Beauty Fix: A concealer to hide all sorts of blemishes, the trick to at-home facials and more answers to your beauty questions
Every week we take on your questions about makeup, skincare, hair and more and provide all the answers. This week we’re taking on questions about concealer, at-home facials and overnight skin treatments. While these may seem like very different concerns, the goal is all the same: How can you brighten your complexion? From multi-colour concealer palettes to a skincare regimen that will boost and brighten, read on for the full fix. Have a question we haven’t answered? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I have undereye darkness that just looks grey when I cover it with the concealer that works on the rest of my face. I feel like I never have a product that matches both my face and eye area. How can I find something that will work for me?
You are not alone! The primary fact here is that the face isn’t one uniform colour, so you probably will want to reach for different products to address your different concerns. You’ll also need to accept that it’s fairly normal to have different colour options for different seasons, knowing that we’re all inherently a bit darker in the summer months and fairer (read: ghostly pale) during the cooler months. Regarding covering up undereye darkness, the reason the area ends up looking grey when it’s covered with concealer is because a standard concealer usually isn’t the right colour to counteract darkness. Undereye darkness tends to have tones that are blue or purple, and these shades are counteracted and neutralized by pink and peach colour correcting products. Knowing that you need options to conceal different ailments, thank your lucky stars that M.A.C has just created a Pro Conceal and Correct Palette ($48, maccosmetics.com), which contains four shades of Studio Finish Concealer (two cool-toned shades and two warm-toned shades) as well as two Studio Finish Correctors. These concealers and correctors can be mixed to create custom shades so that the palette is usable year-round, and the concealers can double as contouring colours in a pinch.
How can I do a quick eye look for evening without needing many different products?
This is a really common question that I’m asked by women of every age and profession, because everyone wants to look thrown together for a night out, right? Right! But a really fantastic eye look doesn’t have to require ten minutes of applying and blending eyeshadows out with four different brushes: it definitely can be streamlined to the bare minimum and still be anything but dull. Grab Dior Twin Set eyeshadow in “Grey Sigh” ($30, thebay.com) and master a night eye look in a couple of swipes. At one end is a creamy metallic dark grey eyeshadow pencil that can be used to either cover or messily line the lid, while the other is a shimmery graphite powder shadow that is perfectly suited to layer on top of the cream eyeshadow base. The cream shadow stick serves as the adhesive for the powder shadow and adds to the dimension (and longevity!) of the overall look. Brush on some mascara and you’re all set—it doesn’t get much simpler than that!
Getting facials regularly isn’t really in my budget. What can I do to deal with congested skin at home?
Facials and skin treatments are definitely an indulgence that can seem a bit gratuitous at times, but that doesn’t mean your skin’s needs should be overlooked. If congested skin is a concern, a mask containing enzymes can help unclog pores. Bliss Steep Clean Mask ($61, sephora.com) is an excellent contender for a weekly mask to add to your routine. Not only will enzymes and beta hydroxy acid exfoliate skin and reduce pore blockages, this mask contains vitamins A, C and E (antioxidants abound!) and grapeseed extract for a moisture boost. All this exfoliating and moisturizing goes on in a mere 15-minute time span, which sounds too good to be true, but trust when I say it’s a product that performs. It’s also a welcome reason to slow down and pamper yourself once a week.
Is there any product for keeping my perm curls under control? I’ve been just “washing and going,” but my hair is starting to look, well, freaky. I need something to keep it down.
Hair that has any kind of texture (natural or chemically induced) tends to be a bit on the unruly side. If curly hair is simply washed with no product added to it afterwards, it can virtually take on a mind of its own! If you find your hair to be in need of some calming down—while still keeping your beauty routine to a minimum—enlist a lightweight pomade. Bumble and Bumble Semisumo ($33, sephora.com) is a light pomade that’s best used in extremely sparing doses on dry hair. It will tame any “freakiness” while adding shine and definition. To apply, start with a small amount of the product in the palm of your hands. Rub your hands together to warm up the pomade and then work it through the length of your hair, avoiding the roots. Tip: even though this is a light product, always start with a minimal amount and then add more if necessary. As the saying goes, it’s always easy to add but very hard to take away—and with pomade, it’s near impossible.
My skin seems uneven and dull from past breakouts. Can I apply something to help it out?
This is a huge concern for many people. The occasional breakout can result in acne scarring, and when accumulated over the years it results in in hyper pigmentation and uneven skin tone. The best way to brighten skin by fading acne scars is with products containing Vitamin C, such as Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial ($54, at Shoppers Drug Mart). In addition to vitamin C this skin treatment cream contains wild rose oil, which acts a barrier between harmful elements and the skin to promote skin healing, as well as root extracts that return moisture levels to equilibrium. A laundry list of highly effective ingredients that result in brighter skin while you sleep? Yes, please.