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Concealer vs. Foundation – All You need to know!

Concealer vs. Foundation – All You need to know!

Concealer vs. Foundation is a moot point among ladies? Therefore, there is a need to draw a line between the two or people will keep doing the wrong thing over and over again and hoping that the results will get better. With the mention of the two, many questions pop up in our minds.

Are the two the same thing? If no, which one comes first and when should I use either of them? The latter has been a bone of contention for a long time, and it has turned out to be more of a chicken and egg situation.

The many products that keep coming up and their smoke and mirrors while they try to sell their products result into confusion worse confounded. Nevertheless, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Read on to solve the riddle surrounding the concealer vs. foundation discussion!

What is the foundation?

It is a type of makeup that is skin-colored which is used on the face to see to it that the applicant achieves not only even but also uniform color in comparison with his or her complexion. In addition to that, it can hide flaws as well as change the natural skin color. As the word means, it is put on before putting on the rest of the make-up. It is what you should go for if you are looking for a uniform skin tone.

What is concealer?

It is also known as a color collector, and as the name suggests, it hides age spots, blemishes, dark circles, expression lines, pimples as well as large pores. It blends the inconsistencies into an even skin tone. Go for it if you have deep scars that remain noticeable even after applying foundation.

Similarities between Foundation and Concealer

  • The only correspondence that I can think of when I think of the two is their results. Both of them are used if one intends to achieve a uniform color on the skin especially the face.

Differences between Foundation and Concealer

  • The concealer is thicker than the foundation since it is more pigmented than the foundations.
  • One should apply foundation to the entire face, but the concealer is strictly for use on the affected areas.
  • Foundations come in large glass bottles or tubes while concealers come with small tubes and resemble lipstick.

Also Check: How to Apply Highlighter

Types of Makeup Foundations

  • Liquid foundations: They are those and liquid form as the name suggests. It does not come as a surprise that it is the most given type because of its nature which makes them not only lightweight but also easy to apply. Avoid oil-free ones if you have oily skin.
  • Cream foundations: They not only provide coverage but also moisturize the skin. Therefore, they become a perfect choice for women whose skins are dry and normal, but a no-go zone for those with oily skins.
  • Powder foundationsFor frequent touchups even when in the move, think of this kind all thanks to its compact form. If you happen to have oily skin, there is a foundation that you can use without fear of adverse effects. However, its coverage is not as big as that of the liquid one. Expect no exaggeration but instead a natural yet even look.
  • Stick foundation: This one is yet another one for those with oily skins. Its resemblance to lipstick regarding texture and shape is undeniable. It dries quickly after its application, and it is an excellent example of a foundation that does not need to be used together with the concealers.
  • Spray foundation: For sensitive skin and frequent touchups, spray foundations remain the ultimate choice. Since they come in a spray bottle, you directly spray on your face whenever a need for the same arises.
  • Tinted Moisturizer: As much as it is on the list, it is not a foundation as such. The product is a blend of a foundation as well as a moisturizer. They do the trick too well if you have dry skin and also if you will be in the scorching sun for long. The SPF shields your face from the sun. It is also perfect for those with wrinkles, and you should not expect skin streaks after its use.
  • Mousse Foundation: It is an intermediary of a liquid and a powder one. Go for it if you have a skin that is not only dry but also aging.
  • Mineral Foundation: All thanks to it, women with sensitive skins can now afford to smile. Due to the presence of zinc among its ingredients, protection of the skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays is a guarantee. It is made with natural elements which explains why they are the safest to use.
  • Liquid to Powder Foundation: Do you have a normal skin that is neither dry nor oily? This type is a God sent foundation that you should not hesitate to use.
  • Waterproof foundation: If you live in areas with hot, humid and rainy seasons, there is no need to worry about the disappearance of your foundation as soon as you get out of the house. Why should you when there is a perfect solution which is the waterproof foundation?

Foundation vs Concealer

Types of Concealers

  • Liquid concealer: It is the most common one and the very first type to ever exist.  If you have redness or small under eye covers, go for it. However, if you have dry skin, it is advisable that you apply a moisturizer or else the dryness will be very noticeable. It is ideal for the normal and oily skins.
  • Balm concealer: Most of them are used under foundation because they are color correctors. Expect them to last for long and to bring out great results if your skin is either oily or normal.
  • Cream concealer: This one not only covers dark circles under your eyes but also hydrate both the normal and dry skins. That would mean that it is a no for the oily skins unless you confirm that your choice is oil-free. If you have sensitive skin, you should avoid those concealers with alcohol.
  • Stick concealer: They are perfect for covering dark spots and tiny blemishes and perfect if you are on the move. For oily skins and the hot weather, I would advise that you do not settle for it.
  • Color correcting concealer: Strictly use them is others do not provide the coverage you require. On top of that, apply foundation over them to neutralize the various colors. Lavender does great when correcting yellow shades while green counteracts redness. For scarring or deep purple, go for the yellow and pink will do the trick if you have a blue skin tone. Orange, on the other hand, rectifies gray, blue or deep purple skin tones.
  • Cream-to-powder concealer: Go for it if you have a dry, normal or combination skin. They are easy to apply using a brush or fingers. Nevertheless, it would be suicidal to use this kind if you have wrinkles or fine lines. After a few hours, you may be scaring those around you or not want to look at your face. No offense though!
  • Pen concealer: Do you have under eye circles? Are you aware of some parts of the face that need highlighting? I cannot think of a better concealer.
  • Pencil concealer: If you have small blemishes, this is the way to go. They are ideal for use on the waterline, and they will do the trick of opening up your eyes.

Concealer vs. Foundation

Having seen the purpose of concealer and that of the foundation, it is only apparent that one uses the latter before the former. Do not forget that, your skin may not need a concealer at all if you do not have stubborn marks and scars. The concealer should only be applied to the affected areas as well which supports the logic of using foundation before.

More: Concealer for Dry Skin

Despite that, some concealers demand that they should be used before the foundation. Keep that in mind! Now that you know that keep reading to find out how you should use each one of them for excellent results.

Instructions when choosing the ideal Foundation

  1. Ensure that the foundation you settle for is almost similar to the color of your natural skin. If the manufacturer has offered a numbering number and the largest is for darker skin.
  2. See how your skin looks under either daylight or neutral white light without any makeup. That will help you determine your undertone which can either be cool, warm or neutral. For the warm undertone, yellow fabric or gold jewelry will complement the face. On the other hand, if a red fabric or silver jewelry gives your face a healthy glow, you have a cool undertone. Neutral does not respond to either exposure. It also requires you to use various foundation on different parts of the face.
  3. Examine your foundation for your jaw, chest or both. As a result, the face and the body will not be different.
  4. There is need to test the color under natural light for you to see how it will look once you are outside. Only judge it after some time because it will change once it dry and then oxidize.
  5. With the types of foundations provided above, choose the best one but stick to the color you have settled for based on the activities above.
  6. Identify the finish. If you need to tone down your skin which is oily, matte foundations will be a great choice. For wrinkles, consider using illuminating ones for good results.

Tips when selecting the most suitable Concealer

  1. Identify the type of concealer to use and consider the instructions we have given you regarding the different kinds and when they are ideal.
  2. Select a color that is similar to the foundation chosen above. A shade lighter does the trick if you aim to hide dark eye circles and any other dark patches.
  3. Contemplate the finish which can be matte or satin just to mention a few. Powder after a non-matte concealer’s application is recommended.
  4. If need be, apply a color corrector on the patches according to the directions given under color correctors in the list of types of concealers.

A Step by Step Guide on how to apply Foundation, Concealer and the rest of the Makeup

  1. Clean your hands: Since dirty hands may transfer germs and bacteria to your face, you should clean them before you begin the face painting. Use warm soapy water for a good wash.
  2. Use a MoisturizerThe purpose of this step is to ensure that your skin is not only protected but also looks natural even after applying makeup. Some have sun protection ingredients. However, for those without, this is the best moment for you also to apply sunscreen.
  3. Apply PrimerIt will create a smooth base for the foundation as well as see to it that your makeup remains intact until the end of the day. It is something that oily skinned people cannot afford to miss.
  4. Use Color Correcting Concealer: This step will not be necessary if you do not have port wine birthmarks, dark eye circles or any other patches that have color. Extensively apply it to the severely affected areas.
  5. Foundation: Apply the foundation you chose and ensure that every inch of your face is covered. Use your fingers, sponge or brush. Use a stippling brush not only to blend it but also remove excess for an even tone.
  6. Confirm that the blending is perfect and the tone is uniform: Do that attentively and adjust in case of any irregularities. Do not insist on a lot of foundation application because what you need is a thin layer. If it is too much in any given area, a bare powder puff tap will make it even.
  7. Apply Concealer: Some smear it all over, but I would advise you to cover the areas that have blemishes, uneven tone as well as acne only. With the help of a sponge, finger or concealer brush, ensure that there is no noticeable difference between the surrounding skin and the concealer.
  8. Brush a translucent powder: Apply it lightly so that you can get a fantastic matte finish. In addition to that, the translucent powder sees to it that your makeup lasts longer. If you have dry skin, do not do it so that it does not absorb moisture.
  9. Use other makeup: This final step only applies you find it suitable. If you so please, apply eyeshadow, mascara, and lipstick among others. Once through, then you are good to go.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Concealer vs. Foundation vs. Primer

Primer: It is applied to the skin before the foundation. Its purpose is to ensure that your makeup remains nice for a long period. It also smoothens the face and hides fine lines, large pores, redness, and wrinkles. Primers avoid cake around your eyelids as well.

Foundation: You apply it on your face to ensure that it has an even and uniform tone. Some people need only the foundation, and they are good to go.

Concealer: Once you finish applying foundation, this is the solution for those stubborn marks that are still noticeable. They include birthmarks, blemishes, tattoos as well as scars.

How to apply Concealer and Foundation on dark skin

The process of applying foundation and concealer on either a dark skin or light skin remains the same. All that matters is the color you choose, and you have the tips for selecting the best discussed above. If you have dark skin, ensure that it is as close to your skin tone as possible. Equally important, ensure that you use the ones ideal for your skin type.

There are those for the oily, normal, dry or combined skin. If you want good results, choose wisely. Be keen if you have sensitive skin as well.

Can you wear a foundation without concealer?

The answer is a resounding yes. Since concealers mask serious marks, there will be no need to use them if you do not have such spots. Only apply concealer if you notice prominent scars and marks after applying foundation.

Use Concealer before or after Foundation?

Color correcting concealers are usually applied before the foundation. As soon as you sweep the foundation over your face, apply any other concealer to hide dark spots as well as blemishes. Apply only the affected areas because doing otherwise will be a waste of both money and time.


From the above discussion, you are now wiser than you were before. The confusion that comes with both the concealer and the foundation is solved. In addition to that, you have advice on which type and best on which skin and how to ensure that you choose one that rhymes with your skin.

Additionally, there is a guide on how to apply them so that you can achieve the best results. I know too well how each of the details affects the outcome hence the detailed discussion. No need to visit parlors or settle for less. Heed our advice and do yourself the justice you deserve, eventually.

Louis Chilton

Thursday 10th of September 2020

Best writeup

Jane le

Monday 10th of February 2020

Thank you for your article. Helpfull.