My Favorite Drugstore Base Products (Part 3): Concealers

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I'm particularly excited to bring you this final installment of the My Favorite Drugstore Base Products series. I love drugstore concealer, and this post actually inspired the idea for the whole series. If this was a post on budget concealers I like, you'd be seeing about 8-10 products, but I've edited the list down to only my very favorite concealers.

If you missed the earlier installments, here are the links for Part 2: BB Creams and Foundations, and Part 1: Primer and Powder. Again, I have oily, acne-prone skin and the prices I've listed will vary based on location.

CoverGirl + Olay Concealer Balm ($8): This product is fairly new to the drugstore shelves, but it quickly earned its way to the top of this list. I'm happy with the solid coverage it has, but the consistency and texture are what make this concealer an unquestionable favorite. The ultra creamy and slippy nature of this product allow it to really melt into the skin, which lets me build it up to cover a monster of a zit without getting cakey concealer face. This actually works particularly well with my favorite drugstore foundation, Revlon Nearly Naked, as the textures of the two mesh beautifully. I mostly use it on my face, but I can use it under my eyes as well--a rarity for the kinds of concealers I use. The creamy texture means it doesn't tug on my delicate under-eye area, and while this is not my favorite concealer for those dark circles, I love that I have the option of using this anywhere I like. If you like the Revlon PhotoReady Concealer, this is very similar, but with a smoother and creamier formula that sits better on the skin.

Bourjois Healthy Mix Concealer (£8, approx. $13): My favorite drugstore under-eye concealer! I'm cheating a little since I can't actually get this at the drugstores where I live, but others can so here it is. My all-time favorite under-eye concealer is Estee Lauder Double Wear, and this is surprisingly similar in the way it goes on and wears throughout the day. Ultra-pigmented, a tiny dab of this stuff is enough to cover both my dark circles, and there's definitely a bit of a brightening factor I always appreciate for that area. I don't use this on any other part of my face, but it creases very minimally under my eyes and holds up nicely throughout the day. When I lost my beloved Double Wear concealer, I substituted in this cheapie and remembered how much I love it. Best of all, it sets to a natural skin-like but smooth powdery finish so you may not even feel the need to set with powder (though I usually do). 

Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda Concealer Palette ($10.50): Like there could be a list of favorite drugstore concealer without this little quad! I've devoted a whole post to this gem, and while I do go through phases of concealers, this one is never too far away. Again, I go into further detail (and swatches) in my original review, but this one is fantastic for travel as you do get different shades and powder in one. I actually have two of these compacts, and one permanently lives in my weekend bag for exactly that reason. I probably use this a bit unusually, as this concealer palette is almost strictly for use on zits and discoloration, and not for underneath my eyes. My under-eye area is incredibly thin, and the weight and consistency of these concealers can make my bags look crepey, but my friend uses this palette in the same area without that problem. People normally rave about the creamy, pigmented concealers (and they're right), but I'd remind you to show some love to the green corrector. It really comes in handy when dealing with large, red zits, a splotchy allergy nose, or hormonal-red cheeks. On days when I don't really want to wear "makeup" (read: a lot of makeup), the corrector by itself goes a surprisingly long way to even out my skin tone. This is one of the most versatile products in my makeup bag, which would explain how I've gone through three of these palettes by now.

Rimmel Match Perfection ($7): This was my favorite (post) when I was a bit of a concealer newbie, and even now that I have more cosmetic experience, this tube still has a special place in my daily makeup bag. Similar to YSL Touche Eclat, this is one of those concealing and highlighting hybrids, although unlike the YSL, it's got more coverage than luminescence to it. When I first started using this, it was enough for my not-so-dark circles, but these days I find that I need more coverage, so this functions as a topper. I typically use this on top of a more opaque under-eye concealer, to get some extra brightness and lift, but I also apply it around the corners of my mouth and nose when those areas look particularly sallow and dark. This is great for when I want to add some gentle dimension to my face without wanting to fuss with a powder--I'll bring it up to my brow-bone and sometimes even on top of my cheekbones like a subtle highlighter. Used in this way, it brings light to certain areas of the face instead of shimmer for a much more natural, skin-like look. Match Perfection holds up alright on its own, but I like to apply a light dusting of powder on top (especially if I've used it on my dark circles) to ensure it doesn't move around. This is a similar concept to the Maybelline Dream Lumi concealer, but I prefer this one as it has better coverage, and the squeeze tube is much easier to work with than a click-up brush.

Honorable Mention
Hard Candy Glamoflauge Concealer ($6): I've only had this for about two weeks, so I don't feel like I can put it in the same category as the others, but it still deserves a mention. This is unlike any other drugstore concealer I've tried in terms of coverage and strength of pigment. When I first got it, every time I thought I squeezed out just enough, it was always way too much--even for large swaths of my face. The texture is also unlike any of the other products here, as it's not creamy or slippy which I find unusual for a concealer. That means this product is not quite as easy to blend in, but if you're willing to work with it a bit, you will get incredible coverage that doesn't look heavy. I like to do a combination of patting and rubbing (depending on what kind of problem I'm trying to cover) with my fingers, as brushes don't seem to work as well with this. Being that this is heavy duty, I usually use it on my acne and discoloration, but it's surprisingly good under my eyes as well. I do have to be extra careful blending it in there, as this concealer has no slip and the under-eye area is extremely delicate, but it covers up my circles and stays put. Glamouflage does tend to settle into my creases a bit, but once I pat that away, it doesn't happen again. If you're a fan of the Physician's Formula Conceal Rx concealer, Glamouflage is even more pigmented, but not as creamy and pliable. I definitely prefer the latter, especially as the Conceal Rx only comes in two entirely too-light shades--shame!

I hope you've enjoyed this series--tons more product reviews coming your way!

Happy Wednesday!

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