Thursday, January 21, 2016

Review: Nivea Men Sensitive Post Shave Balm (as Makeup Primer)


In case you don't keep up with the latest trends over on "the youtubes," you may not know about this one. I believe this all started with this video by NickiTutorials (she is credited with this discovery), but I actually first heard about it after watching this video by YoungWildandPolished.

In a nutshell, Nivea Men Sensitive Post Shave Balm is now widely used by many makeup lovers as...face primer. Yes, the stuff you put on your skin before you apply your makeup. Now, if you look at the ingredients (which you'll see in a second), the second ingredient is glycerin, which is in just about every face primer on the market. I wanted to give this a try because you know I'm ALL about affordable solutions when it comes to makeup (as well as using products in unconventional ways to help save a buck or two). Plus, unlike many traditional after shave balms, this one contains no alcohol (when I say alcohol, I'm talking about isopropyl alcohol, SD alcohol, denatured alcohol, ethyl alcohol, and rubbing alcohol, which can have a drying effect on certain skin types--especially my own). This product does contain witch hazel though, in case you're sensitive to that.

Nivea Men Sensitive Post Shave Balm
(retail: around $5, 3.3 oz.)

I picked up this bottle at my local Target (in the men's shaving aisle) for $5.59 (you can also get it on the Target website), but you can get this product just about everywhere. Nivea Men products go on sale constantly at the drugstores, so you can definitely get it at a better price than I did if you keep an eye on sales/coupons/store rewards.


Ingredients




Made in Germany



This bottle is made of milk glass with a thick plastic screw-top lid. The bottle is substantial--it has some weight to it and it feels a tiny bit heavy in the hand (especially when compared to plastic bottles).


Back of bottle


The mouth on this bottle isn't super wide, and I don't find it difficult to control how much you dispense. The product itself is quite thin and runny, but you can tilt the bottle at a slight angle and it comes out slowly enough into your palm so that you shouldn't have much trouble controlling the amount.


In the time it took for me to pour a little onto the back of my hand, grab my camera and take this pic, what you see above is how much product dripped down my hand. So again, it's a thin formula.

Now, if you google "nivea post shave balm as makeup primer" (which you can do by clicking HERE), you'll see many, many, MANY glowing reviews. So I was extremely excited, and hopeful, when I started using this product.

On day one of my testing, I tried this product in place of my normal moisturizer, before my makeup. So the only thing on my skin prior to makeup was this product. That day, I used concealer, powder foundation, and setting powder on my face, in addition to some cream blush, eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara, brow pencil, and lipstick. 

By the end of day one, I was pretty impressed. My makeup looked great, even after a full eight hours of wear. I had a teeny tiny bit of breakthrough shine on my nose, but that's it. If you're a longtime reader of my blog, you know I have super oily skin, so having just breakthrough shine on my nose after eight hours is seriously impressive.

But sadly, after day one, things seemed to fall apart. 

Over the course my testing period (four weeks), I tried this product with every combination I could possibly think of, including but not limited to:
  • Directly on bare skin
  • On top of moisturizer
  • On top of moisturizer + serum
  • On top of moisturizer + sunscreen


And I tried it underneath all of the following:
  • Powder foundation
  • Liquid foundation
  • Long-wear liquid foundation
  • BB/CC creams
  • Cushion compact
  • Tinted moisturizer


I also set all of the above products with one of the following:
  • Pressed powder
  • Pressed oil-control powder
  • Loose powder


After that first day, I just could not seem to recapture those great results. I tried using less, I tried using more. I tried letting Nivea Men Post Shave Balm set on my skin for a few minutes before applying my makeup, and I also tried applying my makeup directly after application. No matter what I did, it failed me.

When I say it failed me, I'm talking about how my makeup looked an hour or two after application. On most days, I noticed a cakeiness that isn't usually there when I don't use this balm. My makeup seems to pool up into my fine lines, and it caked up really badly around my eyes and nose in particular. In terms of oil control, I found that for my oily skin, this product never worked as well as it did that first day. For the rest of my testing period, I found that within two to three hours after application, I could both see and feel a greasy, sticky, tacky film on my face. One day in particular after using this product, I was out running errands with Mr. G and he looked at me in full sunlight and said, "Babe, what's wrong with your makeup today?" I looked in the mirror and was pretty much horrified. My makeup had settled into all of my fine lines, it was caked up around my nose, and my face was super greasy looking. And this was just three or four hours after application.

As for the scent of this product, the fragrance isn't super strong, but I definitely notice it during application and it does seem to linger for a few hours. I wouldn't call it a "manly" scent (whatever that means), but more of a unisex scent that reminds me of Irish Spring or Zest bar soap. Clean and fresh. I've heard some people mention that there's a fragrance-free version of this product out there, but I certainly couldn't find one. The only other version I could find was THIS ONE, which is the "cooling" version (and also contains fragrance). 

FINAL VERDICT: Oh how I wish this product worked for me in the same way that it works for countless others, but I'm afraid that's just not the case. That first day? Great results. Every day after that? Horrible. There must be something in this product that just doesn't agree with my particular body chemistry, but that's not to say that it won't work for you! If you're in the market for a new, affordable makeup primer, you may want to give this a shot. I personally will be sticking with my holy grail Black Radiance Complexion Perfection Primer (same parent company as Wet n Wild), which is also very affordable. The kaolin clay in that primer really works well with my oily skin and it's been my holy grail primer for years now. This Nivea product definitely didn't knock it out of its Number 1 position (or even come close).

Are you a fan of Nivea Men Post Shave Balm? If so, I would absolutely love to hear your success stories!

The products featured in this post were purchased with personal funds. For more information, click here.
SHARE:

66 comments

  1. This broke me out, something with it doesn't agree with me either. The trader joes antioxidant facial serum is AMAZING as a primer though, I've continuously had great results without any issues to my skin

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You might me sensitive to the glycerin. I know my skin breaks out badly with anything that has that ingredient.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the tip about the Trader Joe's serum! I love some other skincare items from TJ's, so I'll be sure to look into this one. :)

      Delete
    3. I know right away I can't use this stuff, because oddly the witch hazel breaks me out. I don't have issues with glycerin though. Everyone's skin is different.

      Delete
    4. Have you tried milk of magnesium? Works awesome! Google it....

      Delete
  2. I had the near identical results as yourself. I was so disappointed & ended up returning it just yesterday. Win some, loose some. Thanks for reviewing it! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aaah shoot. Well at least I'm not alone? Lol! ;)

      Delete
    2. Not alone! :) All those glowing reviews were what made it too good to be true.

      Delete
  3. It didn't work at all for me either :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It did not work out for me too... Oily skin and had lotta shine on my t zone in few hours

      Delete
  4. Hi, G! Curious about your holy grail primer mentioned...is it available in any stores? I'd love to find something to keep my crazy oiliness under control! Thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, Black Radiance is available at select CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Walmart, and Target stores. You can check the store locator on their site here:

      http://www.blackradiancebeauty.com/store-locator

      Delete
    2. After G mentioned the Black Radiance primer I could not get it out of my thoughts everytime I passed it at Walgreens. I had a few primers I wanted to get through ( darn you travel size items at Ulta and Sephora's checkout line!! lol ) Anyways I used a 1.00 off peelie I had grabbed off another item in a display, which brought it down to only $5.79!! OMG its my HG primer!! I am so grateful that she mentioned that one, because to be honest I would have just passed it up. The BR primer, as well as the NYX Angel Veil are my favs even over highend! Thank you G for another informative review, as well as the introduction to my BR primer that has changed my foundation/makeup application and longevity for this fellow San Diegan Oil Slick!!

      Delete
    3. Oh Ashley, that's FANTASTIC! I'm so happy you took a chance on the BR primer and that it paid off!! Yay!!!!! Your comment totally made my day. Sending you big hugs, from one oil slick SD girl to another! Lol! xo

      Delete
  5. Much like any product everyone's results are different. I seem to have a very similar skin type to yours, usually really oily, large pores, texture and fine lines. I, however, had the exact opposite results as you I think it us HG status for sure. It minimizes my pores, hold my oil at bay and helps my foundation last longer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely! That's exactly why I said it was still worth a try (in my "final verdict"). :) So very happy it's working so well for you. Yay!!!

      Delete
    2. You described my skin type exactly! May I ask what products you use together with the post shave balm? Foundation, moisturizer? Thank you!

      Delete
  6. it worked for me and I have combo skin. More oily in the summer than in the winter. I have been using it daily for about 2 weeks now. First I put on my moisturizer Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel‑Cream then I follow with the nivea shave balm, then I put my Boots No7 Beautifully Matte Make Up Base in my tzone to control my oils. Without that step i get a little oily using just the shave balm. No breakouts my skin looks more clear if anything. I think its good for those with dry skin.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad to hear you found a winning combo that works with your skin! That's fantastic! :D

      Delete
  7. Aaaaamazing review !!!! Thank you!!!! Love your blog one of my favorite !!!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. It didn't work for me either. It didn't make my makeup worse, but it definitely didn't help either. I'll be trying your HG to see if it works for me :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would absolutely love to know what you think if you give the Black Radiance a shot! Please keep me posted? :)

      Delete
    2. Definitely! There aren't any stores in my area that carry Black Radiance, so I'm gonna grab it from drugstore.com :)

      Delete
  9. My face looked really cakey when I used a moisturizer then this primer on top but recently I've been using this as a moisturizer and it works okay - but no amazing results. Disappointed!! I wish it controlled my oily ness and made my makeup last longer. The primer that you're talking about - does it prolong your makeup?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it made my face cakey even when I didn't use any additional moisturizer. Such a bummer! :(

      And yes, the Black Radiance keeps my makeup looking fresh for several hours longer than when I don't use it (in addition to controlling oil). :)

      Delete
  10. "Babe, what's wrong with your makeup today?" ...oh no, every woman's nightmare! Haha But for real, I'm in the middle of testing this on myself...still unsure how I feel about it!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I had the same results with this (minus your one good day lol). I only spent like $5 on it so at least it didn't set me back too much but I was super excited to try this and really disappointed.

    I'm one of those people that use Monistat Chafing Gel as a primer (which I love and would totally recommend) but my skin is ridiculously dry right now.

    I decided to test it out by doing one side of my face with my normal primer and one side with the Nivea balm. At first the balm felt really moisturizing so I got excited...but then when I put on my foundation I immediately noticed the difference. With my normal primer I do still have a lot of dry spots but using this as a primer my entire skin looked dry and it really emphasized any lines and hair. I tried it later on with different foundations, I combined it with my primer, tried a serum or moisturizing first...nothing. It looked bad every single time.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have been using this as a primer for about one month. I have dry skin, and it keeps my makeup looking flawless all day. Seriously impressed. The only complaint is that I've noticed a blemish or two, every few days, that i don't normally get. But I'm not sure if it's because of this product.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am going to say something about this lotion. I never actually tried it on my face...but I have used it as a lotion on my bikini area after shaving and let me tell you...BUMPS BE GONE. Since this isn't described as a primer...I never really thought of it that way. They also say Milk of Magnesia works well too (which seems kinda gross). So, it doesn't surprise me you got those results. I recommend you use it after shaving legs, armpits, or bikini area. Like I said, it works wonders.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for recommending this use! I have been getting bad bumps on the lower part of my legs after shaving recently, and I think I may try this. Worth a shot for a few bucks, right?? :)

      Delete
    2. I loathe those bumps. Must try this! :)

      Delete
  14. Ahh, so sad. I have mature skin (39, omg) I love this product and have used it under foundation, just concealer, and just bbcream. I have normal to dry skin. Thank you for your website, I follow you daily and have learned much
    Thank you for your honesty! :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. I had good and bad days when trying this out. My skin goes from super oily to combo. On good days I would have this slight "glow" not oily looking but not completely matte looking either and my makeup would last all day. But the bad days I would have splotchy areas, my pores would be so visible and my makeup would melt off. I saw where somewhere that you are supposed to rub it into your skin until it gets tacky but I haven't tried that yey.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I tried this product after hearing Nikki review it and have to say I love it. I have used with regular foundation, bbcream, powder foundation, etc, I have to say I love it! For me it keeps my foundation matte (or dewey dependant on foundation) all day and I looked,flawless. I'm normal skin maybe dry sometimes so maybe that has something to do with it?? Thank you so much for your blog, I think I've said it before but this is seriously the most informative beauty blog in existence. Keep it up G, amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Aww that sucks! Seriously, I wish it would have worked for you. I know someone mentioned in a YouTube comment section that you should maybe press it in and continue to do so with your fingers, without adding more product, until it becomes tacky. Not just letting it sit but actually creating a tacky surface by continuously pressing it into your skin.

    Me--- I sweat... a lot and I wore this on a night that I was sure my makeup would melt off and slide into patchy messes. Girl! At the end of the night I was a sweaty mess but my makeup was still on flawlessly. My foundation, my eye shadow, my concealer... all of it was on point as if I had just put it on. No cakey cakes and no patches of misfortune. I felt like it was a win! I don't really wear makeup that often despite my obsession with buying it but I'll put it to the test on Saturday against the arctic temps currently hitting my little corner of the world. I would like to also note that I washed, exfoliated and put an asian toner on my face a long with my Mario Badescou(sp) toner on top and no moisturizer as the balm is supposed to act as a moisturizer in its intended use. The balm became my moisturizer and primer. I also set the whole thing with my MAC fix+ when I was done with my look.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you put this directly on your eye area?

      Delete
  18. I have dry skin and this didn't work for me either. I have major issues with makeup settling into fine lines and caking up so I need to use a moisturizing primer...this just didn't have enough moisture for me. I was bummed because I saw a lot of raves about it on YouTube. :/

    ReplyDelete
  19. Totally unrelated, but target has a mineral fusion moisturizer on clearance for 5.08 it has that clay stuff in it.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I have so many samples of various primers I'm set for at least a year.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I tried it last summer.. made me a greasy mess. Pulled it back out this winter and did better, but after a week or so started having serious skin congestion issues.. basically it was clogging my pores.
    Also wanted to mention I just looked up the ingredients on this yesterday during a discussion elsewhere and they were quite different to the ones on your box.. and it WAS the sensitive version I was comparing it to the regular which contains alcohol...possibly a reformulation so more than one version out there.
    As for oily skin primers.. really enjoying the M4E mattifying primer (it's the only pore filling/smoothing/mattifying primer that has ever done all those things well on my skin) but that is HE.. the new CG one also worked well it's very liquidy and just mattifying no smoothing. Boots No7 matte primer worked well too, and the BR complexion perfection which I haven't used in a long time. I usually have to resort to MOM in the summer though, nothing else beats that. Additionally I've noticed my skin gets used to primers over time.. switching them out seems to make them more effective.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I wish it had worked for you but I'm glad I'm not alone. After all the awesome reviews I saw, I was certain. I must be a mutant. It did nothing good for me at all. :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's exactly how I felt lmao! "Why am I the only one this didn't work for??" Glad to see I wasn't alone in my results!

      Delete
  23. So so complete and informative review! I have been intrigated by this product but i was hesitating because of the perfume in it. But now for me it is a no no. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Didn't work for me either. Maybe it only works for normal to dry skin? I have tried a lot of primers. Hourglass works, but I breakout after. So far nothing else other than MOM works for me.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thanks for this review! Yep... I first heard it from Nikkietutorials because I subscribe to her channel and she has been using it for a while now. Though I believe it hasn't been that long. I wanted to try it out since her skin always look amazing after applying foundation. However, one thing I am not sure that I would like is her mentioning it feeling tacky on the skin which suppose to be a great way for your foundation to adhere to. Not so sure if I would like having that tackiness feeling And I definitely have super oily skin like you. I find that during the winter, my face is dry and peely yet it's even more oily and my foundation does not last as long. I haven't try much face primer overall both drugstore/highend because it is another step to the makeup process. I don't have the money to spend on the high end one and even find the Benefit primer isn't as helpful on my skin. I am currently trying to use up my Rimmel primer from their Stay Matte line which is not a good line overall. The primer does nothing on my skin and it seems to even break down my foundation much quicker. I wish my local Walmarts would have Black Radiance to try out your holy grail primer.

    ReplyDelete
  26. The problem with this product is that it contain witch hazel that has high tannin content, its irritating because it constricts blood flow.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I blame the fact that I knew nothing of this product on my very limited YouTube viewing (see the Wednesday question) and the fact that I only read a total of 3 blogs! But like Randi said above, I have so many primers from Ipsy and Birchbox that I just wouldn't bother trying anything else for a long time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't feel bad, I watch a lot of YB beauty bloggers and I'd never ever heard of this.

      Delete
  28. I haven't tried a different primer since I found out about Monistat Anti-Chafing Gel. Love that stuff :)

    ReplyDelete
  29. Thank You so much for testing all the combinations for us. I wanted to try it myself. i am so sorry that the product didn't work for. I was getting really excited when i read the first few paragraphs. But you saved me from the struggle.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I had the same experience...great first day, awful after that AND it made me break out with the jumbo sized, cystic pimples :(

    ReplyDelete
  31. Yes, thanks for this comprehensive review. I use powder foundation and I was suprised that this caused it to look so bad. Also, it broke me out.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I use that Monistat anti chafing gel as primer, that works great for me.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Bummer that this didn't work for you. From my experience, the majority of bloggers have dry skin, so maybe it works better for that skin type.

    From oily-girl to oily-girl - have you tried Nyx Angel Veil? I've tried my share of high-end primers (pore-minimizing, oil-control, the works), but Angel Veil is seriously a game-changer. I would love to know what you think!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I totally agree! I've tried so many different primers over the last year and the Nyx Angel Veil is the only one I've repurchased. It smooths my skin, helps keep me matte and my makeup last longer. It's a little pricier but I buy mine at Ulta and use their coupons.

      Delete
  34. I'm wondering what skin types this actually works best for. I've heard some hype around it but I haven't tried it either, I'm too much of a cynic. I am DEFINITELY going to try the Black Radiance primer since my Hg is Laura Mercier and that stuff is pretty expensive.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I picked up this product after hearing many reviews on YouTube. I like it and it works well for me. I have dry to combination skin, that is more on the dry side, especially during winter time. After that being said, I like it but it doesn't WOW me and I don't tend to reach for it much. It isn't really anything special to me. I do use it occasionally and get good results, but I have other primers I like better that product the same if better results. Hopefully this helps others in their buying process.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Have you seen the new Black Radiance primer? I couldn't get the nivea to work for me either so I decided to pour a lil into my NYX first base primer spray since I was almost out and the results was amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  37. G, I decided to skip the Nivea post shave balm and try your HG primer instead. I LOVE IT! Thanks for even mentioning it because the Black Radiance primer is keeping my oily skin in check.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Does it bother anyone that the BR primer is made in China? I'm sure a lot of products are made there but that just sketches me out a little.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It does not personally bother me, because I trust products made by Wet n Wild and Black Radiance (same parent company) as well as other brands that make products in China like elf, NYX, Too Faced, etc. For me it depends on the brand itself when it comes to country of origin. I don't judge based solely on the country.

      Delete
  39. I went and bought the nivea balm was weary didn't think it would work on my combination skin but I was pleasantly surprised I put on under my foundation an then put on my avene mist stayed on all day no issues

    ReplyDelete
  40. It depends on the type of your skin! it basically works for OILY SKIN only as they suffer when using primers. So its not for everyone really!

    ReplyDelete
  41. For those of you who said this product did not help the oily skin, the original version of the balm contains alcohol which is a key player in shine control. Maybe its worth a try? :)

    ReplyDelete

I love and encourage comments here at Nouveau Cheap, and I do not censor comments unless they violate my comment policy, which you can view here.

Please refrain from comments that contain:
• Links to your own blog or website
• Advertisements or referral links

Thanks very much for your help in keeping this a spam-free zone.

© 2009- Nouveau Cheap. All rights reserved.
BLOGGER TEMPLATE MADE BY pipdig