year in review

This Eye-Bag-Concealing Powder Is the Best Thing I Bought This Year

Photo: The Strategist; Photos: Writers

If you’ve read any of our Strategist editor hauls, you’ll know that our writers and editors buy a lot of stuff, and even though we think carefully about each thing that goes into our carts, there are still standouts. To close out the year, we’ve asked our staffers to write about the best thing they bought in the past 12 months. Today, writer Rachael Griffiths on the only powder that can camouflage her under-eye bags. 

My mom has given me many wonderful things that I’m deeply grateful for — except her hereditary, purple-ish under-eye bags. Lots of sleep and water don’t change them. But their effect on my makeup irritates me the most. I can spend an hour contouring and baking my face, only to resemble a Tim Burton character within an hour of leaving the house (and not in a cute Wednesday Addams way; more Beetlejuice vibes). Concealer, banana powder, and under-eye serums and creams all cost me money over the years, but they couldn’t properly camouflage my bags.

Then, for my college graduation earlier this year, I decided to get my makeup done professionally for the best possible photos. In the chair, my makeup artist whipped out a tub of Huda Beauty’s translucent powder, in the shade “Poundcake,” when I asked how she’d tackle my eye bags. “This stuff is absolutely magic,” she said, showing me the powder: It’s loose and light, with a hint of gold. And when she dusted it over my blended-out concealer, to lightly bake, my under eyes not only looked smooth, but their red and purple tones had disappeared. After eight hours, including a six-hour round trip and the graduation ceremony, when my under eyes still looked brightened in the photos — and my whole face illuminated as a result — I was sold. I ordered a tub of powder on the train journey home.

That was back in May, and I don’t think I’ve gone a week without tapping on a layer of this powder since, on days when I wear makeup. I’m not a makeup artist, so it took some trial and error to get right. The whole thing became much easier once I swapped my beauty blender for a velvet powder puff, which transfers the product more efficiently. You can use the puff’s flat, pointed edge to press a light layer of powder right under your lower lash line, as though you’re dabbing it into your blended concealer. I use this very inexpensive one from Amazon.

You don’t need to use a lot of product at all, either. My first tub from this summer has lasted me for about six months, whether I’m baking it properly or dusting a light later directly onto my skin. And on days when I go for more of a full face, the Huda Beauty powder pretty much stands in for a setting spray to keep my makeup from moving or creasing. Now, I don’t spend money on caffeine drops, eye creams, and cooling patches that don’t stand a chance against the kinds of eye bags I have. I can look well rested and glow-y when I want to. But I’m not determined to banish my under-eye bags anymore — and my mom is relieved that I’ve finally stopped moaning about them.

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This ‘Magic’ Face Powder Is the Best Thing I Bought in 2022