Makeup Advice

The best blush guide: how to apply blush naturally and beautifully

Jul 31, 2019

While foundation plays an important role in any beauty routine by concealing open pores or dark spots, it can also mask your natural complexion and expression. That’s where blush comes in. Just a few dabs of color to the cheeks can open a world of aesthetic options, from accentuating the natural tones and contours of your face to sharpening or softening your overall complexion. Use this guide to journey into the world of blush and conjure that cute, charming look—or, restore a natural flush that glows from within.

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How to apply blush for any look 

Choosing the right blush is more than simply picking a color. You can choose from different formulas—powder, cream, or liquid—depending on your desired finish.

Powder blushes are the easiest to use, especially when applied with professional blush brushes. Brushes with a lot of soft bristles tend to hold plenty of powder for rendering natural nuances and finishes. Start by applying a generous amount blush powder on the brush, tapping off any excess powder over a tissue or the palm of your hand. Next, apply a light dab of color in wide, circular, sweeping motions along the lines of your cheekbones to create a soft effect without conspicuous borders. This will bring out a naturally healthy, flushed look.  

For a chiseled appearance, blend a powder blush at a sharper angle of the brush along the cheek lines. Avoid applying blush below the nose line, as this might create a droopy-cheek effect.

If you have high, prominent cheekbones, apply light colors in broad, circular strokes to soften the cheeks. Strong colors can draw too much attention to the cheeks by emphasizing their height and volume. Avoid reddish colors and let the powder blend naturally into the skin.

Take note of symmetry when applying blush. Always blend blush in the same direction on each side of your face and double-check that the darkest parts of the cheeks match perfectly on the left and right side.

How do professional makeup artists prevent harsh lines? 

A broad-tipped blush brush won’t leave harsh lines. For the best effect, the brush tip should follow the handle as you apply the blush to your cheeks.

The right blush finish for you

Just like formulas, you can customize your blush texture with a variety of finishes, from matte to glow. Choosing the right finish depends on personal preference and the type of look you’re trying to achieve, but be sure to watch out for finishes that might clash with your skin type.
Young women prone to cakey makeup may want to select a matte blush finish to avoid excessive shininess, while mature women should go for a matte or natural glowing finish with fine granules rather than a strong luster blush. Looking to hold back on the pearl-effect but still want something more sheer than matte? Go with the velvet-like quality of the semi-matte type.

Each finish gives a different texture:

Glow: Youthful, healthy, clear, and transparent
Semi-matte: Soft, light, and foggy
Matte: Refined, delicate, and fashionable 

Sophisticated blush techniques

A well-chosen blush can improve skin color and add contour to the face. If you want to downplay the skin color difference between your face and neck, try blending leftover blush powder upwards from the bottom of the chin after doing your cheeks.
Trying to soften the contours of your nose? Add a touch of color at the bridge of your nose. Concerned more about dullness around the lips or flakiness in your foundation? Obscure it by gently brushing touches of red from beneath the nose down to the upper lip.

What’s your blush color?

Keep in mind that not every blush is going to fit your desired look—choose the right shade to flatter your complexion.  Go with a pink blush for fair skin tones, coral or red for medium skin tones, or orange and beige for darker skin. If you’re in the mood to experiment with different blush colors, play it safe by first combining them with other makeup colors that blend naturally with your skin.
For a makeup look with a sense of unity, try matching the colors of your cheek blush and lip color. When you wear bright red lipstick, for example, a light dab of red blush will conceal any hints of flakiness in your foundation.
Makeup is a creative medium for expressing your individuality, so have fun with it! By coordinating your color palette with your cheek blush, you’ll be creating your ideal makeup masterpiece in no time.

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