Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush ($29.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “soft peach.” It’s a pale, subtly warm-toned peach with a satin finish. Buxom Swept Away is pinker. MAC Stay By Me is a touch darker. MAC Peaches is darker and more orange.

It is absolutely a color and product that will work better on very, very pale skin tones. On my medium complexion, it just barely shows up, and it may turn chalky/ashy on deeper skin tones because of the light base color. For lighter skin tones, though, especially those with natural redness occurring in their cheeks, this will work quite nicely. The importance here is that the pigmentation is still good, as it appears true-to-pan; it’s just that the color won’t show itself to its full potential on my complexion. (Pale readers who’ve tried this, speak out!)

From what I could tell, the color lasted around six to seven hours on me, but it was even harder to see after eight hours (it’s so much harder to see wear when it’s barely visible to begin with!).  The texture is very soft, finely-milled, and a smidgen on the powdery side but it lies nicely on the skin–it doesn’t look powdery on the skin, and if you buff it into the skin, it turns just slightly luminous from that satin finish.

The Glossover


NARS Sex Appeal Blush Review, Photos, Swatches

This is a blush that will work best on lighter complexions, and it can help to reduce the appearance of redness from the peachy coloring.











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NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

NARS Sex Appeal Highlighting Blush
NARS Sex Appeal Blush

Product & Review FAQ

Where can I purchase it? How much is it?

Is it limited edition?


Any dupes?

Buxom Swept Away is pinker. MAC Stay By Me is a touch darker. MAC Peaches is darker and more orange.

What makeup are you wearing?

On lips: Benefit Fauxmance.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

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79 thoughts on “NARS Sex Appeal Blush Review, Photos, Swatches

  1. This looks so pretty, but I doubt it will look good on me. I am NC 35.

    • Shontay07108

      Even though I’m nc45 I am attracted to this blush. It might not even show on me but I won’t be satisfied until I try.

      • Annick Chantal L. H.

        If Peaches can be a dupe for this blush, why not, but I am not sure. I’ll go to my local Sephora (Paris, France), and will try it. I’m not sure that this beautiful blush suits with NC44-45 and 50.

      • Ashley

        Shontay I’m with you girl. I’m an NC45 and I am in love with this blush. It’s so pretty!! It’ll probably go ashy on our skin. Such a bummer!

  2. luka

    sex appeal?! deep throat?! orgasm?! whats next…
    this look pretty thoug :)

    • LU

      Sometimes I feel like they give their products odd names because they think its edgy, but really, its not, especially with names like deep throat, LOL. Its like Urban Decay and their obsession with same old products, new packaging. -.-

    • Sherry

      I know. The names are tacky. I actually don’t buy Nars because of it. I look for dupes. It’s a shame too because their products seem really good. Oh well!

  3. This is gorgeous, texture looks alot similar to benefits shallow! You should try that for a more coral toned blush that will actually show up on your cheeks! xx

  4. Cheri

    I’m more interested in knowing what you’re wearing on the lips! :3
    Nonetheless, it’s a very pretty peach/pink colour. :)

  5. Svetlana

    So pretty . This is exactly the kind of blush I was looking for because I’m always afraid of having too much color on my cheeks.

  6. Thymine

    I’ve seen countless pictures of you wearing blush but I have to say I think this is the most beautiful one. You look truly stunning here, but I do have a soft spot for more natural looks though. :)

  7. Annette

    What are you wearing on your lips? Its so pretty!!

  8. Cecilia

    I too am a NC25/30, so this prob won’t work for me. But it’s so PRETTY in the pan!!!! :-(

  9. Kit


    I know what I need in my life!

  10. Justice

    Not worth the $26, in my opinion…

  11. I couldn’t even get this to show up on my hand (NC35), it’s such a beautiful color in the pan but unfortunately I passed on this one =(. I picked up Doceur instead =D.

  12. Lexi

    Gorgeous !
    Which lipgloss are you wearing ?

  13. Nicole

    I love Nars blushes, and the softness of this shade really appeals to me. I think I might be pale enough, but I’ll need to see it in person first. (Tomorrow might be a Nars haul day for me! I need to get my hands on Etrusque eyeshadow, and Sephora FINALLY sent a VIB discount to Canadians!)

    The lip gloss looks so gorgeous too!

    • Amrita

      A VIB discount? I’m Canadian, and I’d love any discount on make up! 😛

      • Nicole

        I think you need to be a VIB (‘Very Important’ Beauty Insider) to get it, but maybe they’re emailing Beauty Insiders too. Unfortunately it’s not an online code, just something an email that we print out and show in store.

  14. Rosa

    I agree with the others, your lips look great in this look!

  15. Alex

    I’m NW15 so I have no problem trying to get this to show up on my paleness. I really like it! I bought it a few days ago.

  16. maryelle

    i know this isn’t completely relevant to ‘sex appeal’, but i was wondering if you were going to do a review on ‘bougainville’? (looks awesome on your lips!) i already have ‘strawberry fields’ and i want to know how similar it is to bougainville because they look almost the same to me!

  17. Letícia

    Looks gorgeous on the pan!! Cant wait to swatch it myself.. It looks like NYX Natural but a bit peachier.

  18. Crystal

    As a huge fan of Nars blushes, I am really disappointed that the last two blushes they have released do absolutely nothing for medium to dark skin tones (I am an NC42.) Come on, Nars!

    • I think it’d be cool if there was a way to make it more buildable – so you could get the softer look without too much trouble, but you could build it up, too, for something more intense.

    • Lorna

      i’m an NC/NW 25 and I can’t get this to show up. i even had difficulty getting douceur to show up with a regular blush brush; i had to go with a kabuki. i’m really surprised that NARS does not have a true hot pink blush. he’s got plenty of pinks and corals and even some stand out shades like exhibit a and taj mahal but no hot pink. it baffles me.

      • Rina

        Have you seen NARS Desire blush? It’s a matte but very hot pink blush in my opinion. :]! Very pretty. If you like sparkles, Angelica is sorta similar but with silver shimmer!

  19. Callen

    This is the most beautiful pic I’ve seen of you Christine! :) You’re a knock out!

    I love this whole collection by NARS… Melusine and Etrusque are on their way from Sephora and now I need this blush and Bougainville!

    Are you going to be reviewing Melusine or anything else from the collection??

  20. nicci

    I got this over the weekend after reading many reviews and swatches and I’m really happy with it! NARS finally came out with a shade that isn’t super pigmented and loaded with glitter. I don’t have to apply this with a light hand which is nice. It gives me a nice glow and enough color. :)

  21. Too bad it doesn’t seem to do it’s job because that blush looks great in the pan. It’s like the distillation of “girl.”

  22. You look gorgeous in the swatch pic! like BEAUTIFUL! I think this looks very different from Peaches – much lighter, but then again, I have much lighter skin than you do!!

  23. Sami

    It only sells because of the name. People like sexy names (orgasm, super orgasm, deep throat). The colors alright, looks like straight up peach colored chalk.

  24. Red

    I have this and love love love it so far. I’m glow in the dark pale (MAC doesn’t go that pale even) and this looks fabulous and something that’s almost impossible to find in most blushes – natural on me. I was afraid it would be almost like Benefit’s Georgia which didn’t show up at all on me, but thankfully its not similar to that at all for me.

    • Marie

      Thanks for the info. I’m in the exact same situation. :) A natural-looking blush for the very pale is soooooo difficult to find.

  25. kristie

    oh dear….I like it!!! perfect for my ridiculously pale skin haha

  26. Mahera

    hey christine. bellasugar has an article abt blake lively and kylie minogue pulling this off with vibrancy; i guess they are very fair though

  27. Rachael

    Its very subtle on you. looks great. And so does the gloss. Thanks for the review!

  28. Rina

    Ughhhh I pine for this blush. The colour in the pan is just SO gorgeous! And I can’t lie… I love the name too. It seems like people are having trouble getting this to show being NC/NW25’s (I’m NC20) so I’m not sure if it’ll work for me. Definitely have to try it in store before I make any decisions. If it doesn’t work for me I think I’ll suggest it to one of my super pale friends (jealous of her!!)

  29. Dollymix8

    I love the colour on your lips! Look amazing!

  30. It looks really good on you in this picture, but despite the colour being perfect for me, I prefer my blush with a very faint shimmer. It just looks better to me. However, once again, you rock it on this pic.

  31. Marie

    This blush might be exactly what I need. I’m pale (NW05-10) and I pretty much always go for a natural look, so I’m often concerned about being too heavy-handed with blush.
    Thanks for the review!

  32. Ann

    For everyone bashing this blush for being invisible or “chalky” – what about those of us who have NEVER been able to wear a NARS blush because they’re all too pigmented and we’re too pale? (Using a skunk brush with extreme delicacy can get old, and it can be hard to get such a strong pigment to go on evenly over very pale skin, where any mistake shows up so brightly!)
    Come on – give us one! There are how many that are awesome on darker light, medium, and dark skintones? Tons!
    Just because it doesn’t show up on your skin-tone doesn’t make it “chalky”, lower quality, or without value – layering and layering a product not designed to show up on your skin is what makes it look chalky.
    I think what’s happened here is that NARS has filled a major hole in their blush line – prior to this one, there weren’t any good options for a very pale person who didn’t want full-on blush overload. I’m really pleased that it seems like they’ve listened to their customers about what’s been missing!

    • I found the texture a little chalky – just because it was powdery – not quite the same thing as being light, just FYI! :) The texture felt noticeably different from other NARS blushes.

      • Maud

        really? This blush has easily the nicest texture of not only all my bars blushes but all my blushes in general

    • Marie

      Thank you for this; this is exactly what I wanted to say.
      If you’re either too pale or too dark your choice is limited for face products, whereas there is choice aplenty for medium skintones.
      I, for one, am glad when any brand produces something that they know will work only for a limited portion of their customers.

    • Flauer

      Ann, I couldn’t agree with you more. Sex Appeal has been the first blush (and product in general) I have ever felt compelled to try by the Nars brand. Contrary to the majority, I have never been woo’d by the blushes Nars has put out. While the rave tends to be over pigmentation and the finely-milled consistency, I find Nars blushes overall pretty uneven, casting patches on most women’s complexions, and even offering very common, dull and dupable hues and shades. (I laugh recalling another reader’s remark to Christine asking whether she was wearing a layered or “mulit-colored” blush in the “Oasis” review & swatch section due to the appearance of such effects Nars’ blushes tend to have on skin. Christine answered she was only wearing Oasis…ALONE.) I am a professional movie makeup artist and I can also tell you, not all artists in the business are created equal as in any industry. For example: How many of you ladies have witnessed bad makeup jobs on celebrities for yourself? Just because these artists and celebrities share tastes in makeup, doesn’t mean the taste they share is good, nor does it mean that the product is good–or bad—it just means perhaps that they don’t know how to apply it. To Nars’ credit however, I am very pleased with the new blush addition, “Sex Appeal.” The quality and coverage is exquisite, and it is very versatile. I don’t often make the rounds on these public blog sites, but I do enjoy visiting from time-to-time just to hear what women are saying about their makeup practices and purchases. Thanks for all the work and samples you showcase on your site, Christine!

  33. Lauren

    I bought Sex Appeal a couple weeks ago and I like it but I don’t love it. I am NW20 and it still doesn’t show up that well on me. I like the natural glow it gives me but I have to put several layers on in order to get that effect.

  34. Naz

    Hmmm…this is not unlike their Fall blush Douceur which was also very light and barely shows up on medium/darker complexions. I think I’ll pass on this one. Fingers crossed for maybe a creme blush from Nars…in a shade that will be a tad more universal.

  35. Deb

    Ooh, I may have to try this one! I’m usually the palest shade a brand offers, and peach makeup can be a little tough to find for me!

  36. Natalie

    I am NC20 and this shows up no problem. I love this when I have strong eyes or lips and just want enough color on my cheeks. On me, it goes on peachy.

  37. Suzanna

    I like this on you, especially with the vividness of the lipstick. I don’t think it is too light at all and it suits your skintone well. I’d keep trying it through the winter.

  38. az

    I’ve decided to stop buying mac and start buying more NARS blushes, but this one isn’t worth the money I think. It’s not going to do anything for me, and there are a bunch of other NARS blushes I have my eye on that I’d rather get!

  39. bree

    Oh I really like this look!
    You are so beautifull

    kisses from Brazil :*

  40. Melissa

    It looks like my now discontinued MAC “Cheek” blush, which is my HG peach. Does anyone know if it is similar to Cheek?

  41. Thats a really pretty look on you, the bottom picture :)

  42. Shaguna

    Your picture looks amazing in this. I love your look!

  43. Dollymix8

    It looks really pretty on you! But I think it’s too light for my skin colour and my style… I do really love the lipgloss you’re wearing, maybe I’ll get that one instead of Stawberry Fields…

  44. Maggie

    I picked this up yesterday with the VIB 20% off, and it really is an amazing blush for us one-step-up-from-dead-pale folks. I’m an NC15 and this shade is amazing for my skin tone! It’s ust a nice, subtle color that, as you said, is impossible to overdo! I snagged Etrusque shadow and Bougainville gloss, too – man, this collection is full of delicious colors :)

  45. Flauer

    I disagree–this looks nothing like Benefit’s Dandelion (except that it is just as lovely), but I’m curious to know how similar it is in appearance to Benefit’s Georgia. Does anyone own both? What’s your opinion (and skin-tone)? I’m NC25 and I can tell you that Sex Appeal appears to be more similar in appearance to MAC’s discontinued (PRO) powder blush in the color “Cheek”. Anyone remember that one?

  46. Daisy

    I’m not really a fan of this one, it looks cake-y.

  47. RUTHIE


  48. Buddy Fields

    Please advise where or what stores sell NARS blush, color sex appeal. I am in Greenville, SC or can purchase over the Internet. Thank you for your prompt reply.