The best concealer for hiding dark circles and blemishes

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  • Hide dark under-eye circles and cover blemishes with our favourite concealers, designed to combat all manner of imperfections

    If you’re looking for the best way to get rid of dark circles under your eyes, or need something that can camouflage blemishes and redness, you need to invest in the best concealer you can get your hands on.

    The right formula will cover spots, disguise under eye bags and work with your skin type, whatever your budget. But there are a few things you need to look out for during the great concealer shop.

    ‘Not all concealers are made equal and not all concealers will do everything,’ explains MAC Senior Artist and Glow Up judge Dominic Skinner. ‘Concealer is like a pair of shoes; you need different ones for different occasions. When choosing a concealer you need to ask yourself, “what is it for”’ and “where is it going?”. This will help you find your way through the forest of options.

    ‘For under-eyes you need something that will set, like the MAC ProLongwear Concealer. This will mean it won’t sit in the fine lines and won’t start lifting your mascara – causing panda eyes at the end of the night. You might also need a shade that’s more pink or coral than your skin tone as this will help to banish those dark circles.

    best concealer

    ‘To conceal blemishes you need to go for a concealer that has a more creamy texture,’ Dominic continues. ‘This will prevent the dry skin from around the blemish to crack and peel during the day. It’s best to go for a concealer that is closest to your skin tone and I find that applying with fingers in a tapping motion works the best to camouflage the blemish completely.

    ‘For pigmentation and uneven skin tone, I recommend a liquid concealer as you can build up the coverage to a flawless finish. Plus, you can mix it into your regular liquid foundation to give it that extra red carpet finish. The MAC Studio Fix 24 Hour Smoothwear Concealer is amazing, and a fashion week and award season staple in my kit.’

    So, no matter your concealer needs, whether it’s dark circles, fine lines, blemishes or redness, we’re sure to have the best concealer for you below. Keep reading to find your new beauty bag buy…

    Best under eye concealer

    Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage, £28.50, John Lewis

    best concealer Laura Mercier Secret Camoflauge

    Under-eye concealers are the best way to combat dark circles and disguise any signs of late nights (or very early mornings). The best concealer for this delicate area will be feather-light but durable enough to combat shadows and conceal those pesky lines. Sounds like a tough job, but it’s nothing that our round up can’t handle. The best concealers for dark circles will even radiate light – keeping your eyes bright all day long. While on the hunt for a new concealer, look for products that are packed with moisturising properties. A truly indulgent formula will have vitamin A and D infusions to help fight the effects of dryness and encourage elasticity. An industry favourite for years, Laura Mercier’s Secret Camoflauge completely camouflages dark circles and blemishes. With two shades to match your undertone and your skin colour, you can create your own custom blend and thus the perfect coverage.

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    Best concealer for dark circles

    Bobbi Brown Creamy Corrector, £19.50, Fabled

    best concealer Bobbi Brown Corrector

    Technically a corrector, we know, but the power of this little pot of pigmented cream is a firm favourite of so many in the office that we had to give it a mention. Colour matched as a concealer is to your skin tone, the pink or peach toned formula perfectly neutralises any dark under-eye shadows. The result? You look super awake and healthy before you’ve applied any other products. It’s no wonder the brand calls it one of the ‘secrets of the universe’. Check out our before and after pictures if you don’t believe us, and follow with Bobbi Brown’s Creamy Concealer Kit to disguise bisque or peach hues.

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    Best drugstore concealer

    Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer, £2.99, Boots

    best concealer drugstore

    Insanely popular thanks to its affordable price point, Collection’s concealer is the proud owner of endless positive reviews from consumers, YouTubers, beauty bloggers and editors alike. Considering its affordable price tag, it’s thick, pigmented and does a good job of covering spots and dark circles, plus there’s a lot in the tube for just four quid. Resist the temptation to dab directly on to your face, especially spots (not hygienic) – instead, dab a little onto a clean finger, press into the blemish and blend slightly using a brush if you prefer.

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    Best concealer for dry skin

    Clarins Instant Concealer, £22.50, John Lewis

    best concealer Clarins Instant Concealer

    Dry skin benefits from all textures of concealer, they just need to be nourishing and glow-giving to nourish rather than enhance dry patches. Liquids will do this perfectly well, but also try out creams; they’ll be thicker and give better coverage, and a stick is perfect for blending and dotting along imperfections, whereas a cream concealer works well under the eyes to cover up any discolouration. The last thing mature or dry skin types need is a cakey formula that’ll make fine lines or dry patches look worse – opt for a nourishing liquid formula that’ll sink into the skin and give some luminosity. Smooth fine lines and banish shadows and imperfections while boosting radiance with Clarins Instant Concealer; lightweight and smoothing, this concealer is a make-up bag must.

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    Best concealer for acne

    MAC Pro Longwear Concealer, £19.50, Selfridges

    best concealer MAC Pro Longwear Concealer

    Much like the best under eye concealer, this one will even out your skin tone while covering any blemishes or redness. The only difference? You don’t want the brightening effect. When you’re aiming to hide redness or blemishes, you don’t want to attract attention to the area. Make sure to use one of the best acne treatments beforehand so it can get to work under your concealer. MAC’s new Pro Longwear Concealer  issuper lightweight and so it flows over any angry, raised areas easily before sinking into the skin. Use a pointed concealer brush to ‘scribble’ over any blemishes, using the warmth of your finger to gently blend the edges into the skin for the most subtle spot coverage ever.

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    Best concealer for spots

    Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer, £39, Space NK

    best concealer Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer

    Pesky spots can be a nightmare to cover up; while there’s nothing wrong with blemishes, having a giant angry one can make you feel a bit self-conscious. On its own, Kevyn Aucoin’s Sensual Skin Finish – an intensely pigmented cream product – is perfect for pressing the tiniest amonunt onto spots, scars, birthmarks, you name it. But it can be mixed for foundation, too, coming in a broad spectrum of light, olive and dark shades. For a formula that blends more easily, mix with a little moisturiser for a concealer, or a dash more for a full coverage base. It’s a cult classic for a reason.

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    Best concealer for oily skin

    NARS Soft Matte Complete Concealer, £24, Fabled

    best concealer NARS

    Once you’ve found the best foundation for oily skin, it’s time to pair it with a trusty concealer. Those with an oily skin type should typically should avid creamy or stick concealers and instead opt for liquid concealers. Not only does they easily build coverage, they’re also easy to apply and are less likely to crease thanks to their light texture. However, there are some great new oil-free cream concealers on the market, which help you stay free from shine all day long. NARS’ oil-free formula is every oily-skinned girl’s dream and it’s got seriously magic coverage and staying power. The soft-focus finish blurs away imperfections, it lasts for hours without creasing or caking, plus the inclusion of peptides, vitamins A, C & E, and hyaluronic acid mean your skin gets a treat underneath.

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    Best concealer for dark skin

    LA Girl PRO.conceal HD High Definition Concealer, £5, Beauty Bay

    best concealer LA Girl

    Most brands have only just started to take notice of their olive and dark-skinned clients and it’s about time. While it’s important to prioritise a formula that sits comfortably on your skin, blurs imperfections and does all the other tricks, those with darker skin need to pay careful attention to the actual pigment of the concealer; avoid anything that looks greyish, reddish or ashy and make sure it doesn’t oxidise or go lighter or darker throughout the day. LA Girl’s Pro.conceal works all over for blemishes, dark circles and fine lines, but we’re mostly impressed by the serious range of shades on offer. From Porcelain to Almond To Dark Cocoa, there really is something for everyone – and at a fiver, it’s a total steal.

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    Best concealer for acne scars

    Amazing Cosmetics Amazing Concealer, £21.33

    best concealer Amazing Cosmetics Concealer

    First of all, those dark marks left after a spot aren’t classified as acne scars – you’ll need a highly pigmented concealer with brightening properties and a good glycolic acid toner to combat those. Deep, textured, pitted scars need something more heavy-duty, so look for something with a creamy, sturdy texture to completely fill and cover them. Amazing Cosmetics’ answer to the best concealer is highly concentrated, so you only need the tiniest dab to cover any acne scars. It works on dark circles, broken capillaries, redness and acne as well – just remember to blend with your finger to melt the slightly waxy texture into your skin.

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    Best concealer brush

    Although some people prefer to use the ‘wand’ or bristled tip of their concealer, a brush is recommended in order to ensure that you make the most of the product and get a nice, even finish with equal coverage. Size-wise, we suggest something like this Bobbi Brown Concealer Brush, or the classic MAC Concealer Brush. Alternatively, pat concealer into the under eye area with your ring finger – it’ll fit perfectly into the inner corner of your eye socket and under the lash line.

    Our pick of the best under-eye concealers will help you achieve that flawless look, no matter what kind of night you had. Shop more of our favourite concealers below.

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