Baking 101: How to Cover Dark Circles

Baking the face is something I always do for full coverage looks. Some of you may be familiar with this term, but incase you’re not- Baking is when you apply A LOT of setting powder in targeted areas of the face and leave it there for a few minutes before brushing off the excess. By applying a heavy layer of powder and letting it sit, you are warming up the product with your skin. This helps the powder adhere to the area, stay in place throughout the day and gives you a full coverage effect. I typically Bake the under eye area and my jaw line immidately after blending out my concealer.

What type of Powder to Use:

There are certain powders that work better than others when Baking. You want to use a loose setting powder, something that is not in a compact. Powders that are more finely milled will work better, as they are soft to the touch and blend down smoothly, oppose to chunkier powders that may cake up on the skin. We want to bake, not cake!

Color is also an important factor with Baking. Go for a “translucent” setting powdered instead of one that matches your skin. A translucent shade will match with whatever foundation/concealer you are using. Please note translucent does varies per brand, some still are lighter than others, here are 3 translucent powders from different companies.

Some loose powders I really like to use for baking are Kat Von D Lock It Loose Setting Powder, Coty Air Spun Loose Face Powder, and Tarte Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Finishing Powder. One thing I will mention is the Tarte powder has pretty bad flashback (which is when your face looks stark white it someone takes your photo) so I would not recommend the Tarte powder if you are attending an event or plan to have photos taken.

For a budget friendly brand, my favorite setting powder is Coty Air Spun, which you can purchase at Walmart for $5.97 (2.3 oz).The texture and coverage of this is very comparable to high end powders, plus the price is amazing for so much product. The only cons for this are the smell, way to floral-y for my liking and the color is a tad to dark for my pale skin.

For a high end option, Kat Von D Lock It Loose Setting Powder is absolutely wonderful. This works really well for my skin because it’s so light that it works to brighten the under eye area. The size pictured is available at Sephora for $15 (0.19 oz).

Applying the Bake

I first apply my primer and foundation to my entire face and then follow up with concealer on my problem areas and anywhere I want to highlight. I create a triangle grid under my eyes and I make a straight line down my nose, along my cheekbones and a bit on my forehead. I always blend my under eyes first and immediately follow with the Bake.

The best way to apply a bake is with a make up sponge/beauty blender. I dip the sponge directly into the powder and then press the powder into a thick layer everywhere I put concealer. This can be a little messy and it does look quiet strange, but don’t worry.

Once the under eye, jawline and center of forehead are covered in the powder I do my brows, eyeshadow, liner and mascara, which give my Bake about 5-15 minutes to sit on the face and warm up.

Removing the Bake

There are a few ways to go about removing the powder from your face, they are all pretty similar. The first way to remove the Bake is to use a fluffy brush that is shaped well to fit the under eye. I use a rounded brush as the bristles are shaped perfectly. You can really use any kind of fluffy brush, just make sure your getting into those harder to reach spots so that you don’t have patchy powder spots.

Another way to remove the bake is with a clean makeup sponge. You can very carefully and lightly dab at the powder which presses into the skin further. This is good for film/photos as it will really cover dark circles.

Once the Bake is removed, be sure to lightly set the rest of you face with the same powder. I typically use a big fluffy brush and lightly buff a tiny bit of powder all over my face to make sure everything stays in place for the day. Make sure you do this with a very light hand. Then apply your bronzers, blush, highlight and spray the crap out of you face with setting spray to lock everything down.

That’s it! It seems like a lot of extra steps by it really is easy peasy. I, for one, have struggled with dark circles under my eyes my entire life, so this technique has really been one of my favorite beauty tricks. What do you guys and gals think, is this something you normally do? If so, what powders do you use? Let me know in the comments!

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