Review: Tatcha – The Silk Canvas Protective Primer

As the daughter of a contractor, who has “helped” paint walls many times (this is debatable), I know that one of the most vital aspects of painting is having a good quality primer. My dad would never just go straight to the paint without laying down a high-quality primer, it’s just the rules of the trade. This is especially true when you are paying a lot for good quality paint. (And I won’t even go down the rabbit trail of the quality paint for homes. Here’s a hint, if your contractor or painter is getting his paint from Home Depot or the like, run away. According to my dad, who is a literal artist and perfectionist when it comes to the homes he creates, there are only a few places where you can get high-quality paint, and they are expensive but worth it! And cheap paint is trash, it will ruin your house and will not last so it will end up costing you even more long term. Ok yes, I did enter the rabbit trail and started going down, but I am done).

Back to primers. Clearly, you can see that the importance of quality products and proper techniques for their application was instilled in me at a very young age. So it’s funny because usually, primers are something that people first getting into makeup know nothing about, they can be super confusing and a lot of people don’t see their benefits. In my makeup journey, however, I knew I needed a primer just as soon as I discovered foundation. I mean hello, if you use a primer for your house, then, of course, you’d want one for your face. So in I go to the Macy’s (where I bought all my first makeup, hello Clinique, Lancome, and Estee Lauder nostalgia). I walk up to the counter and say “ummm…do you guys have like a primer product for foundation…or like something to put on to make the foundation last longer and be smoother…?”

The first one I bought was doubtless something to help with Acne and Oiliness. I remember not really noticing a huge difference, but regardless, primer just became a part of my daily routine. After all these years of using primers though, I can say I do empathize and understand those who say that primers do nothing for them. And to be honest, I was getting to that point myself. I was trying so many and ultimately finding that there wasn’t much of a difference between my skin that was primed or bare. The major difference I learned was whether or not my skin was properly moisturized. So I started reaching for my primers less and less and going in with moisturizer as a substitute and that was working nicely. Until…I see something so gorgeous I have to have a second look.

It’s the Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer…and let me tell you when it comes to packaging and presentation, my god. It doesn’t get any better than this. It’s so beautifully and uniquely done, you just have to see it for yourself. So I examine and revel at the beauty of the tester and I’m sold, have to have it. But my heart is dashed – sold out!


I go home still thinking about it and decide to watch some reviews to see if it’s actual quality or just hiding behind gorgeous aesthetics. The reviews are unanimous and stellar. Literally, just about everyone raves about it like it’s the new sliced bread or they just can’t believe it’s not butter. (Whatever that phrase is, I never understood what’s the big deal with pre-sliced bread?! Is it really that hard to run a  knife through bread? Like seriously how lazy are we as a people-don’t answer that).

So by now, I’m dying to try this product, but not without some trepidations. You see, my skin requires a lot, it’s the Cher (Clueless not Do you believe in love afterlife) of skin when it comes to high maintenance. I need oil control, but I also need moisture. I need smoothing for texture, I need pore minimizer and I need something for those lovely fine lines that are starting to creak through. I also really look for more natural products that are good for the skin, I mean the primer is literally the barrier between your skin and all the powders and creams you’re going to put on it. And trust me, unless you’re super dedicated to only using natural, clean and safe products, then you are layering your skin in some pretty nasty crap (seriously, reading the labels to most products out there is a pretty scary experience).

I was beyond happy when I found that the Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer met the qualifications for Sephora’s Clean at Sephora label. It’s non comedogenic, cruelty-free, has no synthetic fragrances, DEA, mineral oil, parabens, etc.

What it does have it pretty rad and new to the beauty world – it’s a balm of pressed silk. How cool is that?! The silk extracts nourish the skin while smoothing texture and minimizing pores and the silk powder helps your makeup to last longer while looking as fresh as when you first applied it. It also has a botanical protective layer that acts as a barrier towards pollutants and harmful chemicals as well as the makeup itself – hello no clogged pores! It’s got a ton of other skin nourishing and beautifying products and I’ll put a link here where you can read the product description as your leisure. For me, when it comes to things like a product being natural, I’ll be honest, it’s a huge benefit, but it’s not what sells me. I know it’s vain, but I buy a product based on how well it works and when it comes to makeup that means, how great does it make my skin look. I won’t compromise and pick something that isn’t effective just because it’s all natural. Sorry, not sorry. I go for what works. Period.

And I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this- the Tatcha Silk Canvas. It works. It works overtime, it gets all the promotions, it climbs that corporate ladder and ends up taking over the whole company before the current CEO can pull up his khaki slacks and say “country club”.

As far as scoring goes: Definite 10/10.

Hunny, just go try it. If you can find it that is, it’s notoriously sold out which is just tragic. But get yourself into a Sephora and at least find a sampler. My god. Do not hesitate. The Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer is all that stands between you and the skin you have always dreamed of. It will make you smoother than you ever thought possible. It will make your makeup last and look better than you ever thought possible. It’s also really fun to apply and you hardly need any product so that helps make the price tag worth it. It comes with this cute little spatula that has a little demarcation line and you scoop until the product reaches that line (it’s like the size of a skittle chopped in half and squashed flat kinda…) and then you just spread it onto your skin using your fingers…ahhhh ever just typing this out is sending me to relaxation station. It’s quickly becoming one of my favorite steps of makeup application because it’s just so relaxing and nice. It also smells divine.

My bottom line with Silk Canvas is how amazing it makes my skin and makeup look. I notice a huge difference when I don’t use it or when I use a different primer…it’s just that good. I’m beyond wowed. I mean all this effectiveness for the gods and then you add the bonus that it’s GOOD for your skin?! It’s cruelty-free too. Yeah, I’m sold. Go try it out for the love of all that is beautiful and healthy, it’ll be the happiest sale of your life.

Hannah Flack
Hannah Flack

I am a USC grad with a passion for beauty, health and science. I reside in beautiful California with my husband and puppy (@sebastian.thecavalierking).

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