing Primer 40 ingredients

Marshmellow Smoothing Primer hasn't been rated yet.
Rate it now

e.l.f. cosmetics Hydrating Face Primer 10 ingredients

3.0 /5
from 1 rating