Under-eye circles! They’re an ever-hot topic amongst ladiez, and it’s no wonder why — everybody has them, but pretty much nobody knows how to deal with them. There are a million so-called “remedies,” like eating less salt, drinking more water, drinking less alcohol, and getting more sleep, but why even try to change your lifestyle when you can just cover those bitches up like a pro? Or maybe you do all those things already, and your dark circles still won’t budge. Whatever the case, THERE IS A WAY OUT.
Prime. Priming is, arguably, the most important step in a makeup routine. Why even bother applying your foundation and concealer and whatnot if it’s not going to stay? You should already be using a primer all over your face, including underneath your eyes, before putting the rest of your face on. You’re doing that, aren’t you? (If not, start. There are a ton of great primers on the market — I’m partial to Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen for the texture, the SPF, and the light coverage.) It’s kind of extra credit, but if you have oily skin or notice that your makeup tends to slide off by the end of the day, using a primer specifically for the under eye area may be necessary for you. It is for me, bro. Tarte Clean Slate 360° Creaseless 12-Hr Smoothing Eye Primer is kind of a godsend because it’s amazing as both a shadow primer and an under eye primer. I swear to god I don’t, like, work undercover for Tarte. They just have the best shit!
Cover. A crucial part of concealing under eye circles to the best of your ability is finding the right shade for that area. More often than not, the color that matches the rest of your face just fine will not suffice for your under eyes — generally, it’ll be too light. I don’t know why this is, it’s just ONE OF THOSE THINGS. You’re probably gonna have to haul ass to SephoraThere are a lot of great under eye concealers out there, but I can only attest to the ones I’ve used. First off: Benefit Erase Paste. This stuff has always worked FANTASTICALLY for me, and please note I never use a concealer brush, I just slap that shit on the back of my hand to warm it up and dab and blend with my itty-bitty fingertips. The key to covering this area seamlessly in a way that will stay all day is using as little product as possible. You can use a concealer brush to dot it on, or do like me and use your gross hands.
Whether you decide to do it the legit way, or the ratchet way like myself, I do recommend always first loading the product onto the back of your hand. This warms it up so it will go on smooth and also creates a nice little palette for you to work from. When you blend the concealer, it’s important to employ a pressing and dabbing technique using your middle or ring finger rather than pushing or rubbing the product into your skin. The downfall of Erase Paste is that it only comes in three shades, so if you have much darker skin, this selection may not suffice. (The Fair shade doesn’t seem like it will work for super-pale skin, either, but I am pretty much translucent and it works just fine for me.) I’m also obsessed with Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer, which comes in a million shades, but I’m reluctant to recommend it because I LITERALLY RECOMMEND EVERYTHING BY TARTE EVER, DO YOU HATE ME? But seriously, it’s great, and you can use it on blemishes and scars and literally everything.
Highlight. After you’ve sufficiently concealed the area, it may look a little flat. And you want to glow, don’t you? Sparkle, Neely, sparkle. This is where you will want to fucks with something like Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat, which is a gilded click-pen filled with the blood of angels. What? Yes. It’s so expensive I might gag, but there’s nothing like it on earth. It somehow not only brightens skin, but lifts it or something. I don’t even know, really, but it’s fundamentally perfect and makes everything look a million times better. You only need a tiny bit dabbed right beneath your eyes, especially in the inner corners, to look like a unicorn. A slightly more affordable option that I’ve had great success with: Clinique Airbrush Concealer. The oooonly thing is that it comes in, like, zero colors, unlike Touche Éclat. If you want to get super ~~radiant~~, a tiny bit of a pearly (not sparkly!!) liquid highlighter, like Benefit High Beam, dabbed just in the very inner corner of eyes, will do the trick.
Set. Like blemish concealer before it, set that shit with powdaaaa. You don’t want to lose all the glow you worked on, just make it sort of settle into your skin so it looks natural, so you just want to dust on a very fine layer of a translucent powder. You can use a smaller kabuki brush if you aren’t powdering the rest of your face, or just use a big fluffy powder brush to cover everythang. I like to spritz my face with a spray toner from afar to finish everything off, but you do you, babe. Always do you.
Is there a celebrity beauty look you want to steal? A new product you want to learn how to use? Don’t know which foundation, moisturizer, volumizing spray, or novelty eye glitter to invest in? Want to see how many Momofuku birthday cake truffles I can fit in my mouth at once? (So many.) If you’ve got a beauty question, concern, or demand, any at all, hit me up on my videophone. I mean, uh, my email. Or Twitter! firstname.lastname@example.org or @frigidbardot — make it ring, or rain, or something like that, babes!
[Photo of woman with concealer on face via Shutterstock]