Why Too Faced Shadow Insurance Is My HG Eyeshadow Primer (It’s Even Better Than UDPP!)

by Gio
review too faced shadow insurance

My lids are so oily that if I skip eyeshadow primer, I end up looking like a 3 year old has been painting with crayons over them – all within 3 hours of wear. Ugh.

I’ve always relied on Urban Decay Primer Potion to keep my canvas intact. Until Too Faced Shadow Insurance entered into my life. It has completely blown me away. Here’s why:

What’s In Too Faced Shadow Insurance?


Truth bomb: most eyeshadow primers out there contain silicones.

The reason is simple: silicones create a barrier on the skin that smoothes out imperfections, fills in tiny crevices, and give its texture a nice slip. Anything you apply on top goes on smoother and looks more flawless.

You’ll be happy to know that Too Faced Shadow Insurance uses fewer silicones than most primers. Not that silicones are bad for skin. As long as you remove your makeup every night, they won’t clog your pores or anything.

Related: Are Silicones Bad For Skin?


Talc makes up the base of Too Faced Shadow Insurance. It’s what keeps the oils on your lids from messing up your smokey eye.

Here’s everything it does for you:

  • It absorbs excess oil
  • It helps makeup better adhere to the skin
  • It gives cosmetics an opaque finish
  • It prevents caking

P.S. Talc isn’t dangerous. It undergoes a strict purification process to remove any traces of nasty and toxic substances that may be lurking in there. Phew!

Related: Is Talc Dangerous For Skin?


Isododecane is a clear and colourless liquid that softens skin and gives slip to a formula – without leaving a greasy residue behind.

But those are not its main jobs here. Isododecane is highly volatile, a fancy way of saying it evaporates from your skin instead than absorbing into it. This trick makes your makeup last longer.


Silky and creamy, yet lightweight and thin without being watery. It dries instantly.


It blends so well into your skin, you literally can’t see it. Yet, you know it’s there because your eyeshadows stay put all day.

Staying Power

My lids are pretty oily, yet Too Faced Shadow Insurance keeps my eyeshadows stay intact from morning till evening. No creasing, either.


It’s fragrance-free.

How To Use It

You can apply it either with your fingers (what I do) or a brush on clean eyelids.

too faced shadow insurance review

Performance & Personal Opinion

Too Faced Shadow Insurance does everything an eyeshadow primer should do and more.

I apply it in the morning before my eyeshadows and my makeup stay put all day, without creasing nor fading, until it’s time to go to bed. Even if I decide to workout and hit the gym, my makeup won’t melt away.

TFSI also improves the color payoff of eyeshadows a bit, but don’t expect anything too dramatic. If an eyeshadow has no colour payoff, even the best eyeshadow primer in the world can’t save it.

I also didn’t have any problems at all with blending eyeshadows over this base. Everything glides on so smoothly.

The only problem? Rumour has it, the formula can separate. I read reviews saying that the ingredients weren’t holding together anymore, releasing a yucky liquid when you squeeze the product out of the tube.

It’s never happened to me in all the years I’ve used it. If it does, I’ll report it.

Who Is This For?

Anyone who wears eyeshadow.

Who Is This Not For?

If you want a completely silicone-free eyeshadow primer, this isn’t for you.


Too Faced Shadow Insurance comes in a sleek blue and gold tube with a needle-nose applicator that releases just the right amount of product you need, so that none gets wasted.

Does Too Faced Shadow Insurance Live Up To Its Claims?

Featherweight eye primer that locks down shadows for 24 hours of crease-proof, budge-proof, waterproof and true colour payoff.I haven’t tested it for 24 hours, but it really makes eyeshadows lasts from morning till night without creasing or fading. It’s lighter than a feather, too!
Neutralises any lid discolouration.It helps hide them, but if they’re severe, this alone won’t do.
Grabs pigment and intensifies eye shadow colour.Yes, just not too much.

Price & Availability

£17.00 at Asos, Cult Beauty, Look Fantastic, Sephora and Ulta

Do You Need It?

If you wear eyeshadows, YES!

Dupes & Alternatives

Have you tried Too Faced Shadow Insurance? Share your experience in the comments below.


Isododecane, Talc, Cyclopentasiloxane, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Glyceryl Triethylhexanoate, Polyethylene, Trihydroxystearin, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Isopropyl Lanolate, VP/Eicosene Copolymer, Propylene Carbonate, Dimethicone, PEG-40 Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Tocopherol. May Contain (+/-): Mica, Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499)

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Jeni February 7, 2011 - 1:41 pm

This is the eye shadow primer I use – actually it’s the only one I’ve ever tried! I know Too Faced is coming out with (or maybe it’s out already) a new shimmery version of it, which I’m curious to try. I only use this a few times a week, and it’s lasted me a really long time so far (at least a year!)

beautifulwithbrains February 7, 2011 - 2:39 pm

Jeni, it’s a great primer, isn’t it? It’s made not want to try anything els anymore lol. I think the new version you mentioned has come out only a few days ago and, like you, I’m really curious to try it and see if it works as well as this one.

Phyrra February 7, 2011 - 4:03 pm

This is my holy grail primer. When comparing it to 9 or 10 other primers, it actually was more vibrant than most of them, including white bases. I do agree that if you use Pixie Epoxy on top of TFSI you get great results 🙂

beautifulwithbrains February 7, 2011 - 8:45 pm

Phyrra, really? I only have one white base and that seems to add more vibrancy but TFSI didn’t fare much worse, it still good to improv color payoff. 🙂 I use it with PE most of the time though as this combo really makes eyeshadows so much brighter. 🙂

Dee February 7, 2011 - 7:44 pm

Shadow Insurance is the one primer that I have yet to try. I was put off when I heard that the product can separate, but it really seems like a wonderful product. I know UDPP came out with a humongous squeeze tube version, but it was limited edition, boo! Since you like TFSI a lot, I’m definitely going to give it a try, thanks for your review!

beautifulwithbrains February 7, 2011 - 8:48 pm

Dee, that put me off too at first but when I finally decided to try it I was amazed at the result! It’s a fantastic primer. Mine didn’t separate yet but a couple of reviews I read recommended massage the tube every now and then to keep that from happening. But as I said, I didn’t have that problem yet. Do try this one, I’m sure you’ll like it. I do prefer TFSI to UDPP but I still wish the huge squeeze tube were permanent!

Trisha February 7, 2011 - 8:00 pm

Ew…separation. Yuck. But otherwise, this sounds awesome. 🙂

beautifulwithbrains February 7, 2011 - 8:49 pm

Trisha, it is awesome! I was worried about separation but so far it hasn’t happening to me. Massaging the tube should prevent that from happening from what I read in other blogs. 🙂

Dao February 8, 2011 - 12:20 am

I’ve never used TFSI but I tried UDPP before and I love it! Also, ArtDeco eyeshadow primer that you sent is very nice, too!

beautifulwithbrains February 8, 2011 - 8:08 am

Dao, I love UDPP and ArtDeco too. They are awesome primers. But there’s just something about TFSI that I prefer. 🙂

Fabuless Beauty February 8, 2011 - 1:41 am

I still have yet to try this primer!

beautifulwithbrains February 8, 2011 - 8:09 am

Fabuless Beauty, you should try it! I put it off buying for ages for some reason and now I cannot live without it, it’s great stuff!

Makeup Morsels February 8, 2011 - 4:13 am

OMG the separation drives me nuts sometimes. I’ll leave it alone for awhile, and then one day I’ll open it and…ugh. Still, I do like this a lot 🙂

beautifulwithbrains February 8, 2011 - 8:11 am

Makeup Morsels, that would drive me nuts too. I’m sorry to hear yours separated, I guess I’m lucky it hasn’t happened to me yet. Still, a fab primer though imo. 🙂

Vonvon February 8, 2011 - 10:32 am

Bad me! I still haven’t opened the tube I have. 😉

beautifulwithbrains February 8, 2011 - 1:08 pm

Vonvon, open it! You’ll regret not doing it sooner, it’s awesome. 🙂

tgz February 9, 2011 - 6:00 pm

I love TFSI! I liked the ArtDeco primer too (though it lasts a bit less on my eyelids, but still good enough unless I want my makeup to last through night being applied in the morning) but I have no idea where I put it, so nowadays it’s TFSI or one NYX jumbo pencil when I don’t need so much lasting power.

beautifulwithbrains February 9, 2011 - 7:55 pm

Tgz, I agree with you. I like the Art Deco primer a lot too but TFSI lasts longer on me as well. It’s the perfect base for when you have to be out all day. 🙂

tgz February 9, 2011 - 6:01 pm

Oh, and mine had separated, but after a good massaging of the tube and putting it in a cooler location it got perfect again 🙂

beautifulwithbrains February 9, 2011 - 7:56 pm

Tgz, and thanks for sharing this useful tip. 🙂

Lila September 8, 2011 - 10:32 pm

I so much prefer the UDPP. Seriously, its the better product. My eyelids dont crease at all. TFSI its and average one, unfortunately it didn’t do much for me:(
My own review here:

beautifulwithbrains September 9, 2011 - 6:27 am

Lila, I’m sorry to hear TFSI didn’t work for you. What a shame! I love UDPP too. They work the same for me, but I prefer TFSI only for the lightweight texture.


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