When you suffer from hyper pigmentation like me, concealer is the most essential part of your makeup routine. For me I just always look like I have dark under-eye circles regardless of all the eye creams, tips and tricks. But can a drugstore creamy concealer stand up against the legendary Nars Radiant?
The Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer (£4.19) was the first one I tried and I have to say I have mixed feelings about it! This only comes in 4 shades and Shade 3 was just too light for me, whereas the one I have (Shade 4) is a little dark and definitely has a neutral base. It works fine when I apply foundation back over the top of it but this is so time-consuming!
The shade aside, I do think that sometimes you can see a little under-eye darkness shining through. Though this works an absolute dream on blemishes and spots - I'd say the best of the three. I would say it is the most drying of the three and I have a pretty oily eye area.
I next bought the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer (£5.99). In terms of the shades I had a similar issue and be warned the shade numbers do not run in any logical order! 35 (which I have) is far lighter than 30 so definitely swatch these in-store. This definitely has the lightest coverage (though it's still pretty good) and is the most fluid. I would recommend this more for dry skin as it's a very hydrating formula. This also has the best formula if you want to use a cream concealer to highlight with.
Finally I got the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer (£22). For me this has to be the winner because it is halfway between the slightly dry/paste texture of the Collection and the very fluid Maybelline. The shade is also perfect and I do feel that when you buy a premium product part of what you're paying for is that shade selection. Personally I would still say it's a little thick and dry to use for highlighting but plenty of people seem to use it for this. For me it disguises dark circles and blemishes completely and creates the canvas for the more fun, colourful aspects of makeup! (See a before and after with the Sheer Glow Foundation here).
To be honest by the time I've added foundation on top of the two drugstore ones they all look very similar on, for me though the Nars just works right away with no downsides. The formulas are all a little different and for my skin type the Nars is the perfect in-between texture. Packaging doesn't really matter to me but the Nars writing doesn't rub off and it's glass, not plastic. The doe-foot applicator is largest on the Nars, followed by the Collection and the smallest is the Maybelline.
I'd say definitely give one of the cheaper ones a go. If you have oilier skin go for the Collection, for dryer skin go for the Maybelline. It will give you an idea of how to use a creamy concealer before investing in the Nars. If you really like one of the cheaper ones you've saved yourself lots of money!
Save or Spend?: It's a Draw!