Dark Under-Eye Circles Hate This Power Couple

Published in: Makeup, Makeup Tips/How To

Reader Anna made my day week when she recently had this to say about one of the banes of my existence:

Your under-eye circles are virtually invisible! What concealer have you been favoring these days?

Hi Anna,

OOH, GURL, that’s the new MAC Pro Longwear Concealer ($16.50)/Smashbox Photo Op Under Eye Brightener ($18) combo (Longwear applied on top of Photo Op).

I don’t remember what prompted me to try the two of them together, but let me tell you — they’re frickin’ rad, especially when my dark circles look extra dark and purplish.

First, I blend in a few dots of Photo Op (a golden peach liquid with a hint of shimmer) under each eye to prime them for concealer. I’ll give them about a minute to dry and follow up with MAC Pro Longwear Concealer patted and blended right on top.

I’m normally an NC 35 in MAC foundation, but I’ve been using Longwear Concealer in NW 30 because I think its peachier tones do a better job on my dark circles.

Smashbox Photo Op Under Eye Brightener and MAC Pro Longwear Concealer in action

The combo diligently conceals my dark circles for a solid 12-16 hours before showing any signs of fatigue (smudges or migrating).

I haven’t gotten anywhere near this kind of coverage since timeBalm.

This two-fer is totally kicking @ss, and I hope your dark circles loathe it just as much as mine do. πŸ™‚

Products mentioned in this post…

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,




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So far, 35 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. I love love love the smash box photo-op but I never thought to try it with the mac concealer. Will def do now. You put me on to time balm and I am obsessed with that too.

    • Karen says:

      GIRL. Seriously. Try it tomorrow and tell me what you think. I hope the heavens part for you like they did for me, LOL!

      How are you? And how’s the baby?

  2. Alex says:

    I have photo-op! I bought it by accident and I actually like it alone for me. What is a great undereye drugstore concealer that you’d recommend?
    Alex recently posted … Promise Phan

  3. Vixxan says:

    I have both products and I will give this a try tomorrow. Amazing concealers has been a miracle for my dark under eye circles.
    Vixxan recently posted … Giveaway Rock amp Republic Blush Bedroom

  4. Tiffany H. says:

    So I am definitely going to try this combo! Thanks Karen πŸ™‚
    Tiffany H. recently posted … Manicure Mondays-Orly Mirror Mirror

  5. Appu says:

    The Smashbox under eye brightener seems like a good buy. I have a sample of the pro longwear concealer in NW35, but looks kinda muddy on me dunno why!!?? Will it help if I try it with an eye brightener? I look like a panda these days. No amount of concealing seems to be helping me πŸ™
    Appu recently posted … Bare Minerals Lipgloss in Cupcake

    • Brittani says:

      Dont worry its not just you the Pro longwear is most def a different formula than the rest of the MAC foundation/concealer lines. I am usually a NW43 or 45 in all my MAC foundations and powders but with the Pro longwear I am a NC40. I discovered that after I bought the Pro Longwear in NW45 and it was not only too dark but too red for me as well. I noticed that the NC colors also have a lot of yellow in them now and are a lot more creamy so you wont need very much to cover. I suggest you go to the counter and play around with both NW and NC to find the perfect match. Hopefully this helped. πŸ™‚

      • Appu says:

        Thanks a ton Brittani! I think I should play around more before I actually get the product. I would prefer it if it’s more peachy toned since my dark circles are rather purplish πŸ™
        Appu recently posted … Bare Minerals Lipgloss in Cupcake

      • Karen says:

        Thanks for this, Brittani. It was really helpful.

        I have to jump in and say that I had to actually return the first bottle I bought — it was waaaay too dark.

        I think these run darker than the rest of the MAC concealers!

  6. Nina says:

    i did get an NW when i bought the pro longwear concealer! πŸ™‚ i have a sample of that smashbox thingy somewhere – ill try your tip tomorrow! ive been having later and later nights lately … blame it on TV season!

  7. Tracy says:

    I am totally going to pick up this concealer now when I go visit A Tartan Tale!
    Tracy recently posted … Fall Trend: Orange Lips

  8. Hafsa says:

    This is great advice, one question: I have Origin’s Ginzing eye brightner, would that work the same way as Photo Op? I don’t want to buy something extra if I don’t need it πŸ™‚

  9. Anna says:

    Wow Karen! Thank you for that post πŸ™‚ I actually just went to try MAC pro longwear today but it didn’t last too long by itself, I’ll try your combo approach and see what it does for me! I’m also of Filipino descent with horrendous circles, and the same skin tone as you so this post was super helpful.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Anna,

      Glad you found this helpful! Be sure to test the color out first in the daylight and keep your receipt. These concealers tend to run dark so you may/may not need to adjust. The first bottle I bought was actually too dark so I had to bright it back for this one!

  10. marisol says:

    I may have to invest in this combo. Although I have a sample of the smashbox product. I think I may try it with the timeBam and see how it works.
    marisol recently posted … My first work out

  11. Elle says:

    You look gorgeous. I already have the concealer, but now I think I gotta try out that Smashbox product. I don’t think I own any Smashbox.

    …and how’s that for a world series opener?? My crush on Tim Lincecum is getting worse by the minute… πŸ™‚

  12. Nika says:

    Can’t wait to try out that combo! Although I’ve yet to buy a MAC concealer and I’m completely torn between Pro Longwear and Studio Sculpt.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Nika,

      I vote for the Pro Longwear Concealer. The pump kinda sucks, but the concealer is amazing.

      • Nika says:

        Hi Karen,

        I couldn’t wait to go to the store and by myself the Pro Longwear Concealer but felt awful when the sales assistant said the concealers haven’t come out in our country yet. πŸ™
        Ended up buying the Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer instead. I’m hoping for the best! My undereye circles are no joke.

        Have a great day!

  13. mint says:

    I haven’t tried these two concealers yet. thanks for the post! I think i’ll check it out next time i’m at the stores. πŸ˜€
    mint recently posted … Benefit Boiing Industrial Strenght Concealer Review

  14. Maddy says:

    I have the worst under eye circles ever. I’m really pale with dark purple circles, and Erase Paste in Fair is the best thing I could find so far…

    I definitely need to check these out… Karen, thank you so much <3

  15. PS says:

    Love smashbox products! I bought the smashbox artificial light in white and pink and mix it together and use on checks, side of nose, under/above lip and mix it in with concealer under my eyes, works great to really brighten up the face/eyes.

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