We know just about everything there is to know about concealing under-eye circles and telltale darkness. Whether it’s caused by a late night, too much sodium, or even just stress, it doesn’t matter—we’ve got our concealing routines down to a science, and we bet you do, too. After all, you can put on as much mascara or bold lipstick as you like, but it can only go so far to give you a wide-awake look. (We’d put our bets at around four hours, just enough time to get you through lunch, but not quite to the end of your workday.)
Orange-tinted concealer, green to hide redness, highlighter to brighten, concealer to, well, conceal—we pull out all the stops, that’s for sure. But there’s one thing you may not be doing, and it can mean the difference between drawing attention to your dark circles and making them disappear with the flick of a makeup brush.
That one thing? Well, it involves powder. You may balk at the suggestion that you powder under your eyes, and that’s fair—because after all, we’re repeatedly told that what we need is highlighter, to brighten the area and put the light back in our eyes, and besides, won’t powder just enhance dark circles and signs of aging, settling into fine lines and every crevice along the way? The answer is no, but granted, the secret is all in choosing not only the right powder, but mastering the right technique, too.
Here’s what you should do: First, select your powder. It should be a translucent powder that blends into any skin tone, as well as finely-milled in texture. Loose powder is ideal, but as with any powder, if it looks chalky before you put it on, it’s probably going to look chalky on your face, too. If your skin tends to be dry, look for a powder with a hydrating component like hyaluronic acid. Unsurprisingly, we’re fans of MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder—you really can’t go wrong.
The next step is grabbing your brush. Opt for a small eyeshadow brush, the type you’d use to apply loose or pressed shadows to your lids. Then, pick up just a small amount of powder—you really don’t want to go overboard, because that classic powdery beauty faux pas happens so fast once you get overzealous. Just the tiniest amount of powder will do, and the lightest touch beneath your eyes. Position the brush beneath your eye at the inner corner, then sweep outward, covering and setting the concealing products you’d applied previously.
The trick to this is that you’re mattifying the area, because think about it. When you want the eye drawn to your cheekbones, you add highlighter; when you want the eye drawn to your lips, you add gloss. You should apply the same principle to your skin. A natural, soft-focus matte finish downplays the under-eye area and makes everything look smoother, and does away with the appearance of dark circles instantly. It’s the easiest, and most easily overlooked, beauty secret out there… and now you know.
Read more from Daily Makeover: How to Get Rid of Bags Under Your Eyes