Everything you need to know about covering a tattoo concealer - the ultimate guide
What is the best tattoo makeup concealer?
(Updated Jan 2020) You have to love a tattoo! There is no more personal piece of adornment, no better way of expressing yourself.
But sometimes, there are times when you want to conceal your tattoo.
Maybe it's a job interview - that dream job you have been chasing for the last years. Maybe it's meeting your new boyfriend's Mum who "hates tattoos". Maybe your wedding dress doesn't work with a tattoo. Maybe you regret your tattoo (and as a bonus - here's our guide to ensure you don't regret your tattoo.)
Whatever the reason, if you are going to cover up your tattoo, you are going to want to do it properly.
Google "Tattoo Makeup Concealer" and you'll get so much advice that is often conflicting and quite honestly, often just plain wrong.
So we have put together our Ultimate Guide to concealing a tattoo with makeup so that you'll know all the answers, once and for all.
Let's start with the question that many people start with; "Do tattoo concealers work?"
The answer is - they absolutely can but it is worth taking the time to understand how they work and which way is the right way to go for you.
We have a quick 20 second quiz for you to take if you are unsure if your tattoo is a good candidate to be covered.
What are your options when covering a tattoo?
The solution is going to vary hugely depending on where your tattoo is, how heavy it is and how much colour is in it. Some of these tips might seem obvious, but sometimes all it takes to cover up your tattoo is to think outside the box a little.
Option 1: Cover it with something physical
One of the most popular spots for a tattoo (at least for ladies) is on the wrists. if that is you - you might take the easy road and cover it with a thick bracelet.
Cuff bracelet's not your style? You might be surprised - there are a lot of options out there. Here are some ideas from Etsy to get you started. For men, think about a large watch and tighten the strap to keep everything in place and covered up.
Same deal with an ankle or foot tattoo. Maybe you were planning on sandals but what about the idea of rocking boots with your summer dress and do the boho thing and take the easiest road to cover up.
Option 2: Cover it with ordinary concealer.
It's a question I get asked all the time: "Can you cover a tattoo with ordinary concealer?" The answer is "it depends."
If your tattoo is small and somewhere inconspicuous, you may be able to get away with using just regular concealer. My advice here is - try it and see if it works for you.
One expert tip that might help you pull it off it to use a red lipliner over the design first. Sounds crazy, I know but the idea is that it is easier to tone in red than black into your skin tone.
Here's how one expert, Benjamin Puckey suggests you think about it.
"It might help to think of executing a tattoo cover-up with makeup as a really advanced colour-correcting project. Depending on the intensity of the blue or purple, you need a deeper orange or salmon tone [to neutralize it],"
But if your tattoo has more brown in it, I like to use a more pink-based tone."
Option 3: (yes this one is our favourite) Use concealer specially formulated to cover tattoos.
What is different about specific tattoo concealers?
Typically, tattoo concealer is thicker than standard concealer. Some products (like ours) are designed to work only for tattoos, while others act more as all-rounders and are designed to cover up scars, discolourations and varicose veins.
The purpose of this article is to offer the very best information on covering up tattoos so the tip here is don't multitask. Go with the tattoo concealer.
The other baseline here is this. Make sure your concealer is waterproof. Even if you aren't going near the water. It's a horrible feeling trying to convince yourself not to sweat and then being worried about smudging. Honestly, life is too short.
If you aren't sure where to buy tattoo makeup concealer - this blog should help you out.
How do I actually use tattoo makeup concealer?
STEP 1: Prepare the area
Lots of tutorials make this step seem really complicated. Don't be fooled. It's not. You need your skin to be clean and dry and moisturised. If you want to get really fancy use an ordinary makeup primer but that's it.
Clean, dry and moisturised. Done.
Here's what that looks like:
STEP 2: Add the Neutralising Base Concealer
Use the spatula that is provided and place a little of the Base Concealer onto your hand. Using small strokes, take the concealer onto the brush and apply to the tattoo.
Do one full layer first. Wait for it to dry a little and do another and then if needed, another until the tattoo is fully covered.
Test out both of the colours that are provided and don't be afraid to use both. Different areas of your tattoo may need a different concealer colour.
Here's how that looks:
STEP 3: APPLYING FINISHING COLOUR
In every Tattoo Secret kit, there are 3 Finishing Colours. They come in light or medium and contain high colour pigments for long-lasting coverage.
This is where you should spend a little time. Play around and test out different combinations. Apply the Finishing Colours to achieve a natural match to your skin tone. Again, take the spatula.
Place a little Finishing Colour on the palm or back of your hand. This will allow the texture to soften. That way it will be easier to apply and colour match. Make sure you blend the edges carefully.
As before, add as many layers as you need. Every few layers use some of the finishing powder. This is your skin and your look so experiment with the combination that works for you. Here's what that looks like:
STEP 4: Add Finishing Powder Our Finishing Powder is realy easy to apply. It is lightweight and allows the makeup to set with a water-resistant finish. It is easy to apply. All you have to do is touch the powder on with the puff that we have provided. Once that is done, you can brush off any excess with the smaller brush. And here's what the finished product looks like...