I'll have my cake and eat it too
We are gradually heading towards the end of 2019 and brands are still trying to come for the iconic Shape Tape Concealer. So when I heard that Benefit Cosmetics created a formula not only comparable, but potentially better - I had to give it a shot. A few weeks in, here is all I have to say. Curious? Then please keep on scrolling.
My Skin: dry, sensitive.
About the Product
Benefit Cosmetics Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer (22 USD; Made in Canada) is described as a “full-coverage yet natural-finish concealer”, that claims to hide it all (dark circles, blemishes, discoloration – you name it) without caking. It is currently available in 12 shades.
Packaging: similarly to all things Benefit Cosmetics, this little guy too has a fun, quirky design so perfect for stationary-addicts out there. I mean, it literally looks like a chubby pencil with an eraser. The “cushion tip” doe-foot applicator does a good job at applying and distributing the product.
Formula: while it feels lightweight and thin, you can tell this is a highly pigmented formula right off the bat. Thankfully it doesn’t have a particular scent (it smells just like makeup) and from what I can tell – some shades might set darker in tone. It has a soft-matte, "powdered" finish. This is not a cruelty-free product.
Shade Selection: I don’t mean to sound rude, but the shade selection is poor. After all it is 2019 and when brands like Tarte Cosmetics, NARS offer 30 shades or Fenty Beauty offer 50 shades of concealer – it is somewhat unfortunate to only launch 12 and assume that it would be enough for an entire, wildly diverse population of the World, considering Benefit Cosmetics is a massive, global brand with a budget that could easily cover at least 20 shades to start off with.
My complexion is light-neutral, which is one of the easiest tones to match (whether it is a high-end or a drugstore line). However, while I was swatching all of the existing shades of Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer, I’ve noticed that even I had a trouble finding my colour-match (and please don’t even get me started on the lack of medium and dark shades). There are obvious gaps and missing undertones in this range, where jumping from something light to something dark is a piece of cake. Pun intended. I ended up with shade 5, which is still not ideal for me.
Application: Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer does set relatively fast, so I would suggest working one area at a time to ensure you get a moment to finesse it. It does blend out with ease and if you want a truly full coverage, my advice would be to work in thin layers. Layer, blend, layer, blend. If you go on too strong from the start, you will experience creasing and potentially caking. Since my skin is dry, I do like a light-medium coverage and often mix a little bit of this concealer with my eye cream to sheer it out; it still wears nicely. If you have oily skin, make sure to set it with powder. I prefer to blend it out with a sponge, but brushes work just fine.
Wear: now, this is truly one of the most long-wearing concealers I’ve tried. I do not use powder under my eyes (too dry for that), so there was a small amount of creasing, which is totally fine as it happens with every other concealer. I remove the excess with either a clean finger or cotton swab and that’s about it. Having said that, sadly this formula does emphasize texture/pores (especially if you have dry skin), so make sure to exfoliate or use a smoothing primer in areas that need it. As for dark spots and blemishes – it did an excellent job at camouflaging them all. I would say, Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer lasts for about 6-8 hours. It is neither hydrating nor drying.
While I think this is a nice new natural-matte formula, which many people will appreciate, there are a few downsides worth mentioning such as: poor shade selection and the fact that this product will sink into pores and accentuate dry patches like nobody’s business. I like that you can sheer it out with a brush when needed and it does last well throughout the day, but! I just don’t think Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer is forgiving enough to be appreciated by someone, who has dry skin. Particularly if your under-eye could use some hydration, no matter what skincare you apply, this formula will suck the life out of it over time.
If I had to compare it to Shape Tape, I would say that the latter certainly wins in terms of the colour range, it being a cruelty-free formula and the sheer fact that it doesn’t emphasize pores or texture. But when I did the “half/half face” test YouTube-style, I did notice that Benefit side looked a bit more natural and unlike Shape Tape, it played well with most of my foundations. All in all, both are good, but I still prefer Shape Tape.
To conclude this rather long concealer debate, I give Boi-ing Cakeless Concealer B-. I hope Benefit decide to expand the shade range to make it more inclusive and available to everyone. Now that I bought it, I will keep on sheering it out with my hydrating primers or skincare to adapt it to my skin type (I list my “dry skin” concealer favorites here). Personally, I will not repurchase or recommend it to those of you with dry, very dry skin. But if you are more on normal, combination or oily side and enjoy a full coverage concealer with a semi-matte/powder finish, this might be something new for you to try.
What do you guys think about this concealer? Let's chat some more in the comments!
More online: sephora.com
Purchased product; full disclaimer here