Winter manages to suck all the life out of my skin. So, in order to avoid looking too ghostly when I'm at my palest, adding a touch of cheek colour becomes an ever more important step in my makeup routine at this time of year. Currently, I have five favourite blushes that I flit between using, depending on my mood and the look I'm going for. As you can see, I tend to wear warmer red, rose and peach tones during A/W, rather than softer pinks which I reserve for spring and summer.
Shiseido's Luminizing Satin Face Colour in RS302 Tea Rose is the most typically wintery shade of my picks. A deep rosy hue with definite red undertones, it can look a little intimidating in the pan, but it creates the most beautiful flush of natural blush. At first, the finish appears to be matte, but somehow this blush creates a lovely luminous sheen on the cheek, preventing the colour from looking too flat. Texture wise, the powder is silky soft and you only need to lightly tap your brush on to the product to pick up a generous amount of pigment. I always worry that red shades will be difficult to pull off and will leave me looking like a patchy, ruddy mess. Fortunately, as this blush is so finely-milled, that isn't an issue and blending is effortless.
MAC's Peachtwist Sheertone Shimmer Blush is probably a surprising and less predictable choice for this season, being a golden shimmering peach. Although it may be more of a summer appropriate shade, it works wonders to brighten the complexion and give the skin a warming glow when it's looking dull. I particularly love pairing this blush with golden tones on the eyes and a red lip, which is pretty much my signature festive go-to. Despite it being quite an intense, bronzy shade, the sheertone shimmer formula makes it easy to wear. You can dust on a little for a subtle sheen, or layer it for more impact. Although the shimmer looks strong in the pan, it's not at all glittery and I love how it lifts a lacklustre complexion and allows you to skip using a separate highlight, if you're rushed for time or can't be bothered.
As you may have already noticed, I tend to prefer wearing warmer tones on my cheeks, but Nars Oasis Powder Blush is one exception. This cool-toned dusky rose blush has a hint of lilac to it and is infused with a generous helping of golden shimmer. There's no need to worry that this blush will leave you looking like a disco ball, as the chunkier shimmers don't really translate on to the skin at all and it creates more of a soft gleam. Only under very harsh, artificial light do the sparkles become more obvious. If you've read my Nars Powder Blush Collection, then you'll know just how much I adore Nars' blushes. For me, they're just perfect. Every one I've tried is velvety smooth, strongly pigmented and lasts all day without fading. Oasis is no different.
Whenever my skin is feeling particularly dry, I prefer to use cream blushes and Stila's Convertible Color in Camelia is always one I turn to. The pinky-brown nude shade is great to use when you want a neutral colour for the cheeks, to avoid drawing the attention away from a statement eye or bright lip. Props to Stila for creating such an amazing formula with the Convertible Colors, too - they're super smooth, creamy and leave an almost glazed, dewy finish on the cheeks. If you have an oily skin-type, or prefer more of a creme to powder formula, then these cream blushes won't be for you. They have quite a thick, nourishing consistency and don't dry down, but I'm obsessed with how plump and glossy they leave my skin looking.
Another cream blush that I often reach for during the A/W season, is Maxfactor's Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Copper. Surprise, surprise, this is another shade which warms up a pale complexion, but without being too orange. This coppery peach blush is the perfect brightening pick me up for dull skin. Similarly to Stila's formula, these creams stay glossy after application, but they aren't as rich in consistency and offer a sheerer hint of colour. So, if you're not very confident with blush application and find cream formulas a bit scary, then these are a great, affordable product to try first. I often find that some cheaper cream blushes can feel greasy or leave behind a sticky film, but these blushes have more of a buttery texture that just melts on to the skin and blends so easily.
|Swatches L-R: Shiseido Tea Rose, MAC Peachtwist, Nars Oasis, Stila Camelia & Maxfactor Soft Copper|
Which blushes do you love wearing during A/W?