Concealers are a Girl's Best Friend


You might have to try different concealer shades to find one that looks natural.
You might have to try different concealer shades to find one that looks natural.
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Is there any greater teenage tool than a tube of trusty, magic-working concealer? Even if zits become a thing of the past as we get older, other blemishes and imperfections will invariably find their way onto your face. So don't forsake concealer just yet -- chances are you'll need this cosmetic at some point, no matter what your age.

Concealer does just what its name says. It can cover up pretty much anything and everything you need it to, within reason. It'll take care of your pimples, moles and red spots, though it can't mask a third eye or anything like that. Concealers come in many forms. For fuller coverage, try a stick, pencil or cream. Liquid and powder formulas will give light to medium coverage. For powder formulas, you apply it with a wet brush so it temporarily turns liquid.

One of the main uses for concealer, particularly as we age, is covering up dark circles under the eyes. To do so, apply concealer using your ring finger under the eyes and on the sides of your nose. Take care to blend so that it looks as natural as possible. Some experts say to use a concealer that's one shade lighter than your normal skin tone, while others say that's counterproductive and unnatural-looking. My advice is to try one of each and see what works best with your individual skin. No two complexions are alike, so it might take a bit of troubleshooting to achieve exactly the right look.

If consistency is a problem, you can also dab a little face lotion in with the concealer to make it go on more smoothly. This obviously works better on people with dry or flaky skin.

Illuminating concealer pens are a pricier, but very effective option for under eye circles. If you are constantly doing battle with under eye circles, and don't mind splurging on one cosmetic, consider picking one of these bad boys up. Or, just use regular concealer and apply some shimmery face powder for a similar effect.

When it comes to overall flaw-masking, start with concealer under eyes, as already described. Then, dot it around your face as needed to cover up zits, spots and other imperfections. Next, apply foundation, taking care to blend smoothly and mind the perilous jawline area, which is often treated as an afterthought. (Some women with naturally smooth even skin tones may want to skip the foundation.) Then, give yourself a quick once-over and add concealer to any spots that are still visible and gently blend using your ring finger. Follow up with blush and powder, and you're ready to move on to eyes and lips!

However you choose to apply concealer as part of your overall look, take pains not to go overboard. (Using your ring finger rather than your index will make it go on lighter.) Your regular flaws look natural. Pancake face does not!