Blush – worth the splurge?

Two words for ya: Hells. Yes.

Now that we have that cleared up, and you’re all aware that you’re talking to a total blush whore, let’s get started!

Why spend obscene amounts of money on blush?
Well, actually, I’m recommending that you don’t. I know, I know – I’m very confusing and roundabout today. But this series is for the girl who only wants to own a couple blushes, not an entire stash of them. So I’m telling you to buy two expensive blushes, and be done with it!

The only three blushes you’ll need to own:
The shades depend on personal preference (we’ll go over that later), but I recommend that you have one “clear” matte or low-shimmer blush and one shimmery medium-to-sheer blush.

Your clear colours are pinks, plums, apricots, etc. Depending on what you like and what you look like, this shade will vary! The great thing about high-end blush, though, is that you can try it on before buying it. So dedicate that hour to your favourite high-end store and walk out with the pefect one for you! Make sure it’s matte or very low shimmer, and gives you a subtle (but perfect!) lit-from-within hue.

That matte blush can be layered with your shimmery one – which is why it needs to be matte! Ideally, your shimmery blush should be in strips/marbalized, so you can blend all the colurs to wear on its own, or wear just the low-pigment ones over your matte blush. Boom: with two blushes, you’ve just created five different blush looks! (The light parts of the shimmery blush on their own, a swirl of all of the shimmery blush on its own, the matte blush on its own, all of the shimmery blush over the matte blush, and just the light parts of the shimmery blush to hilight the matte blush)

Wow. Talk about a mouthful.

What to look for when you’re buying your cheek products
Well, the first is obvious: make sure it looks good on you! But you also need to check pigmentation – the more pigmented it is, the less you’ll use at once. However, if you’re a beginner, too much pigment can be hard to work with! For the shimmery blush, pick out one with at least two shades, one that imparts a nice but not very pigmented glow, and one that you could wear on its own and would give you a nicely pigmented flush.

When (not if!) you’re trying on the cheek product in-store, ask to apply it yourself to “get a feel for it” – just because it looked good when the MUA helped you with it doesn’t mean you’ll be able to achieve the same results at home. Wear it around for the day to check its wear and how it looks in different lighting before you make your decision.

And lastly? Don’t forget to make sure you love the packaging! (Hey, if I’m forking over $30 for something smaller than my hand, it damn well better be luxe and make me feel like a queen every time I use it.)

Great blush lines to check out
Lancome knows how to make a great matte blush. Though I hate how their powder blushes smell in the pan, I’m in love with the product! Check out their Blush Subtil line for great pressed blushes – they’ve become the only powder blushes I wear on a daily basis. I’ve also totally fallen for their Color Design creme formula. A tiny press (not even a swipe! Just a press!) of my finger onto the pan of undeniable pigmented creaminess blends over my entire cheek.

Clinique’s Fresh Bloom blushes are great for your shimmery pick – they’re very sheer and layerable, but beware! They’re also very soft and don’t travel well.

NARS would be a great choice for your matte blush – these are also very pigmented. However, I can’t stand the gummy packaging (it gets dirty very quickly, and is basically impossible to clean) – and I know a lot of other makeup minimalists will be driven nuts by this as well. Their hilight/shimmery blushes are great, but they unfortunately only come in single pans without strips/marbelizing. They’d be great in a stash, but less optimal if you only want to own one shimery product.

Cargo blushes are huge, and great quality, so check out the normal tins and BeachBlushes for a matte blush, and the BeachBlushes and SuedeBlushes for a shimmery one. The BBs have strips of colour, and the SBs are marbelized, so they’re perfect choices for your shimmery blush!

Dior practically costs its weight in gold, but the regular line is a shimmery/matte duo – meaning one product will serve for both your matte and shimmery blushes. Just make sure you love them both!

Lastly, MAC’s mineralized skinfinishes would be wonderful choices for your shimmery blush. And as an added bonus, a lot of the LE ones are being added to their regular collection this summer, so you won’t have to hunt them down online. They’re pricier than the regular line, but you’ll get more shade choice, and they’re bloody huge.

That’s all I can tell you for now, folks. I’m sure there are heaps of other great blushes, but those are the ones I’ve tried and loved so far! Happy hauling.

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  • Fabulously Broke

    Cargo’s blushes are great for me. I use Molokai and it requires a blush brush to look good. However, I am not sold on buying a creme or liquid/gel blush as I do travel a bit.. and I hate touching my face with my fingers.

  • Elvira

    Awesome post!
    You forgot my faveorite blush. Chanel…which is so overpriced but so worth it. They last forever. even after a year of constant use my Chanel Narcisse blush has not hit the pan yet. Dior blushes are wonderful. I must get more of them!

  • Audrie

    I completely agree, always buy good blushes. I actually don’t own a single drugstore blush, gasp! I tried a L’oreal one a long long time ago and it was not bad, but definitely nowhere near the quality of NARS, and as a blush whore myself, I like my blushes to be high quality! I am starting to have too many of the same colors though…hehe

  • Rae

    FB: I know ^^ Correct me if I’m wrong, but Molokai is the only blush you have, right? And it’s gorgeous!

    I always wash my hands before putting on my face, so cream/stain/liquid/gel blushers are a-okay with me. And, with their tiny sizes, they’re okay with airport security, too! :P

  • Rae

    Elvira: Ooh, I so want to try their blushes! Unfortunately, as a student, I hardly think it would be wise to spend my tuition $ on Chanel! ^^

  • Rae

    Audrie: I know – me neither!! I wear blush every day, and it’s not like I have any crazy colours (though if I wanted some, I WOULD by drugstore). I figure it’s worth it, as you know what you’re getting, you’ll use less, AND it’ll stay on all day.

    And yes, you DO have too many blushes!! (ha, I used to believe that was impossible. Before I noticed 90% of my blushes were pretty much… the same x.x)