How to Cover a Tattoo or Bruise with Color Correction

Maybe you did something stupid like getting an ice cream cone tattooed on your arm or dropping your phone on your face while you’re texting in bed.  Or maybe you have a beautiful tattoo that you love, but you wanna take a little break.  Whether it’s a badge of dishonor or a minor inconvenience, if you want it gone I have ways of making that happen.  Follow these steps for a new, monotone you!

Notes on Color Correcting.  People with dark circles: listen up!  Color correction is essential when it comes to erasing unwanted color from your skin.  Whether it be heavy redness, a scar, a bruise, or whatever, you can’t always just apply a full coverage product and expect it to disappear.  I actually tried to cover this tattoo by applying a thick white product by Ben Nye over it first, then applying the same foundation, but the color was still horribly obvious.  In order to truly erase color we need to neutralize it by applying its opposite (according to a color wheel, available here) on top.  Colorful tattoos will probably require a few different colors, and it may take some practice to find which shade works best.

PicMonkey Collage

Step 1:  Cleanse.  That’s self explanatory, really.  You want a clean, even surface.

Step 2:  Apply Foundation.  I started with a very light application of medium coverage foundation first as sort of a transition shade.  I blended it out pretty far so it would match surrounding areas.  This is optional.


Step 3:  Neutralize the Color.  My tattoo has a greyish-green tint to it, so I went with an orange-red matte eyeshadow.  I tried using Nyx’s orange under eye concealer, but found the dry consistency hard to work with.  I had much better results with powder.  Use tapping/dabbing motions, don’t rub.  I liked using my fingers for this whole process, because the heat from my fingers makes the product more spreadable.  I find in general when working with full coverage products it’s best to use fingers.  After taking this picture I added more red powder and the tattoo became even less visible.

Step 4:  Spray with Hairspray.  Yes, I’m telling you, do this.  You’ll need to apply a few layers of product with each step, which means you need to set each layer as you go.  You can use translucent powder, but it will begin to look cakey quickly.  Apply a thin layer of hairspray and let it dry before going in with foundation.  If you have a few options, spray them on the backs of your hands and pick whichever has the least shiny finish, since skin isn’t usually shiny.


Step 5:  Cover with Foundation.  Be patient.  It may take a few layers (spraying in between) in order to build the correct opacity.  It’s best to pick a thick, full coverage foundation for this. I tried using MAC’s Pro LongWear concealer because it is amazing in so many ways, but it was a little too thin.  I wound up using Kat Von D’s Lock-It Tattoo Foundation instead.  I like to use a very thin layer of this stuff in a yellow undertone to neutralize redness on my face before going over it with a nicer looking foundation (girl’s gotta glow and the finish on that foundation leaves much to be desired).  You can use any full coverage foundation, though.  Revlon ColorStay, Tarte Amazonian Clay, MUFE Mat Velvet, and Becca Ultimate Coverage Complexion Creme (I own and also like) are all full coverage as well.  It’s important buy full coverage as opposed to medium/buildable because you want to use the least amount of product on your skin possible.  Spray again with hairspray between each layer.


Step 6:  Apply a Matte Translucent Powder.  I opted for a yellow based powder after taking this picture and it worked nicely.  This is important because hairspray will leave your skin looking unnaturally shiny and draw attention to the area.  You can then set this with a setting spray if you really wanna go to the extra mile.  Read more about finishing powders and setting sprays here and here if you’re curious!  Brides – don’t use mineral powders or HD powders!  You’ll need to use a decent amount of product and those white, HD powders will cause a flashback effect, which will look absolutely crazy in photos.

So, every girl who did the Kylie Jenner lip challenge and ended up with a bruised mouth, you’re welcome.  Or, to the bride who’s trying a different look for her wedding day, congrats!  Or, the guy going for a job interview – isn’t your boss going to find out eventually anyway?  Come back tomorrow to see what came in my Allure Sample Society Box!

All The Best,


5 thoughts on “How to Cover a Tattoo or Bruise with Color Correction

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