How to Cover a Blemish Without Looking Cakey

By Shefali Choudhury

Covering a blemish means using concealer to block out color and to lessen the look of any swelling. A blemish with a crusty top is harder to conceal without a cakey look because texture prevents makeup from going on smoothly, and a caked finish sometimes even highlights a blemish instead of making it less noticeable. Preparing your skin, as well as using the right technique with a suitable concealer, remedies this.

Get a smooth makeup finish by treating blemishes gently before using concealer.


Step 1

Cleanse the skin to remove excess oil, which stops makeup from adhering.

Step 2

Remove flaky skin from the blemish, taking care not to irritate it. The best way is by gently rolling a cotton-tip swab dipped in liquid exfoliator, then sweeping off dead skin. Liquid exfoliators contain alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) rather than grains and are available from spa brands, such as Aveda.

Step 3

Moisturize skin, to make it as smooth as possible, with a dab of oil-free hydrating fluid or lightweight gel-cream.

Step 4

Smooth a dab of oil-free makeup primer over your entire face. This also helps to give makeup a smooth, natural finish.


Step 1

Apply an even coat of your chosen foundation. You can just use concealer on bare skin, but a foundation helps you to build up fine layers of coverage, which is the best way to avoid a cakey look.

Step 2

Smooth concealer over the blemish. Using a brush gives you the control to apply a thin, smooth layer of cover.

Step 3

Wipe the brush clean on a tissue and use it to carefully blend the concealer edges around the blemish. Leave the concealer covering the tip of the blemish untouched.

Press a velour puff loaded with translucent loose powder over makeup. If you are concerned about wiping the concealer off the blemish during this process, apply powder over this area only using a soft eyeshadow brush. Setting the base with powder stops cream makeup from shifting around on your skin, shining and becoming cakey.