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Shady Lady: Choosing the Right Blush

September 13, 2013

by Tina Liu

Most of us 90’s kids, when we played with makeup, we slathered on blue eye shadow and blush with a result that looked a little something like this:Bad-Blush-Photo

We all (hopefully) grow out of the clown phase at some point and opt for a more natural look. So how do you get that just-got-in-from-the-cold rosy flush?

Blush is an enigma that shrouds most women, but despite not having anything to trace, (like our eyes, lips, brows, etc) applying blush is a lot easier than you think. And it doesn’t have to look like an enormous deluge of red war paint all over your face.

First, you’ll want to choose a type of blush that’s right for your skin type before you delve into color preferences. Between all the powders, cream blush, liquid tints, or shimmers on the market, here are a few tips for identifying the right ones for you.

Oily Skin

Powder is generally considered the best for oily skin and for the longest coverage (since it is the densest). Slick blushes tend to have less staying power on oily skin.

Dry Skin

While powder blush is great for ALL skin types, cream blushes offer dry skin a rich moisture that your skin might be lacking. The trick with cream blushes is that they can have intense color, meaning that it has to be used sparingly and blended well.

Oily to Normal Skin

Gel/Liquid blushes are the commonly agreed upon to be the best for oily to normal skin. Since a lot of these formulas are oil free, sometimes water resistant, and have great lasting power. The key to these formulas is blending the product quickly since they can be hard to spread once dry.

It’s always great for beginners to start off with the easiest formula for their skin tone before moving on to more difficult applications.

Once you determine the type of blush you want, move on to the color that is best suited for your skin tone!

For a natural looking flush, think of what you look like after a light jog.  Pinch your cheeks. Get that color and imitate it. If that’s too vague, try these ground rules:

Fair Skin


A teensy amount can go a LONG way on fair skin.  Try light shimmers (pinks, corals, and peaches) for an ethereal goddess look. The hint of a healthy glow is absolutely DIVINE on fair skin.


Jour Moisturizing Cheek Tint in Bare

NARS Blush in Amour

Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Dollface

Medium SkinMedium-Skin-Blush

Rosy pinks and peaches are amazing on medium skin tones. Too light and you’ll look like Casper; too dark and you’ll look like a clown.


Illamasqua Blush in Lover

Laura Mercier in Nectarine

Too Faced Full Bloom Cheek & Lip Creme Color – Tea Rose

Dark SkinDark-Skin-Blush

Deep oranges, bright fuchsias and roses, truly enhance dark skin. A good blush gives a regal glow to the natural beauty of your skin tone. You don’t want to look washed out with lighter colors.


Tarte Amazonian Clay in Amused

NYX Blush in Cinnamon

Mac Blush in Raizin

With a little luck, trial, and error, you’ll find the perfect blush to add some major color to your skin while avoiding the middle school girl look. Just remember, a little can go a long way!

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