The questions most commonly posed in the beauty community are how to cover dark circles under the eye, what products to use that will not settle into fine lines and how to achieve an overall flawless finish.

Each time these questions are asked, you get a multitude of differing and often contradictory answers.

I have dry skin, under eye shadows, fine lines and a few prominent wrinkles. Here is what I have learnt through my own experience. I hope that if you are affected by these issues, you may be able to save a little money, as I have already spent it for you 😉

Truth: The more hydrating makeup you put on, the more it will move. There is a common belief that fine lines under the eye diminish through putting on extra moisturizer and using very moisturizing concealers. They don’t. All makeup products increase the visibility of fine lines, You can see this once you put your foundation on, immediately afterwards, your foundation will have had no time to settle in fine lines and despite that they are more evident. Smoothing out the complexion makes imperfections stand out.

It is common to color correct under eye shadows with a salmon/pink or even orange corrector (depending on your skin tone) and then layer concealer on top and set it with a powder. This can work well for up to 6 hours, but post that there will be a visible shift with cakey powdery zones and products gunked into fine lines, so whilst it can work very well, once it falls apart it can look really bad. They key to having it last, is to use as little product as possible and also to use products that move as little as possible and in order to be that they need to be dryish. So instead of using a silky smooth color correcting paste/concealer, use a drier product such as for example Bobbi Brown’s “Retouching Face Pencil”. Less is more. Having moisturized under the eye before applying the makeup, is an absolute given.

Truth: There is no one product that will solve your woes. I own 11 concealers, all of them claim not to settle into fine lines. They all do. Don’t fall for the marketing baloney. Getting the balance right of concealing is product combination and application. You probably already own fantastic products that can do a fantastic job when properly combined and applied in a way suitable for their consistency. You may see your favorite YouTuber broadly blending concealer with a beauty blender, but if that concealer is too fluid you may be blending it into your fine lines, you may have a color corrector beneath it, where that technique lifts and removes the product. So get to know your products and try out different application methods.

Truth: Baking creates raisin under eyes. If you have fine lines, just don’t do it, it’s not worth it.

Myth busted: You do not always need to set concealer with powder. Depending on the product, setting concealer with powder can make it look worse. Some concealers dry rapidly and don’t need that extra step, setting them makes them cakey. See what works best for your product before doing what everyone else is.

Finally: Regardless of which product combination and application method works for you, any product is going to apply better with a properly prepared canvas. That means well moisturized skin and a good primer. Do let them “set” before applying any color corrector or concealer or you will make the products slide around more than they should.

Product combinations that have worked for me include:

  1. Smashbox Primer with Lancome Teint Idole Ultra on the face, under the eyes, Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector topped with Benefit’s Fake Up or Mac’s Mineralize Concealer, or Maybelline’s Age Rewind Concealer, set with the “highlighting” shade from Smashbox Contour palette.
  2. Guerlain L’or Radiant Primer with Estee Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover over the entire face, topped with Shiseido’s Sheer Eyezone Corrector (no setting required).
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