CONCEALING 101 – How to neutralize and brighten dark circles

concealing dark circles quide

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Let’s talk about dark circles.

I love this topic, because understanding the basics of it makes concealing easy. I’ve done one post on the subject before, but this will be more in-depth. I will teach you a few things about color theory and neutralizing dark circles properly. Concealer is just as crucial as a foundation. A good base gives room for the rest of your makeup to shine!

In a nutshell the most important things are the right product placement, neutralizing any unwanted colors and bringing light back to the eye area.

how to hide dark circles best concealers

The best way to hide dark circles is by neutralizing unwanted colors

Remember when neutralizers were all the rave? Well, when it comes to dark circles, you do want to neutralize. The whole idea is to counteract the unwanted colors – dark circles – with an opposite color. It’s simple color theory. You need to use a concealer that has a bit of color that neutralizes whatever color you have going on under your eyes.

color wheel dark circles opposite colors

A common misconception seems to be, that the lighter the color, the more it hides the dark circles and brightens them. Typically people choose a concealer that is too light. For actual dark circles, that rarely works. It can actually make the dark circles shine through even worse. The lighter the concealer is, the less it has pigment that would cover the unwanted darkness. This is why you should neutralize instead and use a concealer that is close to your skin color (it has more pigment).  After that you can brighten the area with a lighter concealer – but I’ll come back to that.

How to neutralize dark circles – what color to choose?

The right color depends on the color on your dark circles.

neutralizing dark circles color chart

For blue hues, choose orange or peachy (more pink/salmon) colors.
For purple or brownish hues, choose yellow or peachy colors.

For most people, a peachy color works best. It depends on your undertone, if the color should be leaning more to orange or pink. For warm-toned undertones, warm orange peachy colors work best. If you’re cool-toned, you might want to choose a cool toned, more pink/salmon peachy neutralizer.
neutralizing brigthening discoloration chart

The color theory works also for other unwanted colors. You can neutralize redness, sallow skin or dark spots with opposite colors – or brighten with yellow or peach.

Tip! If you have redness on your skin, a greenish primer works wonders! Check out Zuii Organic’s Mint Primer. It’s subtle, yet balances redness really well. Another good trick for red skin is to choose a yellow-toned foundation. Yellow also hides redness. (Looking at the color wheel you understand why – it’s not quite the opposite color, but close.)

 

The best way to find the right color to neutralize is to really look at your dark circles and try and see what colors they have. It’s easier said than done though. It’s not always clear, so it might be easier to just try different colors, typically peach or something more yellow.

concealing dark circles quide

Best concealers for neutralizing dark circles

You can use an actual neutralizer for this, or a concealer that has enough of the tint you want.

My dark circles are quite blue and my undertone is warm/neutral, so NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in the shade Custard works best for me for neutralizing my dark circles. (Vanilla works for brightening, but Cannelle is the wrong shade for me, too pinky peachy.)

Swatches of NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla, Custard and Cannelle. These shades work for blue/purple dark circles depending on the skin tone.

There are good shade descriptions on the NARS concealer, so you can check out the shades and find your match easily. A lot of products have good shade descriptions on their site.

Some examples of the light/medium light shades:

Vanilla, Creme Brulee = cool with a subtle pink undertone
Custard = warm with a neutral undertone (I would add that it’s a bit yellowy)
Cannelle = warm with a peachy undertone (I would add that it’s more pink peachy)
Ginger, Nougatine = warm with a yellow undertone

Concealer I use for neutralizing:
*NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, Custard

Neutralizer palettes:
*Stila Correct & Perfect all-in-one Color Correcting Palette
Has all the colors: orange, yellow, peach, pink, mint and lavender.
*Make Up Forever Ultra HD Underpainting Color Correction Palette
Has good selection of colors for different skin tones from fair to deep.

Browse all the *color correctors on Sephora.
Browse the *best selling concealers on Sephora.

More of my concealer recommendations further down the post.

beautyact concealer how to hide dark circles

How to brighten dark circles

After you’ve neutralized the dark circles, you can brighten up the area with a concealer that is slightly lighter than your skin.

Since you’ve already neutralized the unwanted colors, choosing a brightening concealer is easy. It’s enough that the color suits you and is slightly lighter than your skin. It doesn’t matter if it has a bit of the tint you need for neutralizing, but it might be unnecessary if the unwanted colors are already gone.

You can also use the undertone of the concealer to your advantage. Cool-toned concealers really help to brighten up the area even more. I typically use a cool-toned concealer for brightening, since I’m warm toned. It might not work for everyone though (I would imagine it would be too much of a contrast on olive skin for example). You can also just choose a concealer that is the right undertone for you  – and just go for one or two shades lighter than your skin.

Helpful post: UNDERTONES & MAKEUP – are you cool, warm or neutral?

best concealer brush zoeva nars concealer

Best concealers for brightening and hiding dark circles

I’ve been using NARS RCC shade Vanilla a lot. It makes my under eyes super bright, since it has a pink (cool) undertone. It’s quite light for my skin, especially since I use self tan, but I can make a tiny amount work.

Another favorite of mine is beautyblender’s concealer. With that I have a shade that is warm undertone (2.30W), which also brightens really well. The concealer itself is also really great: very pigmented, smooth and light reflecting.

Since I’m using two concealers on the thin skin around the eyes, I use very little amount of them. Preferably, the brightening concealer could be something that’s also lighter in consistency. Pay attention to that especially if you have dry skin.

beautyblender concealer 230W and beautyact mattifying concealer 01C
Concealers I use for brightening:

*NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, Vanilla
*Beautyblender Bounce Concealer 2.30W
Madara Concealer, Vanilla
Very light texture, this is my favorite natural (organic) concealer! The shade is similar to NARS Vanilla.
*BeautyAct Mattifying Concealer, 01C
I really love the consistency of this. Super pigmented, yet quite light and easy to blend. Sold in KICKS in the Nordics.

 

Okay, now that you have the right colors and concealers – let’s move on to application.

thhe best concealer brushes

How to hide dark circles  – step by step photos

I always use a brush to apply my concealer. That just feels more convenient than using my fingers – which you can obviously also do. The two best concealer brushes I use are from Zoeva and Luxie (you see the brush in the tutorials).

*Zoeva 142 Concealer Buffer brush
(It’s from this *Rose Gold Brush set, that I use daily and can’t hype enough. Also sold on *Beautybay.)
Luxie 205 Tapered Blending Brush

How to neutralize and hide dark circles

where to apply concealer dark circles
Here’s where your concealer/neutralizer goes. Right on the dark circle. Try and keep it focused on the dark circle and don’t blend it around too much.

how to neutralize and hide dark circles

Starting with the concealer that neutralizes the dark circle. You should focus it in the darkest spot of the dark circle. So wherever you see that unwanted color – conceal. Make sure to also get that inner corner, which is also typically dark.

When you apply the concealer, don’t swipe and move it around too much. Tapping motions work best and make it easier to focus it where you want it (the dark circle).

Only after you’ve placed your product on the dark circle, and there’s not a lot of product on your brush (or your finger), you can start blending the edges a bit.

How to brighten and hide dark circles

where to apply concealer to highlight under eye area
Concealing and brightening the dark circles with a lighter concealer. It should be focused in the inner corner and in the outer corner (for a lift). It can be blended to the surrounding skin. So this goes on a bigger area than the neutralizer.

how to brighten and hide dark circles

Now to the lighter brightening concealer. That should be focused in the inner part of your dark circle. You can also swipe it on the corner of your eye to get a lifting effect. Once you’ve tapped on the most of the product, you can start blending on a bigger area. This – the lighter concealer – can be blended on a slightly bigger area under the eye. You can actually also highlight your face with it.

And that’s it!

You can also find a video tutorial on concealing dark circles on my IG TV, here.

concealing dark circles how to

Now I know that this topic can seem a bit overwhelming, but I hope you found this post helpful.

I would also recommend you to read Tommy beauty pro’s post about Color theory & makeup artistry.

ALL ABOUT THE GLOW: 3 picks from Vita Liberata

kuulas iho vita liberata

Ad: Vita Liberata Finland

 

Let’s talk about glowy skin.

To me, glowy skin is healthy, hydrated and radiant. A good glow makes it look like I just had a nice mini vacation, slept like a baby for ten hours and enjoyed a healthy yet delicious brunch in the morning. You know; happy, healthy skin.

And if that’s the kind of glow you’re after, Vita Liberata has just the products.

vita liberata beauty blur primer

Glowy skin with Vita Liberata

Ever since trying Vita Liberata’s products, I’ve enjoyed a natural looking tan whenever I feel like it. Which is, most of the time. Why not, since it’s so easy and I love the glow it gives me? I like having a bit of summery color on my skin in winter (and obviously in summer I rock a total beach babe look).

The thing that makes Vita Liberata’s products so good, is the fact that they are formulated with hydrating, mostly natural ingredients. The products are also fragrance-free and vegan.

vita liberata glow products

Vita Liberata Fabulous self tanning mist

My new self tan favorite is the Fabulous self tanning mist. You can use it on your whole body, but I like to use it for my face, neck and décolleté. Don’t tell anyone, but sometimes if I’m feeling super lazy, that’s the only area I tan.

Since it’s a water-based spray, I love to mix it with my toner or serum. One spritz is enough for me to use a few times per week, but you can build up the color by using it daily or using more product.

I apply it on my face and neck with my hands or the tanning mitt. If you’re not quite used to self tanners, I would recommend spritzing the product to the mist first and then apply to the skin.

vita liberata fabulous self tanning mist review

Just like the Invisi mousse, this product is clear and dries quickly to your skin, making it feel as if no product was ever applied there. However, the next morning, after a shower, my skin feels super soft and moisturized. The fabulous self tanning mist contains awesome ingredients such as aloe vera leaf juice, coffee seed extract and hyaluronic acid.

You’re probably starting to understand why I think Vita Liberata has the best self tanners.

Shop:
*Vita Liberata Fabulous Self Tanning Mist

vita liberata glow

Customize your foundation for a glowy finish

If you’ve been following my Instagram stories, you might have seen me customize my foundation. One of the best products to do that is Vita Liberata’s beauty blur. If you’re looking for more hydration, glow and a lighter consistency – you should try mixing beauty blur to your foundation.

vita liberata beauty blur glowy skin
Wearing Vita Liberata beauty blur (Latte Light) mixed with my foundation.

Vita Liberata beauty blur

Beauty blur is super versatile. It can be used as a primer, you can mix it with your foundation or use it as a subtle highlight. It’s also moisturizing, which is exactly what my skin needs in winter.

On no makeup days I like to wear it just on its own. It has some tint so it evens out the skin tone and gives a beautiful glow. But I really love it together with my foundations. I make it so that my foundation has either half or one third of beauty blur mixed with it. It depends of the foundation. If I have a matte foundation, I can mix half. If it’s more of a glowy foundation, one third is enough.

Using a glow product all over the face might sound crazy, but it actually looks quite natural. Having an overall glow to the face makes your skin radiant, like it’s glowing from within.

There are 3 shades available. There’s also the Sunless Glow version, which has self tan in it.

Shop:
*Vita Liberata beauty blur

glowy skin with vita liberata luminosity highlighters

Vita Liberata blur luminosity highlighters – Rose & Gold

Once I have my tan on and my radiant base done, I like to finish off my look with a highlighter.

If you have any texture or skin issues, you probably know that highlighters can be tricky. But that’s where cream products come in. Vita Liberata’s luminosity highlighter comes in two pretty colors – rose and gold. I would safely recommend these highlighters to all skin types, because they apply smoothly on the skin and don’t enhance skin texture.

vita liberata luminosity highligher rose gold swatches
Swatches of the Vita Liberata Luminosity Highlighters Rose & Gold.

The cream highlighters are packed with moisturizing ingredients such as squalane and shea butter. They reflect light beautifully and the colors are pretty and nuanced. The cream comes out of the tube quite white, but once you start blending the gorgeous color unfolds.

I usually apply these on the cheekbones, bridge of my nose and cupid’s bow. They also work on the lids for a quick look and they look beautiful on the body as well. I have a feeling I will be using the gold highlighter on my body a lot in summer.

Shop:
*Vita Liberata Luminosity Highlighter, Rose
*Vita Liberata Luminosity Highlighter, Gold

All in all I’m so excited about these products and the glow they give me. Have you tried them yet?

 

Shop the products:
*Vita Liberata products  (oletkaunis.fi)

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