You’ve been diligent in caring for your lashes—you brush them daily, sleep with a silk pillowcase, and always resist the urge to pick—but your lashes are popping off and you don’t know why. If this sounds like you, your beauty regime may be to blame. Oil-based products are your lash set’s worst enemy—and many moisturizers, eyeliners, foundations, and concealers are oil-based. Oils can break down adhesive bonds, causing extensions to pop off the natural lash, and leaving you wondering what you could have possibly done to deserve this.
If you’re uneasy about going oil-free with your beauty products, you’re not alone. At SL PRO, we live in a very dry climate, and compromising hydration is not going to happen—even if that means slipping an oil-based product into our beauty regimes here and there. But in an effort to keep your lashes happy—and to help you avoid future heartbreak—we tested 3 extension-safe concealers to see if you can go oil-free without losing hydration and coverage.
Nars soft matte complete
Best for oily skin
This concealer has an oil-free formula that is silky smooth and—better yet—extension-safe. The light, buildable formula goes on easily with your fingers, but is pigmented enough to hide dark circles and blemishes when you need it. Plus, it comes in 16 shades from ivory to dark brown, so chances are you’ll be able to find a colour for you. The soft matte finish leaves your skin looking soft and natural—and so not greasy. We did notice that without a powder over top, this concealer tends to end up in places you don’t want it, so be sure to set it if you’re looking for full-day wear.
What we loved: The velvet matte finish was great for minimizing the appearance of oil.
What we didn’t: Our testers with drier skin types found it tended to crease. Many of us found the potted concealer was more difficult to apply than those in sticks or with applicators.
Too Faced Born This Way
Best all around
This concealer was the overall favourite during our test, and favoured by our testers with dry, oily, and combination skin alike! The oil-free formula gives full coverage, easily hiding dark circles and blemishes. Formulated with hydrating coconut water, this liquid concealer manages to stay smooth on dry skin, and still provide a velvety finish on oily complexions. Most importantly, you won’t have to worry about oils sticking to your lash line and breaking down your adhesive bonds. Use to prep eyelids for shadow, and camouflage under-eye circles with no regrets. And it comes in 16 tones!
What we loved: The hydration, and the finish. Dab it onto the highest points of your cheek bones for a radiant finish that is the perfect compromise between matte and dewey.
What we didn’t: Some of our testers found it a bit on the heavy side.
Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof
Best for dry skin
While Tarte describes this as a full-coverage concealer, we found it in the lighter to medium coverage range. It has a beautifully light, creamy consistency that feels more like a tinted moisturizer on your skin than it does a concealer. While the other two concealers we tested needed setting to stay put, this one seemed to melt right in—in a good way. This finish was almost dewy, with no hint of caking or chalkiness. It has the perfect amount of pigment to conceal under-eye circles while still looking natural. Plus, it’s waterproof!
What we loved / Personal GUSH: I LOVED the texture! I expected it to be chalky or drying because of the Amazonian Clay, but it was the smoothest, and most magical concealer I’ve ever tried—oil-based included.
What we didn’t: The colour range is not very impressive. It comes in ten colours, with most in the light to medium beige range.
All in all, these three concealers definitely eased our skepticism about oil-free makeup. Skin-type was the biggest factor in the overall texture and wear of each concealer, but even our testers with dry skin found a favourite among the three. Our verdict? Maintaining a beautiful set of lashes doesn’t mean compromising the things you love about your cosmetics. Oil-free still delivers on hydration, coverage, and finish—all without compromising your set.
Full disclosure: These concealers contain glycerine, which is generally considered a no-no product for lash extensions. However, the amounts that are present in these products, and the amount that would potentially end up on your lashes is negligible.