Tuesday, 24 September 2013

#theSOproject: 05 Blusher




Can you believe that we're half way through the SO Project already? Well, here we are at week five talking all about blush. So, let's not dilly dally and get on with it!

What

Blush or blusher is the traditionally red-coloured powder that is applied to the cheeks to add more colour to the face. Blush is a sure way to add some life to a look or balance it out. Luckily the product has come along somewhat from the days of plain old rouge. Today you can buy blushes in a variety of colours and textures to suit anybody! Some people tend not to bother with blush, and I used to be the same, but now I feel even more pasty if I'm wearing a skin base and don't put any on, even with my naturally rosy cheeks! Of course it's up to you, but if you want to go all out, blush helps to add dimension and colour to the face and really finishes off a look, in my opinion.


Choosing Your Blush

With so much choice on the market, it can sometimes be difficult to find a blush that suits you. I tend to go for the rule that your blush should match the colour group of your lipstick - none of this 'pick a blush that matches the colour your cheeks go when you pinch them'. You can wear any colour you like! Although personally, I tend to think that pinks and corals suit people best, purplish and more brownish tones can be good too depending on the tone of the product and your skin. So, I'll leave the shade up to you, but allow me to give you a little more guidance on textures.

Powder This is your bog standard blush. It is best applied with some sort of brush and will usually come in a pan. The finish can be matte or illuminating, or even glittery. Personally I like a bit of a sheen but tend to shy away from glitter - I love a blush that'll naturally add a bit of iridescence and highlight.
Cream These blushes are much more blendable than their powder partners. Cream can add a beautiful, healthy glow to skin and is a personal favourite of mine.
Cheek Tint Almost forgot this one... this applies a little like a serum which you dot on your cheeks and blend out. You then feel like you're not wearing anything, but are left with a very natural looking tint as the name would suggest. Benefit are very well known for doing a couple of these.
Lipstick An old trick, but a goodun in those 'emergency' situations. Your grandmothers may have used to do this, but I still don't see the problem with dabbing a bit of lipstick on your finger and blending it over your cheeks. I'm not sure how my skin would feel if I were to do this all of the time, but hey, if Pot Rouges can be used on lips as well as cheeks, then why not try it in reverse?





Application

This is where things could get controversial. Most people think that blush (whether it be cream or powder) should be applied to the apple of the cheek - that's the bit that goes all chubby and squidgy when you smile. This may be endorsed by many makeup artists, and I know that there are no rules to makeup, but there isn't much logic behind this idea. If you want your blush to look natural, particularly if you're older, apply your blush with a straight face right on the cheekbone from around below where your pupil is and blend it up the cheekbone toward your temple. This is where I find that it adds the most lift to the face while still looking natural (thanks Wayne Goss for helping me to figure that one out). If you do apply your blush to the apple of your cheek, when you stop smiling then your blush will drop and actually instantly age you (placing blush low down on the face is a technique used by stage makeup artists to make you look older). I like to use the Real Techniques Contour Brush for my blush application, or another small headed brush (a synthetic one for cream blushes). Please also remember to apply cream blush on top of your foundation but before you apply any powder products: cream on cream, it will not apply nicely on top of powder!


Tried and Tested

I'm really not sure how many blushes I've tried in my time... quite a few I think, but I definitely have brands I really like and some other brands that I wasn't so impressed with. Here are some of the ones that jump to mind and what I thought of them in a nutshell.

  • Benefit Dandelion - I love how silky this blush feels to apply. It's my go-to natural, peachy colour and includes the tiniest bit of shimmer which really perks up any look.
  • Benefit Benetint - This is Benefit's most famous tint and is a rosy red colour. It definitely lasts well on the cheeks, but isn't my preferred colour or formula.
  • Benefit Posietint - The formula to this is the same as benetint, but I prefer the colour as it is a brighter pink colour.
  • Bobbi Brown Desert Rose - This blush was given to me by my mum and is a dusty pink colour. I dont use it that often as I feel like it looks better on darker skin but it is a nice powder formula.
  • Bobbi Brown Rose Shimmer Brick - This is more of a highlight (it is a set of shimmery blush colour that you swirl together). I love the finish of these and use it frequently as a blush on a night out.
  • Inglot Powder Blush - This is my favourite ever blush. I have the bright pink version which is a go-to colour to make myself look fresh and awake. The pigmentation is absolutely incredible - this is going to last me ages, and the formula is a dream to blend out.
  • Mac Dollymix - This is a lovely bright pink, and has good pigmentation and formula but I now prefer my Inglot blush when I'm looking for a bright pink.
  • Mac Ladyblush - This is a mid-toned pink cream blush. If you want a natural glow, this is definitely a great way to go as there is no shimmer but it still adds a beautiful sheen to the skin.
  • Mac Well Dressed - This is my lightest pink blush and can be used as a sort of highlight in that sense. It also has tiny particles of glitter to add to this illusion. Great for paler skin tones.
  • Maybelline Dream Touch Blush - My version of this is in a peachy colour. It is my only lower-end cream blush and it isn't as well pigmented as Mac, but because of this I like to use it as more of a sheer cheek colour and it works brilliantly for that by adding a sort of warmth to your makeup look while feeling super light.

That's it from me for this week. If you haven't tried blush before, I would seriously recommend giving it a go some time - you may just like what you see!


What's your favourite blush?

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