Whether it popped up due to hormones, after a strenuous workout or seemingly out of the middle of nowhere, for most of us, pimples are a very unfortunate fact of life. Even if you follow a strict skin-care routine to keep breakouts at bay, every once in a while we all get a blemish or two. In those instances, it’s time to reach for high-coverage concealer to help blur all visible evidence. No concealer? No problem. We share exactly how you can cover up pimples without concealer, below.


Before we dive into how to cover up acne without concealer, let’s first discuss why you may be getting blemishes to begin with. Many people wrongly assume that pimples are only a teenage problem. Adults can get acne, too, even if they’ve never dealt with pimples during their adolescence. Adult acne is cyclical in nature and presents itself most often as papules, pustules and cysts around the mouth, chin, jaw line and on the cheeks. Another unfortunate truth of adult acne is that it can leave its mark. This higher risk for scarring is due in part to the slowed desquamation process, which is essentially the natural shedding of dead skin cells to reveal new one’s underneath. As we age, the process tends to slow down and once a breakout clears, it can result in a scar. While teenage acne is most often caused by excess oil and clogged pores, adult acne is typically caused by these four factors:

Adult Acne Cause #1: Hormonal Fluctuations

Puberty, pregnancy and periods are all common instances where these flare-ups can occur. Hormonal fluctuations can cause the sebaceous glands to act up and result in breakouts.

Adult Acne Cause #2: Blockage of Oil

Genetic factors, build-up of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin and poor cleansing can cause a blockage of oil which leads to a breakout.

Adult Acne Cause #3: Bacteria

Bacteria is a common culprit for breakouts, both in teens and adults, which is why cleansing in the morning and at night to remove bacteria is incredibly important.

Adult Acne Cause #4: Flare-Ups

Stress, pollution and poor sleep can all lead cause skin flare-ups, otherwise known as breakouts.


So, how does one go about covering these blemishes? First things first, patience is key when it comes to addressing pimples. Resisting the urge to pop, poke and pick at your skin, is of paramount importance. Not only can you make matters worse, but you can also end up with a scar long after the pimple has made its exit. That said, sometimes, despite knowing better, pimples get popped. When this happens do not — we repeat, do not — put makeup over the area until after you’ve let it heal. Instead, reach for an acne-fighting product and remember, until that blemish has dried up and closed, makeup is off-limits.

Acne Tip #1: Ice

Icing the skin helps to cause short-term vasoconstriction of the blood vessels, which can help to temporarily improve the appearance of some pimples. Wrap a few cubes of ice in a paper towel and ice the area on and off for a few minutes.

Acne Tip #2: Color Correctors

Pimples may come in various sizes, but one thing they almost all have in common is their tell-tale redness. Regular concealer alone may not do the trick which is where color correction comes in. Think back to grammar school when you learned all about the color wheel in art class — the colors opposite one another neutralize each other. Therefore, to neutralize the appearance of redness, you’ll want to reach for green. Pat the pigment gently on the affected area and then reach for your foundation. No concealer necessary. But remember, this is off-limits until your blemish has closed!

Acne Tip #3: Spot Treatment

Have a pimple you need to get rid of fast? Reach for a spot treatment formulated with acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or sulfur. Many spot treatments can dramatically reduce the appearance of breakouts.

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