I have had issues with dark circles since I was in the twelfth standard –or at least that is when I noticed them and became conscious of them. Today I can easily talk about them, but I have had major self-esteem issues and it has not been easy. People coming and pointing them out to me was even more tough. “You look sick!” “Whoa! you really have bad dark circles” and “Didn’t you sleep well last night?” were questions that would boil my blood and these were questions that were asked pretty often. For all I know, I subconsciously ended up being camera and people shy thanks to all such comments.
It has been a long journey and I still don’t have a perfect solution. I cannot cover my dark circles completely, but I can at least not look like I have had a sleepless night. Before I move on and tell you what worked for me, I will have to tell you why I cannot cure my dark circles naturally. Two simple reasons — they are hereditary and I am allergic, hence I rub my eyes with a passion that matches nothing else. So even if I end up sleeping the whole day and night, even if I put all the world’s cucumber on my eyes, I will wake up looking exactly the same.
I am still learning. For today’s post, I tried 2 different methods. One worked, one didn’t. However what did not work today has worked earlier. So as I said, I am still learning and when I really become an expert in concealing my dark circles, I will definitely talk about it. Until then, maybe you would like to be a part of my journey and both of us might end up learning a few things from each other.
Now as I have made it clear about how conscious I am of my dark circles, I wanted the best concealers in the market. So I broke my “under budget” rule and went for one of the costliest brand — M.A.C.
My experience with MAC — I went to the store opposite to Garuda mall. I think the staff there is super friendly and patient. The first time I went there, the Store Assistant guided me pretty well and together we zeroed down on Pro Long wear in shade NC45. However, I soon realized that NC45 makes me look orange. So I was back to square one. A few months later (Giving myself some time to recover from the bill) I went back to the same store and told the SA about what NC45 does to me.
This is when she told me the real problem. My dark circles are really dark and the rest of the skin is way lighter compared to that. So to get a uniform color, my only option was to mix another shade with NC45. After a lot of tests, we then finalized on NC35, again in ProLong Wear. I am pretty satisfied with this combination. However, I am still working on how much of which shade should I put because as I earlier mentioned, this method works perfectly sometimes and sometimes it fails. I have first applied the darker shade (NC45) and then a lighter shade (NC35) over it. Also, It works better when I do this process step by step. I tried mixing the 2 colors together in a palette and applying it, but I was not happy with the results.
In the below picture (left eye), it looks like a fail. But trust me, I am wearing 2 layers of concealer.
Make sure that whatever store you go to, do NOT compromise. Do NOT come under the marketing tricks of the SAs. Until and unless you are completely satisfied with the results, don’t buy the product. And never ever buy a concealer by looking at swatches on the back of your hand. Ask her to apply it on one eye and compare it with the other. Take pictures in a lot of lights. It is better to take a friend along who will be honest with you so that you can get an exact opinion. Also, looking at yourself in the front camera of your phone helps a lot to make the right decision.
The Orange Lipstick Trick — I have seen unlimited orange lipstick trick on YouTube. The science is simple. Orange cancels blue — which is really the shade of the “dark circles”. However, in the videos, I see the girls applying a LOT of the orange product. I prefer to keep it light. One is supposed to apply a bit of orange lipstick (enough to cover the darkness) and then use your usual concealer. At home, I always tried this trick with NC45 and it would look terrible. However, this trick seems to have worked amazingly well with NC35. The lipstick I have used here is from ColorBar. This is what I am wearing in the right eye and I think I will end up using this more frequently because it looks natural too.
I have finished both looks with a dab of 9 to 5 compact powder.
If you would have noticed, my eyelids are dark too. But I prefer not to put the concealer over my eyelid because that makes me look highly artificial and made up. Also, once my dark circles are covered, I prefer to not wear any foundation because my rest of the skin is otherwise healthy (Touchwood!) So I avoid unnecessary layering of products. I, however, make sure that the products are blended extremely well. I use a beauty blender to blend in the products.
So this was my struggle story. I am sure all of us have some flaw that we are conscious of. And while I spoke of all those people who would point out how sick I look, I cannot forget to mention all those wonderful friends who would tell me that my dark circles are completely normal and acceptable (“It gives you a nice Indian touch”, Someone said and I couldn’t help but laugh!) Covering my dark circles gives me enough confidence.
Dark circles are one of the most common skin issues in India and we hope this article will help you in some way. If you identify with my story in any way, please write to us. We will be glad to have company!
Keep it healthy and Stay Beautiful!