I'm not a girl blessed with perfect skin.
My skin's sins are many and more often than not they are intolerable. I suffer from dark circles under my eyes (I blame genetics for about 30% of this and my erratic sleep pattern for the rest), I suffer from hyper-pigmentation left by acne scars and therefore it almost goes without saying that I also suffer from spots/pimples/blemishes - whatever you want to call the little devils.
As much as foundation is my friend when it comes to evening out my face's overall appearance, when it comes to the details I look to concealers. The devil is in the detail and without concealers my make-up is not only incomplete but it is positively lacking. I am happier when I use only concealer than when I use foundation without concealer, and I know that this is the case for many other people.
Concealer is therefore an important part of my routine and I wholly rely on affordable drugstore options. Today I'm going to talk you through the four products that I use, usually not all at once but I'll explain when, where and how they each come into play. I'm also going to include how I apply my concealer to different parts of my face including any tools that I use to do so.
Left to right: Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer in Ivory, Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair, Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Light and Soap and Glory Trick and Treatment.
Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer in Ivory
This is my current 'go-to' under-eye concealer. It isn't as thick as Collection's Lasting Perfection Concealers and it isn't as drying. I find that it lasts well throughout the day and doesn't disappear but it does sometimes crease, although not as badly as Collection's Lasting Perfection Concealer. The colour match is perfect for my skin tone and I've been using this for a good few months now without it drying up. I don't think that this works tremendously well at concealing blemishes (I find it doesn't last throughout the day) but it is fabulous at concealing dark circles. Available from Boots for £5.49 in four shades.
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair and Light
This concealer is somewhat of a beauty sensation with bloggers across the board celebrating it. Now, I'm not about to disagree with them but I certainly think that it needs to be used with caution. Firstly, the difference in colour between the 'Fair' and the 'Light' shades is huge and this makes colour matching difficult. 'Light' is too dark to use under my eyes and it is only the right shade for my face when I'm sporting my most serious of tans (albeit even then I'm not all that tanned). 'Fair' is the right shade for concealing under my eyes but it has a relatively thick and heavy formulation that can mean that using even a little but too much product makes my make-up look cakey and leads to creasing. In addition, 'Fair' isn't the right shade to use to conceal blemishes either as it is a bit too light and only draws attention to them. I have to mix the shades 'Fair' and 'Light' to a colour which better suits me. However, it is worth the extra effort as once I have done so I think that the concealing effect for blemishes and hyper pigmentation is fantastic. Bear this in mind and have a play around with a couple of shades, better to experiment than match yourself to a colour that is too dark or too light! Available from Boots for £4.19 in four shades.
Soap and Glory Trick and Treatment
This is a concealer targeted at correcting under eye circles. It is yellow toned, more liquid in texture and has the shiny appearance of a highlighting product. On days when my under eye circles are particularly bad I use this in conjunction with my Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer. If you prefer a more natural appearance use this sparingly, allow it to dry and then apply your normal under eye concealer. If you don't mind (or if you need) the extra zing of a reflective under eye highlighter then use this sparingly over the top of your normal under eye concealer. Alternatively, if you don't have bad under eye circles and want a lighter concealer option then Soap and Glory's Trick and Treatment has a lighter consistency than the other concealers that I've mentioned and might be what you've been looking for. Available from Boots for £9.
When applying concealer...
Under my eyes: I apply the product to my skin with the applicator provided and then use a finger to gently and evenly spread the product under my eye. To finish the application I either use my Real Techniques Contour Brush to very gently buff the foundation into my skin for a more natural appearance. If I want to increase the longevity of my concealer I would be sure to very lightly dust the area with powder, this is best done with a large, fluffy powder brush which won't deposit too much product. If you ever apply too much make-up or powder and want your make-up to look more natural I would advise you to lightly spray your face with a thermal water spray (such as this one from Avene) from a 30cm distance. This will restore a little bit of dewiness and freshness to your face without compromising your make-up. I also find this helps with concealers creasing under my eyes throughout the day.
To cover specific blemishes around the nose: I have hyper pigmentation around my nose which I cover by applying concealer to one of my fingers and then maybe halving the amount - you don't want to apply too much. Using the concealer that you have left, gently bounce your finger down both sides of your nose or on the specific area you want to conceal. Use a small brush (I would use my Real Techniques Contour Brush) to buff the product into your skin. I then personally like to use a larger brush (I use my Real Techniques Buffing Brush) to go over the area to make sure it blends seamlessly. I would only do the buffing motion gently and with a light hand because I don't want to remove the concealer, just help blend it in. A very light dusting of powder will help set the concealer, this is especially important for anyone like myself who has an oily t-zone.
To cover specific blemishes on the rest of the face (spots, acne scars, hyper pigmentation): I dot a small amount of my preferred concealer on the back of my hand. I then dot a very small brush into the concealer (I use the Real Techniques Detailer Brush or Accent Brush) and apply it only to the specific areas I want to conceal. Then, for truly effective concealing, use the same brush (or, better yet, a clean one) to blend the edges of the concealer out into the skin. This called pinpoint concealing, it is particularly effective at rendering a very natural and seamless finish but it can be relatively time consuming.
You don't by any means need the same tools as me, I just included them so that you can reference their size/shape.
Thus concludes today's post but I hope that this has helped some of you either find a new concealer to try or new ways to use the concealers that you already love! And please do let me know what concealers you love, I'm always on the hunt for new ones to try.