I’ve always thought concealer was a great big Catch 22. You start with an angry clogged pore that turns into a zit. So you cover it it up with some fleshy coloured goo (though let’s be honest, you aren’t fooling anyone within 2 meters of you). Said fleshy coloured goo clogs even more pores, and on it goes. A never ending zit parade, probably designed by the makers of concealer so you can never stop buying it.
The last time I was in Sephora I noticed funny little pots of distinctly non-face coloured goop. That you were supposed to put on your face. It came in a selection of pastels, including minty pink, lavenderish purple, and some sickly looking yellows and oranges. As a designer I figured these were either a) very boring face paints or b) some sort of opposite-colour correcting device type thingy.
It turns out it was b. I didn’t really think much of it until I saw the greeny one that looks like choc-mint ice cream (without the chips, obviously) used in the first bit of this video. Up until this I would have guessed that you would be left looking like Elphaba or the Grinch who stole Christmas. Guess not.
So I thought I would take the idea and apply it to concealer. But I didn’t stop with colour correction. I also wanted no pore clogging and lots of healing power.
Now, I’ve tried concealer before. Or, at least I should say I’ve tried to make concealer before. I made it as a lotion, and it was sort of ok at first… and then it drastically changed colour after a week, which was pretty suspicious (in addition to making it useless), so I tossed it. This time, after making my a bunch of different lipsticks, I thought I’d go entirely oil-based.
So: I selected rosehip oil and sea buckthorn oil for their supposedly legendary anti-acne wonders, and vitamin E for its general awesomeness in helping the skin heal. I thickened the whole mixture with some beeswax, cocoa butter, and capuacu butter.
For the colorants, the first step was making it opaque with some oil-soluble titanium dioxide.
Then, I added some multani mitti and zeolite clays (feel free to use any clay that sort of matches your skin tone) for some starting colour and the awesome healing/pulling properties of clay. From there I used a mixture of oxides to get it the rest of the way to my skin tone. I then divided the mixture, and added a hint of green to one part, giving me an anti-red concealer, and a plain, skin-coloured concealer.
The resulting concealer is exactly my skin tone, and works beautifully. I am so very thrilled with myself.
DIY Healing Concealer
7g/0.25oz capuacu butter
5g/0.17oz cocoa butter
4g/0.14oz seabuckthorn oil
4g/0.14oz rosehip oil
1g/0.03oz vitamin E
1g/0.03oz magnesium stearate (optional; adds slip)
1 ¼ tsp oil-soluble titanium dioxide
½ tsp sericite mica
1 tsp zeolite ultrafine clay
2 ¼ tsp multani mitti clay
Melt the beeswax, capuacu butter, cocoa butter, seabuckthorn oil, rosehip oil, vitamin E, and magnesium stearate together in a small saucepan over medium low heat.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the titanium dioxide, sericite mica, and clays.
Now it’s time to use oxides to get exactly your skin tone. I found this part to be pretty darn annoying, frankly. Lots of measuring, mixing, blending, stirring, testing, and repeating the entire process. In the end I think I used approximately 1 tsp of yellow oxide, 5 “pinches” of red, and 3 “pinches” of brown. It turns out I didn’t take terribly good notes (sorry!). Anyhow—work slowly, take your time, test and blend away, and you will eventually come out the other end with you-coloured goo.
If you’d like a red cancelling concealer, mix in a bit of green oxide. This recipe makes quite a lot of concealer, so I’d recommend doing what I did, and dividing it up.