Whether you regularly go bare-faced or you have a full make-up routine, concealer is a great addition to any girl’s cosmetic bag as it can dramatically reduce the appearance of a whole host of imperfections. But choosing the right kind of concealer for you can be tricky, especially when there are thousands of brands on the market all claiming to offer different things – coverage of dark circles, blemishes, redness, spots... the list is endless.
You may wish to opt for one all-rounder concealer that can be used on all areas of the face, this is ideal if you tend to find yourself requiring a concealer for spots one day, dark circles the next. If you chose this option, you'll want to opt for a concealer that is the shade of your under eye area as this typically the lightest area of skin on your face. By choosing this lighter shade, you can cover dark circles when you need to and highlight more bronzed areas of your face when you are looking to give your blemishes a bit of coverage without it looking misplaced.
You may wish to have more than one concealer in your make-up kit for different purposes- for example when you’re feeling especially tired and need a brightening effect under the eye, a concealer with a highlighting quality and reflective pigments will tackle that specific problem area. Then you can opt for a second concealer for tackling problematic skin, spots and blemishes which will need to be more matt in order to blend the problem areas into the rest of the face.
Concealer also comes in different consistencies which will work differently on different skin types. Some are more liquid-based which is good for dry skin and is best applied under the eyes for dark circles, whereas others come in a stick as more of a thick cream which is better for pinpointing problematic areas such as spots or scarring.
If you are worried about ordering online as you are concerned about the colour match to your skin, most popular brands offer a 'colour match' guide somewhere on their website. This allows you to enter what shade you would typically wear in major foundation brands and the colour match technology will recommend which shade of concealer to purchase. You can check out Yves Saint Laurent's colour match guide here (opens in new tab) as an example.
We’ve rounded up our pick of the top 10 best concealers on the market today, with a range of products to suit all styles and budgets, and ones that pinpoint the most problematic areas. Remember, you may not find that one concealer suits all of your needs, in which case, considering investing in more than one concealer could be worthwhile.
The NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer takes our top spot for the best concealer as many users claim this is a great all-rounder which can tackle both dark circles and imperfections such as redness and spots. It’s a liquid concealer, which means you’ll find it quite lightweight on the skin; however, if you have dry skin, some users have noticed it can become a bit clumpy around the eye area. The best way to avoid this is to ensure you are using moisturiser in your skincare routine. It comes in 15 different shades to suit your skin tone, but users have advised opting for a shade slightly lighter than your skin to ensure it blends well and brightens the skin.
This colour-correcting concealer is a thick creamy consistency that is said to provide substantial coverage of blemishes and dark circles. Many find it easy to apply and blend, however, for those with dry skin, reviewers found it can become a little cakey and start to show creases throughout the day. Therefore, if you are looking for a concealer to spread across a larger area such as underneath the eyes, you may be better off choosing a liquid concealer that isn’t so dry. From users overall opinions on this product, this Benefit concealer is much better at pinpointing problematic areas such as spots or scars.
You can keep your skin looking flawless on the go with this easy-to-use pen concealer that will fit neatly into your handbag. This is a liquid concealer with a formula that aims to brighten the skin to achieve a radiant, dewy finish that makes you look healthy and awake (users say it works wonders on dark circles). It is a little pricey for the amount of product you get, but with glowing reviews, it’s worth the money for glowing skin. Any tired Mum's out there looking to 'fake it 'till you make it' - this is the best concealer for tired eyes on our list.
Customers absolutely love this BareMinerals concealer for its silky smooth texture that glides across the skin with ease. It has been found to work perfectly on all areas of the face, except for under the eyes where reviewers say it tends to crease, as with many concealers on the market. However, if you are someone who doesn’t wear a lot of make-up and simply wants a little cover up for those imperfections, this concealer could work wonders for you. In some cases, people find this one a little too liquidy, but if you’re not a fan of the thicker concealers from the likes of Benefit, give this one a try!
MAC’s Pro Longwear Concealer is particularly popular among those with problematic skin and those who suffer with acne. Reviewers have said how good this concealer is at providing great, long-lasting coverage, without becoming cakey or creasing. It is also designed to brighten the skin, however, if you have very light skin you may struggle to find a shade to match your skin tone. It’s not too expensive compared to other concealers and unlike the others it hasn’t been noted to dry the skin out as much.
If you hate the feeling of product on your face, then this Urban Decay concealer is made with a formula that aims to feel lightweight and breathable on your skin. Many users like this concealer as it is kind to skin and doesn't irritate or dry out your face after continued use. It is also hydrating and reportedly doesn't cause too many creases when used around the eye area. It is quite a small bottle that will likely need replacing frequently if used everyday but totally worth the money if it works for you.
For those who notice redness or discolouration in their face, this Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Corrector Serum is designed to even out skin tone and provide a natural, flawless finish. Most users report that it works incredibly well for them, particularly under the eyes, with some claiming that it works in an instant, which makes this concealer stand out from the crowd. Older women particularly like how it smooths out lines and brightens tired eyes; the only thing that is disappointing is the price of this product for the amount of serum you get. If you only use a small amount, then it is worth the money and would last a long time.
Dark circles are something all women struggle with at some point, so if you’re feeling extra tired, this Clarins concealer could be the answer. Many women have said they found this formula to be smooth and although thin, provide excellent coverage with only a tiny amount of product. It doesn’t crease, and can last well even in the harshest of elements according to reviewers who have trialled this product during rainy and windy days. If you are a fan of Clarins skincare products in general, this is a handy little product to have in your beauty bag.
This concealer by Estee Lauder is incredibly pricey, but if you’re very particular about your make-up and beauty products then this is may be worth the investment. Women have rated this product very highly in terms of coverage and ease of use, claiming that it turns black circles to beige in one application and doesn't require too much 'rubbing in'. Plus, the formula is designed to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. So, if you really hate the creasing under the eye area or you are becoming increasingly aware of crows feet, this is a 2-in1 product that aims to tackle wrinkles and signs of fatigue all at once. Perfect.
You can now even skin tone and conceal blemishes with this 2-in-1 stick that users say is great for sensitive skin. The thick consistency means it is better in smaller areas and will need to be blended carefully to avoid patchiness, reviewers are happy with the coverage that lasts all day without the need to reapply. It has also been noted that these sticks can be used for contouring by purchasing a darker shade and blending with your natural shade. For a primer and concealer in one, this Dior option is a winner and is the best concealer for sensitive skin on our list.
Check out our guide to the best eyes creams for dark circles to use alongside your concealer to really give under eye bags the boot!