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13 Best Affordable Concealers That Make Dark Circles, Acne and Redness Disappear

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Written by Jenna Cartusciello

Affordable concealers don’t always have the best reputation; many buyers still think of them as cakey, overly-drying and limited in shade range. However, the last decade has seen a tremendous improvement in concealers, so you don’t have to pay high-end prices for high-end results. The options have become endless, which is overwhelming at first but means you can be choosy about your concealer.

For instance, most drugstore brands make an effort to produce non-comedogenic formulas — that is, formulas that won’t clog your pores and lead to acne — but not all brands focus on low-toxicity ingredients. Both factors are very important to us, which is why we’ve created a comprehensive list of the best affordable concealers based on their toxicity levels and comedogenic ratings. On our list, you won’t find any products with comedogenic ratings higher than three out of five, nor will you see products with toxicity ratings higher than five out of 10. We’ve also paid special attention to each product’s shade range, coverage level, finish, blendability and staying power. The result? An array of high-quality, affordable concealers that will make your skin happy and nix dark circles, acne and redness with ease.

The 13 Best Affordable Concealers That Make Dark Circles, Acne and Redness Disappear

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Finding the Best Affordable Concealers: A Buyer’s Guide

Finding the right concealer can be overwhelming, but that doesn’t mean you should go without it and only rely on foundation. The reason? These two forms of makeup do different things. “The biggest difference between concealer and foundation is that concealer typically has a little more coverage,” says makeup artist and YouTuber Alexandra Anele. In effect, the primary goal of foundation is to create a basic, even layer of color, while concealer is meant to cover up targeted spots of discoloration, such as eye circles or blemishes.

In addition, discovering the right product can be a relatively simple process if you think about your three most-important concealer qualities. For instance, you may want a concealer that has a low toxicity rating, a natural finish and long-lasting wear. If those are your top three qualities, you’ll have a much easier time narrowing down your choices.

One last word of advice: While color matching is one of the most important parts of choosing the right concealer, remember that it shouldn’t be an exact match — experts recommend that your concealer be at least one shade lighter than your foundation. On the other hand, going too light may create a gray, unnatural look, so you may need to do a little experimenting to get it right. Below, learn more about other important factors to consider before making a purchase.

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Affordable Concealers


Unfortunately, there are a host of ingredients out there which may irritate your skin or cause you to break out. If you have sensitive skin and want to find your favorite concealer ASAP, stick to products that have a toxicity rating below three out of 10. In general, avoid the following ingredients: parabens, fragrance and alcohol.

Shade Range

Matching a concealer to your skin tone is arguably the hardest part of finding the right product. If you always struggle to match your skin tone, look at concealers that offer at least 20 shades — the more, the better. We also recommend visiting your local beauty store, such as Sephora or Ulta, where you can try out swatches on your inner wrist.


Drugstore concealers are usually the least expensive subcategory of concealers, but they range dramatically in price. It’s important to think about your budget before making a purchase. The least expensive drugstore products cost a little over $3, and the most expensive cost about $30. Most drugstore brands charge between $10 and $15 for a bottle of concealer, while other brands often cost $20+ (or $50+!).

Skin Type

Is your skin dry, oily or a combination of both? Dry skin typically does better with a hydrating formula that has a natural to radiant finish, while oily skin fits well with oil-free formulas that have a matte finish. If you have combination skin, look for an oil-free, hydrating formula. In addition, waterproof concealers usually last the longest on oily skin.

Comedogenic Rating

How sensitive is your skin to pore-clogging ingredients? If you can tolerate certain oils, such as coconut oil or grapeseed oil, without issue, you need not worry. If you find that you break out from different makeup products, make sure you look for potentially comedogenic ingredients before buying your concealer. Skincarisma and INCIDecoder are great online tools for this purpose.

What Are the Different Types of Affordable Concealers?


Most concealers are liquid formulas in tubes, which are very easy to apply and blend into skin. They also dry down relatively quickly and hide blemishes, discoloration and dark circles well. However, liquid concealers have a tendency to collect in fine lines and creases, highlighting them instead of blurring them.


Cream concealers fall right between liquid and stick formulas in terms of moisture and texture. They are thicker than liquid and still easy to apply, but require a decent amount of blending and buffing to make sure they don’t look unnatural. Cream formulas offer excellent coverage.


Stick concealers are similar to lipstick in terms of texture and moisture. Typically, you can apply dabs of a stick concealer directly on your face and then blend them out. Most stick formulas require a buffing sponge or a makeup brush to get the best blend, though you may need to apply with your fingers if the formula is too thick. Stick concealers also offer excellent coverage but have the tendency to look cakey.



NYX HD Studio Photogenic Concealer

Number of Shades: 23 Coverage: Medium Finish: Matte Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • Affordable
  • 23 shades
  • Vegan


  • 3/10 toxicity rating
  • Small bottle
  • May be drying

Color us impressed! For the price of this product, the NYX HD Studio Photogenic Concealer performs as well as high-end alternatives. This lightweight, blendable formula provides medium coverage that doesn’t settle into creases. You can also use it as a contour. We gave this product a comedogenic rating of one out of five, since it has a small amount of just one comedogenic ingredient: coconut oil.

However, a few buyers complain that the bottle is quite small. This product may be drying, so be sure to apply moisturizer underneath it — especially if you have dry skin. As for toxicity, the formula gets a rating of three out of 10.


Flower Beauty Light Illusion Full Coverage Concealer

Number of Shades: 12 Coverage: Full Finish: Natural, luminous Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • 2/10 toxicity rating
  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Full coverage


  • Only 12 shades
  • Small tube for the price
  • Drying

While it may be tempting to buy a concealer that contains salicylic acid or a similar anti-acne ingredient, you may be better off keeping your skincare separate from your makeup. We recommend using the acne treatment that works best with your skin, then applying a standard, non-comedogenic and low-toxicity concealer, like Flower Beauty’s Light Illusion. The reason? Other drugstore concealers advertised as being great for acne contain potentially irritating and comedogenic ingredients. We also like that this formula is full coverage, blendable and lightweight with a natural to radiant finish.

Unfortunately, color matching is not easy because this product comes in just 12 shades. Some buyers would have liked a bigger tube for the price. The formula is on the dryer side, so we recommend that you apply a moisturizer beneath it.


IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye, Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer

Number of Shades: 24 Coverage: Full Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 1


  • Full coverage
  • Cancels out purple and red hues
  • Long lasting


  • 3/10 toxicity rating
  • Expensive
  • May settle into creases

For dark circles, it helps to get a concealer that’s designed to cancel out purples and reds. The IT Cosmetics Under Eye Concealer is an excellent pick because it’s formulated for dark circles and provides full coverage. We like that a little goes a long way, and you can thin it out with a little moisturizer if you want a lighter feel. We gave this formula a comedogenic rating of one out of five.

As with most full-coverage formulas, this product may settle into fine lines and creases. A few buyers dislike the sticky consistency after application — we recommend blending it out very well and setting with a little powder. This product has a toxicity rating of three out of 10.


Revlon ColorStay Skin Awaken Concealer

Number of Shades: 18 Coverage: Medium to full Finish: Matte Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Buildable
  • Naturally brightening


  • 3/10 toxicity rating
  • Drying
  • May settle into fine lines and creases

Struggling to even out some dark spots? Try the Revlon ColorStay Concealer, which offers buildable coverage that lightens and cancels out dark areas of the skin. Bonus: It contains caffeine, making it a great product to reduce puffy, dark circles as well. We gave this formula a comedogenic rating of one out of five.

Since the formula has a matte finish, it may be drying — apply moisturizer beneath it as needed. It may settle into fine lines and creases as a result. This product has a toxicity rating of three out of 10.


Catrice True Skin High Cover Concealer, Waterproof and Lightweight

Number of Shades: 14 Coverage: Full Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Long lasting
  • Low chance of settling into creases


  • Only 14 shades
  • Fragrance which may irritate skin
  • Unknown toxicity rating (likely moderate)

Combatting redness while still matching your skin tone is a tricky business, but the Catrice True Skin High Cover Concealer is up to the task. It provides full coverage and cancels out red and purple tones. It’s also lightweight and long-lasting — after a 12-hour day, it still looks great and has a low chance of settling into creases. We gave this product a comedogenic rating of 1/5.

Unfortunately, color matching may be difficult because the Catrice True Skin Concealer comes in just 14 shades. This product does not yet have a toxicity rating, though similar Catrice products have a rating between four and six out of 10.


NYX Bare With Me Hydrating Face & Body Concealer Serum

Number of Shades: 17 Coverage: Medium Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • 2/10 toxicity rating
  • Vegan and cruelty-free


  • Faulty pump
  • Shade range could be bigger
  • May need setting powder

Concealers tend to be drying, so finding a formula that is truly hydrating isn’t easy. We picked the NYX Bare With Me Hydrating Concealer because it contains glycerin and sunflower seed oil for a moisturizing boost. Plus, the medium coverage doesn’t settle into creases and blends well. We gave this product a 1/5 comedogenic rating. It also has a low toxicity rating of two out of 10.

Many buyers wish that NYX would change the pump on this product, which tends to be faulty. We also wish the shade range were a little more extensive. If you can’t find a good match, you may have a hard time getting the right coverage on dark circles and redness.


Maybelline Fit Me Liquid Concealer Makeup

Number of Shades: 18 Coverage: Medium Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 2/5


  • Oil-free
  • Doesn’t get cakey
  • Not drying


  • 2/5 comedogenic rating
  • Contains parabens
  • 5/10 toxicity rating

It’s hard to make dry, flaky and oily skin happy, but the Maybelline Fit Me Liquid Concealer could be just what your skin needs. The formula is oil-free, so it won’t clog pores or contribute to an oily feeling, and it contains glycerin to help moisturize and soothe skin. Buyers love that the formula provides medium coverage and never feels cakey or drying. We gave this product a comedogenic rating of two out of five.

Unfortunately, this product contains two parabens, which increase its toxicity and may lead to skin irritation. Some buyers also wish that the concealer provided a little more coverage. This formula has a toxicity rating of five out of 10.



Honest Beauty Fresh Flex Concealer with Niacinamide

Number of Shades: 16 Coverage: Medium Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 2/5


  • EWG verified
  • Hydrating
  • Buildable


  • Only 16 shades
  • Expensive (but goes on sale often)
  • Contains alcohol

If you’re looking for excellent coverage without the appearance of makeup, pick up a bottle of the Honest Beauty Fresh Flex Concealer. This product is EWG verified, meaning it doesn’t contain potentially irritating or toxic ingredients, and the clean formula contains hydrators like shea butter, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide and vitamin E to increase skin elasticity.

However, the product does contain alcohol which may be irritating on sensitive skin. Some buyers also note that it takes a long time to blend because it is liquidy. We wish the concealer came in more than 16 shades. As for its comedogenic rating, we gave this formula a two out of five because shea butter may clog pores.


Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Multi-Use Concealer

Number of Shades: 18 Coverage: Medium Finish: Natural Comedogenic Rating: 1/5


  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Crease-resistant
  • Hydrating


  • 3/10 toxicity rating
  • Contains parabens
  • Not all shades available on Amazon

Unfortunately, many medium to full-coverage concealers don’t work well on mature skin because they’re drying and settle into fine lines and creases. The Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer sets itself above the rest because it is crease-resistant and ultra-hydrating without being thick or cakey. We give this product a comedogenic rating of one out of five.

While this product isn’t likely to clog pores, it is more likely than other products to cause irritation because it contains parabens. We also wish the sponge were pointed or not as big, because it makes it hard to apply product precisely. This product has a toxicity rating of three out of 10.


Maybelline Cover Stick Corrector Concealer

Number of Shades: 6 Coverage: Full Finish: Natural to matte Comedogenic Rating:


  • 1/10 toxicity rating
  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Great for dark circles and redness


  • Only 6 shades
  • Harder to apply than liquid formulas
  • Thick

Looking for a formula that is both non-comedogenic and as clean as possible? Try the Maybelline Cover Stick Corrector. To apply, dot the face in the spots where you need coverage, then gently dab and blend. The results are impressive: The formula provides full coverage without caking. The EWG gave this product a one out of 10 toxicity rating, and we give this product a comedogenic rating of one out of five.

Unfortunately, the Maybelline Cover Stick has the least inclusive shade range of our recommendations with just six shades. It is also a little harder to apply than liquid concealers and may be too thick. If so, we recommend first warming up the tube in the palm of your hands to soften the product.


L’Oréal Infallible Full Wear Waterproof Concealer

Number of Shades: 22 Coverage: Full Finish: Matte Comedogenic Rating: 3/5


  • 1/5 comedogenic rating
  • Easy application
  • Long lasting


  • Potentially irritating
  • Drying
  • May be too illuminating on acne

If you don’t have the time or patience to reapply concealer throughout the day, we recommend the L’Oréal Infallible Full Wear Waterproof Concealer. It applies beautifully in a thin layer and offers excellent coverage without feeling thick or cakey. Plus, it lasts all day long.

While this product does an excellent job of brightening dark circles and dark spots, it may be too illuminating for other areas of the face, like the cheeks or forehead. We’ve given this concealer a comedogenic rating of one out of five, but caution that it contains irritating ingredients, including seven fragrances and fragrance maskers, which may lead to breakouts

People Also Ask

  • Q: What ingredients should I avoid if I have sensitive skin?

    A:To prevent irritation, avoid parabens, phthalates, alcohol and fragrance. To avoid breakouts, stick to products that don’t contain shea butter, avocado oil, grapeseed oil or avocado oil.

  • Q: What ingredients should I avoid if I have oily skin?

    A:Try your best to avoid products that contain oils — look for concealers that advertise oil-free formulas.

  • Q: What ingredients should I avoid if I have dry skin?

    A:If you have dry skin, we recommend avoiding parabens (especially butylparaben), alcohol and certain skin conditioners like ethylhexyl palmitate.

  • Q: How much do drugstore concealers cost?

    A:Most drugstore concealers cost between $10 and $15, but range in price from $3 to $30.

Why trust Us

At Us Weekly, we aim to inform readers to make smart purchasing decisions, saving you both time and money. Our editors are obsessed with finding products in a variety of categories from fashion and beauty, to home and fitness.

We try various products, so we can recommend our favorites, and we also summarize feedback and data from other customers. Data, like product reviews and ratings, helps us recommend the best product choices for individual price points and needs.

On top of that, we highlight unique product features for special use cases, ingredients preferences, and more. We strive to make sure you are discovering new products that can make your life easier, while keeping you up to date with the best product choices for types of items you already know and love.

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By Jenna Cartusciello

Affiliate Commerce Writer Jenna loves recommending great products to her friends and family, so helping the rest of the internet on their quest to find the best stuff makes tremendous sense! Though she mainly writes in-depth buyer’s guides these days, Jenna still enjoys crafting the occasional health article. In her spare time, she loves immersing herself in creative writing. Her favorite authors (for anyone who is willing to geek out with her) include Neil Gaiman, Cheryl Strayed, and Jennifer Egan.

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