Tutorial: How to conceal seriously dark and dry eye bags

The key to looking fresh everyday is to look wide awake! That’s why we go to great lengths to draw attention to our eyes with mascara and eyeliner. Unfortunately, if we have dark undereye circles, we can end up detracting attention from our beautiful peepers and end up looking haggard instead.

Dark undereye circles are commonly caused by lack of sleep and too much alcohol. However, there are other factors, too, such as genetics, allergies, iron deficiency, aging, and stress. Since the skin around the eyes is very thin, blood and blood vessels tend to be the most visible in this area, giving off a bluish tinge. Whatever the cause is, though, we’ll show you how to fake a good night’s rest using makeup!

For this tutorial, I'm working on our managing editor Den. Simply applying concealer, no matter how heavy the coverage, absolutely does not work for her! If this is a problem you've encountered and wondered if you just needed a better concealer, it's possible that your skin simply has more of that bluish tinge. In cases like this, it's necessary to use a corrector as well.

Den's bare face, with eye cream applied

Den's bare face, with eye cream applied

Step 1: Apply a hydrating eye cream. Skipping this step could possibly dry out the skin from all the makeup and exacerbate our dark under eyes. Hydrating the area also helps to prevent creasing. We used the In Her Element Triple Treat Eye Cream (P645 at inherelement.ph) because it targets fine lines, dark circles, and puffiness plus the formula is non-greasy lightweight enough to wear under makeup.

Step 2: Apply base makeup such as a foundation or your favorite BB cushion. While some gals like to skip this step, it’s still best to have a base for a more even skin tone and the other makeup products we’ll later apply will blend more seamlessly. We patted the Chica Y Chico Matt Cushion (P610 at althea.ph) all over Den's face for medium to full coverage with a matte finish.

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Optional step: If you find that makeup tends to crease under your eyes or slides off quickly, use an eye primer! Den's dry skin makes her more prone to creasing so we applied elf's Eyelid Primer in Sheer (P129 at SM Beauty) first. You can also try Etude House Proof 10 Eye Primer (P298), which doesn’t budge once it dries, and is touted to be a dupe of the cult-favorite Urban Decay Primer Potion.

Step 3: Use a color corrector. A peach or salmon color corrector like Happy Skin Bye Bye Blues Concealer (P899 at Happy Skin) is a good bet for light to medium skin or for people with just moderate discoloration, but for tanned skin or for those with more prominent bluish circles, it may be necessary to whip out an orange color corrector.

Swatches, from left: elf Eyelid Primer in Sheer, orange shade from Tony Moly Panda’s Dream Dual Lip and Cheek Tint in Bubble Red, K-Palette Zero Kuma Concealer in 02

Swatches, from left: elf Eyelid Primer in Sheer, orange shade from Tony Moly Panda’s Dream Dual Lip and Cheek Tint in Bubble Red, K-Palette Zero Kuma Concealer in 02

Short of scouting pro brands, though, it’s not easy to find orange color correctors in the drugstore. As a substitute, you can use an orange lipstick that isn’t too glossy or a cream blush. We used the orange shade in Tony Moly Panda’s Dream Dual Lip and Cheek Tint (P598 at Tony Moly) in Bubble Red. I personally like to use my fingers to apply concealer on my eyes because I find that my fingers blend products well without absorbing it. When I want more coverage, though, I reach for a concealer brush and dab it lightly on the area that needs concealing.

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Step 4: To keep the corrector from blending with your concealer, dust a very light layer of loose translucent powder on top. This is particularly necessary if you're using a very creamy product like a blush, as it tends to mix with other products placed over it. The powder also helps to somewhat set the pigment so it does not budge.

Step 5: Apply your favorite concealer in a shade close to your skin tone. Pat it on very lightly to make sure not to disturb the orange color corrector underneath. We like the K-Palette Zero Kuma Concealer (P795 at Beauty Bar) because it gives heavy coverage but is easy to blend and work with. Blend the edges where you place the corrector with the rest of your makeup. If needed, you may apply a very thin layer of the base makeup you started with for a more even-looking finish.

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Voila! The result looks much fresher and more awake, and the brightened area makes Den's face look more lifted. If you have oily skin, we recommend setting your makeup (read about our favorite setting powders here) or you can even bake your makeup for extra staying power!

What are your solutions to dark undereyes?