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9 best concealers to banish blemishes & dark circles - plus expert tips for mature skin

Finding the best concealer is no mean feat. We've reached out to the experts for help... 

2 hours ago
best concealer expert edit
Leanne Bayley
Director of Lifestyle & Commerce
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Finding a great concealer isn't easy, but I'm here to help you make the best choice. If you're anything like me, you want a concealer that looks like skin when it's on, but you also want a concealer that can cover dark circles under the eyes, and maybe diminish the odd blemish or neutralise acne scarring. 

How do we find the perfect concealer? For this, we needed the experts! 

Experts in this article 

  • Bobbi Brown, makeup artist and founder of beauty brand Jones Road. The brand's philosophy is that the world doesn’t need more beauty products. It needs better beauty products. 
  • Laurretta Power, makeup artist and beauty influencer. Lauretta is a seasoned makeup and brow specialist with over 20 years of experience. From flawless complexion to stunning brows, she's committed to making every client feel confident and radiant.
  • Jesse Walker is a London-based freelance make-up artist with over 13 years experience working in fashion and beauty. Her work is largely skin-focussed, which has lead to her shooting campaigns for leading skincare brands such as Elemis & Estée Lauder. 

Best concealers for all skin types - at a glance

Bobbi Brown says: "Concealer is the best kept secret in the world. It’s important to pay attention to hydration and how you feel. If you're tired, your skin is probably drier and you might need a formula that is extra creamy, or consider using a moisturiser."

How to find the best concealer shade for you?

Jesse Walker said: "Ideally you want your blemish-covering concealer to match your skin-tone and foundation colour."

For the under-eye, Bobbi recommends going lighter: "When it comes to shades, look for a concealer that is one shade lighter than your skin tone. Choose the shade that blends right into the side of your face and your forehead. If you don’t see it it’s the right shade for you. However, If the chosen shade isn’t bright enough for the darker areas on the face, use one in a pinky or peach tone on top of your regular skin tone."

How I found the best concealers

Makeup is personal, what works on me might not work on you, but I've scoured all the reviews online, watched hundreds of TikTok videos and I've tried plenty in order to share my top concealers to recommend. You've also got the expert recommendations as well. 

The best concealers 

  1. 1/9

    NARS Light Reflecting Eye Brightener

    NARS Light Reflecting Eye Brightener© NARS

    Good For Eye Brightening: NARS Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Brightening
    • Glides on sheer
    • Buildable coverage

    A favourite with TikTokers, the NARS Light Reflecting Eye Brightener gives the under eye area an instantly awakened look with brightness that lasts up to 24 hours. 

    It also targets dark circles and dullness and the creamy texture glides on sheer, and you get buildable coverage. 

  2. 2/9

    Jones Road The Face Pencil

    Jones Road The Face Pencil© Jones Road

    Good For Speed: Jones Road Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Natural-looking finish 
    • Great for "no makeup makeup" looks
    • Perfect for on the go

    Bobbi says: "What I love most about the Face Pencils is that they are virtually undetectable, yet they can cover redness, lighten dark spots and circles, correct discolouration, and even out skin tone." 

    After moisturiser start around the nose to cover redness. Next, apply around the mouth, spot correct wherever you see discoloration or brown spots, as needed, and blend in with fingers.

  3. 3/9

    Makeup by Mario Surrealskin Awakening Concealer 5.8ml

    MAKEUP BY MARIO Surrealskin™ Awakening Concealer© Makeup by Mario

    Good For De-Puffing: Makeup by Mario Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Long wearing
    • De-puffing thanks to caffeine
    • Brightening

    Makeup by Mario's brightening concealer is a weightless concealer that provides medium coverage. The buildable formula conceals even the darkest undereye circles and it's creaseproof. Formulated with Lift & Lock™ technology, the caffeine-infused concealer depuffs, tightens, and smooths.

  4. 4/9

    Laura Mercier Real Flawless Weightless Perfecting Concealer

    © Laura Mercier

    Good For Lightweight Coverage: Laura Mercier Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Lightweight
    • Minimises Undereye Darkness
    • Skin-like in finish

    Following the viral Real Flawless Foundation, Laura Mercier has launched the Real Flawless Concealer, and John Lewis customers can’t get enough of it! Online searches for ‘Laura Mercier concealer’ have increased 6 fold compared to this time last year and with shades already selling out, it has quickly become Laura Mercier’s best selling concealer yet.

  5. 5/9

    Haus Labs Triclone Skin Tech Hydrating Concealer with Fermented Arnica

    Haus Labs concealer© Haus Labs

    Good For Blurring: Haus Labs Triclone Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Blurring
    • Brightening
    • Good for acne-prone skin 

    A lightweight, longwear, skin-loving concealer that does more than cover: It blurs, de-puffs, brightens and conceals with medium buildable coverage.

    It's also non-comedogenic which means it won't clog pores and is ideal for those with acne-prone skin.

  6. 6/9

    Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Radiant Concealer

    Charlotte Tilbury concealer© Charlotte Tilbury

    Good For Contour: Charlotte Tilbury Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Luminous
    • Easy to blend
    • Longlasting 

    If you're wanting a concealer to contour with, this is it. Using a slightly deeper shade, apply on cheekbones, temples and jawline, and blend out using a larger brush to define your facial framework.

    Lastly, to define the nose, apply along the sides and under the tip, and blend out using an angled brush.

  7. 7/9

    Futurist Soft Touch Brightening Skincealer ConcealerDouble Wear Stay-in-Place Foundation

    Futurist Soft Touch Brightening Skincealer Concealer© Estee Lauder

    Good For Mature Skin: Estée Lauder Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Brightening
    • Soft-touch applicator
    • Water-resistant

    Designed for precision application and easy blending in all areas, this innovative 'Skincealer' will make your skin look hydrated and brighter - great for the under-eye area.  

    Think long-wearing but with the texture of skincare - the silky formula with brighten dark circles and it's water-, sweat- and humidity-resistant.
    The exclusive soft-touch applicator is based on the shape of a dainty fingertip. Designed for precision application and easy blending in all areas.

  8. 8/9

    Iconic London Radiant Concealer & Brightening Duo

    Iconic London Radiant Concealer & Brightening Duo© Iconic London

    Good For Multi Use: Iconic London Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Multi-purpose
    • Easy to blend - silky almost! 
    • Natural finish 

    Iconic London is famed for its glow-giving formulas and its Radiant Concealer & Brightening Duo is now your one (okay, two) stop shop for a fresh-faced finish. 

    Featuring a brightening crayon to illuminate and lift the under-eye area, as well as a liquid concealer that camouflages dark spots and blemishes with medium to full coverage.

  9. 9/9

    Dior Forever Skin Correct Full-Coverage Concealer

    DIOR Dior Forever Skin Correct Full-Coverage Concealer - 24h Hydration and Wear© Dior Beauty

    Good For Full Coverage: Dior Forever Concealer

    Why We Love It

    • Full coverage
    • Super longlasting
    • Minimal transfer

    Dior Forever concealer is a major favourite of mine, and one that I carry out with me on nights out - it's an amazing full coverage concealer, and works beautifully for touch ups. 

    Its creamy texture visibly corrects complexion blemishes and reduces the appearance of under-eye circles in a single sweep.

How to apply concealer 

Makeup artist Laurretta Power said: "The best concealer applicator depends on personal preference; options include brushes, sponges, or even your fingertips. Fingertips can create the lightest finish, or go with a sponge for full coverage. Experiment to see what works best for you!" 

What is the best concealer for older skin?

Jesse said: "As we age, our skin often becomes drier, so it’s important to focus on products that contain hydration-boosting ingredients to ensure an even, radiant finish. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye contains both hyaluronic acid as well as anti-ageing peptides, making it a great option for this demographic."

Laurretta agrees, and tends to opt for skincare-enriched products as well: "For older skin, I love creamy, hydrating and skincare infused concealers with light-reflecting properties to avoid settling into fine lines."

Concealing wrinkles - can you do it? 

Jesse said: "Make-up can’t conceal texture, but it can still help you look fabulous as you age. Make-up is for any age, it’s just about finding textures that work with your skin rather than against it. A good skincare routine is the best place to start when looking to minimise any wrinkles or skin texture, ensuring makeup applies more smoothly and lasts well throughout the day."

What are the main differences between different concealer textures?

Bobbi says: "Nothing bothers me more than concealers that are dry and cakey, you want to prep your skin well and apply moisturiser where it's most needed before applying any concealer to the areas most needed. My Jones Road Face Pencil is almost undetected and glides on with zero pulling for a ‘you skin but better’ feel."

Tricks for the under-eye when it comes to concealer?

Jesse said: "My number one tip for applying under-eye concealer is simply don’t use too much. The trick is to start in the darkest area of your eye, slowly applying and blending as you go until you reach the level of brightness you require. Applying your make-up in daylight directly in front of a mirror always ensures best results.

"When it comes to very dark or discoloured under-eyes, I think the impact of using as corrector is often overlooked. If you’re finding that your under-eyes still look grey or purple after applying concealer, you may find that using a corrector underneath will give you a better result. If your under-eyes look more purple, aim for a peach-toned corrector. If they lean more blue/green, look for a corrector with salmon or bisque tones. Charlotte Tilbury Magic Vanish correctors are a great place to start."

Bobbi recommends The Neutralizer Pencil by Jones Road: "I suggest starting with a colour-correcting product with a pink or peach tone. This will help lighten up the dark areas. After you have colour corrected the shadows underneath your eyes, it’s time for your concealer. I’d recommend one that has yellow undertones and is one shade lighter than your foundation.

"I sometimes use two different colours, one that neutralises and gets rid of any extra darkness and one that gets rid of the dark circle. Blend with your finger or a brush - it's all down to a preference that works for you."

Can you use the same concealer for under eyes as for concealing spots/blemishes?

Bobbi says: "When it comes to covering a blemish up, you never want to use under eye concealer. Since under the eye concealer is one shade lighter than your skin tone, it will only highlight what you want to hide. Instead, choose a concealer designed for the face to spot cover any imperfections or redness." 

Laurretta agrees, saying: "For  blemishes, use a concealer that matches your skin tone precisely and apply with a small brush or your fingertip for targeted coverage,  you can also use a green or yellow corrector to reduce any redness under your concealer."

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