The Ultimate Guide To Hiding Freckles and Pigmentation

Michael Brown

Beauty Expert

If you’ve got freckles or dark spots, you’ll know how difficult it can be to cover them up. Dreaming of a flawless complexion is one thing, but finding the best makeup techniques to realise that dream can be difficult. Nicole Kidman’s porcelain skin may not be the norm for some, but there is a way to smooth the skin, minimizing concerns and giving a more translucent result. Learn how to hide freckles and pigmentation flawlessly with these tips.

freckles-emma-stoneimage via pinterest

Freckles can be hard to cover completely as they are usually spread over a larger area of the face, rather than a dark spot caused by ageing for example is usually a smaller more concentrated area. I always try to suggest to even the skin tone, but not cover the freckles completely as it can start looking like you are wearing a mask with a shade difference from neck to face. You also have to factor in that someone with freckles present on their face may in fact have freckles on their neck and body. If their face is then covered perfectly, it does not match the rest of their body, it just will not look natural.

If your neck is slightly darker than your face it is easier to even and smooth out the appearance of the freckles, as you can up the shade of her foundation to match the neck, therefore minimizing the appearance of the freckles.

For most cases though, the neck is the same colour, or lighter than the face, making it harder to cover the freckles… Uh Oh!


For any Pigmentation or Dark Spot on the skin, its best to up the shade of your foundation slightly..

Wearing the same colour or lighter will only make the pigmentation go a grey like colour, making them look worse.

Yellow to orange pigment is the best to use as it will be deep enough to lift away the dark spot or freckle and even the skin – stay away from any Pink base undertones in concealer or foundation when pigmentation is present on the skin.

NEVER MATCH YOUR SKIN COLOUR TO YOUR FRECKLE though. Its always that in between shade we are looking for, not too light not too dark, but the depth and undertone, as mentioned above is key to the right overall shade choice.

Most foundations have 4 main pigments – Black, White, Red and Yellow.

When a foundation is pink based, it has all 4 components, but a higher concentration of Red.

When it is yellow based, it is the same, but with a higher concentration of yellow.

A neutral foundation, meaning no colour and often a bit flat, this means the black and white pigments out way the red or yellow – great for pale sin or Asian skin.

So, now knowing this information, if your skin is pale, with freckles and has a pale or paler neck than your face, which is the most common skin tome with freckles, these are the steps:

1. Find your exact foundation match to your real skin shade – jaw to neck colour – then, depending on the brand, it is normally one or two shades higher that will be your foundation colour.

*Matching perfectly to your real skin colour, will give the ‘grey appearance to your face with not enough depth in the colour.

For really pale skin, try and find a neutral based foundation. It may look dull in the packaging, but will not add too much pink or yellow, meaning visible colour to your skin. If you are the skin tone above, you can use a yellow-based foundation.

2. Always start the application from the centre of your face, then seeping out. This means you are applying more pigment where it is needed and less where you don’t.

Because you are applying a not–true match of foundation to your skin, it is important to never start application near your jawline as you will then have no blending power, starting from the center gives you just that, blending power… As you sweep the foundation from the centre of the face outwards, it glides and thins out the product so there is no build up at your jaw  – no excuse for a two toned neck and face!

3. Double check neck area is free of any discolour and then if you are still concerned about certain areas, concealer can always then be layered and dabbed over the top for extra coverage – only if necessary.

Even Celebs such as Gisele Bundchen have light freckles on their face.

freckles-giselleimage via pinterest

With the right foundation base tone, you can always look fresh!!

To the person who has the freckles, it could be the first thing they see in the mirror, but to everyone else, we see other features on the face.

Emma Stone and Lindsay Lohan also have freckles and both have had some smoking hot looks over the years, but not looking to mask like – yes it can be done ladies…

Even a BB cream texture can work if you are not a foundation, but it is all in that right neutral to yellow undertone that will help smooth over your skin, remember, don’t go too light or pink –based!

Now to more concentrated spot pigmentation, or age/dark spots as they are known.

Because these are only usually one area of the face and not all over, it is important not to see one dark spot and then cover the entire face in a mask like, too dark foundation!

Its like when you have a pimple, don’t let the good areas of your skin suffer, by covering up the whole face, only cover what is needed for best results.

A dark spot, almost like dark circkes, has pigment deeper than your natural skin tone – normally a brown, purple/blue undertone.

This means you need a deeper concealer/foundation shade for that particular spot as your natural skin foundation, may not be deep enough, or it could contain pink.

Deep yellow (medium skin tone), neutral (for pale/Asian skins) and orange (European, deeper skin tone) are all great for lifting away the dark spot.

Here are some steps

1. It is important to apply your foundation as normal and in your correct shade – starting centre then sweeping outwards, always works well for me in my work and application process.

2. Over the top of the dark spot, use a very yellow to orange concealer and with your finger if a larger area, dab and dab the pigment so it layers over the top of the spot to conceal.. If it is a small area a concealer brush can be used, but also in a dabbing movement to layer the pigment. As soon as you sweep, you lose the coverage and the spot will be revealed.

3. Once the desired coverage is there and the spot is concealed, it is important that with your fingertip, you dab around the edge of the spot, so the concealer blends nicely into the rest of your skin or foundation.

4. Use a translucent powder lightly on top, once again, not sweeping, just a dab, to lock in the staying power of the concealer.


Don’t use any reflective, light reflecting, luminous style concealer or foundation for this. Matte works best and of course with the correct undertone as explained above.
If you use a shiny, radiant product you are drawing attention to the spot.

You will always know if you have the wrong shade of concealer or foundation when covering a dark spot, it will just go grey!

My fave concealer for correcting things like pigmentation on the face is the Napoleon Perdis Pro Concealer Palette (RRP $60)


I love the three shades, as not every skin is the same, so I can mix the shades to create the right choice for every skin I work with.

Also even for the deepest of pigmentation, the top left shade is deep and orange enough to conceal, with bottom shade a great everyday concealer and the right shade a good highlight shade – contouring is easy with this beauty! 

Don’t forget ladies, makeup was designed to distract the eye from areas you don’t want people to look at.

So if an area of the face has pigmentation or something else you do not like, then play up big the areas you do like, to pull focus away from the negative, turn the face into a positive!  

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