Makeup Advice

Basic Concealer Tips to Revamp Your Makeup Routine

Dec 21, 2017

Enhance your complexion with the untapped potential of concealer. Dark circles, dark spots, and unwanted blemishes are all avoidable with the help of a well-chosen concealer. There are so many shades and varieties to choose from: sticks, powders, liquids and creams. Here are some simple, techniques to choose and use the ideal concealer.

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Know Your Purpose and Target Area — Choose the Right Type of Concealer.


  • Go with liquid concealer when you want light coverage over a wide area of the face
  • Liquid is great for areas that move around a lot, specifically around the eyes, because it creates a light finish.
  • *
    Overuse of heavy concealer tends to accentuate wrinkles over time.

Stick or Compact

  • Stick or compact concealers are great for small or narrow area coverage
  • *
    When using a stick type concealer, choose a solid one.

Choosing a Concealer Shade

Highlighting or adding clarity? Stick with a lighter tone. Dark spots and pimples are better conquered by a neutral shade, slightly darker than your natural skin color.

Using Concealer over Foundation

Ideal shades vary depending on the order foundation and concealer are applied. If you’re using concealer over liquid or cream foundation, first try covering the area with foundation. Still struggling to get that perfect look? Try a concealer closer to your natural skin pigment.

Seasonal Shades

Summer season means darker skin tones. Don’t forget to match the concealer shade to the season.

Queue Up, Foundation and Concealer

Apply powder last. Always. It helps your makeup last longer and prevents caking. Concealer goes on first when you use a powder foundation. Using a liquid or cream foundation? Concealer comes after. Finish up with a face powder.

Liquid foundation ⇒ Concealer
Concealer ⇒ Powder foundation

Q. When I use concealer, is it OK to skip foundation?

Make sure you apply the appropriate shade if you’re only using a concealer. Blend it well with the surrounding skin to ensure a natural-looking finish. Foundation will give you a flawless veil effect that you can’t achieve solely with concealer. A combination of concealer and foundation is ideal. Scared of an unnaturally thick appearance? Apply lighter amounts of both concealer and foundation — you’ll easily get that well-balanced, organic finish. Adding Blush and face color on top of foundation and concealer gives your skin a desirable, healthy appearance with a refined texture.

Q. What about when using concealer on oily skin?

Avoid using too much product on areas prone to oiliness. Apply concealer as needed after working in a liquid foundation. Concealer tends to cake on oily skin, so powder as a finishing touch is key.

Problem Spots

Dark Circles

An illustration of an eye with arrows indicating the darkest portion of dark spots under the eye.

  • The skin around the eyes tends to dry out easily. Before applying a concealer, be sure to moisturize with eye cream.
  • Since your eyes move a lot, you’re better off avoiding a heavy type of concealer. Instead, go with a liquid or cream type with a light finish. A concealer specially designed for the eyes also works.
  • Say “so long” to gray and blue tinged dark circles with an orange-hued concealer.
  • Apply concealer only to the darkest part of the circle, instead of spreading it across a wide area. Administer concealer with a lifting motion along the area where the dark circle is most noticeable to purify and refresh your skin.
  • *
    When you apply concealer over a wide area, the lines surrounding dark circles stand out more, so we tend to lay on the product thicker. The concealer then forms creases when the skin moves, accentuating wrinkles under the eye.
  • A special concealer brush or cotton swab is particularly handy for small or delicate areas.

Bonus Tip from Kanebo’s Makeup Artist:

Worried about dark circles? Add impact to the eyes with eye makeup like eyeliner, eye shadow, and mascara. Let your flawless eyes enjoy the limelight.


  • A stick or palette type solid concealer works wonders. Stick with a shade one tone darker than your natural skin color.
  • Erasing redness is no sweat with a yellow-hued concealer.
  • Put the desired amount on a concealer brush with hard, fine bristles. Apply only to the red part, and gently blend it in.
  • Soften the look by finishing it off with face powder.

Dark Spots and Freckles

  • Choose a solid concealer.
  • A darkish foundation that’s close in color to your skin’s pigment minimizes the difference between the spots and your foundation. Massage it in and then apply concealer to minimize the difference even more.
  • Gently pat the area around the concealer with a finger or brush to blend it in.
  • Finally, set the foundation and concealer in place with powder.

Bonus Tip from Kanebo’s Makeup Artist:

Dark spots and blemishes disappear when you spread foundation lightly in the direction of the face line. Orange-hued blushes are also a good choice for eliminating dark spots.

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