(This post was written for The Glosse Posse)
What is a concealer?
I thought foundation was supposed to conceal everything – the pores, the fine lines, the dark circles under the eyes, and acne. If the foundation couldn’t do all that, then I would have to find the next best foundation or something with more coverage. After all, why complicate the make-up routine with hundreds of make-up products?
Then I started to wonder if you could use concealers in lieu of foundation. My very first concealer was Benefit’s Boi-ing and I loved it. I wasn’t too concerned with dark circles at the time but I certainly needed something that would cover the imperfections. Boi-ing came in a little black compact with mirror (they’ve changed the design now, I believe) so it was perfect to bring along with me if I ever needed to touch up. It wasn’t long before I ran out but rather than spend $20 on a product that worked for me, I decided to spend less and find something similar. I did find a cheaper alternative but I did not like it. I ended up switching to liquid foundation (Vichy) and forgot about Boi-ing.
Fast forward seven years later, I realised I needed a concealer for the dark circles and the occasional blemishes on my face. Prior to this, my solution for covering the eye bags was to apply as much liquid foundation as I could under my eyes. Earlier this year, I tried Garnier’s Skin Renew Anti-Dark-Circle Roller. I think there’s only medium and light (maybe dark now as well?) so it’s rather risky if you’re looking for something to match your skin tone. I went with medium but found it too light. After blending it under my eyes, however, it made me look more awake. This roller is supposed to do two things for you: 1) hydrate and refresh your eyes and 2) cover the dark circles. I didn’t feel more awake or refreshed – Simple Skincare Revitalising Eye Roll-on does that for me – but the dark circles were well-covered. Garnier says it’s not a messy roller, which is true at first but not after it’s been tossed around in a make-up bag. Now the product comes out pretty quickly so you might want to keep the roller in a standing position and certainly not upside-down! You won’t need a lot, by the way, and it will dry up on its own once you’ve patted it in place.
As for the pimples, the only thing that I knew was Vichy’s Anti-imperfection Stick, which was a funny one as there is only one shade available and it appears rather orange – even on my light-medium skin tone. It certainly did its job well though, drying up the imperfections fairly quickly. I don’t know why I kept going back to it except for the fact that I wasn’t sure what else would work as well.
This summer when I visited Sephora and Murale, I was introduced to Benefit’s Fakeup and Erase Paste, both of which were highly recommended by reviewers and beauty bloggers. I nearly went with Erase Paste ($26) but the sticky formula made me second-guess my decision. It’s one thing to have something somewhat sticky or creamy on your cheeks but it’s another to have it under your eyes. I liked the smooth application of Fakeup and the idea of having hydrated skin for 6 hours. It’s $24, just a bit more than Boi-ing but it’s like lipstick for the face. There are only 3 shades available so I went with medium, which is a tad lighter than my summer shade but can act as a nice highlighter. On days when I don’t feel like applying foundation all over my face, I will use Fakeup. On the website, you’ll see that it’s mainly to cover the dark circles but I find that it works just as well to cover up redness and imperfections.
When my combination skin became more oily this summer (because of the humidity), I noticed that Fakeup looked and felt creamier. When I bought Lancome’s Teint Visionnaire in August, I was happy to see that the foundation came with its own concealer (see my review on Visionnaire). Visionnaire’s concealer is more solid and dryer but does not dry out your skin. It gives you a more matte look, which was just what I wanted for the summer. Of course, this concealer will also cover any blemishes on your face but I found that the Visionnaire foundation already does a good job on coverage.
There are many more concealers out there, some of which are just for the dark circles or for imperfections, and others are good for both. It all depends on how much you want to spend, how you like the texture (I might not like creamy, but maybe that’s what you like), how it works on your skin, and what you want it to do for you. I hope these reviews were helpful. Do let me know if you have any recommendations or how these products worked for you. 🙂
By the way, I just checked Benefit’s website yesterday to find that there’s a new concealer called Play sticks, which is a concealer, foundation and powder in a tube for $36. Already it has received high ratings so I might have to give that a try next time. 😉