Yves St. Laurent Touche Eclat has been touted as a magic wand for dark under-eye circles. But its not-at-all-natural formulation disqualifies it for natural types. So what’s the solution for those of us whose windows to the soul are showing the pains of sleepless nights and possibly a genetic predisposition to dark circles?
First, acceptance of reality, says Brooklyn natural makeup artist Jessa Blades. “We think it’s possible not to have under-eye circles. But often they’re a shadow from your brow bone. You might want to be a little open to the fact dark circles are not going to go away completely.” (Even if you watch your salt intake and sleep.)
The second challenge: Finding a natural concealer that covers enough—or covers without looking cakey. And third, we just don’t know how to use concealers properly, says Blades, who’s witnessed many a cake-icing technique on that thin under-eye skin.
So how can you effectively cover dark circles? Read on for seven mind-blowing tips from Blades—and our top picks for natural products that work:
1. Hydrate the eye area
Is your finger or brush dragging on dry skin? The skin around the eyes is thinner and has fewer oil glands than the rest of the face. So you may need to hydrate the area first with something creamy first, then smooth on your concealer.
Solution: Weleda Pomegranate Firming Eye Cream, $33, or Organic Pharmacy Honey & Jasmine Mask, $65.95
2. If concealer is too drying, use a creamy foundation
Often concealer is too thick or cakey like corrective makeup. So use a creamy foundation that feels more like a second skin, and yet provides some coverage, says Blades. You should love the way it lies on the skin.
Solution: NVEY ECO Organic Cream Deluxe Foundation, $30
3. Use concealer under a tinted moisturizer
This creates a barely-there makeup look that conceals a few flaws then illuminates your skin, if your tinted moisturizer uses mica, a mineral with light-reflecting properties.
Solution: RMS Beauty Un-Cover Up, $36, or Lavera Natural Concealer, $19
4. Don’t windshield-wiper the concealer under your eye.
Instead, apply it on the sides of your nose, from the corner of your eye up to where your eyebrow begins, and blend. This is where the shadow’s darkest, and it evens out the skin tone around your eyes, says Blades.
5. Diffuse light
Use a lighter shade concealer, a luminizer or highlighter, or a light-reflecting mineral eye shadow on the inside corner of your eye and over the top of the tear duct. This makes eyes pop.
Solution: RMS Luminizer, $38, or Vapour Organic Beauty Trick Stick, $20
6. Buy concealers in two shades
We have this idea that one concealer should do the trick. Blades recommends women have two concealer shades in their arsenal. “Buy one concealer that matches your skin—you should literally be able to use it all over your face—and a lighter concealer.” Or buy a palette.
Solution: Jane Iredale Circle/Delete, $30 (two-shade palette), or Organic Glam Concealer (four-shade palette), $47.95
7. Don’t use a concealer brush
They pick up too much product, and don’t drag enough off. Instead put a thicker amount on, go brush your teeth and let it sink in. Then do a little blending. You’re pulling less on this area then, not affecting the fragile elasticity.
Solution: Jane Iredale and Alima brushes, $14.49–$23.75 —Melisse Gelula