Product Review: Benefit Stay Don’t Stray

by Gio

benefit stay don't stray 01

Name: Stay Don’t Stray
Brand: Benefit
Size: 10ml
Price: $26.00

From Benefit’s website:
This dual-action power primer works 360 degrees around the eyes to make concealers AND eyeshadows STAY PUT. Concealers don’t crease, eyeshadows stay vibrant & true.
stay don’t stray now comes in TWO neutral shades to suit all skintones (light/medium & medium/deep) and features a NEW “dip & dab” wand for easier application. Just a dab’ll do ya!

What I liked:
– makes eyeshadows and concealers stay pout for hours
– creamy, slightly thick texture is easy to apply

What I didn’t like:
– only two shades available

“Stay! Don’t Stray! Pleaseeeee.”

That’s what I desperately prayed for whenever I did my eye makeup before I discovered primers. What a wonderful day that was. Over were the days of creased, wrinkled eyeshadows. Now, I could leave the house without worrying about retouching my eye makeup every couple of hours. How liberating!

Since then, I tried a lot of primers. But none so far has been able to displace my HG, Too Faced Shadow Insurance. What I adore about it is the texture. It’s so lightweight to be practically weightless. It blends in so completely that it truly looks like you haven’t just applied anything to your lid, and yet your eyeshadows stay put for the entire day.

So, it was a bit of a shock to go back to using something thicker. Think of a liquid MAC Paint Pot. That’s the consistency of Benefit Stay Don’t Stray. The pale beige of the Light/Medium shade only provides the lightest tint on fair-skinned lids like mine. Dark Damsel should opt for the Medium/Dark shade, but even that may not be dark enough for everyone.

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Still, the subtle tint can help hide small discolourations, imperfections, and redness on your eye area. Even if you don’t need that, you’ll appreciate how long this base makes your eyeshadows last. On my slightly oily lids, it prevented eyeshadows from creasing and fading at all. My eye makeup was as good in the evening, when I returned home, as it was early in the morning when I left it.

It works just as well as a concealer primer. At least it does if you manage to find a good match. Very tricky, when there are only two shades available. If you prime your concealer with a shade that’s either too dark or too light, then your concealer will stand out and look weird. Applying it before foundation, which can cover the darkness or lightness up a bit, can help. But then, why not use a face primer?

I’m lucky the light shade is a good match. So, I first apply foundation all over my face bar the undereye area, then Benefit Stay Don’t Stray under my eyes, and finally my concealer. My HG is Bobbi Crown Concealer Kit, which has the unfortunate tendency to crease after a few hours. But it comes with a setting powder that prevents it from budging, so it’s all good.

But when I use with Benefit Stay Don’t Stray I don’t bother with the powder. I don’t have to. My concealer stays in place for the entire day. I wouldn’t say it works better than the setting powder, though. They seem to extend the staying power of the concealer for the same amount of time.

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So, it all comes down to personal preference. Both combinations (primer + concealer and concealer + powder) look natural on me, but if you have dry skin, the creamier consistency of the primer may work best for you. Just as long as you don’t use too much product. But then you don’t need to. A little goes a long way.

As for me, I’ll keep using the powder. It comes with the concealer so it would be a waste not to. And, as a creature of habit, I’m too used to the weightless of Too Faced Shadow Insurance to go back to something even just a little bit thicker. But my little sample of Benefit Stay Don’t Stray will come in handy when I travel.

It’s small enough not to exceed airport regulations, can be used to set both eyeshadows and concealers and, on good skin days, doubles up as a concealer too. It’s quite versatile, and we never need that more than when we travel.

Benefit Stay Don’t Stray has a creamy texture that glides on smoothly and helps both concealers and eyeshadows last for hours without creasing. But it is available in only two shades, so not everyone will be able to find a good match.

Rating: 4/5

Disclosure: this item was sent by PR for consideration.In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

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Allison April 20, 2015 - 11:42 pm

Stay Don’t Stray sounds like a very nice primer. I don’t really mind about not getting a great match ‘coz I attempt to cover up the primer with eye shadow. In fact, sometimes I’ll use a light/white base to make certain eye shadows pop. It’s great that you can also get double-duty out of it as a concealer.

Gio April 21, 2015 - 2:03 pm

Allison, it is a very nice primer indeed. I think, if the shade is not too dark or light for your skintone, covering it up with eyeshadow would work quite well. But I’m not sure that would work when used as a primer for concealer too. Getting a right match for the undereye are is vital if you don’t want to look odd.

Gauri April 21, 2015 - 9:03 am

I’ve been using Shadow Insurance since many years & absolutely love it! Nice to know there are other options too 🙂

Gio April 21, 2015 - 2:07 pm

Gauri, TFSI is my favourite too. But this is very nice as well. 🙂

Kiss & Make-up April 21, 2015 - 12:33 pm

Sounds pretty good, thanks for the thorough review, Gio!

Gio April 21, 2015 - 2:10 pm

Melissa, it is! My pleasure. 🙂


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