How to Choose the Perfect Concealer Shade For Your Skin Tone

How to Choose the Perfect Concealer Shade For Your Skin Tone

Ever struggle with dark circles, uneven skin tone, or features you'd like to define subtly?

a woman sitting at a table with a bunch of makeup brushes
By Sue Biller
Caitlin Snethlage
Edited by Caitlin Snethlage

Updated February 1, 2024.

A woman holding a brush with multiple shades of concealer on her cheek.

Many of us crave a radiant, flawless complexion, and concealer promises to be the magic wand. But with countless shades and formulas, choosing the wrong one can leave you looking cakey, mask-like, or even more highlighted under-eye circles.

That's why we've created this guide to help you find your concealer shade match for a natural, luminous finish that boosts your confidence and lets your true beauty shine.

Why Does Concealer Shade Matter?

Miss the mark with concealer shade, and you'll highlight flaws instead of hiding them. Too dark? It accentuates what you want to downplay. On the other hand, a hue that's too light creates a patchy mess that clashes with your foundation.

Tips for Flawless Application:

  • Apply concealer after foundation for a smooth, blended finish.
  • Use a light touch and blend with a damp beauty blender or brush for natural coverage.
  • Set it with powder to prevent creasing and smudging, especially under the eyes.
A woman applying the right shade of concealer to her cheek.

» Learn to prepare your face for makeup

How To Match Your Concealer Shade

1. Find Your Skin Tone

Find your perfect match: stand in natural light and compare your skin to light, fair, medium, and dark concealers. Remember, undertones matter. Recognizing if your skin leans cool, warm, or neutral helps refine your search.

2. Find Your Undertone

Your undertone is subtle but essential when choosing makeup and clothing. Here's how to find yours:

  • Cool: Look for rosy, pinkish, or bluish veins on your wrists and skin that flatters silver jewelry. Look for peach or beige concealer shades to neutralize any unwanted redness or sallowness.
  • Warm: These undertones show as greenish veins and gold-toned jewelry complementing your skin. Find golden, yellow, or honey concealer shades to brighten and even your complexion.
  • Neutral: Greenish-blue veins and enjoying both silver and gold jewelry suggest you fall in the neutral range. Feel free to experiment with cool and warm-toned shades to find what flatters your skin best.

» Find the right type of blush for your skin tone

3. Find Your Match

Once you have a general idea of your skin tone and undertone, head to a makeup counter. Always test before you buy.

Ditch the jawline: swatch concealer on your inner forearm under natural light. Blend well and choose the shade that disappears, leaving no lines or color differences. This approach mimics your cheek area better for a more accurate match.

Tip: Ask for help. Makeup artists are experts at color matching and can guide you toward the perfect concealer for your unique complexion.

A woman applying the right shade of concealer to her cheek.

Not All Concealers Are Equal

Stick concealers are waxy, thick, and adhere to the skin. Matte ones minimize shine and attention and blend well into the foundation.

Cream and liquid formulas offer sheer to medium coverage that blends into the skin, avoiding cakiness. This property makes them ideal for everyday wear and targeting minor imperfections.

Once you've chosen your preferred texture, here's how to pick the perfect shade:

  • Hyperpigmentation, acne, and minor scars: Match your skin tone and opt for a thicker, waxier for full coverage.
  • Under-eye circles: Go slightly lighter than your skin tone and use a luminous cream or liquid to avoid makeup creasing.
  • General coverage: Match your foundation for seamless blending using a slightly thicker formula than the under-eye formula.
  • For mature skin: Opt for a waxy or dense concealer on the face and a fine, highly pigmented matte formula under the eyes.

Tip: If your concealer feels too thick, warm it up by gently rubbing it between your fingers or tapping it on the back of your hand before applying. You can also mix a tiny amount of your favorite moisturizer for a more fluid consistency.

» Find the right makeup brush to use for your concealer

Say Goodbye To Imperfections

Dark circles, acne, and hyperpigmentation are common concerns, but they don't have to define you. The right concealer can help draw attention away from these areas and make you feel comfortable and confident in your skin.

Beauty subscription boxes can help you explore different textures and shades to discover your perfect concealer match. With the Klever Mystery Beauty Box, experiment with various new, high-quality makeup products every month.