Oct 312012

A few weeks ago, I became curious about color correctors. Above, are the results of my experiment and some thoughts about how things went. My adventure started at a few makeup counters where artists tried an orange or yellow-toned corrector to counteract my blue-toned dark circles and the now-highly faded remainder of sun damage (a treatment summary is here).

I used to think of color correctors as using a distasteful green color and I couldn’t imagine doing that. Well, as it turns out, green isn’t the type of color correction that I’d ever need, so I had a mental block against trying any. Yellow or amber are said to be best to counteract blue or ashiness. Here’s a summary of my experiment–first, face primers and then undereye correctors.

Face Primers

1. Make Up For Ever HD Perfecting Primer in Yellow #6 ($34) This is a sheer yellow that essentially brightens warm-tone pale skin. The line makes other colors (caramel, mauve, green). The strength is its stability. This certainly helps makes my foundation last all day. I found that the color-correcting properties were modest and subtle. However, it did keep my foundation from shifting or fading, thus maximizing coverage over problem areas throughout the day. If you are already  using a stable, long-lasting foundation, you might not notice a tremendous difference.

2. Yves Saint Laurent Tient Parfait Complexion Enhancer in #4 Apricot ($ 42) is a cosmetically elegant, luxurious mousse that provides a sheer coverage of skin-brightening, luminous color. This YSL Complexion Enhancer provides enough coverage that, when used with a light coverage of a powder foundation, is a nice, casual-day look. It really gives me a peaches-and-cream glow. No, really. Like many other YSL products that I’ve used, the Complexion Enhancer seems a bit fragile. Over time and in high humidity/heat, I noticed fading and disappearing long before sundown.


Under Eye Color Correctors

1. MAC Studio Finish in Pure Orange ($12) I became curious about this product watching this video on the MAC website. It features concealers for hot climates (where I’m currently visiting). After researching it, I found advice that this will work to color-correct light skin tones if it is blended with concealer or foundation. I’m sure a makeup artist has no trouble doing that, and this is the most cost-effective corrector on the market. It’s highly pigmented, and would probably last a year if not longer. I found that I lacked patience to dilute this on a daily basis, I just didn’t have the knack–some days it was too orange, some days not enough. Not for me. This also comes in a pot for $18.

2. Bobbi Brown Correctors in Porcelain Peach and Peach ($23 each).  Bobbi Brown makes four (4!) different peach correctors. Porcelain Peach is lightest and Peach is the third darkest. These worked pretty well. They are not as cost-effecient compared to MAC Pure Orange (nothing is!) but they were super easy to use. They blend well, and look close to natural.

3. Tom Ford Illuminating Highlight Pen in Amber Eclat ($52) This worked best of all of the options that I’ve tried (I bought two), even better than Armani’s Master Corrector in #2 Orange. This looks quite natural and has good lasting power. I use a concealer over this.

Close up of the Tom Ford brush:

Although Tom Ford makes concealers, Amber Eclat is a corrector–so it has a decided amber-orange tone. Here’s a quick comparison with some other concealers that I happen to have with me on this trip–Burberry Sheer Luminous Concealer in #1, Armani Maestro Corrector in #2 and Chanel Pro Lumiere Corrector in #10 (this may be discontinued):

As you can see, the Tom Ford leans orange, and the Armani almost disappears in its natural look. They actually work nicely together.

Some Results of My Experiment

For face primers, I did not find a corrector which really does the job. I fell in love with the YSL Perfection Enhancer in Apricot for a peaches-and-cream glow, does that count? I only wish it has the longevity of the Make Up For Ever HD Primer. The best thing that works if I want a flawless canvas is a light concealer. As I said here, the Giorgio Armani Maestro Concealer gives me a very natural, undetectable look.  If you need more coverage,  Make Up For Ever Full Cover concealer ($32) is absolutely bullet proof and comes in a wide color range. Vichy Dermablend Liquid Foundation ($28ish) is another good choice.

For eye primers, Tom Ford won my heart. Although I use a concealer over it, I find my concealer lasts longer, and I need far less of it, wearing the correct. It just works well. 

For more about correctors, I found Goss Makeup Artist video here very helpful.

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  14 Responses to “Sketchbook: Thoughts About Color Correctors”

  1. I love YSL’s complexion enhancer – but I have it in Champaigne. I actually use this alone over sunscreen in the summer. The apricot shade you showed also seemed interesting and looks more yellow toned than the champaigne version I have which is a light beigey-bronze. I like the way Armani’s maestro swatched on you, if their light-medium warm-toned shades didn’t read orange on me I would pick one up. One of my favorite blogs because of how extensive you are across department store beauty brands.

  2. I am confused about the “rules” of what color corrector to use with different color discolorations. How does one know whether to use a pink or peach based corrector? I see you have blue-ish under eye circles as do I, and use a peach-toned corrector. I have gotten conflicting advice from the Bobbi Brown counter. Some SAs have suggested the peach correctors and some the bisque. Thoughts? Thanks!

    • Hi Nina, I have used Bobbi Brown’s bisque corrector before and it does work well. I was honestly using it as a concealer. Because its so pigmented, it did work–most times, I didn’t even add a true concealer on top of it. As long as you match the color properly to your foundation, and if this works for you, then I’m sure you look gorgeous.

      This color correcting concept is a little different–it’s correcting the color so I can use less concealer (or a lighter weight one). If you go to the end of my post, there’s a video by Goss Makeup Artist for more information in case I’m not being clear. 🙂

  3. For face primers, have you tried Givenchy’s? They have a range of six colours for different needs. Here’s the product I’m talking about:

    I’ve been meaning to buy it for ages. Every time I swatch, the effect on the back of my hand is good, the glow it gives! I really should get around to buying it soon.
    Givenchy is pretty underrated in my opinion. It’s so hard to find decent reviews online. I don’t have a lot from them, but I do like what I have.

  4. Super interesting post ! I have the Bobbi Brown Corrector and even though it is one of my holy grail products, it always creases on me, very cool to know there is more out there ! xox

    • Well, you are supposed to set it with powder. Every concealer creases if you don’t set it with powder. I’ve been using the bobbi brown corrector for years, and it does not crease if you set it with powder

  5. Great post! I need concealer to mask dark circles, and the Tom Ford corrector seems like just the ticket. I will purchase it in my next round of beauty buys — the list is ever growing. Thanks, Amy.

  6. I can really recommend the Giorgio Armani Corrector – my HG, even better than the BB corrector, which I used for ages. There are two color options: pink and orange. I am using the pink one (NC 15 with dark blueish circles). The formula is very thin and highly pigmented. It covers well and does not crease. Most of the time I don’t need an additional concealer, the corrector needs some time to set though.

  7. I’m so happy to see the YSL Complexion Enhancer getting some love on-line! Particularly the apricot shade is deliciously delightful because it does really give a peaches & cream glow (no really!) – for years, I wore this as my “foundation” having learned about it when I lived in Paris. Every woman I know there has one of these in their kit.

    I also agree on the GA corrector – its magic on undereye circles, and plays so well with other concealers. One of those little tubes lasts for absolute ages (I’ve had mine for almost 2 years now) I used BB for a few years but recently found it too cakey – I love my smile lines, but not the concealer that might cake into them 🙂

  8. I love these it just makes me want all the bbu palette from bobbi brown haha xx

  9. I love your blog and read it daily! I’d love your opinion. How do the following compare? Burberry and Cle de Peau concealor. I’ve used Bobbi Brown for so long and I need something new. Thanks!

    • Burberry and Cle de Peau are both awesome! Burberry is liquid pen, and Cle de Peau is a cream stick (easier to use as a cover up if you need to re-do entire face w/o your foundation nearby. Really, you won’t go wrong with either!

  10. Thanks! I am currently using the Burberry foundation and glow and was really impressed with my concealer samples. Thanks again and look forward to reading your next post!

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