The most exciting part of my makeup routine is highlighting my less noticeable features with concealer—my infraorbital figure (under-eye area), philtrum (above my lip), chin boss (middle of my chin), bridge of my nose, and brow bone. As a girl, I'd sit in the powder room and watch my mother apply her makeup. That's where I learned to love it. But, she didn't use concealer. Though, over time, makeup formulas evolved and education about how to properly shape your face became more readily available.
After years of trying techniques, I found my niche with concealer—highlighting without contouring, to be specific.
Concealer can be used to cover blemishes and discoloration, or applied to highlight. For the latter, the shade should be a shade or two lighter than your actual complexion. The best way to do this? Understand your undertone. I am a black woman of African American descent with luscious caramel skin. Which means every shade of brown won't work, the same way it wouldn't with lighter skin tones. Each complexion is unique. See, undertones are separated into cool, warm, and neutral categories with blue, red, and pink, falling under the cool realm, and yellow, gold, and peach in the warm.
Neutral undertones are a mix of both.
Personally, I have caramel skin with super yellow undertones—so warm, yellow-tone concealers work best. But, I didn't always know that. It wasn’t until Cle de Peau's cult-favorite formula (in the shade Honey), landed on my desk years ago that I began to understand how much undertones come into play when finding the perfect formula. And, it was only then that I began to look like as much like myself with makeup on as did bare-faced. Adding a little yellow here, a dab of chestnut there, and some bronze along the sides is the formula that works best for me.
Below, find concealers to best match my skin tone.
The color, the color, the color! Did I mention the color? It's perfect for me! The Honey shade exquisitely matches my skin, better than any other concealer I've tried. And, the formula hugs like a second skin. It’s hydrating, buildable, and waterproof. This hero product single-handedly changed my life and upped my makeup game, seriously.
I came across this little pot as I was tidying up my beauty storage and it instantly became one of my favorite concealers—I use the NC 35 medium beige shade with golden neutral undertone for medium skin. The emollient-based formula is extremely workable and applies best with a small, flathead brush. I blend it out with a Beautyblender, but it's also easy to use with your fingers, as you can get into the little creases around your eyes and smoothing it out.
The soft, cushiony applicator is the key—making it simple to cover blemishes, dark circles, and any discoloration. It's really pigmented, but the formula is so soft (like cashmere) so it's comfortable enough to wear under your eyes each day.
This one comes in handy when I have a bit of a tan, as it’s more toasted than the rest. At first, I was apprehensive about the matte formula—no one wants dry-looking under-eyes—but this product has never dried out my skin and, instead, offered flawless coverage.
After hearing so much hoopla about this one concealer, I caved, gave it spin, and must admit that it lives up to its hype. Again, matte formulas frighten me but this product is a bit of a hybrid. It comes in liquid form and dries matte, as the shea and mango butters offer moisturizing properties on top of the supreme long-wear capabilities.
This beloved concealer is super creamy and hydrating, so it definitely takes the cake during the winter months when the air gets dry. It has a mineral tone balancing powder that reflects light to mask any imperfections, as well as grape seed extract and Vitamin E secure moisture. If you have medium-toned skin with golden undertones, this is the pick for you.