20 Best Makeup Concealers – cover acne, dark circles and tattoos


The best makeup concealers even out skin tones, cover blemishes, scars, bruising, discoloration and circles under the eyes. This wonderful makeup product is definitely one of the most popular cosmetics in modern history, so it’s no surprise its destination has become multi-purpose.

I set my mind to offer you some professional makeup advice that will prove handy when choosing concealers for tattoos or for scars and makeup concealer tips on how to apply this product like a makeup artist to ensure best results. Below you’ll find recommendations on the most popular concealer palettes on the market for fair or black women, as well as the best under-eye concealers for dark circles. I also made a selection of green makeup concealers for acne and blemishes, and color-correcting powders to set your concealer and camouflage your skin imperfections.

You know as well as I do that in order to have a great makeup, you need to have a perfect canvas. And when all else fails (yes, I’m talking about BB Creams & CC Creams and even some foundations), concealers save the day by covering up everything from acne, oily skin, bruises, scars, fine lines, tattoos, blemishes. Basically, all the enemies that threaten your looks:

All aspects of makeup—foundations, color-correcting skin tones, concealing tattoos, birthmarks, blemishes or irregularities in the skin use color, so it is important to understand it and its functions in order to obtain the desired effect and to use concealers effectively.

When searching for the best makeup concealers, you will need to address the undertones in the skin, the balance it creates and the particular circumstances when your natural chromatic composition is altered. That tends to happen more often than you think, due to the variables affecting the percentage of melanin, carotene, hemoglobin and what not in our bodies.

That’s why relying on an exclusive concealer tone is what got you digging for more information regarding the best makeup concealers out there. In fact, even though there are a number of great cover-up miracle workers out there, there is seldom a product that will cover all your needs…so to speak.

The key is finding the best makeup concealers on the market that excel in providing the coverage promised or investing in a concealer palette suited for anything from dark circles to blemishes and acne.

Best concealers

How to apply concealer

I will present my complete guide and personal choices in concealers, but first, let’s cover the basics in concealers and discover the art of camouflaging in makeup.

How to Apply Concealers

Concealers have a thicker composition than foundation, and are available in cream, stick, tube, pots, and liquid.

Although most of us need it to cover spots, blemishes, acne scars and dark under eye circles, you can also use concealers on the body to cover any unattractive marks, bruises, or scars, or to cover tattoos.

For the face and body (not the eye area), concealers with a high pigment are best for camouflaging because they provide complete coverage and last longer. You need to blend the concealer well into the skin so that it disappears, especially if you are not using a makeup foundation on the skin. You can apply concealer under or over makeup foundation, depending on the product.

Be aware that concealers are designed to be applied over the foundation if you are using a liquid or cream base.

If you are using a powder or dry foundation, apply the concealer underneath the base. With the exception of dry foundations, most makeup artists recommend both, under and over, when applying concealer. Your choice will become part of your working technique and style.

Here is a make-up tutorial I’ve posted on my YouTube Channel, that shows you how to apply under-eye concealers properly. Hope you like the bronzed makeup look, as well.

In difficult camouflage situations, you will need to apply both under and over the foundation to get the coverage needed. Try applying concealer both under and over a foundation for effect. Check out this other post of mine on how to apply concealer like a Makeup Artist. You’ll learn so much more!

Best concealers for oily skin

Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer is also known as the King of all concealers, especially if one of the three shades available matches your skin tone. This excellent concealer covers completely, blends perfectly and stays in place all day long. Any downsides? Why the price, of course…

Shiseido The Makeup Concealer Stick is a creamy, vitamin-packed camouflage product that evens skin tone without caking.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Flawless Wear Concealer is a lightweight creme formula that blends really well and doesn’t crease throughout the day. It’s oil free and water resistant, it provides medium buildable coverage. This awesome concealer is available in 10 different shades.

MAC Select Cover Up Concealer offers a crease proof and natural look. You can layer it up to the desired coverage and has a matte finish. I believe it’s a very good concealer for oily skin.

Get your best concealer for oily skin from here.

Best full coverage concealers for acne and blemishes

M.A.C. Studio Finish Concealer has a thick consistency and covers well blemishes, spots and acne scars. Like with all M.A.C products the key is to gradually apply the product in thin layers, until the desired effect is established.

Make Up For Ever Camouflage Cream is another great concealer pallete good for covering blemishes and spots, while still being able to perform as an under eye concealer, due to its lighter texture.

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer is great for covering even the darkest under eye circles, due to its perfectly blendable 2 shades system. What makes it more suitable as a full coverage product is its yellow undertones that help cover up redness and even broken capillaries.

Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer is a full coverage,  waterproof concealer, with botanical extracts and other nourishing ingredients such as vitamin E, essential fatty acids, maracuja oil, vitamin C. It minimizes the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes, imperfections, dark spots and acne marks, at the same time brightening the complexion and improving skin tone and texture.

Murad Acne Treatment Concealer contains 2% Salicylic Acid, a popular ingredient for treating acne so this has got to be the best concealer for camouflaging as well as treating acne and blemishes. It’s medium to full coverage, so not as opaque as the other concealers in this category, but it doesn’t look or feel dry on any skin imperfections and it stays in place all day.

Get the full coverage you need to camouflage acne or blemishes

Best concealers for acne scars

Kryolan Concealer Wheel is one of the best concealers out there that can cover scars, as well as tattoos or skin discolorations. The wheel contains 6 shades, from light to dark, so it’s perfect for professional use, but if you need it for personal use, you can customize the shades and mix contouring and highlighting shades with blemish camouflage tones, with salmon tones for dark spots etc

Ben Nye Concealer Cover-All Wheel contains four classic neutralizing shades that make this a best selling wheel. Mutes redness, veins, tattoos, beard shadows and skin discolorations, hides scars and leaves a natural effect.

Laura Geller Real Deal Concealer has a silicone-based formula that leaves a velvety finish to the skin. It has great staying power and offers full coverage, enough to camouflage acne scars, tattoos, pigmentation, dark spots and blemishes, without effort. This concealer is long-lasting, oil free and chock full of healthy vitamins

Clinique Even Better Concealer  is best for uneven skin, if you need to cover dark spots, scars and under-eye circles. The Vitamin C formula brightens your skin and improves the way it looks over time.

Get the best concealer for acne scars from here.

Best under eye concealers for dark circles

Under eye concealers come in stick, cream, or pot, as well as liquid. Look for concealers that are creamy in texture, with light to medium pigment. Remember that the skin around the eye is delicate, so the products you use to conceal around the eye area should be, too. Check out a list of my favorite under-eye concealers to hide dark circles

If the product is too thick or uses a heavy pigment, you will have to work too hard to blend, irritating the thin skin tissue and you will probably cake the sensitive eye area and deepen fine lines or wrinkles.

Choose a concealer one shade lighter than the foundation that you are working with, and one that has moisturizing properties. A stick concealer offers more coverage but is more difficult to blend, so it can be hard on the skin around the eyes.

The most popular choices are Paula Dorf, Iman, Kanebo, LORAC, YSL Touche Eclat. Wand concealers are usually more sheer and can be used under the eye area, where light coverage is needed:

Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer has a moist formula that won’t highlight fine lines and wrinkles, while still providing enough coverage for dark circles. It brightens the eyes and prevents creasing for at least 6 h.

Peter Thomas Roth Un Wrinkle Concealer is smooth, doesn’t cake up and brightens the undereye area while covering really well.

By Terry Touch-Expert Advanced Multi-Corrective Concealer will correct any skin discoloration, diminish dark circles, imperfections and dullness. This “all-in-one” radiance-correcting brush is an anti-blemish tool that banishes wrinkles and shadow and erases all signs of tiredness without heaviness and provides an impeccable, luminous and long-lasting smoothing effect.

Eve Pearl Salmon Concealer works best for under eye coverage due to its gel consistency that doesn’t cake up. If you need a good coverage that is sheer enough for the eye area this is the product for you!

Laura Mecier Secret Concealer is a creamy, light concealer that blends perfectly and uses light-reflecting pigments in order to brighten the eye area. Enriched with Vitamins E and A, this unique concealer blend softens the skin around the eyes and virtually “fills” fine lines.

Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat is the world’s most popular concealer/ brightener for a good reason. This wonderful product is more of a radiant eraser, illuminating the eye area and giving your eyes a wide-awake look.

Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch Concealer is a creamy, opaque concealer/illuminator, that effectively blends over under-eye circles to conceal and reflect light, making skin look refreshed. It lasts all day on the skin, doesn’t creep into fine lines and actually provides better coverage than other under-eye concealers.

Learn more about these concealers and get them now from here.

Best concealers for dark marks and spots

Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer is an awesome multi-purpose product, that applies evenly and blends seamlessly into the skin, only to set fast and last all day. It camouflages dark marks and spots, blemishes and acne and I sometimes use it as an under eye concealer on special occasions, to make sure the concealer won’t eventually settle into fine lines and wrinkles.

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer is a lightweight fluid concealer that provides medium to full coverage with a comfortable, natural matte finish. This formula lasts up to 15 hours and it helps conceal and correct the look of under-eye circles, discolorations, dark marks and spots, as well as blemishes.

Bare Escentuals bareMinerals Correcting Concealer SPF 20 is a light concealer that blends well into the skin, camouflages dark marks, fine lines, under eye circles and other skin imperfections, while at the same time offering superior SPF protection. It provides a medium to full coverage that lasts all day long while diminishing the appearance of dark spots and discolorations over time.

Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer Concealer is a medium to full coverage concealer designed to create the appearance of healthy, radiant skin, thanks to its silky texture. It can be used as a spot foundation, dark spot concealer, all-over foundation, highlighter. This concealer is available in 16 shades.

Get your hands on the best concealer for dark spots.

Best full coverage face & body concealers for tattoos, birthmarks and stains

For birthmarks, port-wine stains, and tattoos, you will need a two- to three-layer process for complete coverage, done before applying a makeup base. This layering of color allows you to cancel out color completely, without any bleed through.

Sometimes a color will bleed up through the cover-up, usually in a gray undertone. You will use the stipple technique to apply color over each layer. For your first color, use the opposite color on the color wheel to cancel out the discoloration.

Your second color is dependent on how much coverage is needed – if just two layers are needed, your second layer is a matching flesh tone and if three layers are needed, your second layer is a mauve (red) or orange tone to cancel out any gray bleed coming through from the first layer. Many times there will be a gray bleed or tone coming through the correction.

Best concealers

Best concealers to cover tattoos

In these situations, you need three layers of color. Your second layer will be to neutralize the gray, and your third layer is the flesh tone. This is 100 percent coverage for those situations with intense color (port wine stain) or ink (tattoo). These products are 100 percent pigment. They are not sheer, and are designed for camouflaging.

The best products you will find out there are Dermablend and Dermacolor by KRYOLAN.

Dermablend Smooth Concealer is the the best beauty buy for all of those in need of a rich, creamy, full coverage pimples/birthmarks and stains camouflage.

Kett Creme Fixx Concealer is creamy enough to blend, but dries matte. Coverage is buildable from sheer to full-on and will cover anything without caking. You can use this for covering pimples, capillaries or scars, but don’t expect it to perform miracles like the Dermacolor or Dermablend.

Kat Von D Tattoo Concealer is a heavy duty, highly pigmented, transfer- and water-resistant, multitasking concealer. It’s opaque enough to cover tattoos, but it also works to hide under-eye shadows and imperfections plus blemishes and redness.

Dermablend Cover Creme is specially formulated to cover sores, cuts, pimples or capillaries on legs and body, becoming the best concealer for body use out there. Just remember to choose a shade or two darker for the area below your neck.

Learn more about these heavy-duty concealers from here.

I hope this post helps you figure out how to apply your concealer in a professional manner and how to get the coverage you need to make your skin look gorgeous, radiant and natural. I’ve classified the top 20 (…and counting :P) concealers out there based on their coverage and purpose, thus offering you the best choices for the under-eye area, for covering acne marks and scars, blemishes, dark spots and pigmentation problems.

If you need further help, I’ll be happy to recommend the best concealer for you in the comment section below. Please feel free to share your favorite makeup concealers of all times.


About the Author

As a professional make-up artist and beauty enthusiast, Luiza's expertise has become highly prized over the years. As owner of this site, she set her mind to create a publication for those who are focused not just on beauty trends and popular brands, but also on the industry's most well-kept secrets.

Published on September 2, 2014 in Make-up .
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  1. Arafah

    Which drugstore concealer is good for under-eyes, dark circles, blemishes etc?

    • I like Bourjois. They have one under eye concealer that is pigmented and creamy and one blemish concealer stick, that hides imperfections. You’d have to get both…

  2. Michele

    What do you recommend to cover black permanent eyeliner? Thank you.

  3. Christina

    Hi! Luiza,
    You’ve done a perfect review for concealers. Thank you. My question is Im over 50, meduim skin, which concealer will you advise so they won’t look to ashy or cakey. Thanks

  4. SD

    I have active hormonal acne as well as purple/red acne scars. Trying to get medicine straightened out to control active breakouts, but I would like to know your best recommendation for a concealer for both issues at this point. Thanks!

  5. I like very much this article, I keep it as a “tool” for my makeup sessions :). I tested recently the concealer from Sisley and it is really great for a mature skin.
    For acnea problems, I recommend the blemish stick from Thusrday Plantation to be applied before a concealer, it is transparent and with very good tea tree extract and it is “sealing” the area.
    For men, what do you recommend? I ask this because for special events when I do the makeup for men, I see that their skin around the eye is very dry….

  6. Sandra

    I have very dark scars from scratching mosquito bites on my legs. Which over the counter concealer is best that will give me full coverage and won’t rub off? Maybe even waterproof? I tried sally hansen leg sprays and even dermablend and they dont cover them enough. I also prefer not to have to use a setting powder.
    Thank you

  7. sandra

    Looking for full coverage concealer for very dark scars on legs. Availability at drugstores and waterproof a plus. What do you recommend?

    Thank youn

  8. Stephanie

    Hi Luiza,
    I have a question (or several); I have red acne scars I want to cover up. What’s the best drugstore concealer I can get my hands on to cover up acne scars? Also, someone told me that a green concealer would be the right choice to cover up red acne scars, would this be true?
    Thank you for your time and I hope you can get back to me,

  9. s

    Hi, I have a medium to dark coloured skin tone, I have acne which leaves behind dark marks around my face, which foundation would you recommend that is long lasting and able to hide at least some of my marks. Also any products to use along side it. Thanks

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