I might as well not pretend I don’t have it, and share what I do to try to conceal it, huh?
it’s not absolutely undetectable, but it’s a great help WITHOUT DISRUPTING THE COLD SORE, and provides a confidence boost when you’re in dire need of it.
as treatment, I usually use Acyclovir (Zovirax) in cream or pill form.
to conceal, I like to use the Compeed Invisible Cold Sore Patches. many brands make them as well and you should easily find them in your local drugstore.
these patches aren’t completely infallible — they can start to peel off if you smile a lot or eat more greasy foods, and also if you’re on the dreaded “blister phase” of the cold sore — but they are a huge help. I notice my lips don’t swell as much nor feel as sore when using them.
also, the brand claims that, although these patches don’t have any medicine embedded in them, the fact that your cold sore is enclosed and isolated under the patch decreases the danger of infecting someone else and allows it to heal as quickly as it would if you were using a cold sore cream. I can say that this last one is true IF the cold sore is small enough.
the patch should be applied on clean and dry skin — no treatment cream residue — and you should try to have as much patch in contact with your healthy skin as possible, to make it adhere as much as you can.
I don’t apply any kind of moisturiser, foundation, concealer or powder near the patch — those things could interfere with the glue.
concealing the patch and the swelling depend a lot on the type and colour of lip product you choose. I find that dark opaque colours hide any swelling a lot better, and mattes flatten it out perfectly. the last ingredient is longevity: a lip product that sets on your lips and doesn’t have any slip to it, doesn’t fade easily nor bleeds is the best.
with all these powers combined, it could only be a long lasting matte liquid lipstick or a lip pencil.
if you opt for a lipstick, just make sure to place a bit of it on the back of your hand and use a lip brush to apply it, to prevent any direct contact with the cold sore. you can also have a spare one on your medicine cabinet right by your cold sore treatments.
the liquid lipsticks that I have tried and loved are the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet and Kiko’s Matte Muse.
the lip pencils can be sharpened and you can spray a bit of alcohol onto them and they’re done.
plus, I find it easier to find nude colours (deeper, but still nudes) in a lip pencil form.
the one I’m using from Essence, on this video, is under 3€ and it’s just impeccable.
other option are the M.A.C. Pro Longwear Lip Pencils, which have a huge array of colours.
applying the lip product is as usual, just make sure that, when painting over the patch, you go from the inside out, so you don’t accidentally peel any piece of the patch.
if your lip is visibly swollen and appears asymmetrical, just outline the healthy connected area a bit until you’ve achieved the desired evenness.
that’s that! just make sure you keep an extra patch and you lip product on your bag in case the day gets really long.
oh, and don’t mess with your cold sore. please. I’ve watched videos of pure horror, where the concealing of the thing started with rubbing scabs off and some other crazy things… just. don’t.
nothing is worth the risk of spreading the infection and hurting yourselves. let it be and let it heal.