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Maybe you ran out of concealer, forgot it somewhere, can’t afford one, or you are just curious. But there are creative ways to conceal imperfections without using a concealer. Concealer alternatives or concealer substitutes may require some testing or some getting used to. But they can help you out of a jam.
But it all depends on what you need them for. The good news is I’ve covered them all! If you simply want to know what you can use instead of a concealer for your eyes or for your face, I’ve listed different concealer substitutes.
If you’re looking for actual products to use instead of concealer, I’ve rounded up some of those too. Either way, you won’t leave here empty-handed.
What To Use Instead of a Concealer
First and foremost, if you have a foundation, you can go ahead and use it as a concealer. But there are some strings attached if it’s for your under-eye area.
To use foundation as a substitute for face concealer, get a little bit of product and gently dab it on areas that need concealing. This is a great way to spot-conceal blemishes, scars, and spots. Make sure to blend well for a seamless application.
To use your foundation as a concealer for under-eyes, you need your foundation to be a little lighter than your actual shade. Obviously, this is how we choose concealers; they need to be one shade lighter than your foundation.
So a light-shade foundation is the best alternative for under-eye concealer. If that’s not an option, the foundation will look too dark on the eye area and you’ll have to go ahead and use it all over your face for a uniformed and even-looking skin tone.
Remember that some types of foundations can look heavier when you use them under the eyes. So make sure that you apply only one layer for the under-eye area. Otherwise, things will look cakey and creasing is 100% guaranteed.
2. BB Cream, CC Cream, Tinted Moisturizer
Beauty balms and color-correcting creams are the most underrated makeup products. They’re the easiest way to up your base game.
The best thing about BB creams, CC creams, and tinted moisturizers is that they can be used all over the face. And you apply them just like you’d apply a moisturizer. Plus, they blend in seamlessly!
So just like foundations, BB creams, CC creams, and tinted moisturizers can be used as a substitute for face and under-eye concealer. You can spot-conceal acne, pores, and dark spots. You can also use them to brighten up your under-eyes.
3. Color Corrector
Even though the term CC is used interchangeably, there is a difference between color-correcting creams and color correctors. The former is skin-tinted whereas the latter is, well, not.
Color correctors come in pink, green, orange, and in the form of cream, powder, liquid, or even pen. But the point is color correctors conceal without actually concealing. They simply cancel the color of the area, which ends up giving you a neutral base.
And they can be an alternative to concealers too. For example, use a green color corrector to cover up redness on the face, peach, and orange tones to cover up dark circles under the eyes, and hyperpigmentation on the face.
Generally, most people will color correct and then apply some sort of foundation and/or concealer. However, if you’re going for a no-foundation no-concealer look, here’s what you do.
Get a tiny bit of your color corrector and apply it to the area you want to conceal. Blend it very well until you no longer see the shade of the color corrector. Otherwise, you’ll definitely need an actual concealer.
4. Contour Kit
If you have a contour kit lying around, you might want to check it out for available shades. Personally, I have a couple of contour kits I bought thinking that I’d be all over the trend. But I left them in my cabinet basically to expire.
But here’s the point, contour palettes have both lighter and darker shades to highlight and contour. For example, there’s always something yellowish or beige and something dark like bronzer.
And between those lighter shades, there’s a chance that one of them will work as a concealer for your complexion. And if you’re lucky, you can try the shades to see if you can use them under your eyes too.
Because those shades are amazing for concealing discolorations and dark circles under the eyes. But because you won’t be using a concealer, remember to go slow and apply in small amounts.
Powder foundations and concealers are there for a reason. They provide coverage, work especially well for oily skin, and can work as substitutes for concealer!
You can use a powder foundation as a concealer to cover up blemishes and pores on your face. The trick is to start very slow and build.
Otherwise, the shade will look out of place and you will need to do your whole face, which is a bummer if you’re going for a no-makeup makeup look.
But if you need something for your under-eye area, you need something translucent. Though translucent powders are great for setting your concealer, you can use them instead of concealer to smooth out the under-eye area.
Remember to moisturize and use a hydrating under-eye cream in advance to avoid flakiness and patches. And wait for your eye cream to fully absorb before going in with your translucent powder.
6. Spot Treatment
Tinted spot treatments are exceptionally great substitutes for a concealer when your end goal is to cover up acne. Because they not only help you treat the problem but actually provide cosmetic benefits too.
Obviously, the trick is the tint that looks like makeup. While skin-tinted spot treatments work like a regular concealer, green-tinted spot treatments work like color correctors!
Additionally, there are acne patches you can use to conceal pimples. But know that no matter what people say, it’s really difficult to make them look invisible except for maybe when you’re on Zoom.
7. Tinted Eye Cream
Tinted eye creams are the best substitutes for under-eye concealers. They care for the eye area but actually provide coverage too.
Most of them come in pink, peach undertones to cancel out under-eye circles. So they’re like color-correcting products with extra skincare benefits.
And if you’re trying to give up makeup altogether, a tinted eye cream is the best replacement for your concealer.
8. Tinted Sunscreen
Sunscreen is a skincare staple. But tinted sunscreens are next-level products. They literally make you less dependent on a foundation for makeup. So if you have one lying around, now is the perfect time to make it work double duty.
Because tinted sunscreens are not only excellent foundation alternatives but also excellent concealer alternatives. You can get a little bit of your product to spot-conceal areas on your face and blend it for an even base.
Last but not least, this can be a great hack when you’re in urgent need of some concealer but don’t actually have one. Creamy lipsticks, depending on the shade, can help you with both under-eye concerns and skin concerns.
A very light nude shade can brighten up your under-eye area whereas deeper shades can be used to hide discolorations on the face.
Though they can’t give you coverage, they can reduce the look of discolorations. The same thing applies to lip liners too!
So these are some of the best concealer substitutes that generally work very well. You might be tempted to do your DIY product and mix your moisturizer with powder. Well, I say no! That’s a terrible idea. We can’t even find the right product with the right texture with a thousand options to choose from. What makes you think that you’ll get it right with DIY? Plus, you’ll be wasting your products. So as much as it sounds tempting, a DIY concealer almost always fails.
The Best Concealer Alternatives For Face
If you’re looking for a way to conceal without a concealer or just trying to replace your concealer with something lighter, more natural, and versatile, below are the best concealer alternatives you can use for your face.
This is a real makeup bag must-have. This pen comes in different shades and can be used practically all over the face. You can highlight the brow bone and the inner corners of your eyes. But you can actually use it to conceal. It’s super creamy and can be used to erase blemishes, spots, and red areas on the face.
This is an acne treatment that actually reduces the look of red, inflamed acne. So it’s a treatment that doubles as a concealer. It’s made with sulfur to dry up acne. That way, it actually targets the root cause of why you need a concealer in the first place. Because of its liquidy texture, you can blend it and cover up blemishes.
This is a multi-purpose makeup stick you can use instead of a concealer, besides highlighter/bronzer, foundation, and even primer. For our purposes, as long as you choose the right shade, it can work wonders on the skin and make you go (almost) completely makeup-free. You can use it to amplify the coverage of your foundation, spot conceal acne, blur out pores, and simply prime the face.
The Best Under-Eye Concealer Alternatives
If you need something for the under-eye area, find below the best concealer alternatives for the eye area.
If you’re looking for a substitute for a brightening under-eye concealer, this will do the trick. This is an under-eye balm to hydrate and moisturize. But it’s low-key pink-tinted and has a dewy finish. This helps you to look more awake and fresh while the tint helps with minor discolorations. It’s packed with caffeine to help with dark circles, and hyaluronic acid and other humectants to plump up the eye area. And it can be used on both lighter skin tones and darker skin tones without the need for anything else.
If you’re looking to color correct dark circles without a concealer, this tinted eye cream multi-tasks like no other. First of all, it’s an amazing eye cream, to begin with. It has silk powder to smooth out lines and imperfections, hyaluronic acid to hydrate, niacinamide to brighten, and antioxidants to stave off free radicals. The good part is that it comes in two shades and actually provides coverage for the eye area!
In case you didn’t know, Becca is out of business. It’s farewell to some of the best highlighters ever. However, Smashbox acquired two products from Becca. Because they were that good! And one of them is this under-eye brightener. It’s like a highlighter for the under-eye area. The shade Light simply brightens the eye area and color corrects minor discolorations. However, the pigments go deeper as you go from light to deep. And deeper shades will definitely require a concealer or another product. So get the lightest one to color correct without the need for concealer or foundation.