FOR the last few years, contouring has reigned supreme, and while we love a sculpted face just as much as the next person, right now it’s blush that is having a beauty moment.
The trend started on TikTok – when a video about how blush placement can change your face shape went viral – and since then influencers all over the platform have been showcasing how to achieve different looks using blusher, with the hashtag boasting over 490 million views.
The new trend may have taken off on social media, but the boom is actually down to the latest innovative blushers on the market.
This new breed come in a variety of textures, multiple finishes and a plethora of colours that together have sent this former staple to the front of our make-up bags.
So how do you rock rouge in 2021?
The New Textures
Cream blush has been around for a while, but its staying power has always been lacking. The moisturising properties mixed with the colour pigment looked great on application, but after an hour it absorbed into skin.
Well, not any more! These new products contain the same moisturising ingredients that make skin look radiant, but they stay put.
Good for… Everyone! If you have cheeks, you should be adding a cream blush to your arsenal.
Traditionally, this soft-matte finish has been the go-to texture and ideal if you have oily skin, which can cause cream or liquid to slip off. It gives a blurred finish similar to Instagram’s Paris filter IRL. However, when it came to colour pay-off, either it would be too strong or make little impact.
But now, powders are easier to work with. Finely milled pigments melt on to the skin like butter, and are easily blended out if you go OTT.
Good for… If you like a powder foundation, go for a powder blush, as a cream or liquid can appear blotchy when layered over the top.
Over the years, liquid blush has tended to work like a stain – with a matte finish – that sank in quickly and was hard to blend out.
In 2021, the new-gen liquids are the ideal cream/stain hybrid, offering a sheer, dewy look. They’re perfect for adding a hint of natural colour that can be built up for a statement finish.
Good for… Creating an au-naturel, no-make-up look as the liquid blends seamlessly into the skin to give a no-fuss finish.
This has been the holy grail move for blusher in 2021, explains make-up artist Aimee Connolly.
“For a ‘lifted’ look that elongates the face, place the blush higher and closer to the cheekbones. Then blend it in an upward motion towards the temples.” This opens up the face and makes it less flat.
Skin looking like it needs a dose of vitamin D? Skip the bronzer and try a coral or peach blush instead. “These work if you’re looking to brighten dull skin,” says celebrity make-up artist Lan Nguyen-Grealis.
“Use a cream or liquid, as it will look more realistic and softer. Apply slightly along the top of the cheeks and tap out with fingers, and dab some on the nose too.”
According to Lan, the secret is to add a touch to your hairline and sweep over your lids. This ties the look together, so your complexion works as one, giving a proper glow.
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Nothing beats that post-workout flush, but if you’re feeling tired, try these tips to fake it. “Pick a blush shade similar to your natural flush during exercise,” says Lan.
Then place the blush on to the apples of your cheeks and also softly across the nose. A touch on your chin and the middle of the forehead will create a natural-looking finish.
Not sure which hue is the one for you? Aimee Connolly is here to help…
Fair skin: “For fair complexions with a pink undertone, look at baby pink or soft pink shades. If your skin is pale with more of a yellow tinge, soft peach tones work like magic to bring colour back into the skin.”
- Cream Flower Beauty Blush Bomb in Bubbly, £8.99
- Powder Nyx Professional Makeup Sweet Cheeks Matte in Rose & Play, £6
- Liquid Iconic London Sheer Blush in Fresh Faced, £18
Light/medium skin: “This skin tone looks great with either a rose or a warm peach shade, and red-based hues make skin glow.”
- Cream Sculpted by Aimee Connolly Cream Luxe Blush in Peach Pop, £16
- Powder ELF Primer-Infused Blush in Always Rosy, £6
- Liquid Maybelline Cheek Heat in Nude Burn, £8.99
Deep/Dark skin: “Darker skin can carry bright, bold colours. Think strong pinks, orangey peaches and even berry tones.”
- Cream Beauty Pie Supercheek Cream Blush in Universal Pink, £6.99 for members
- Powder Vieve Sunset Blush in Malbec, £23
- Liquid Ciaté London Dewy Blush in Pomegranate, £19