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Here’s a fun fact for ya—did you know that dark undereye circles are largely caused by genetics? Yep, just like your hair color or shoe size, whether or not you have to deal with constant dark circles ultimately boils down to your DNA. (Though yes, things like a lack of sleep can absolutely exacerbate the situation and make any undereye shadows you have all the more noticeable.)
When it comes to camouflaging raccoon eyes, at the end of the day, a concealer is by far your best bet. Eye creams can help—to a certain extent—but it takes time to see those effects. A good undereye concealer, on the other hand, can give you complete coverage and make you look bright-eyed in seconds.
Here, the best dark circle concealers that do exactly that.
There’s arguably no concealer out there more beloved than this one. Beauty editors swear by it (Hallie Gould, Byrdie’s Senior Editor, is just one of many Byrdie staffers that are obsessed). Influencers post about it on the reg. And people buy it—and rave about it—time and time again. While it works great all over your face, it’s especially choice for under the eyes, thanks to an extra hydrating and creamy formula (credit mango and shea butter) and complete coverage that never creases or settles into fine lines.
On the flip side, if you’re looking for a little luminosity, this concealer can’t be beaten. Despite the fact that it packs full coverage, it still has a featherweight, nearly skin-like texture—no easy feat. Creamy and smooth, it also has the perfect amount of radiance to leave skin looking fresh and healthy, without veering into sparkly or shimmery territory.
This drugstore staple is a best-seller—one of the top-selling ones in America, NBD—for good reason. The creamy formula completely covers up not only dark circles but also fine lines and wrinkles as well, while tamping down puffiness in the process. Essentially, it’s all you need to make your entire eye area look better and brighter. Bonus points for the built-in, sponge-tip applicator that ensures silky smooth blending.
It’s a simple beauty fact of life: Concealers always come in fewer shades than foundations. That’s why this particular pick is so noteworthy. There are, wait for it, a whopping 50 shades with an extensive range of undertones to pick from, offering a hue for pretty much any and every skin tone. Long-wear and sweat-resistant, one swipe offers medium coverage, though it’s easily buildable if you need more.
This one is the recommendation of Byrdie Editorial Director Faith Xue. Reach for it when makeup touch-ups aren’t going to be feasible; the formula offers medium coverage that stays put for up to 16 hours. It also boasts a mineral tone balancing powder to optically correct, not just cover, discoloration, plus a light-diffusing mineral powder as well to create a radiant finish.
The OG Touche Éclat highlighting pen first launched nearly 30 years ago; it too can be used to brighten the area under the eyes, though to score both the brightening and concealing benefits, reach for this take on the classic. With more coverage, it helps camo discoloration, but still offers the same Optical Brightening Technology that works to deflect the light away from the eyes to diffuse darkness and increase radiance.
In celebration of the 20th anniversary of their best-selling Luminous Silk Foundation, Armani recently launched this guy, the concealer variant of the beloved base. Both have that same silky feel and subtly radiant finish and this concealer delivers up to 24 hours of hydration, thanks to the addition of glycerin. There’s also caffeine in the mix, choice for helping to combat both dark circles and puffiness.
If you’re part of the ‘the more coverage the better’ camp, Gould suggests you try this option. Despite the fact that it packs on some major pigment, it still feels incredibly lightweight and hydrating; credit the addition of a moisturizing vita-serum complex. It goes on silky smooth and blurs away the look of shadows instantly, while also imparting some subtle brightness.
Those who crave coverage, but don’t love the look and/or feel of concealer, will appreciate how undetectable this formula is. Credit elastic micro waxes that move with your skin, rather than sitting on top of it (and end up resulting in caking or creasing).
For best results, warm up the product with your fingertips before blending it in.
Those looking for clean ingredient lists will appreciate this formula, free of a long list of potentially questionable chemicals. In fact, the first ingredient is aloe juice, imparting plenty of soothing hydration. Per the serum part of things, it also contains brightening and protective vitamin C and has a serum-like texture that melts and blends seamlessly onto skin, even in areas where there might be some fine lines or crepiness (like around the eyes).
Byrdie Associate Editor Holly Rhue raves about this full coverage, waterproof, long-lasting formula. A new variant on the OG (and also very popular version), this one boasts more of a luminescent finish, ideal when you want a little extra brightness around your eyes. But like its predecessor, it too contains hydrating hyaluronic acid, plus anti-aging collagen and peptides to help smooth out the look of fine lines and wrinkles over time.
No matter whether you’re dealing with dry skin or want to make sure you have plenty of coverage, reach for a cream concealer. Often housed in pots, they’re a surefire way to get plenty of creamy color. This one, another one of Rhue’s picks, packs plenty of color. So much so that you truly need only a tiny dot (about the size of the grain of rice, per the brand’s recommendation) under each eye. Jojoba oil in the formula ensures it’s nice and hydrating and never creases or cakes, and we also love the intensely pigmented pick for strategic covering of pimples.
Stick concealers are choice for easy application—all you have to do is swipe on and blend in with your fingertips, no extra tools or brushes required. This particular one is a fave of Karli Bendlin, Byrdie’s Email Editor, and touts an extra creamy consistency that glides beautifully along the skin. Use it as your AM concealer, but, as the name suggests, keep it on hand for touch-ups, too. It layers nicely over existing makeup if you realize you need a little more coverage mid-day.
Those who prefer that the area around their eyes look matte should try this concealer, another favorite of Bendlin. The oil-free formula packs plenty of coverage and has a velvety finish that strikes the perfect balance between being matte but never coming across as dry or flat. It’s also nice and creamy, instantly melting into skin, and works just as well to conceal blemishes as it does dark circles. Bonus points for the addition of protective antioxidants—vitamins A, C, and E—always a good thing for the delicate skin around your eyes.
As any pro makeup artist will tell you, layering a color corrector underneath concealer is an easy way to ensure your dark circles really get covered up. Choose color correctors with warm peach or apricot tones; because they fall opposite blue and purple on the color wheel, they’re the best choices for neutralizing undereye discoloration. This particular one earns our vote for both the lightweight formula that blends in nicely and layers well under concealer, as well as the fact that it comes in three shades (peach, pink, and dark peach) that work on a variety of skin tones.