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Conceal Dark Under-Eye Circles Like a Pro With These Effective Expert Tips


While dark under-eye circles and under-eye bags are often associated with tiredness, they can also be hereditary. Regardless of their cause, no one wants them. Not only do they make your under-eye area look dull and unrested, but they can age you, too. While it may feel like all the mascara and eyeshadow in the world can’t save you, there’s one thing you can do no matter what: camouflage those dark circles with a good makeup tutorial. But how exactly can you achieve the coverage you’re looking for? We got to the bottom of it from two pro makeup artists. Follow the four essential steps below and learn how to cover dark circles.

About the Experts:

Sarah Egan is the makeup department head for some of the biggest late night shows, including Late Night With Seth Meyers.
Jenny Patinkin is a pro makeup artist and founder of her namesake skincare brand.

How to Conceal Under-Eye Circles, Step by Step

1. Apply an Eye Cream

OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright™ Eye Crème

Trying to put concealer on top of dry under eyes is kind of like baking cookies without oiling up the baking sheet first. Much like the cookies will stick to the pan, your concealer or color corrector will stick to any flakes and texture issues. “You need a little slip so the concealer will glide over the thin, delicate skin of the eye area,” says makeup artist Jenny Patinkin.

Celebrity makeup artist Sarah Egan seconds that approach, and takes things up a notch by keeping eye cream in the fridge. “When you apply it to your skin, the cooling effect can help reduce puffiness,” she says. “The skin underneath the eyes is textured, and that texture is often enhanced when eyes are dark, swollen, and puffy.”

Egan prefers eye creams that have hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid. “The added boost of moisture helps smooth skin and get it ready for makeup application,” she says.

We always have success with the OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright™ Eye Crème. Lightweight, smoothing, and deeply hydrating, it also includes vitamin C to brighten dark circles for the long haul after continued use. Need additional options? Check out some of our other favorite eye creams for dark circles.

2. Apply a Color-Correcting Concealer

E.L.F COSMETICS Camo Color Corrector in Peach

Courtesy of E.L.F. COSMETICS

Instead of reaching for your standard blemish-covering concealer, try an under-eye concealer with yellower or peachier tones, depending on the color of your dark circles. “For circles with a blue or gray undertone, look for a concealer with an orange tint to it, then decide how deep that orange tone should be based on your skin tone,” says Patinkin. “For lighter skin tones, think more of a sherbert or sorbet orange, and for deeper skin tones, think of the color inside of a ripe cantaloupe or apricot.”

We agree with TikTok and stand by the E.L.F. Camo Color Corrector. It comes in five versatile shades to counteract the color of your circles and blend with your specific skin tone.

Whatever you do, though, don’t make the common mistake of trying to disguise circles with a concealer that’s much lighter than your skin tone. “That's like trying to cover up a black bra with a white T-shirt,” says Patinkin. “It just calls more attention to the issue.”

3. Dab, Don’t Drag, to Blend

HI BEAUTIFUL YOU Skin Perfecting Conceal


“When you apply concealer, remember that the skin under the eyes is very thin and delicate,” says Patinkin. “Tugging and pulling on it can accelerate fine lines and creasing.” She also warns against using an excessive amount of product, which only accentuates lines and causes that dreaded cakey look. “Use the least amount you can and gently tap it onto the skin with a brush,” she says. Another option: Dab it onto the area with your ring finger. The warmth of your skin will make blending a breeze.

Egan calls this the “finger tap” technique, and says it avoids eyes looking cakey with too much concealer, which can sometimes happen if you apply it everywhere underneath the eye.

Her concealer of choice? She opts for the HI BEAUTIFUL YOU Skin Perfecting Conceal. “It acts like an Instagram filter, blurring imperfections, filtering flaws, and erasing spots and the appearance of redness while improving skin tone and texture,” she says. “It’s a mineral-based pigment with a clean formula that’s extremely lightweight, silky-smooth, and will not crease or settle into fine lines. It doesn’t give the appearance of makeup, so the result is skin that has a matte appearance, natural finish, and is more even-toned.”

4. Set With Powder

LAURA MERCIER Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Finally, before your concealer has a chance to wear away or settle into lines, top with a translucent setting powder to set all your hard work. “I like to dip a sponge into a tiny amount of loose powder and gently press it on top of the concealer,” says Patinkin. “It won't totally mattify, but it will set your concealer in place better for a longer wear time.”

If you’ve spent any time on TikTok, then you probably already know that the LAURA MERCIER Translucent Loose Setting Powder is your key to a set face. We personally love it because it’s weightless and provides up to 16 hours of use.

For someone with fair skin, Egan suggests using a light pink powder to help mask dark circles and add a brightening effect. “Even if you plan to finish your look with a finishing spray, don’t skip applying powder underneath your eyes,” she says. “it will help make the skin appear smoother, thus helping reduce the appearance of dark circles.”

Do you struggle with dark circles? Snag some goodies to help conceal them by getting in the IPSY fun! Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started. And don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and TikTok @IPSY.

About the author
Dahvi Shira
Dahvi Shira
Dahvi Shira is a Los Angeles-based beauty writer, who has a passion for hair, makeup, and skincare. She contributes regularly to Mane Addicts and her blog, Skyelyfe. Her work has also appeared on Glossy, People, E!, Sweety High and more.
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Article Last Updated September 25, 2023 12:00 AM