Scrolling through TikTok is an overwhelming experience because of the number of reviews raving about cosmetic products. There truly is a new hair, skin, or makeup product that influencers and TikTok users are promoting every week.
I am passionate about cosmetic products because they offer me a sense of artistry and contribute to my self-care routine. Positive product reviews make me want to run to Sephora or Ulta as fast as possible and see the hype. How could I not? Thousands of people tell me this new product is better than anything they have used before. Watching the reviews and looking at the comments with collective agreement about how excellent the product is frequently fills me with a sense of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out).
As a full-time college student with no job and debt looming over my head daily, I can’t purchase every trending cosmetic product. It’s only possible that occasionally, or during special occasions, I splurge and buy an item I’ve had on my radar. Most of the things I purchase are cosmetic products I use most often, such as blush and mascara.
While developing a passion for makeup, I noticed that it can look cakey and dry, making me look worse than I did without makeup. I am into the process and artistic aspects of applying makeup, so this issue is frustrating. I turned to online makeup reviews to find products with positive reviews from others with my skin type (dehydrated) to aid me in this obstacle.
Since TikTok is a significant platform providing quick, in-depth reviews of makeup products, I appreciate product recommendations for individuals with dry skin, such as myself. TikTok videos’ comment sections also allow me to read reviews from people not getting paid by a company to promote a particular item. Even though reviews come across my social media algorithms often, there are only certain ones that I sit and watch.
I pay attention to videos that suggest items I am already considering purchasing or are popular with the accounts I follow. Out of my most-used makeup items, the one that gives me the most trouble is concealer because of the dry texture of my skin.
In 2022, the Kosas Revealer Concealer showed up on my TikTok “For You” almost every time I opened the app. Concealer is a staple makeup item that individuals use to mask imperfections on the skin.
I observed a revelation about this concealer; many of the reviews I watched were from social media influencers and makeup artists whom I trusted with their opinions on makeup.
Eloise Dufka, a beauty influencer on TikTok, stated in a video, “I have all of these concealers, and truthfully, there’s only one that I keep coming back to, and it’s the Kosas Revealer Concealer. We don’t want cakey. We don’t want dehydrated. We want fresh skin all day.” Dufka’s impression of the concealer was similar to others I saw on social media, influencing me to buy it.
People on the app described the concealer as lightweight, creamy, and perfect for individuals with dry skin because it had skincare ingredients. Individuals also emphasized how the concealer gave the skin a “dewy glow.” Dewy skin is also a newer makeup trend apparent in the industry, which is another reason why hearing the reviews about this product was enticing.
When I entered Sephora, the first thing that I did was walk over to Kosas’ brand display. I looked up to the top left, where the Kosas Revealer Concealer was located. The presentation of the concealer was professional and aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
I bought the concealer at Sephora and used the swatches provided by Kosas at their brand counter to find my shade match.
The concealer was a pastel yellow color, with an angelic design over the top and bottom of the bottle. One of my favorite aspects of the bottle was the small applicator, which makes it more controllable.
I opened the concealer and was immediately ready to try it. I was overwhelmed with excitement because I was able to get my hands on the Kosas concealer, especially considering it was selling out at the time.
Before I applied the concealer, I made sure to hydrate my skin with a moisturizer that doesn’t interact with the performance of a makeup product. The moisturizer I used before trying the Kosas concealer was the CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion. It is not oil-based, so it doesn’t counteract the oils usually in hydrating concealers such as Kosas’.
After prepping my skin for makeup, it was finally time to apply the concealer. I started to swipe it on my forehead, chin, and underneath my eyes. Usually, I blend my base makeup products with a damp beauty blender, which works great, so I used to blend out the concealer. While blending out the concealer on my forehead, everything was going well. Aside from the concealer’s lack of coverage, it appeared glowy and lightweight, which was Kosas’ claim for the product. The same result occurred while blending it on my chin, but my high expectations for the product slowly diminished. Nothing stood out to me about the concealer that was any better than the ones I had used in the past, and it was even less impressive than the drugstore concealers I had been using for years.
Then, I started blending out the concealer under my eyes. Blending the under eyes is an essential step in my makeup routine because almost every time I use concealer on this spot of my face, it cakes up and dries out the skin because of my dry skin type. The under eyes/dark circles are the driest part of the face, which was why I knew this would be the ultimate test of the effectiveness of this product.
I was genuinely shocked when I looked at my face in the mirror. There were so many issues with how the concealer looked underneath my eyes. There was no coverage–the entire point of the concealer. I tried to ignore that part because Kosas marketed it as “medium-lightweight coverage.” Aside from the concealer’s poor coverage, it completely separated, making it look incredibly crusty. The shade match was also terrible for the undertones of my skin. It looked utterly yellow even after it seemed like my correct shade when I swatched it in Sephora, and its label had the word “Cool” in it.
Several things were going through my head during that time. “This can’t be right. The entire marketing of this concealer was for it not to look like this. Why is it literally yellow? So many people are promoting this product, and it looks terrible,” I thought. After contemplating for a minute or two, I concluded that the concealer may have poorly interacted with a damp beauty blender because that had happened to me while using other concealers.
I removed the concealer, rehydrated my skin with the CeraVe moisturizer (which works perfectly with every other makeup product I have used), and began blending it with my finger. Finger application is one of the best ways to blend makeup. Unlike sponges and brushes, it rarely messes with the ingredients in a product. To my surprise, it looked the same.
Another thought popped through my mind; “Maybe it’s just me? Let me have one of my friends try to concealer and see if this happens to them.”
My friend, Layla Mcgovern, was also an individual who was knowledgeable and interested in current makeup trends, which is why I knew she would want to test out the Kosas concealer. Layla told me she would try the concealer before leaving our apartment for class the following morning.
When Layla returned home from class, she looked at me and stated, “That was the worst concealer I have used in my entire life.” I asked her why, and she said she endured the same issues I did with the concealer. The dryness, cakiness, separation, and difficulty in making it look good with every form of application was something that she also encountered.
Following my encounter with the Kosas concealer, I am now hesitant with every product I consider purchasing when TikTok recommends it. Just because there is an item millions of people are talking highly about on social media doesn’t mean it is phenomenal, and you need to buy it. Unfortunately, many influencers are paid by companies to promote their products even if they don’t like them.
If I could provide everyone reading this with one word of advice after experiencing the disappointment from the Kosas Revealer Concealer, it would be, “Always make sure that you know the return policy.”