Tuesday 22 October 2019


 ***Disclaimer: This post contains both gifted and non-gifted items. The latter will always be marked with *. All links used are affiliate***

Farsali vs Barry M: battle of primers

I’m always on a lookout for a drugstore dupe but can they ever replace the high-end product? In today’s episode, we’re talking Farsali vs Barry M. Should you splurge or save your £££? Let’s find out.


Farsali: £20-£50 for 10ml-30ml (£1.67-£2 per ml depending on size)
Barry M: £7.99 for 15ml (£0.53 per ml)


Luxury trumps the drugstore when it comes to the packaging. Farsali serum simply looks and feel more expensive and so it should give the difference in price (3 times more per ml), but that doesn’t mean Barry M comes out that bad. I quite like the bottle although I find it a little surprising given its size and how much product it contains. Farsali comes in 2 sizes and you get either 10ml of product at £2 per ml or 30ml of product at £1.67 per ml and Barry M comes with 15ml of the product at £0.53 per ml. 

Unicorn branding

Farsali has been well known for their Unicorn Essense formula for years and the name comes from the pinky pearlescent shade whereas Barry M ensures the unicorn packaging reminds you of Farsali serum, whilst also retaining similar pearlescent shade. You can see the difference in the photos. Barry M also kept the similar colour on the bottle making it purple with silver writings and unicorn logo where Farsali kept it simple with gold logo and writing on purple, yet a bit warmer shade. 

Farsali Unicorn Essence vs Barry M Unicorn Primer Drops


Whilst both pink with pearlescent shimmer Barry M has a more peachy tone where Farsali keeps it cooler. Both feel hydrating and skin appears softer, although Farsali has a bit more glow to it. Having said that the difference is minimal. Barry M formula is more sticky which isn’t a bad thing as a foundation stick it to nicely, but simply doesn’t feel as hydrating as Farsali. Barry M doesn’t really smell like anything, whilst Farsali has the softest sweet scent. 


Barry M Unicorn Primer Drops:

Aqua, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Glyceryl Polyacrylate, Polysorbate 20, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Phenoxyethanol, Tamarindus Indica Seed Polysaccharide, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Citrus Paradisi (grapefruit) Peel Oil, Ethylhexylglycerin, Vaccinium Myrtillus Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Extract, Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Extract, Lycium Barbarum Fruit Extract, Potassium Sorbate, Sambucus Nigra Fruit Extract, Sorbic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Mica, Ci 77891, Ci 16035.

Farsali Unicorn Essence: 

Aqua, Propanediol, Glycerin, Polysorbate 20, Glyceryl Polyacrylate, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Extract, Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Lycium Barbarum (Goji Berry) Fruit Extract, Sambucus Nigra (Elderberry) Fruit Extract, Tamarindus Indica (Tamarind) Seed Polysaccharide, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Red 40, Red 33, Red 4, Blue 1, Mica, Titanium Dioxide

Ingredients review

As you can see above Farsali utilises a lot of fruit extracts, quite high in the ingredients list where Barry M also has some fruit extracts but lower on the list which means there’s a lot less of them used percentage-wise. The main ingredients used in the largest percentage are actually similar if you look at the first 5 in both formulas. Farsali also uses some fruit oils but keeps it at the end of the list which simply means there’s not a lot of them. Overall a decent list from both brands, but Farsali also wins this round.

Farsali Unicorn Essence vs Barry M Unicorn Primer Drops

Formula vs foundation - does it work?

I must admit I use both of these and alternate and both seem to be working well with different foundations. Farsali is a lot more hydrating though and is known to fix some of the thicker and more matte formulas. You can also mix both into foundations to sheer them out a bit, and here both work well. I feel like foundations tend to sit better on my skin when used with a primer, but I haven’t noticed any drastic difference in how well the foundation lasts throughout the day. I find both of these to work best to ensure foundation blends in seamlessly and not to extend the life of my makeup. I use 3 drop method - I’m soooo cliche - 1 on each cheek and forehead works well for me. If you’re more on a drier side, you can use a bit more. I’d use them as a first primer and top it up with something more pore filling around the nose and chin if there’s a need for it. 

Splurge or save?

If your budget allows I say go for it. Farsali formula and packaging is simply more luxurious. Both products may work similarly but over time, less hydrating formulas tend to have some lasting effect on your skin. I haven’t noticed anything drastic with each to be fair: no breakouts, no increased sensitivity, nothing bad to report. I like Farsali better as my skin/foundation tends to look better throw out the day as it helps with keeping my skin hydrated for longer. Whilst it doesn’t make my foundation last longer, but it does make it look it’s best for longer if that makes sense, whereas Barry M works well to get my makeup to look and feel great when applied, I don’t see it prolong it looking its best. Both are really fantastic primers and both have a place in my routine. Barry M is a more affordable and great option if you simply can’t afford to splurge but want a nice primer that helps your foundation be a bit more!

Where to buy?

Barry M: ASOS | BootsFeel Unique (cheapest) | Superdrug

Try a Farsali Skin Goals starter kit (4 serums at 5ml each, includes Unicorn Essence, Rose Gold Elixir, Skintune Blur & Volcanic Elixir). Available now: Beauty Bay | Cult Beauty for only £23!

Thank You For Reading.

With love,

Full Disclaimer: 

In line with an updated CMA/ASA Non-broadcast Code, all products marked with * have been gifted to Beauty Drama Queen for review consideration, therefore, are sponsored and displayed as a form of an advertisement. 

All articles sponsored by brand or retailer where specific product placement has been paid for on top of product gifting will be branded as #ad in a clear manner. 

Products I've bought myself but there's a current or past (up to 12 months) relationship in with the brand present will be marked with **.

Products unmarked have been either purchased by Beauty Drama Queen or gifted by family and friends and therefore not in the scope of the legislation.

Beauty Drama Queen uses affiliate links. It means that Beauty Drama Queen earns a small commission should you wish to purchase the product using the link provided. No commission is paid for clicks alone, so you can easily research the product. If you prefer not to use affiliate links, simply copy the name of the product and search for your chosen brand or retailer website. 

Post a Comment

On Instagram

© Beauty Drama Queen. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.