Updated: May 2
No matter how long you bake your under-eyes, or how many layers of your favorite concealer you add, you will never be able to stop the makeup from creasing. It is literally impossible to do crease-proof full-coverage makeup since full-coverage makeup isn’t flexible enough to withstand the movement of your face. Sure, it might look good when first applied, but that thick product will break apart after just a few hours of wear.
As we age, the creases under our eyes get deeper, and we lose hydration, further exaggerating texture. More creases mean more movement, making it even more difficult to get under-eye concealer to stay put. The fact of the matter is, just like I share in this video, traditional full-coverage makeup isn’t designed to move with your skin.
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So, how do you go about creating a flawless makeup look that won’t end up creased and crusty by the end of the day?
Why Does Under-Eye Makeup Crease?
The orbicularis oculi are the muscles in charge of opening and closing your eyelid, and creating your perfect model “smize.” The orbicularis oculi are a sphincter muscle, a lot like your...well...you know what it’s like. Able to contract and widen, these muscles are super important for observing the world around you and are meant to move a lot, making the under-eye (and eyelid) a high-impact mimetic zone (which I’ll cover more in a moment.)
The constant movement of the under-eye makes it difficult to prevent creasing, which is why I like to take a different approach to under-eye makeup than most traditional makeup artists. Rather than applying an inflexible layer of concealer, I use a combination of light-coverage color-correcting products designed never to crease.
Mimetic zones (as mentioned above) are the name for the various muscle groups in your face. High-impact mimetic zones are areas of the face that experience a lot of movement, like the eyelids, under-eyes, and around the mouth. Using opaque, full-coverage concealers and foundations on high-impact mimetic zones will almost always lead to creasing. Instead, you should be using light-coverage flexible products like color correctors.
Low-impact mimetic zones are areas of the face that experience very little movement, like the cheekbones, jawline, and out corners of the forehead. Because these areas don’t pose much of a creasing risk, you can use opaque or full-coverage products without worrying about creasing.
The Fusion Method
The Fusion Method is a simple approach to doing makeup that combines filtering and full-coverage products. I created this method to ‘fuse’ traditional approaches to makeup with my own color-correcting method, developing an approach that works on everyone’s skin, no matter their age, skin type, or texture.
By noting your mimetic zones and taking care to apply your makeup with intention, anyone can create that flawless skin we are all after. In low-impact mimetic zones (cheeks, outer forehead) use higher-coverage products like opaque concealers and foundations. In high-impact mimetic zones, use small amounts of color-correcting products to filter out hyperpigmentation, dark circles, blemishes, etc.
Tips for Eliminating Under-Eye Creasing
As you begin experimenting with the Fusion Method, try implementing some of these makeup tips and tricks. These ideas are things I do to create the most flawless applications and to help keep my under-eyes looking youthful, bright, and smooth.
1. Try “Slugging”
As we age, we lose lipids (fats) in our skin, which contributes to the development of wrinkles and dark circles. To keep your under eyes hydrated, try slugging! Slugging is super easy and affordable, and all you need is a jar of Vaseline!
To slug, apply a generous amount of Vaseline under your eyes 3-4 times a week before bed. Wear the Vaseline overnight, then wipe off gently in the morning. After just a few applications, you’ll begin to notice that your under-eyes are smoother, more hydrated, less textured, and looking brighter.
2. Ditch Full-Coverage Concealer
Huge concealer triangles under the eye and heavy baking with setting powder are SO 2018, and now, it’s all about radiance and glow. Full-coverage concealer is designed to cover as much of your natural skin as possible, completely blocking out everything, including your natural skin tone.
Rather than trying to cover everything, using color-correcting products to filter out hyperpigmentation, melasma, and redness while leaving the rest helps you to even everything out while still remaining natural.
3. Practice Color Correcting
If you’ve never color corrected before, it’s going to take some practice. Before you dive into a full Angel Edit using only color correcting products to filter your skin tone, start with a simple color correcting palette and the Fusion Method. After applying your usual products to the low-impact mimetic zones of your face, turn your attention to the - and practice filtering out unwanted pigmentation. I recommend picking up a Mini Filter Edit, which will include four color correctors to address a variety of skin imperfections.
4. Choose Cream Over Powder
If you have mature skin or extra creasing around the eyes, one of the worst things you can do is apply a bunch of powder eyeshadow. Powders only enhance the look of fine lines and can make you look way older than you actually are. Instead, apply cream products that compliment your skin tone, correcting and filtering when necessary or deepening your natural shadows to create a natural but glamorous look.
5. Use Very Little Product
Even if you don’t have fine lines or wrinkles, chances are good that you have at least some under-eye texture. My Fusion Method is the best way to hide under-eye texture since you’ll use just a little bit of product under the eye. More product means more chance of creasing, whereas small amounts of a lightweight product can move and flex with your expressions.
Color correcting/filtering is a precise technique and requires you to pay close attention to the subtle color changes in your skin. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be amazed at how little of a complementary color it takes to completely eliminate dark circles or blemishes, all without creating extra texture or creasing.
6. Get Color-Matched
If your makeup isn’t the right color, it will never look right, no matter how you apply it! Getting professionally color-matched is a great way to get started with confidence since you can be certain you are using the right products to get the job done. I offer free color-matching consultations where I help you identify your undertones, assess your needs, and give you suggestions for which products will work best for your skin tone.