Belfast Telegraph

Make-up masterclass: 5 top tips for tattoo covering

Paddy McGurgan is one of NI's best-known beauty experts, and every week he'll tell you all that you need to know about the latest make-up techniques

As we approach wedding season, I always recommend that brides-to-be to come in for a make-up trial. It is here that I learn everything about them, from their wedding dress and overall theme to their favourite style of eyebrow. But one question I find I've been getting when speaking to brides is, which products are best at covering tattoos?

Below are a few of my recommendations.

Large tattoos

It is important to ensure that you choose a product and colour that will work for you. If you have a larger tattoo that needs covering, then the perfect product for you is Dermablend Leg and Body Cover (£41.33, amazon.co.uk). This product claims to be a full coverage, buildable and transfer-resistant liquid body make-up that can be used to cover any body imperfections or areas of discolouration and mostly used to cover and conceal tattoos.

Some body imperfections this wonder bottle can cover include varicose veins, stretch marks, tattoos, scars, age spots, birthmarks and bruises.

It is also buildable and sets really beautifully. This is one factor that I find can be difficult when choosing a high coverage product because, often, other products can split and separate or change colour and become ashy when used in layers.

Another great thing about this product is that it comes in 12 shades, so there is a shade for everyone.

Full coverage on smaller areas

Step up, BECCA Ultimate Coverage Concealer (£24, CultBeauty.co.uk). This product has a creamy texture and will glide onto the skin beautifully, giving you maximum coverage. It is a relatively small product, so it would only be ideal for small areas such as hands, face and smaller coverage points but, like the Dermablend, it builds beautifully upon itself to give you full coverage.

Colour correction is key

The most widely used form of tattoo, blemish and discolouration covering is colour correction. This is a method of using a variety of different colours to cancel and remove tones to leave the area easier to disguise with a skin colour product.

Tattoos come in a range of different colours, tones, styles and undertones. Most tattoos have a blue/green undertone, and for this you would use an orange corrector so you are able to disguise and blend using skintone colours and so on. The Viseart Corrector, Contour, Camouflage HD Palette (£38.40, BeautyBay.com) is the ultimate concealer and camouflage palette. It contains 12 amazing colours to correct any blemish, tone or discolouration.

Set up

When you find the perfect product to cover up or colour-correct your tattoo, it is essential to let it set. If left unset, the product is highly likely to transfer, and one thing you do not want is for the product to transfer onto a beautiful white wedding dress.

I recently stumbled across Tattoo Secret Finishing Powder from Tattoo Secret, a tattoo coverage company (£9.50, TattooSecret.co.uk). I loved how lightweight this powder was on the skin. It blended in effortlessly and left the area looking airbrushed and flawless.

Brushing up

One of the more popular alternatives for tattoo covering is airbrushing. I always recommend going to a professional for this rather than doing it yourself because it is a very skilled technique. However, it does give maximum results.

The technique involves airbrushing different colours, shades and tones to counteract the tattoo, as well as blending into the skin beautifully and almost effortlessly.

The airbrushed particles are tiny, so there is minimal transfer and the finished result is sweat and water-resistant.

5 top tips for tattoo covering

1. Apply your neutralising colour in small amounts and use a fluffy brush to blend into the skin. You don't want this colour to be strong and uncoverable, so be light-handed with your amounts.

2. Always set your neutraliser with a setting powder, then apply your skintone coverage and blend back into the skin.

3. If you have some beauty marks/freckles on the area you are covering, add more of a realistic effect by dotting some of this on the area you have just covered.

4. Apply your coverage (skintone) products in a dabbing motion. This will help layer and build up your product easily.

5. Blend your edges. I always recommend using a beauty blender to do this. It makes your coverage look real and flawless.

6. Do not use moisturiser or primer on the area to ensure that the make-up will adhere.

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