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A Beauty Wake-Up Call — Revive Tired-Looking Eyes With New Clarins Instant Concealer


The older I get, the more I notice that concealer — once an optional step in my makeup application process — is now a necessity. Not only do I wake up with darker eye circles that make me look more like an upir than an actual human being, but there’s also way more of a fluid retention problem that manifests itself via major puffiness. On some mornings, it looks like oversize marshmallows — and not just fresh-out-of-the-bag ones, but bits that have been squeezed and groped by sugar-loving children — have somehow been lodged under the skin below my eyes. This, of course, presents a whole other set of problems since now I need a concealer that will match my skin tone and suit my undertones (two separate issues), provide the right amount of coverage, blend into my skin rather than look cake-y or goopy, illuminate the problematic under-eye region, and also reduce puffiness and tighten any loose skin. Add to that the fact that, despite my best efforts, tiny wrinkles are starting to creep up at the corners of my eyes and now there’s yet another consideration: making sure that any concealer I use won’t seep into these tiny lines, making them all the more visible, but that, instead, it will reduce their appearance.

Given all the qualities I’m seeking in a concealer, finding the perfect one can sometimes feel as daunting a task as the proverbial search for one’s soulmate. Luckily, I recently discovered two wonder products that I love so much, I even use them together. First, I tried the Per-fékt Skin Perfection Conceal ($28 at Sephora.com) and, second, the Clarins Instant Concealer ($30 at ClarinsUSA.com). In addition to its tonality, what I adore about the Clarins Instant Concealer is that it offers skin care benefits rather than being a strictly cosmetic concoction. First, it features the brand’s Light-Optimizing+ Complex, corrective pigments that make the skin look airbrushed by magnifying oncoming light and reflecting it, creating an optical illusion by blurring any existing imperfections and essentially highlighting the area under the eyes, thereby making you look younger and more alert. This brightening effect, in and of itself, is enough to completely transform your countenance, bringing life to an otherwise dull-looking complexion.

But there’s more! The formula also incorporates aloe vera extract to soothe and comfort the area under the eyes, a really essential treat since, as we age, this skin becomes even thinner and more delicate, requiring even greater TLC. Once the area is cooled and soothed, it’s easier to apply any eye makeup and have it look its very best. Aside from aloe vera, the formula also contains caffeine, which tightens the skin under the eyes, diminishing the appearance of lines and wrinkles, while also boosting micro-circulation and hence helping to eliminate the fluid retention that manifests itself via puffiness.

The Clarins Instant Concealer comes in four shades: 01, which is aimed at women with fair skin and blue-toned dark circles; 02, aimed at women with medium skin and brownish violet dark circles; 03, catering to ladies with medium to deep skin and brown-to-black under-eye circles; and 04, for women with dark skin and brown-back circles. Since I’m rather fair, I tried the 01 shade, but I was nervous that it would clash with my undertones since I have neutral undertones and some concealers can be either too yellowish or too pinkish. To my delight, the concealer was a perfect match for me. Here’s a swatch of the Instant Concealer 01 shade:


Next, check out how seamless it looks when blended into the skin:


How much do I love this concealer? So much that it was the one I chose to wear on my wedding day last fall. Like most brides, I barely slept the night before the wedding so I was counting on the concealer to work miracles — and it did! Here’s a shot of me right before the wedding:


Given that the Clarins Instant Concealer made me look my best on my big day, it will always have a special place in my heart. But trust me, ladies, you might just want to say “I do” to this concealer too!

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