I’ve always thought that concealer doesn’t get as much love as it should. To me, it’s one of the most versatile products you can have in your beauty bag and would probably be my desert island pick (after a great quality SPF, of course).
While it may not be as exciting as foundations or glow-inducing CC creams, concealer can be used in a variety of ways to create a really natural looking base and allow you to forgo foundation altogether.
The trick? Keeping a few different shades on hand to get the most out of your concealing products. It’s common for people to keep just a single product that’s a shade or two lighter than their foundation for the sake of brightening the undereye area. However, you can do so much more to perfect your complexion by picking up a variety of shades (and learning how to use them).
CORRECT AND CONCEAL YOUR UNDEREYE
Shade: A peach toned concealer one to two shades lighter than foundation
Darkness under the eye area is one of the biggest culprits in ageing your appearance and can be pretty tricky to cover. If you go straight in with a yellow or neutral toned concealer that’s lighter than your foundation, you risk making the area look grey and washed out, rather than bright. This is because those purple and blue tones need an orange or peach base to counteract and help conceal them.
CONTOUR YOUR FACE
Shade: A cool toned concealer two to three shades darker than your foundation
One of the most common mistakes people make when contouring their face is using bronzer in place of a contouring product. Bronzer is typically warm toned and should be used to give the illusion of a little sun. Whereas contouring is all about creating shadows that are naturally cool toned. Concealer is a great option as it will blend seamlessly into the rest of your skin and doesn’t need to be sitting on top of foundation to look good.
HIGHLIGHT YOUR FACE
Shade: A yellow based concealer two to three shades lighter than your foundation
When you’re looking for that natural, sparkle-free kind of definition that fakes the illusion of light hitting your high-points, concealer works wonders. Choosing a yellow based colour that’s a little lighter than your skin tone is the best way to create a natural looking highlight. A concealer with a peach undertone can make your cheeks look a little too rosy, which is why yellow based works best.
COVER BLEMISHES AND PIMPLES
Shade: A neutral toned concealer the same shade as your skin
Going over blemishes with the same concealer you use to brighten your undereye area is a quick way to make your spot stand out even more. You want to be using a shade that’s the same as your foundation and using it just on top of the spot itself. If it’s really red and struggling to be hidden with concealer alone, a green toned colour corrector can help to banish a bit of that redness.
ALL OVER COVERAGE
Shade: A concealer that’s an exact match to your skin colour and tone
It’s a little-known makeup artist and beauty editor trick to use concealer in place of foundation to even out your complexion. The good thing about using a concealer that is an exact match to your skin is that you can create a shear coverage that evens out your skin tone while being long-lasting. The secret is to really ramp up hydration before application then use a fluffy brush, work it into your concealer so it’s fully loaded, then gently buff it onto your skin. You can then bump up the coverage over any blemishes by going back in with a little more concealer.
THE HERO PRODUCTS
Napoleon Perdis Pro Palette Concealer – Kind of like a one stop shop for your concealer needs, the three shades in this mini palette make it really easy to follow our concealer application guidelines. The product is really creamy and blends easily and best of all, is long-lasting and won’t crease thanks to hydrating ingredients like squalane and vitamin E in the formula. You can use a combination of shades or on their own to highlight, conceal spots and brighten your undereye while colour correcting any darkness.
M.A.C Cosmetics Studio Fix Conceal and Correct Palette – These six shade combos will have you feeling like a pro in no time. There are six different palettes that have been designed for light to extra deep skin tones, with six varying shades in each that allow you to correct and conceal different areas of your face. It’s long-wearing, crease-proof and easy to blend so you can create a natural finish or achieve full-coverage.
Benefit Cosmetics Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer – High-coverage and truly cake-free. There are few concealers that achieve the kind of hydrated looking coverage without ever looking cakey the way this one does. It blends nicely into your skin and won’t settle into creases around your eyes, mouth or nose. It’s also great for blending out into a sheer all over coverage. There are 14 shades available so you can pick up a few to suit the tones across your complexion.