As the days get warmer and summer inches ever closer, I’ve found myself scaling back on foundation and opting instead for a few dots of concealer. It turns out that the right one serves as a great multipurpose tool that’s perfect for daily use. You can dab it under the eye to lighten dark circles or you can use it to paint over any surprise blemishes in the morning.
There are plenty of concealer options on the market. We’re sharing our top picks, with help from some of our favorite beauty editors.
Read on for this week’s Chosen Ones and let us know which ones are are your faves.
The hard worker
“Tarte’s Shape Tape is my holy grail concealer, without question. Has been for over a year. This stuff strikes a rare balance between hardcore coverage (which I need because, hello, dark circles!) and lightweight, crease-free wear. Plus, unlike most concealers I try, it doesn’t dry out my tired under-eyes. I like the easy doe-foot applicator and I like that it comes in 14 shades.
I tried it for the first time after a Tarte event I attended last summer and have worn it every day since, usually without foundation, because that’s how good it is. Three cheers for makeup that helps you look slightly more alive.”
—Amanda Montell, features editor at Byrdie
“I’ve used BareMinerals Original Powder Foundation to cover blemishes since I was 13 years old. I didn’t love it as a foundation, but once, on a whim, I patted it onto a particularly angry pimple… and I’ll never look back. It covers seamlessly, doesn’t ever fade (since it’s a powder formula), and since it only contains a few ingredients, it never exacerbates irritation or redness.”
—Kate Foster, associate beauty editor, Hearst Lifestyle Beauty Group
The best for under-eye circles
“I’m most self-conscious about the dark circles under my eyes. It’s thinning skin coupled with visible capillaries, it’s hereditary, and it’s something so many South Asian women with darker skin have. There’s a world where I find the confidence to own this and feel great about it, but that’s not where I am today. So, I’m always looking for good coverage under my eyes, even though I don’t wear much makeup beyond that (BB creams 4 lyfe!).
All of which means I’ve picked every makeup artist’s brain on the topic—and tried what feels like every product on the market. Here’s where I’ve landed: This Becca color corrector is a miracle product. This little pot has more of a translucent shine to it, which really helps reflect light and keeps me from looking like I’m wearing a ton of caked-on makeup. I dot this under my eyes, on the inner corners and on the bridge of my nose. To finish off, I layer on a matte Revlon concealer, like this PhotoReady stick in Medium Deep and I top it off with this Glossier concealer for a bit of shine.”
—Neha Gandhi, editor-in-chief and chief operations officer, Girlboss
The long-lasting one
“This is the concealer I regularly reach for. It’s got great high coverage to really disguise acne marks, but it has a really natural texture and blends in easily. It just launched, too, so the PR team sent it in and I was instantly addicted. I’ve always used creamy concealers!
Bonus: They also very smartly designed the tube in an oval shape, so it won’t roll around when you’re trying to do a flat lay for the ‘gram. ;)”
—Katie Becker, beauty director, Coveteur
The multipurpose ones
“I didn’t realize until recently how much I relied on this Smashbox concealer. It conveniently comes in the form of a little pen that you twist to release a tad of product onto the brush tip, making it great for quick touch ups that aren’t messy. When I found myself a few weeks ago desperately twisting and twisting to get the last, itty bit out, I knew it was money well-spent.
The Smashbox concealer is actually a BB cream with an SPF of 15, so the formula isn’t too sticky or cake-y and it blends easily into your eye area. As my friends already know, I’m a bit of an eyebrow person, so the flat bristle brush also makes it easy to clean up for a sharp brown line.
Last on this list is Kevyn Aucoin’s Skin Enhancer Concealer and Foundation. Professional makeup artists are likely familiar with the product, which can easily be made into a foundation by blending with the right primer or moisturizer, but it’s also great as a maximum-coverage concealer for blemishes or when you want to brighten up the eye area. The little pot is deceiving! You don’t need more a rice grain amount of product to get the job done.”
—Theresa Avila, associate editor, Girlboss