Six Second Hacks: The Concealer You Should Buy That Will Actually Mask Your Hard Partying
The Debrief: No bullshit - what concealers should you spend your hard earned cash on that will actually make your eyes look awake
Or rather, the concealer you should buy that'll mask your hard partying, not go into the dehydrated tiny cracks around your eye, not make you look old and make it look like you're totally not wearing shitloads of concealer. Basically, the dream. And something I've spent over a decade casually throwing money at, waltzing around Boots tossing coins at skin-coloured pens, markers, pots and clicky-things with gay abandon until my money runs out and I'm left sad. And people can still see, under my eyes, that I got in at 2am and slept in my clothes.
There are certain cosmetics that you really don't need to pay a lot of money for: eye liner (liquid and pencil) is one of them. Lip liner is one of them. Lip gloss is another (if you're into that sort of thing). Is concealer? Well, yes, according to high-falutin' beauty bods, but I'm not a high-falutin' beauty bod, so decided to test six of the big boys in the concealing world - from cheap to pricey - to find The Ultimate Way To Make Your Eyes Look Not Shit. Handily, the morning after I drank a bottle of wine, found myself in McDonalds, fell asleep at 2am then got up for an early shift beginning at 7am. Hahahahahahaha (it's not funny)
If anyone is all 'Why isn't Touche Eclat involved in this article, I'm going to call the police', then I don't want to be a dick about it but Touche Eclat is a highlighter guys, so you're supposed to use it alongside concealer. So there.
Maybelline: Dream LumiTouch
Type: Twisty Brush Pen That Also Makes Satisfying Clicking Sound
Did it work? Really light, airy, cooling brush-on concealer that felt like an angel had sat on your eye. Doesn't set like concrete, sit in your burgeoning crows feet or look heavy which is a big plus - but this is probably best for daily usage when you're looking pretty fly, rather than the serious damage control I needed. Me and other people with ever-creeping cavernous bags etched deeper and deeper into their faces by Old Father Time. Sorry for the downer - as I mentioned before, I'm pretty hungover. Either way, good for younger faces and people who don't have serious bags to contend with.
Easy to put on? Yeah I love a brush. It makes you feel fancy. Be prepared to twist it for ages before the first bit shoots out all over your trousers, though.
Easy to take off? Very easy.
Laura Mercier: Secret Camouflage
Type: Creamy Artistic Paint Palette
Did it work? ER, YEAH. Once you've figured out how to deal with the two-colour-sitch, which means you can basically make it whatever colour you need. The white really brightens the inner corners of the eye, and the beige that goes over the top can be toned up or down - I covered my whole under eye in white, then beige, then more white in the inner corners because, as you can all tell, I needed it. And it worked, without looking heavy and crap. If you're going to invest in some concealer for under the eyes because you regularly get told you look tired - then make it this one.
Easy to put on? Yes, once you've figured it out. It's also a lot of fun (I don't really have a life)
Easy to take off? Probably get some eye makeup remover - think of this as solid-iron cladding for your eyebags, so it makes sense it doesn't melt away with some tissue and a bit of spit. Wait that's really gross, I'd like to make it very clear that I don't spit on my eyes.
Collection: Lasting Perfection
Type: Liquid Spongy Pad Wand
Did it work? Very good coverage for this one, but because it's one of those 'lasting' ranges, the final effect was a bit heavy for me. Essentially, you have to do one layer and if that doesn't cover Old Mr Bags (what I call my undereye shadows) then that's that. You can't add a second layer, because the first layer has already fixed and the end result can be a bit heavy and matte. I think it's a preference thing - if you want matte coverage, then give it a go (it's so cheap, you may as well!) but if you're looking for something that reflects light, then maybe go for something different.
Easy to put on? Hell yeah, we all love a bit of spongy pad wand.
Easy to take off? Obviously, no, because it's lasting. Which means that you should probably use a makeup remover specific to the eye area.
Type: Fun Cream Pot
Did it work? Yeah! Felt light but attacked my dark shadows like Gandalf when he rides on that white horse and his wizard staff kills everyone (I haven't seen Lord Of The Rings for a long time, sorry) - only thing is that it can look a bit shiny if you put too much on, so play it cool. Play it reeeeeal cool. Nice thing is that it's airy, feels really luxurious and sort of melts into your skin while giving seriously good coverage - really worth the moola.
Easy to put on? Very much so - and with the added benefit (no pun intended) of being able to say 'Just going to go and boing' when you want to reapply.
Easy to take off? Yep, will be fine with any standard cleanser. The one I used was quite strong, which is why in some of these vines I appear to be crying.
Bare Minerals: Concealer
Type: Fun Cream Pot
Does it work? Oh, like a dream. This vanishes into your face like it never existed in the first place. Except it does exist, because the small children aren't looking at you and screaming anymore. Feels really moisturising around what had, by this point, become an incredibly delicate and sensitive area after I'd scrubbed off four different concealers in the space of thirty minutes. Really brightening, great coverage and I looked totally awake afterwards - but the main test was a colleague asked me if I had any concealers left over and I did, and it was this one, and I felt really sad giving it away because it's just so great. Expensive though, but worth it.
Easy to put on? As easy as one, two, put your finger in it and put it on your eye.
Easy to take off? Yes, it's really non-cakey and melts off your face just like it melted on it (great sentence).
Rimmel: Match Perfection
Type: Tube With A Brush
Does it work? Yes, once you've figured out that no, the brush doesn't rotate (did I mention I'm hungover?) and yes, you will have to squeeze the tube like toothpaste. This resulted in me getting overexcited and squeezing it into a beautiful arc that shot about a metre across the office - but I'm mildly dyspraxic, so you may fare better. Once this is on, it's bloody great. Highlighting, concealing and brightening, plus the brush adds that bit of fun that the cream pots can never provide. And if you don't know how fun a brush can be, then you've never lived. ALL FOR UNDER £6.
Easy to put on? Sort of, although what if you sit on your makeup bag and it squirts everywhere? I can see this happening. Not sure about the tube thing, but once you've squeezed (squozen) the correct amount of fluid, then you're away.
Easy to take off? Actually, yes. This was the only one that didn't irritate my eyes with all the scrubbing.
So what did we learn today? That yes, the more you spend, the better your under-eye bags will be concealed, but it's not as cut-and-dry as you'd think - Rimmel, Maybelline and Collection still do a bang tidy job, but Laura Mercier takes the crown. I can tell, because that's the one I've hidden from everyone in the office in case someone takes it from me. I think it's going to be my lifeline.
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