10/02/2013 03:48 pm ET Updated Dec 02, 2013

Cover Up

Everything you need to know about applying concealer -- the right way.

Under-eye circles, dark spots, zits -- we all have the need to cover things up from time to time. After all, no complexion is perfect 24/7. While it might seem simple, concealing blemishes and dark circles requires some artistry and skill. "You should always have two colors of concealer," says celebrity makeup artist Amy Oresman. "One that matches the skin on your face for blemishes, and an eye-brightening liquid for under your eye and brow bone. Never go too light with concealer as it can make whatever you're concealing even more obvious."

The makeup artist, who works with Neutrogena, is full of genius tips and tricks. For one, "The most common mistake women make in applying concealer is that they do it first! I always apply it last," says Oresman. "Use your foundation on and around your eyes to add soft coverage, then do your eye shadow. You will be shocked by how much less concealer you will use, and that it's easier to apply in the correct area." Which brings us to another common problem: applying thick concealer directly under the lower lash line -- a counterintuitive exercise since it only serves to emphasize wrinkles, bags and texture all the more. Instead, correct application should brighten and open the eye. "Everyone has dark pigment under their eyes. Sometimes it's hereditary and its severity differs with ethnicity, however we all look more awake when our eyes are bright, so that's what we are trying to achieve with concealer."

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Brightening Eye Perfector is Oresman's go-to. (Another great formula is Dolce & Gabbana Perfect Matte Concealer.) "Sweep it on your lid and the bone under the eye area, then pat into your skin with a brush like MAC 195 Concealer Brush. This reflects light with optical diffusers giving a bright, youthful appearance regardless of how much sleep you've had." Additionally she recommends adding a dab of the concealer to the inner corners of the eyes to really make them pop.

When it comes to covering pesky blemishes, again it's important to use foundation (or a BB or CC cream or tinted moisturizer) on the area first. "Use a concealer with salicylic acid so you can treat and cover at the same time," advises Oresman. Try Neutrogena's SkinClearing Blemish Concealer or Murad Acne Treatment Concealer. Occasionally hard-to-cover blemishes call for something a bit different -- "often you have to use a darker concealer that matches the darkness of the blemish, then use your foundation over the top to blend it," says Oresman. In other words, she says foundation should sandwich the concealer and be set with a light dusting of invisible powder. Follow Oresman's guidance and you'll never appear tired or blemished again!

This post was originally published on Beauty Bender