If you have ever given up on blush before it even gets on your cheeks because you're afraid of looking like a clown, I have some good news for you--I'm here to help! I have totally been there myself. I avoided blush completely for many many years because I flush easily so why add more color to my already rosy cheeks? But when applied correctly, blush gives a healthy youthful glow. I now find using blush is just as essential as filling in my eyebrows (and that's saying a lot). Here is all you need to know about this iconic beauty product:
1. When do I put it on?
Put blush on after you've done your base. If you're using cream or liquid foundation/concealer, make sure you set that with a translucent powder before applying a powder blush. If you're using a cream blush, apply your base then blush before setting everything in place with your translucent powder.
2. Cream or Powder?
This one is mostly just personal preference. But: If your skin is oily, you probably want to stick with powder blush but cream blush is wonderful for drier skin types which may look cakey with layers of powder. You can also layer a powder blush on top of a set cream blush for longevity.
3. What color should I use?
Remember when we talked about knowing your skin undertone? It's helpful to use this color theory when choosing the rest of your makeup colors as well. Warm undertones will be the peachy and bronze blushes. Cool undertones include those bright pinks and mauve blushes. An easy way to choose the right color is to look at the natural color of your flush. Try to match your blush to that color.
4. Where does it go?
This is a perfect example of my first rule of makeup application. You can put blush wherever you want. But I love the look of blush when applied on the cheekbone, rather than only on the apples of the cheek. I think it has the most flattering effect. To find your cheekbone, put a thumb on the very top of your ear and your pointer finger on the tip of your nose. the hard part touching your palm is your cheekbone. It might be higher than you would've thought. You also never want the blush to go too close to your nose. Measure between one and three fingers next to your nose and keep that area free from blush.
I like to add a bit of blush on other areas of the face using whatever is left on my brush. Adding just a hint of color to the hairline, the bridge of the nose or chin. This can make the blush on your cheeks look very natural, as the same color is present in other areas of your face--seemingly naturally.
5. How do I apply it?
Build color slowly as too much blush can look well, off-putting and too little is sort of useless.
For Cream blush: You can use your finger or a damp sponge. Dip your middle finger into the blush. If you're afraid you've put too much on your finger, smear some on the back of your hand before stippling (patting) your finger onto the cheekbone, below the outer corner of your eye. Blend in a stippling motion forward toward the apples of your cheeks and then back toward your hairline. Apply more if desired.
For Powder blush: Use a medium-small, tapered brush. Dip your brush into the blush and tap excess off. Start in the same place, on your cheekbone below the outer corner of your eye. Sweep the brush forward and then back. Apply more color if desired.
As always, blend out edges. Take a step back and voila, you look youthful and healthy with a bit of blush on your cheeks (and maybe other areas as well)! Here is a helpful video from Sephora with more on this topic. And if you need more specific assistance in this area, I'm here for you.