I don’t know why, but last spring and summer my makeup was making my skin look terrible. So I did what every sensible person would do.Wear more. Haha. Anyway, that didn’t work. Of course. What did work was going on a big cosmetics overhaul. I don’t know how it can be the case, but most of my friends don’t really wear makeup at all. But that’s never going to be an option I would choose. So, I went on a big research campaign. I swear I watched every Lisa Eldridge video in existence. I bloody love her. She’s amazing. And it really helped me to lighten up my makeup, because she is the master of fresh faced prettiness.
In the last post I did I talked best bases. One of the other things I overhauled was concealer. While creamy concealers offer good comprehensive coverage, there is a strong case to be made for lightening up and using a light reflective concealer. I used to be a devotee of the YSL Touché Eclat when it first came out. But it is a product that has well documented failings – it doesn’t cover dark circles well and can look ashy under the eyes; it photographs badly creating a reverse panda effect; and it doesn’t provide much colour correction. So I started using a colour corrector, and a creamy concealer under my eyes. Over time this has started to look too heavy and creases easily. I find that it also needs to be set with powder, which makes my under eyes look crepey and claggy. So I have relegated the creamy concealer for use on blemishes and redness and have returned to the light-reflective fold.
A lot of modern pens combine both reflective technology and colour correction, making them an ideal light and comfortable product for the most delicate part of the face. I think that for me they promote a more youthful look and are easier to wear.
The two that I currently use are By Terry Touch Expert Advanced in shade 5 Vanilla Beige (£32 at Space NK) and Maybelline Eraser Eye Concealer in Light (£7.99 at boots). The By Terry one is clearly absurdly expensive. I sort of bought it by accident. Well, I wanted it, obviously, but I didn’t ask how much it was, and when the price came up on the till I nearly fell over. Phewy! It is fantastic though – it looks flawless, and comes in 5 shades, so is versatile. It really does create a radiant and youthful finish.
It has a classic pen applicator that releases product into a brush when you click the top. It lasts for a long time since a little goes a long way. I love it (although it is very perfumed) but the price could easily put me off repurchasing. We’ll see.
The Maybelline one has surprised me. The formulation is, of course, not as refined as the By Terry. It has a lot of slip, which I’m guessing is silicone. It blends and covers well and blends flawlessly. This is a fairly newly released product, and it has gained a lot of attention recently. Most people love it, though one of the major criticisms is its fat sponge applicator. I don’t particularly like it myself, but given the price, it’s not a deal breaker. It’s worth using it on the back of a clean hand before transferring it to the face in the interest of hygiene. Another drawback is that it only comes in two colours, and I’m not sure if the Light isn’t a little pale on me, though I am quite fair. It is great value for money though, so I would consider experimenting with the Nude version. It’s a very good product at a more affordable price.
If you really suffer from dark circles around the eyes and are loath to eschew the creamy concealer, one way of benefitting from the radiance enhancing properties of these pens is to mix a little with your concealer on the back of your hand and apply with a brush. This approach works well on any slightly shadowed or darker areas of the face. Having been re-acquainted with the joys of the light reflective concealer, I am a re-convert. It is a must for lightening and brightening and creating a more youthful and radiant base.