Blush can be the perfect accent for a makeup look. Along with providing a bit of color to your cheeks, the right blush can also aid in creating depth. In some cases, you might not need to contour. And depending on the type of blush you select, it can even double as a highlight if it has a metallic or shimmer finish. But more goes into selecting the right blush than simply picking a color.
Just like with foundation, blush can come in a variety of textures. This includes powder, cream, gel, and stan textures. Depending on your overall goals and skin type, and whether or not you’re using your blush with other complexion products, some options are better than others. You want to make sure that you pick products that “play well” together.
Creams are great for people with dry skin who want to avoid flaking. Along with being moisture-rich, they’re ideal options if you want to avoid creating more texture which can highlight problem areas like flaking or dull spots. Additionally, creams are great for people that prefer a dewy effect for their makeup.
If you like the idea of a cream, but want something that offers buildable color, gels are a great option. Because of their texture, these types of blushes go on sheer. This is ideal if you’re not into a bold makeup look and prefer something more subtle. However, they’re still very lightweight and moisturizing like creams.
Most of us are familiar with powder blushes. The most common powder blushes tend to be matte hues. But these days it’s also standard to find options that include a subtle shimmer — which allows for these to serve as multipurpose makeup products that cover blush and highlighter.
Of all the blushes, stains are the most richly pigmented. One nice feature of cheek stains is that they can often double as lip stains. However, they feature a steeper learning curve as these liquids dry down quickly. So, if you opt for a stain, you’ll want to work quickly to blend it out to your desired level before the color sets.
Picking the Right Color for Your Skin Tone
Once you’ve decided on the right formula, the next step is picking a color that compliments your skin tone. Keep in mind that more than one shade might work for you and it’s completely normal to have a winter and summer shade. However, you’ll need to not only consider your general complexion but your undertone as well.
With fair skin, less is more since it’s easy to look overly made up by applying too much color. Opt for buildable blushes in softer pink, peach, or berry colors. Because many people with fair complexions have neutral or pink undertones, you’ll want to look for blushes that offer cool undertones.
People with medium skin tones often also have warm undertones. This segment looks great with peach and rosy pink shades. Still, until you find the right color and coverage level, it’s always good to start with a light hand and build to your preferred color intensity level.
People with olive skin sometimes find that they have green and yellow undertones. Experts agree that a warmer blush that has hints of orange or even gold in them are very complementary.
Dark skin tones are quite varied and can enjoy using deeper blush shades or warmer shades depending on their undertones. While warmer undertones can be paired with warm orange or coral blushes, people with cool tones can also opt for deep berry or cool-toned reds.
Picking the Right Application Method
Because blushes come in a variety of textures, there are multiple options open to you when it’s time to apply them. The classic tried and true option is using a makeup brush like our Angled Blush Brush which can also pull double duty as a contouring or bronzer brush. While this brush can work with a variety of blush textures, you have a few other options as well.
You can opt for your fingers, which can be helpful for gels and creams. Or you can choose to use a blending sponge — which is ideal for gels and stains. If you prefer a sheer effect, use a damp blending sponge to create just a hint of color. Then, if you want a bolder look, you can continue to layer color until you reach your desired color intensity.
The Perfect Finishing Touch
Whichever texture, color, or application method you pick, blush is a great finishing step that can tie your entire makeup look together. There are so many options available to you, there’s no need to limit yourself to just one. But no matter which option you select, just remember that less is more. You can always build intensity. But if you start too strong, you’ll need to wipe it off and start from the beginning.