Fenty Beauty Cool Berry Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush ($20.00 for 0.1 oz.) is a muted, medium-dark plum with cool undertones and a warmer, golden pearl throughout. It had a neat contrast to it with the cooler base an warmer shimmer, so the shimmer was more noticeable when applied to bare skin, just not in a skin-texture emphasizing kind of way.
It had semi-sheer to medium, buildable color payoff applied with fingertips, which was similar with a moderately-dense, angled brush but a touch sheerer. For true, sheer coverage, you’ll want to use a very light hand (like a tap of one’s finger) or a stippling brush. The formula seemed more pigmented initially, but it really does sheer out quite a bit when applied to the skin (as it was designed to do) and needs to be layered for fuller coverage. The product built up beautifully, though, and it never looked heavy or turned patchy with more product.
The consistency felt more like a gel-cream, so it spread easily over bare skin or on top of foundation. It blended out with ease, and though it dried down fully, it seemed to have a bit of dewiness to the finish. It wore well for nine hours before fading visibly on my skin.
FURTHER READING: Formula Overview for details on general performance and characteristics (like scent).
- NARS Ferocious (LE, $30.00) is more shimmery, lighter, brighter (90% similar).
- MAC Here You Go (LE, ) is less shimmery, darker, warmer (90% similar).
- CoverGirl Deep Mauve (DC, $9.99) is less shimmery, less glossy (90% similar).
- Tom Ford Beauty Gratuitous (P, $60.00) is less shimmery, lighter, cooler (90% similar).
- MAC Wrapped Candy (P, $27.00) is more shimmery, darker, warmer (85% similar).
- Fenty Beauty Bordeaux Brat (P, $25.00) is darker, warmer (85% similar).
- Burberry Silk and Bloom (LE, $68.00) is more shimmery, lighter, warmer (85% similar).
- Urban Decay Easy (DC, $26.00) is more shimmery, lighter, warmer (85% similar).
- Makeup Revolution Loved Me the Best (P, $5.00) is more shimmery, lighter, warmer (80% similar).
- Makeup Revolution All I Think About is You (P, $5.00) is more shimmery, lighter, warmer (80% similar).
$20.00/0.1 oz. - $200.00 Per Ounce
The formula is supposed to give a "fresh wash of color" that is "effortless" to blend with a "natural-looking" finish. The coverage is designed to be "sheer, buildable" with a "sweat- and water-resistant formula." The brand recommends to apply with fingertips or their 125 brush (which is a fairly dense, angled brush).
The coverage was definitely buildable with a tendency toward semi-sheer coverage, but the intensity depended on application method. The best way to describe was that by the time you applied and blended out one layer, it often looked like that "fresh wash of color" it was marketed as having, but I'd argue they were closer to semi-sheer to medium, buildable coverage than true, sheer coverage. It was very readily built up to more intense, more opaque coverage with a second or third layer. It layered beautifully, too, so achieving higher coverage was easy to do and was still as flattering on the skin as one layer.
If you took a fingertip and swirled it around at least once, you'd get higher coverage, but it would diffuse a bit to more semi-sheer to medium coverage depending on the shade. With a few taps of a moderately-dense, angled brush (like they paired with this formula), one could get more semi-sheer to medium coverage in a single layer. A stippling brush was most consistent at yielding a sheer wash of color, whereas fingertip application tended to be more medium coverage.
That being said, they had the kind of pigmentation that seems pigmented initially but does have a tendency to sheer out in real application, so finger swatches alone are better as insight into potential opacity but not one layer opacity; the blended out swatch is a better indicator of as-applied to cheeks coverage. I still think they were more pigmented than described, but the formula was very forgiving so they could be used with a lighter hand (like one pat or tap with fingertip/brush) for true, sheer coverage if desired.
The formula played well with fingertips as well as brushes, though I preferred fingertips as they're really just such a handy, efficient tool for cream-based formulas like these (and one less brush to wash!). I didn't have any issues applying and diffusing out the edges of the blush over bare skin or over foundation (I paired them with Fenty's Pro Filtr, which is popular but also more matte, so made for a good test base) as it did not lift up base products.
The consistency was more in line with a traditional cream blush; it was emollient and felt wet to the touch in the compact, and it remained emollient when it was applied to my skin. It did not turn to powder as soon as it came into contact with my skin, but it did dry down for the most part. I felt like there was very fine, barely-there pearl through most shades (some had obvious shimmer) which gave the illusion of dewiness, because when I touched the final application, it seemed dry to the touch but absolutely had that "natural-looking"--read: skin-like--finish advertised.
They wore between eight and nine hours before fading a bit, and they seemed to have a nice, even fade beyond that range. They seemed water-resistant as they didn't bleed when I ran swatches under water, but you could certainly wipe the product away with light rubbing so it wasn't impervious (resistant implies just that, resistant, but not impervious!).
Browse all of our Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush swatches.
Octyldodecanol, Dicalcium Phosphate, Isononyl Isononanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Mica, Synthetic Wax, Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-2, Polyethylene, Silica Silylate, Nylon-12, Candelilla Cera/Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax/Cire De Candelilla, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Tocopheryl Acetate, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Tin Oxide, Talc, Bht, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Iron Oxides (Ci 77491, Ci 77492), Red 7 Lake (Ci 15850), Blue 1 Lake (Ci 42090).