beauty

16 Best Concealers for Dark Circles (and More)

Photo-Illustration: by The Cut; Photo: Retailer

My under-eye, dark circles are hereditary. Luckily, I’ve come to love them. If only my past self could see that now teens are looking to accentuate this feature rather than hide it. Alas, beggars can’t be choosers. Besides some much needed self-love, my then-complex (and my current job) has allowed me to try out almost every and any concealer on the market.

All that to say, who else but me to recommend to you the best concealers out there? I know that finding the right concealer can be confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. If you know what you want to conceal (pimples? redness? dark spots?), and what form you would like that concealer to take (a luscious cream? something more solid like a stick?), you’re halfway there. What’s left is how much coverage you want and how you’d like to apply it.

The MVP

Yes, this concealer lives up to its hype. Whether the Sephora sale associate was trying to sell it to you or it popped up on your TikTok FYP, if you’re in the market for a new concealer, do yourself a favor and buy it. Your under-eye circles, pimples, and dark spots will thank you. It is lightweight, doesn’t crease (but you need to moisturize your face properly), and blends well with most foundations. It’s available in 28 shades, and if you want to build up your coverage, you can pair it with the brand’s Revealer Skin-Improving Foundation, which has the same formula.

The One That Enhances Your Skin

If you love Ami Colé because of its lip gloss, wait until you try the brand’s concealer. When the eczema on my face was at its worst, this concealer stayed true to its name and allowed me to cover up the red blotches with its silky finish. So whether you have sensitive skin or simply want to exalt your features without necessarily hiding them, pick one of the 12 shades available.

The One for Beginners

Behold the concealer that I religiously used all throughout college and during my first years in New York City. However, if you want medium to full coverage, this isn’t for you.

The One That Technically Isn’t a Concealer

Graduated from Glossier? Try out Merit. The stick applicator makes spot-treating any discoloration you might have way easier. Make sure you hydrate your face accordingly, though, since the stick won’t run as smoothly and you might find yourself pulling your skin to blend it out. If you apply the right primer (or moisturizer of choice), this will become an instant favorite you can throw in your bag for retouches during the workday.

The Fashion-y One

This has the word “fabric” in its name, and it really does feel like luxurious fabric on skin — kind of like silk, sort of like cashmere, but mostly like a new pair of Wolford tights. And just like those tights, this concealer (which comes in 20 shades) glides on smoothly, then settles in to a matte but not overly dry finish.

The Best Drugstore Concealer

A drugstore concealer I stand by 70 percent. The missing 30 percent is because a lot of product does stay stuck in the odd spongelike applicator, but once you get used it, this under-$10 option with 16 shades rivals its pricier counterparts.

The One That’s Easily Buildable

Rihanna reigns with the most shades for a concealer (50). This wand- applied formula has a softness to it that makes blending super-easy, as well as buildable, should more coverage be required. One layer evens things out, but two or three will really cover you when serious concealment is required.

The One That’s Long Lasting

When it comes to makeup, Selena Gomez can do no wrong. Between the viral blush, the stunning lipsticks and liners, and the concealer, I don’t know which product is my favorite. Don’ be fooled but what seems like a lightweight liquid formula. It’s actually medium coverage and stays on for long periods of time. I like to pair mine with Charlotte Tilbury’s Flawless Filter for a truly radiant finish.

The Classic

Before I landed on the Glossier concealer, of course my mom bought me the NARS Radiant concealer. It does dewy well while providing the right amount of coverage. If you want a more matte finish, scroll down a bit for another great option from the brand.

The Vegan One

This rich liquid diminishes dark spots and under-eye circles, but it’s also a formidable opponent for red areas, like broken capillaries. The applicator sponge doles out the product in measured clicks, meaning you’ll never wind up with too much, and it makes reaching tricky spots, like the outer corners of your nostrils, much easier. The formula comes in 16 shades, is vegan, and free of parabens, mica, alcohol, and even gluten.

The One Loved by Makeup Artists

There’s a reason why this one is a favorite among beauty editors, makeup artists, and celebs like Kate Bosworth and KKW. Its lipstick-like applicator (and, frankly, nearly lipstick-like consistency) make it easy to use, easy to blend, and easy to conceal. With only six shades, it’s long overdue for a shade extension, but something tells me they’re working on it …

The One for the Mixologist

Makeup artist Troy Surratt created this compact with three pans because our faces are rarely one single tone. It comes in six different shade trios, each with a lighter shade to conceal and brighten, a darker shade for deeper discoloration, and a finishing powder at the bottom that helps refract light. Of course, you can mix them all to hit the exact color you need. Surratt suggests warming them up with your fingers for easier blending. Just don’t be thrown by the slightly tacky texture — it better adheres to skin.

The One That Won’t Move

The vehicle in which one prefer one’s concealer to be contained is another personal preference. Wand dabbers might not understand pencil drawers, who might balk at dipping their finger in a pot. Benefit’s beloved Boi-ing concealer usually comes in a pan, but the brand now also has a wand version, a rich, satiny texture that provides full, long lasting coverage. Even better, unlike its predecessor’s six shades, this one comes in 12.

The One for the Photo Shoot

Fans rely on this long-standing favorite when they need to be camera-ready. The 16 shades of thick cream, all based in pink or peach, do an impressive job at covering the blue, purple, and red tones that are the culprits of under-eye circles. That said, IMHO, its name is a misnomer because it works equally well on upper eyelids, where skin can also need some evening out.

The Wrinkle Smoother

Spackle isn’t exactly the most flattering word to describe a concealer, but that’s what comes to mind when this solid balm blurs fine lines while it covers flaws. That’s thanks to an optical diffusion powder in its formula, which comes in 16 shades. Blending it does takes a little practice, but the end result is worth the extra dabbing.

The One That’s Also an Acne Treatment

Sure, the tip of this pen covers annoying zits very well (in ten shades), but it also works at obliterating those zits with salicylic acid, which also helps prevent future breakouts. Also in this formula are mushroom stem and licorice extract to quell the redness that usually comes with pimples.

16 Best Concealers for Dark Circles (and More)