Rant & Rave: Cream Blush

Tell us what you love and hate about...

Cream Blush

I think it’s underrated, but it can be hard to do well! I like a good, buildable coverage blush that’s more of a cream-to-powder finish than true cream, as I do prefer it to set!

— Christine

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26 Comments

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I’m getting more into cream blushes and highlighters. So far I only own 1 cream blush, which is Fuchsia by Natasha Denona, and I really really really love it. I’ve tried the Cloud Paint gel/liquid blushes by Glossier and I couldn’t get into it. I definitely could have been using them wrong, so if anyone has any tips, please drop them b/c I still have all 4 shades and I get no use out of them.

Have you tried experimenting with placement? Try just the apples of your cheeks, for example, or adding a blended dot to each temple. One of my friends looks fantastic with cream blush lightly blended onto the underside of the apples of her cheeks. Or maybe one of these might work for a deeper, redder blush, while another placement works better with lighter, pearlier colors.

I feel like flattering placement varies more than with powder blush!

I’m not sure what you’ve tried already, but with the cloud paints I usually put a bit on the back of my hand and take a very flexible stippling blush and blend it in circular motions on my cheeks. But also, the cloud paints are pigmented and can be hard to blend out at times. If you want something a little easier to blend with your fingertips, I would try the Flower Beauty Blush Bombs. They have just the right amount of pigment and blend beautifully, and dare I say, easily, too!

Rave: It’s my favorite formula! I think it looks so much more natural than most powders, especially because I don’t wear foundation. As formulas are improving, more brands are dipping their toes into the waters, so to speak. Colour Pop has a wonderful, huge, diverse range of Super Shock Blushes, and Limecrime just announced a pretty colorful collection of cream-to-powder blushes.
Rant: There aren’t enough of them! Brands tend to focus so much more on powder formulas, and when brands do make cream blushes, they usually (but not always!) make the same handful of shades (peach, light pink, berry . . . repeat ad infinitum. I feel like they have more potential for nuance and dimension.

I tend to really enjoy cream blushes UNLESS I’ve forgotten to apply blush and already have powder on my face. Cream blush on top of any powder product is a bad time.

I’ve been using less foundation and powder in general though, and if I’m applying blush on top of a mix of bare skin and concealer, cream sits way better! Powder blush adheres differently to the bare skin versus foundation/ concealer covered areas.

Rave: If it’s ColourPop SS Cheek or a cream-to-powder formula like it, then I absolutely love it for the fact that it is much easier and quicker to blend out without it disturbing my foundation underneath or getting stuck in my pores…

Rant: Most *true* cream blushes fail pitifully on me. They tend to settle into my pores and look like peculiar peach/pink/berry freckles. Ugh!!! 😖

I LOVE CREAM BLUSHES. Love them. I like the look of powder blushes less and less on my cheeks now that I’m getting a little older and cream blushes fix. They also tend to wear longer on my skin; powder blushes fade so fast on me.

That said, a cream blush has to be in the right packaging (like the Flower Beauty Blush Bombs) and they have to blend easily. I have used a couple that kind of stick to where they were initially laid down and that’s not a good look, lol.

RAVES: A good cream blush is easy to use and is more natural looking than powders. I can apply them quickly with my fingers (except for ColourPop’s; I have to use a duo-fiber brush for those).

RANTS: They usually don’t play well with my oily skin: Most want to oxidize into garish colors, or just don’t last. Creams go bad faster than powder blushes. Most brands don’t have as much variety with their cream blushes, if they even make them at all.

I absolutely love cream blush, if it’s the right consistency. I don’t like it thin or if it doesn’t blend easily. I have the Burberry Hydrangea Pink and wear it all the freaking time. This tiny little pot, and worn almost daily, has lasted me a year and it’s still going strong (maybe 1/3 left). $30, but the value — are you kidding me? It’s a mid-to-deep, cool-tone pink (and I’m fair), if you’re interested. Check it out or the other Burberry cream blush colors. They call it Lip and Cheek Bloom (go figure — not good on the lips, imo). Anyway, I love this stuff. Love. It’s getting harder to find, though. Figures.

I had one cream blush pallette I bought from Tarte about two years ago. I loved how natural it looked but the wear time was awful…. I’ve never figured out how to use cream blush and having it last.

Rave: I like that they can “sink” into the skin and look like a natural flush

Rant: It’s difficult to find a formula that doesn’t feel too greasy on the skin. Actually, it’s hard to find them in general as most brands are more focused on their blush powder range

I have never really tried cream blushes as I think it would end up a mess on me, but I am pleased to read that there are a few on the market, namely Colour Pop that are quite good. I might just give them a try.

Love: I love how natural cream blushes can look, their ease of application, and how long they last. Cle de Peau’s cream blushes and Shiseido’s Minimalist Whipped Powder Blush are faves.
Hate: I hate how fast they can go bad- especially in tropical climates like where I live.

I’ve been wanting to try the Shiseido blushes! They have an impressive variety of colors, which is your favorite?

I seldom use a creme blush. I own 4 of them
Three inexpensive Sephora brands and one Nars. I like the Sephota best and a bargan price.

Rave: Love cream blush. Especially from a stick – had tons of the old Tarte formulation and it’s always so quick, dewy looking and mistake proof – swipe it on and blend on my way to the car if I have to. I’ve had some for years and years – they work as well as they did on day 1. Never met a cream blush that didn’t work for me.

I’ve never used a blush so creamy that it can be squeezed out of a tube, so I can’t comment on those. I have ColourPop blushes, a few Sephora domed cream blushes, and a couple Fenty stix: I love that they layer well, but as someone mentioned, you have to get the timing right. I don’t dislike anything about them. I look forward to wearing them alone when I get to a stage where I’m comfortable going without foundation.

Rave: I love the idea of cream blush. My favorite was a YSL that, of course, has been discontinued. It was like a cloud that would last through a hurricane. Because I have an embarassing number of lipsticks I don’t use, and I am in Project Pan mode, I am using a Kryolyn lipstick as a cream blush right now. Couldn’t stand it as a lippie, but Best. Cream. Blush. Ever. Stays on through everything and blends well. Not all lipsticks have treated me well that way as a blush, but this one is. And no waste!

Rant: My skin is changing from oil-slick to normal/combo (using Rx retinol) so it is hard to find a cream blush that 1) lasts an entire shift at work and works as hard as I do 2) is a flattering color for this snow white 3) puts up with hormones at that time of the month and 4) plays nice with changing skin types as I go through retinol.

For me, there’s no rant, it’s all rave. It looks real, which is all I want in a blush. And since I don’t wear foundation I never have to remember to put it on UNDER foundation! I only wish more brands carried it.

I like cream blush (and highlight) underneath a powder blush and highlight. Layering helps with the case of the disappearing blush.

I’ve ditched my powder blushes and agree with the raves that everyone has mentioned so far. My only rant is that you really begin to notice differences in wear from brand to brand and then sometimes even from color to color within the same brand.

Another rave is I can use my favorite earthy-pink-nude matte multistick as blush, eyeshadow, contour/bronzer when dabbed on and buffed out with a brush. I’m a cool tone and it was how we were taught to do it in the 70s/80s. I gave modern bronzers a try and they just don’t look right on me. If I want to be a little extra one day I layer a dab of another cream blush in a brighter color on my cheeks.

The only blushes I ever used now are cream/liquid. My favorites are more liquid; Glossier Cloud paints and the NARS liquid blushes. I put both on with my fingers, no brushes. I do also enjoy CP super shocks, but I find they do need a brush, and frankly I’m just over using brushes so I don’t use them often.

Rave! I like them for practicality and skin-like texture. Kjaer Weis and NARS Liquid have the best, most blendable, longest lasting formulas.

I can’t discredit powder blush altogether though. There are quite a bunch of very beautiful formulas nowadays. However, the tool-free application still wins me over.

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