We Tested 25 Options, These Are The 12 Best Drugstore Concealers of 2022

Our winner is the NYX HD Photo Concealer Wand

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Best drugstore concealers test group shot

Byrdie / Tamara Staples

Dark circles and breakouts happen to the best of us. And when you’d prefer they not be seen, the right concealer can essentially double as a magic eraser to make problem spots disappear. Dab it on, blend it well, and you’re pretty much good to go. This goes for drugstore concealers, too; just because they’re cheaper in price doesn’t mean they’re less effective.

Byrdie Tested & Approved

You can’t go wrong with the NYX Professional Makeup HD Photo Concealer Wand, which received a perfect score across the board for its ability to seamlessly and easily conceal blemishes and dark circles.

“Drugstore concealers have come a long way in the last few years. The technology and quality now rival products that are many times the price,” says celebrity makeup artist Mary Irwin, who also notes that more and more drugstore brands have expanded their shade ranges, too. To prove that point, we researched the best budget-friendly concealers that are a total hit in the drugstore aisle. Then, we put them to the test. We tried out 25 drugstore concealers at our lab in NYC on the basis of texture, coverage, creasing, and staying power — and we’re sharing our findings with you.

Keep reading to discover the best drugstore concealers.

Best Overall: NYX HD Photogenic Concealer Wand

5
NYX Professional Makeup HD Photo Concealer Wand

Amazon

What We Like
  • No creasing

  • Full-coverage

  • Easy to blend

  • Good for acne and under eye circles

What We Don't Like
  • Limited shade range


In order for a drugstore concealer to be crowned the best of the best, it needed to check off a number of boxes. This one from NYX does all that and more. Case in point: It’s lightweight and layers easily, but doesn’t skimp on coverage. In fact, our tester raved about how easy it was to add thin layers of coverage onto dark circles and spots without looking cakey.

A little bit of the formula goes a long way, ensuring it’ll last a long time and you get your money’s worth. The concealer comes in a variety of shades, ranging from light to dark, as well as color-correcting hues like green, lavender, and yellow. Overall, we found it to be a great choice for everyday if you need a full-coverage concealer that blends easily into the skin and color-corrects blemishes and under-eye circles.

Price at time of publish: $6

Coverage Level: Full | Finish: Matte | Shades: 23 | Size: 0.11 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

What Our Testers Say

“There were absolutely no creases. Even when I blinked and moved my face, the concealer didn’t smudge or get messed up at all throughout the day.” — Chantia Murphy, Tester

Best for Dark Spots: Makeup Revolution Beauty Conceal & Define Concealer

4.3
Makeup Revolution Beauty Conceal & Define Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Full-coverage

  • Minimal creasing

  • Conceals dark spots

What We Don't Like
  • The applicator

Powered by niacinamide, a skincare ingredient with anti-inflammatory properties, it’s no wonder why this concealer is a go-to for dark spots. It’s full-coverage, so it hides the look of darkness, whether from an old breakout or too much time in the sun, but also treats them over time and helps give them a little extra dose of calm.

Our tester found the texture thick upon first application, but after a bit of blending, it covered her dark spots quite well. Even after wearing it for a while, her dark spots were still undetectable and the formula felt comfortable on her skin. While our tester took no issue with the formula, she complained that the applicator was flimsy and she worried it wouldn’t last. All in all, as far as dark spot concealers go, this one is a solid option for hiding (and treating) pesky dark spots.

Price at time of publish: $7

Coverage Level: Full | Finish: Matte | Shades: 40 | Size: 0.11 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

What Our Testers Say

“The full-coverage concealer made the dark spots on my face disappear completely.” — Alyssa Fox, Tester

Best for Blemishes: Neutrogena SkinClearing Blemish Concealer

4.2
Neutrogena SkinClearing Blemish Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Contains salicylic acid

  • Lightweight

  • Easy to blend

What We Don't Like
  • Limited shade range

When you’re prone to breakouts, you want a concealer that can cover your blemishes without making them more severe, and this SkinClearing concealer promises to do just that. You can expect medium coverage that reduces the look of breakouts over time. The salicylic acid formula treats while you cover, so there’s no more sacrificing your skin for the sake of its appearance.

Our tester raved about the formula, which didn’t crease or fade throughout the day, as well as the doe-foot applicator that distributes just the right amount of product every time. We love this one for those looking to spot conceal blemishes while still maintaining a natural finish, we do wish it had a much wider shade range though.

Price at time of publish: $9

Coverage Level: Light to medium | Finish: Natural | Shades: 5 | Size: 0.05 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

What Our Testers Say

“I would recommend this product to a friend if they were worried about blemishes. The product is a great spot concealer since it blends well, does not appear cakey, and has a useful applicator design.”— Lauren Socia, Tester

Best for Dark Circles: Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer

4.8
Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Glides on easily

  • Long-lasting

  • Doesn’t settle into fine lines

What We Don't Like
  • The sponge may get gross over time

There’s a reason why this concealer has been rated #1 in America.  It’s a go-to for Irwin as well. “This is a personal favorite of mine. The colors are great, the texture glides on like butter, and the coverage is impressive,” she says. Our tester agrees that it’s easy to blend, thanks to a super creamy consistency. It combines the best parts of a cream and liquid concealer to reduce dark circles in a pinch with little need for touch-ups throughout the day. It wins brownie points for a built-in applicator, which the tester says feels really nice on skin, and makes application easy, even if you don’t have a makeup bag full of brushes and sponges.

Price at time of publish: $11

Coverage Level: Medium to full | Finish: Radiant | Shades: 18 | Size: 0.2 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best for Acne: Maybelline New York Fit Me! Liquid Concealer Makeup

4.8
Maybelline New York Fit Me! Liquid Concealer Makeup

Amazon

What We Like
  • Long-lasting

  • Glides on easily

  • Conceals blemishes

What We Don't Like
  • Limited shade range

If you’re looking for a simple, no-fuss concealer that’s great for covering everyday acne, this is the pick for you. The lightweight liquid formula glides on smooth and has enough tackiness to last all day long as a spot corrector. Our tester loves its natural, dewy finish that makes it ideal for low-maintenance makeup days. She said the formula covered a blemish on her cheek flawlessly and didn’t crease or transfer, even after full day wear.

Price at time of publish: $8

Coverage Level: Light to medium | Finish: Dewy | Shades: 18 | Size: 0.23 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Maybelline New York Fit Me! Liquid Concealer Makeup

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best Long Wear: Rimmel London Stay Matte Concealer

4.8
Rimmel London Stay Matte Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Matte finish

  • Easy to build

  • Stays put

  • Can be used for contouring

What We Don't Like
  • It can be hard to tell which shade you’re using

Got oily skin? This humidity-proof, sweat-proof formula delivers 24-hour shine control so that your makeup stays where you want it to — on your face. Use this buildable coverage option for under-eye circles or discoloration, or go up a shade or two for the perfect contour. Since it’s matte, it dries quickly, but our tester swears that it’s easy to build up if you need more coverage. It completely camouflages the look of dark under eyes and blemishes, leaving behind a fresh, natural look.

Price at time of publish: $4

Coverage Level: Buildable | Finish: Matte | Shades: 20 | Size: 0.23 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Rimmel London Stay Matte Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best Full-Coverage: COVERGIRL TruBlend Full Coverage Concealer

4.8
COVERGIRL TruBlend Full Coverage Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Lightweight yet full-coverage

  • Offers a variety of undertones

What We Don't Like
  • Dries fast; can be hard to blend

With 30 shades in a variety of undertones — cool, neutral and warm — to choose from, this concealer is a great choice for almost everyone. The concealer has a velvety consistency that our tester loved. A fan of creamy concealers that don’t feel too thick, she especially loved how this one was a matte finish that still feels weightless. It comes with a large, fluffy doe foot that makes for super easy application, no matter how you’re using it.

Price at time of publish: $11

Coverage Level: Full | Finish: Matte | Shades: 30 | Size: 0.33 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

What Our Testers Say

“It looks so natural — like an extension of my skin. I used it to even out some redness on my cheeks and chin, too, and it masked that beautifully. I already feel more confident in how I look.” — Mary Honkus, Commerce Editor

COVERGIRL TruBlend Full Coverage Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best Matte Finish: L'Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Concealer

4.5
L'Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Comfortable finish

  • Full-coverage

  • Works great as a contour

What We Don't Like
  • Can settle into fine lines

For coverage that stays matte rain or shine, this concealer from L’Oréal takes the cake. Our tester loved how it covered her dark circles, blemishes, and dark spots in one swoop. In fact, she took note that it didn’t crease at all, even when she applied it across the majority of her face. Try it for yourself and expect a one stop shop for blemishes and under-eye circles for a flawless complexion that lasts from your morning commute to after-work happy hour.

Price at time of publish: $14

Coverage Level: Full | Finish: Matte | Shades: 25 | Size: 0.33 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

L'Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best for Dark Skin Tones: Black Opal Brightening Concealer

4.8
Black Opal Brightening Concealer

Ulta Beauty

What We Like
  • Brightening capabilities

  • Works for acne and dark circles

  • Formulated for skin of color

What We Don't Like
  • Can feel chalky

This BIPOC-owned concealer makes brightening up under-eyes and hyperpigmentation a breeze. The applicator glides on like your favorite lip gloss, making it convenient to toss in your purse on the go. The formula delivers full coverage for blemishes, while the shade selection is ideal for melanin-rich skin. “I use some of the colors in my professional kit,” says Irwin, who gives it her seal of approval, proving you can definitely get a professional quality product at a drugstore price.

Despite feeling like the product went on chalky at first, our tester was thrilled at how the product covered her under-eye discoloration and suited her undertone perfectly. She also put it to the test against hyperpigmentation and found it provided the right amount of coverage.

Price at time of publish: $10

Coverage Level: Medium | Finish: Natural | Shades: 12 | Size: 0.1 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

 BLK/OPL Brightening Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

What Our Testers Say

“This has an excellent creamy, hydrating texture that can be used all over the face. I’d use this on my eyelid to add brightness as well as an eyeshadow base. I’d also love to use deeper colors as a liquid bronzer to warm up my complexion.” — Sunita Mahtani, Tester

Best Cruelty-Free Formula: Milani Conceal + Perfect Longwear Concealer

4.4
Milani Conceal + Perfect Longwear Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Full-coverage

  • Conceals redness

What We Don't Like
  • Can oxidize

Dark circles, blemishes, and redness are no match for this ultra-clean drugstore formula. Just a dot of product straight from the tube conceals all the above and then some. Our tester especially liked how one tiny dab went a long way, ensuring the product will last a long time. To blend it out, she said she’d prefer a damp beauty blender to make sure the product melds into skin, but that fingers work surprisingly well, too. All in all, we love that with this clean concealer, there’s no creasing — or sign of imperfections, for that matter.

Price at time of publish: $10

Coverage Level: Full | Finish: Matte | Shades: 18 | Size: 0.17 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Milani Conceal + Perfect Longwear Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best Multitasker: Physicians Formula Natural Defense Concealer

4.3
Physicians Formula Natural Defense Concealer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Great for sensitive skin

  • Defends against the sun, blue light, and pollution

What We Don't Like
  • Tip dispenses extra product

To win the spot as best multitasker, a concealer really needed to surprise our testers with its efficacy and offer sun protection. While it’s not recommended you skip sunscreen (even on cloudy days), you can rest assured that this concealer is working overtime to keep you protected. Formulated to shield skin from sun, blue light, and pollution, this concealer does it all. The ultra-blendable concealer impressed our tester with its comfortable texture, natural coverage, and functional tip. Just be aware that the tip dispenses the same amount of product every time, so if you need a little less, you may end up wasting some. Otherwise, our tester had no additional complaints and said it made her skin look fresh and bright.

Price at time of publish: $12

Coverage Level: Sheer | Finish: Natural | Shades: 6 | Size: 0.8 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

 Physicians Formula Natural Defense Concealer

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Best Texture: NYX Professional Makeup Bare with Me Concealer Serum

5
NYX Professional Makeup Bare with Me Concealer Serum

Amazon

What We Like
  • Lightweight

  • Clean

  • Hydrating

What We Don't Like
  • It goes on wet

Skincare meets makeup in NYX Professional Makeup Bare With Me Concealer Serum. It works splendidly for brightening up and hydrating under-eyes, but it wouldn’t be frowned upon if you wanted to apply it to your entire face. One pump is enough to blur the look of dark circles, acne, redness, and large pores. Our tester agrees that less is most definitely more: t’s so lightweight and blendable, you don’t need too much.The formula is loaded with nourishing ingredients like tremella mushroom, cica, and green tea, which is great for keeping skin calm underneath makeup.

Price at time of publish: $11

Coverage Level: Medium | Finish: Natural | Shades: 13 | Size: 0.32 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

What Our Testers Say

“One might think that a lightweight formula would give sheer coverage, but this one gave a decent amount of coverage without caking or feeling heavy. Plus, because it’s a serum, it’s more hydrating than other concealers.” — Amy Deputato, Tester

NYX Professional Makeup Bare with Me Concealer Serum

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Final Verdict

Long story short: There’s no need to shell out big bucks on a concealer because there are a ton of great, affordable options to be found at the drugstore. You can’t go wrong with the NYX Professional Makeup HD Photo Concealer Wand or the Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer, each of which is a favorite of Byrdie editors, testers, and pro makeup artists alike. For those who want a concealer that packs serious coverage, the L'Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Concealer is a solid choice. The BLK/OPL Brightening Concealer is a favorite among makeup artists for those with deep skin tones that always struggle to find the perfect match.

How We Tested

Byrdie editors did extensive research on popular drugstore concealers, taking expert recommendations and consumer reviews into account before choosing 25 to test out first-hand. Our testers assessed each one based on texture, coverage, creasing, and staying power before deciding on a rating from one to five. Those with the highest scores made the list. All tests were performed in The Lab, our Manhattan product testing facility.

drugstore-concealer-test-jthompson-0956

Byrdie / Jhett Thompson

Other Options We Tested

Wet N Wild Photo Focus Concealer

While our tester loved the creamy texture and powdery finish of this popular concealer, she took issue with its coverage. It didn’t perform as well as she wanted it to, especially when it came down to concealing dark circles.

e.l.f. 16HR Camo Concealer

Although our tester noticed a difference in the brightness of her skin tone after applying the longwearing concealer, she didn’t like how it made her skin look cakey and clogged.

The Lip Bar Honey Quick Conceal Caffeine Concealer

Initially impressed by the full-coverage offered by this clean concealer, our tester was let down by the fact that it had a really liquidy texture that made it feel tacky when applying.

What to Look For in a Drugstore Concealer

Color

As with any concealer, finding your perfect match is essential. (When in doubt, err on the side of going slightly lighter.) The good news? “Drugstore concealers used to only come in a few colors that matched no one, and now there’s every color under the sun available,” says Irwin.

Texture

Do you prefer cream or liquid? Stick or pot? As with color, there are now more options than ever before, with something to fit everyone’s preferences, explains Irwin. If you have dry skin, opt for something that offers hydrating ingredients in the formula. Alternatively, for those with oily skin, a matte option might be best to help control shine and slippage.

Ingredients

In related news, the formulations of the concealers have also come a long way and may contain the added benefit of including skin-loving ingredients, which is why Irwin says it’s worth reading ingredient lists. Look for things like caffeine if it’s an under-eye concealer, or salicylic acid if you’re using a product to conceal pimples.

FAQ
  • What color concealer is best for dark circles?

    You’ll want to use a peach or orange-toned concealer to camouflage dark circles. “For under the eyes, I always recommend something with a peach undertone for lighter skin and an orange tone for darker skin,” celebrity makeup artist Katie Mellinger says. Mellinger notes that orange tones cancel out blue ones, aka the prominent color in dark circles.

  • Does concealer make dark circles appear worse?

    It shouldn’t if you use the right shade. Be sure to choose a concealer with orange or peach hues. A flesh-toned concealer may not cover discoloration as well.

  • What color concealer covers breakouts?

    Because pimples are typically red, green is an ideal shade to cover them since red and green are opposite on the color wheel. Byrdie writer Kaitlyn McLintock explains, “Green concealer is a great, easy way to use color theory to neutralize redness and discoloration.” She suggests lightly tapping a green concealer over pimples or blemishes, then using a flesh-colored concealer on top of that to blend in with your skin.

What Is Byrdie Verified?

Did you notice the Byrdie Verified seal of approval at the top of this story? This seal means that our team has researched and tested every product on this list using a unique methodology that’s designed to focus on what our readers really want to know—and to deliver insights that you can’t find anywhere else. Occasionally, beauty brands and PR agencies will send us samples for coverage consideration, but our thoughts and opinions are fully our own. If you visit links within our content, we may receive commissions from your purchases, but we never receive any compensation or consideration for the content of our recommendations. In short, the Byrdie Verified seal stands for product recommendations you can trust.

Why Trust Byrdie

Caitlyn Martyn is an experienced writer in the beauty industry and product tester specializing in cosmetics. She has tested dozens of concealers — including several on this list. Caitlyn has been a writer at Byrdie since 2022, where she covers all things beauty.

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