Which Type Of Concealer Is Right For You?

Photographed by Julia Robbs.
Whether you're going modest or bold, concealer can be a game-changer. If all you want is a little coverage, using just the slightest, sheerest amount on bare skin can create a smooth and polished canvas for applying the rest of your makeup. But, if you're after a come-hither glow, opt for a radiant concealer to add gorgeous highlights. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to apply this versatile makeup item: You can use it to pick up where your foundation leaves off, instead of foundation, or to add subtle color for a no-makeup makeup look.  From creamy and hydrating to matte and dry, there are four main types of concealer. Choose from one of these formulas based on your needs.
Brightening Concealer
This type, which typically comes in pen form, highlights and gives light to an area, such as the undereyes or tops of cheekbones. Brightening concealers work for any skin type, and should be applied to areas you don’t want to color-correct but where you wish to add light. Use it post-foundation, BB cream, and/or tinted moisturizer. Start by drawing a downward triangle from eye corner to eye corner and halfway down the middle sides of the nose, extending past the browbone. Use your finger or an Artis Oval Brush to apply. I like Maybelline's Dream Lumi Touch

Full-Coverage Concealer
This creamy category helps smooth out skin's texture for the ultimate flawless finish. It's good for covering up blemishes, scars, or for layering on top of your brightening concealer to give the undereyes extra coverage. Brush it all over your face with a small, synthetic fiber brush. I love the Sephora Collection Pro AirBrush Concealer Brush #57. My choice for a matte finish is Clé de Peau and for a dewy look, it's Tarte Maracuja Creaseless. Liquid Concealer
This one's ideal for medium to full coverage. It can really build, depending on what you're looking for. Its lightweight formula makes it easy to manipulate, so you can apply it to any part of the face. I think of this as an ideal option for those who like to wear tinted moisturizers — just add coverage where you'd like. Simply apply with your fingers or a wand, and dot the concealer where needed. Blend with the pads of your fingers, and press gently into the skin. 
Pencil Concealer
A pencil is easy to use and a good bet for concealing, highlighting, creating contours, and lining the inner rim of the eye to reduce redness. You can even use it as an alternative to nude lipstick. Just mix with a clear lip balm for a shiny, nude look. Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil is a great thicker pencil, while MAC Studio Conceal and Correct is a nice option for those in favor of a slimmer pencil. I like to use the thin pencil to line the inner eye and contour the cheekbones, and the thicker one as a lip-color alternative and for face highlighting. Know what else concealer is great for? Multitasking! It's so versatile that you can use it to do up the entire face. On well-moisturized skin, apply brightening concealer in a triangle from one eye corner to the other, and in a stripe down the face, from the middle of the forehead and down the center of the nose and chin. Use an oval brush to blend. Follow with a pencil that is three to four shades darker than your natural skin tone to contour cheekbones. Finally, finish by blending a Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick on cheeks, lips, and the top of the browbone for a youthful, dewy glow.  Refinery readers, for $25 off a Glamsquad service, use code Refinery29.

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