That so many of you ask me with such regularity about under eye concealers speaks volumes about how much we all dislike seeing a tired version of ourselves in the mirror.
I completely get it: it is already totally shit to feel exhausted and like you’re walking around in a fog, and sporting a wan face with huge bags only compounds the issue.
But before I launch into the list of concealers I revere, note that the under eye area can be touched by many different maladies. It can be puffy or recessed, slightly red in tone or blue, oilier than the rest of the face or dehydrated and crepey. Choosing skincare wisely is therefore, as always, important – and prepping with the best potion for your skin will yield the best results from your concealer.
Also I know it is tempting to want to effectively cancel out the area but try to exercise restraint – a little shadow looks natural and therefore important to the balance of a face IRL (forget editorial shoots with 14-year-old models minus a single bag – even they don’t look like that in the flesh).
Equally, if you decide to plaster your skin with make-up, it often draws more attention, and will also in all likelihood move throughout the day (all concealers are candidates for settling a little into lines unless powdered and tended to, so if you find your concealer has migrated, take your fourth finger, and tap the afflicted bit to disperse the product).
The below are all undereye concealers I think do two things: look like skin when on and don’t require a shedload of effort to either apply or maintain.
(If you own Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage – aka the best spot and redness concealer available – you can mix it into your under eye concealer for more coverage if you’d like provided you aren’t especially dry.)
(Application tip: swipe product on and then tap it in, using the heat of your fourth finger to meld the concealer to skin.)
Clinique Airbrush Concealer. A firm favourite with make-up artists, this liquid concealer is packed with pigment but also lightweight, making it the best option if you want coverage without looking caked.
Trish McEvoy Instant Eye Lift. This is more a creamy salmon colour corrector than concealer so is ideal for dark, purple bags. This is the one I reach for the most, and I just apply it, pat it in, then follow with a thin layer of foundation and a tiny tap of powder.
Yves Saint Laurent Touch Eclat High Cover Concealer. The original Touche Eclat is a highlighter, not a concealer – but enough people made the mistake that YSL thought they’d harness the light reflection (and popularity) of TE and add coverage. This medium-coverage, brightening concealer is the result.
It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer. If you read the above thinking ‘that’s nice, but show me the big guns’, this hydrating paste that offers serious coverage and doesn’t budge is it. I like to add a thin layer of powder to take down its sheen once on as I feel like that slippy surface thing gives the game away.