You’ve been taking painstaking care of your lashes—cleansing them every day, sleeping with a silk pillow case, and going for regular fills—but you’re losing more lashes than you should be. If this sounds familiar, your beauty products might be to blame. Oil-based products are the bane of any lash extension set—and many makeup removers, moisturizers, foundations, and concealers are oil-based. Oils break down adhesive bonds, causing lash extensions to pop off prematurely, and leaving you wondering what you could have possibly done to deserve this.
If you’re skeptical about going oil-free with your makeup, you’re not the only one. Living in a dry climate like we do at SL PRO, keeping our skin properly hydrated is non-negotiable—even if that means sneaking in the occasional oil-based product. But for the sake of happy lashes, and to help you avoid future heartbreak, we tested 3 extension-safe concealers to see if it’s possible to salvage lash health without compromising hydration and coverage.
Nars soft matte complete
Best for oily skin
This concealer’s oil-free formula is silky smooth and extension-safe. It has a light, buildable formula that goes on effortlessly with your fingers, but contains enough pigment to conceal dark circles and blemishes when needed. Plus, it comes in an impressive 16 tones, ranging from ivory to dark brown. The matte finish leaves your skin looking soft and natural—and so not greasy. Finish with a powder if you want to keep this baby going all day.
What we loved: The velvet matte finish was perfect for our testers with oily skin.
What we didn’t: It tended to crease on drier skin types. And the pot is a bit annoying to deal with—especially if you have longer nails.
Too Faced Born This Way
Best all around
This concealer was a crowd favourite during our test, and loved by testers with oily, dry, and combination skin alike! This liquid concealer gives full coverage, making it perfect for hiding dark circles and blemishes. Formulated with hydrating coconut water, this oil-free concealer manages to both stay smooth on dry skin, and maintain a velvety finish on oily complexions. Most importantly, you don’t have to worry about oils clogging up your lash line and breaking down your lash adhesive. Use to prep eyelids and cover up under-eye circles with no regrets. Plus it comes in 16 colours!
What we loved: The hydration, and the finish. Apply it to the tops of your cheek bones for a radiant finish that is the perfect distance between matte and dewey.
What we didn’t: It felt a bit thick and less breathable on oilier skin types.
Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof
Best for dry skin
While touted as full-coverage, we found this concealer in the lighter to medium coverage range. It has a light, creamy consistency that wears more like a tinted moisturizer than a concealer. While the other two concealers risked ending up on your fingers and clothes if you didn’t set them, this baby blended into the skin like it was meant to be there, and your face had been missing it all along. It gave almost a dewy finish, with no hint of caking or chalkiness. It is perfectly pigmented to cover up under-eye circles while still looking natural. Plus, it’s waterproof!
What we loved: The texture! I personally thought it would feel chalky because of the Amazonian Clay, but it was the most hydrating and magical concealer I’ve ever used—oil-based included.
What we didn’t: The shade range is not very impressive. It comes in ten colours, with only two for dark skin.
All in all, these three concealers made us believers in oil-free makeup. Skin-type definitely played a role in the overall texture and wear of each concealer, with Nars Soft Matte winning the hearts of our oilier-skinned testers, and Tarte Amazonian Clay making my dry skin a believer. It turns out oil-free still delivers on hydration, coverage, and finish—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.