REVIEW: Benefit Cosmetics Stay Don’t Stray Eye Primer

| 22 February , 2010 | Reply

Benefit’s newest product in their stable the Stay Don’t Stray eye primer is a 360 degree primer designed to make your concealer and eyeshadow last longer and prevent the dreaded effect of creased eyeshadow.  You simply dab 3 tiny dots of the product under your eyes and on your eyelids,  blend, wait for it to set and carry on with your makeup application as usual.  Stay Don’t Stray is a lightweight fluid that blends easily into your skin and comes in a “universally flattering nude shade”.

I was excited to have Benefit Cosmetics send me six samples of their Stay Don’t Stray, Eye Primer. I asked five facebook friends to put their hand up to trial the product and send back their thoughts.  I’m pleased to say that everyone agrees it’s a fantastic product and does what it says it does, keeps your eye make up on your face – I can attest to this in the most extreme circumstances, I tested the product when I was on holiday in Queensland, the humidity was so intense, we were just dripping and I’m pleased to report that where I had used the primer (I use it on a variety of spots on my face to hold my concealor longer as well) my make up had stayed in place.  My only gripe is the pump, it squirts out far too much, I would much prefer to see this product in a tube, you will have much more control over how much product you use.

But read on to see what my five facebook friends thought too.

Tammerly Holmes, Pink Diva Beauty

When I first heard of the new ‘Stay, Don’t Stray‘, I thought Benefit Cosmetics were launching yet another brow product to hold those unruly brows (I LOVE their Brow-Zings gel!)

Anyhow, I was pleasantly surprised to discover ‘Stay, Don’t Stray‘ is in fact an eye primer.  The reasons for my surprise:

  1. There is a huge gap in the market for eye primers to help control those oily eyelids and to help give eye makeup more hold.
  2. I am always on the look-out for eye primers because they are hard to find – most brands don’t stock one.
  3. ‘Stay, Don’t Stray’ doubles up as an eye concealer too – bonus!

So what do I love about the product:

  • The colour is perfect for concealing my eyelids and reduces and purple or red tinges.
  • I find that the product adheres quickly to the skin and ensures my shadows don’t fall-out or separate across my eyelid which is something most of us fear,
  • Benefit has done it again! The packaging is appealing, lightweight, and the name is exciting.

The cons:

  • This shade won’t particularly conceal the eyelid or a medium to dark skin because the pigment is light.
  • The pump disperses too much product (one pump covers both lids entirely and there is still a bit left over). If this came in a tube or with a sensitive-to-touch pump then it would be more economic for the user (and the environment).

All-in-all, ‘Stray, Don’t Stay‘ is a fantastic product. With a few tweaks to the packaging, this could be a more amazing product. I’m even considering this as an investment piece for my makeup kit.

Tanya Williams, Princess Chic

Being a typical princess I like to look my best and when I get ready for the day, I like my make up to stay put for the entire day.

I don\’t need my makeup sliding onto my couture … so when I was asked to review the new Benefit Stay Don’t Stray eye primer, I happily agreed.

I have to honestly say I love this product. My eyes have been looking fabulous all week. Despite looking like a bit of a panda when you apply it, it very easily blends with your foundation and creates a great base for your eye shadow, liner and mascara.I used a number of different shadows – powder, cream and glittery gel and they all stayed in place. And it\’s been a very hot & humid week here in QLD!!

The only little fault I have is that I would personally prefer it in a tube so there is more control over how much you get.  I give it 4 tiara\’s (out of a possible 5) and recommend it to any make up loving princess.

Brie-Anne Wilson, Madame B Fatale

I was ecstatic when I I got the opportunity to trial Benefit’s new eye primer, Stay Don’t Stray.

Stay Don’t Stray’s predecessor FY eye (newly discontinued) had a very popular following through the youtube and blogging world so I was very excited to see how this new version performed.

The packaging is a slim pump bottle filled with 10ml of product.

On the first use the bottle must be pumped a few times before any product is released so please be careful, as you really only need a small amount!

The directions “Apply 3 small dots over eyelid and under eye, and blend”

Through my trials I found that it is best applied with fingers vs brush as it warms the products and helps to spread and blend out evenly. Then you wait a few seconds for it to set/dry.

I also used the product on my mother (mature skin) and a friend (slightly oily) and worked equally well on them too. (For reference my skin is dry/combination).

On the first use I accidentally pumped too much product out, and decided instead of wasting it I would see what else I could use it for. So I patted it onto any of my blemishes and red areas before concealer/foundation to help pro-long the wear and it did.

Other uses I found for this nifty new product were to use it as a lip primer after exfoliating my lips, this worked well as my lips are quite pigmented and it helped mute them out a bit.  Also I’m unsure if it was intended but it kind of evens out my eyelids and I found myself using less concealer under my eyes.


  • Makeup Lasts longer
  • Helps to even our eye area
  • Handy size
  • Pump packaging (hygienic)


  • The packaging, both a pro and a con is hygienic and handy but you can’t see how much product has been used also you have to be very careful with the pump, if your not then way too much will come out.
  • Also I looked up the price and at RRP$45AUS for 10ml of product it is $10 more expensive than the primer I usually use.

Overall Stay Don’t Stray certainly did ‘prime’ my skin for further makeup application and my makeup did last but with the price tag I would have to consider how long it lasted if I were to purchase.

Marlo Perry

Stay Don’t Stray is the latest offering from San Franciscan beauty brand Benefit.  Designed to help eye makeup stay in place, this is an absolute bonza product to have in your makeup kit. That said, that’s pretty much the standard for ALL Benefit goods in my opinion.

I would liken the consistency of this product (for those of you familiar with Benefit) as a cross between That Girl primer and Erase Paste concealer.

Although designed for the eyes, Stay Don’t Stray make a nice primer for the whole face. It has excellent coverage and just one squirt is enough to cover at least half the face.

Not only does it fulfil its duty of keeping your makeup firmly in place (and prevent those annoying crease lines on your eyelids) but it also creates a smooth, yet almost translucent base for your foundation to go one.

I know what you’re thinking- “huh? A foundation for your foundation?” But priming (or prepping) the skin is a very necessary component for your makeup routine.

Particularly if you tend to have long work hours, go out after work or plan on having a big, long night in general. This will save you time and money that you would have otherwise wasted reapplying your look and it will let you carry on with your day without wondering if you makeup is fading, straying or smudging.

A definite for Primer virgins and for those already in the swing of things.

The only thing I could say is perhaps the packaging wasn’t as cute as Benefit normally do, it looked a bit medical, almost but other than that, it’s an ace of base!

Belle, The Belle Lumiere

As luck would have it after recently reigniting my love affair with eyeshadow, I was lucky enough to receive a tube of the new Benefit product “Stay Don’t Stray” to trial and review!

Full Disclosure:  I was only able to use the product on my eyelids (not under my eyes) as the formula was too dark for my complexion  (I am extremely fair, so this would not be the case for most people.)

What is great about this product …

It works! I have only ever used one eye primer product in the past, which was a cream based formula and I wasn’t that happy with it.  I much prefer the liquid formula of the Benefit Stay Don’t Stray.  The product itself is simple to use, easy to apply and sets quickly.  I tried this out with my weakest eyeshadow (as far as staying power goes), and was pleasantly surprised when I got home after a 9 hour work day to see my shadow still in place and crease free.

Another good thing about the product is that the tiniest amount goes a long way.  Which makes Benefit Stay Don’t Stray great as far as value for money goes.  I can imagine that the tube will last quite a long time, considering how much of the product you need to use with each application.  I will definitely be repurchasing this when the tube eventually runs out!

What is not so great about this product…

It’s not so much a problem as something you need to be cautious of, and that is the packaging is very sensitive.  If you’re too heavy handed with the dispenser you will end up with more product than you’re going to use, which can be wasteful.  Also, if you’re a super-fair lady like myself the product might be a touch too dark for your complexion.

So pencil in the 28th of February because that\’s when it will become available. RRP is $45.

For your nearest stockist on Benefit\’s new kids on the block, call (02) 8353 5000.

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