Concealer was my desert island beauty product as a teenager. I used to stockpile Rimmel Hide The Blemish Concealer in case it was ever discontinued—not only did it provide quick but long-lasting cover for any breakouts, but it doubled-up as a lipstick (yes, really).
You see, concealed lips were a big beauty trend back in the mid-00s, and the best way to achieve the look was to use actual concealer instead of a lip product (it lasted longer and blended into skin perfectly). Rimmel’s concealer came as a wind-up bullet, so it could be applied in the same way a lipstick could and meant on-the-go top ups were a breeze.
It took me a long time to ween myself off the stuff and I probably rocked the concealed lip look for far longer than it was fashionable. But after 10 years, seeing my lips with any hint of colour seemed oddly vulgar.
Looking back, my concealed lips might not have been such a stunning beauty decision, after all. My face look massive, with all my features morphing into one skin-coloured blob. Plus, the concealer was so drying, it would settle in the corners of lips (I know) without regular removal and reapplication.
I was slightly surprised, therefore, to learn that concealed lips are making a comeback. While I’m not adverse to the idea all together (I still prefer a gentle pink or a soft nude lip than a bold shade), I at least hope makeup technology has developed past the point of plastering our lips with concealer and that lip formulas can offer both knock-out nude coverage and nourishment.
On TikTok, it seems beauty influencers are still using concealer on their lips. However, the finished result does look better than the original 00s look thanks to gloss being applied over the top. Plus, the trend now is to use two shades of concealer, one darker to line the lips and one lighter to full out the middle, so at least there’s some level of definition.
Other TikTokers are using concealer to create the popular diffused lipstick finish. All you need to do is apply lipstick as normal, and then dab concealer to the lip line and blend out for the perfect gradient effect.
The other concealer hack for lips I’ve spotted is something I’m actually tempted to try—balmy, glossy lips and just a teeny dab of concealer over the top for the ultimate nude lipstick.
This post originally appeared on Glamour UK.