The A to Z Guide to Coral Blush — Peachy-Coral to Coral-Red!

If I had a weakness in cheek color, it would be coral.  Whether it’s a lighter coral with lots of shimmer or intense coral that borders on copper, I have a weakness for all of them. I could probably write a dissertation on all things coral (I don’t know about having the energy for that, though!). We’re entering another hot week here in Arizona, which always puts me in a summer mindset and leads me to think about my good friend coral blush!

So, I thought I’d share some of the best performing, permanent shades I’ve tested and reviewed… I would love to hear about your favorites in the comments, but don’t forget to chime on the official Best Coral Blush page!

Lighter Corals

Light corals can sometimes get into a peachier territory, and for some skin tones, they end up more as brightening or highlighting shades. I’ve tried to include an assortment of options across price points, shimmer-levels, and both pinker and more orange-leaning hues. I often use these types of shades as highlighters or as a highlighting blush (something that highlights and adds color — not something that’s necessarily sheer!).

Pro tip: If you have an arsenal of highlighters, you can easily layer a highlighter over a darker coral blush to get the effect of a lighter coral! For the lightest effect, apply the highlighter first and then use a fan brush to delicately apply a coral blush slightly lower (and then blended into the highlighter). This creates the definition of a blush while marrying the two together.

Blushes like Make Up For Ever B302, Hourglass Diffused Heat / Incandescent Electra, Essence Satin Coral, and Persona Georgia are stellar picks for those who like more of a skin-like finish–not flat and not quite matte. Dior’s Hologlam has more contrasting shimmer, so it can be a way to wear a coral base without it reading as warm-toned (alternatively: layer a lavender, purple, or cooler pink highlighter over a coral blush you already own!).

Sydney Grace’s highlightersSun Kissed Peach, Cantata, Peach Kisses shown here–are intensely pigmented and shimmery, and they tend to read true-to-pan but a little brighter.


01.

01. Magnetic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B+

NYX Magnetic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium, peachy-coral with warm undertones and a frosted, golden sheen. It had good...

NYX Magnetic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium, peachy-coral with warm undertones and a frosted, golden sheen. It had good...

04.

04. Sun Kissed Peach Sydney Grace

Sydney Grace

PPermanent. $9.00/0.25 oz.

A

Sydney Grace Sun Kissed Peach Highlighter ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, light pink-peach base with light, peachy-gold shimmer that gave it a more...

Sydney Grace Sun Kissed Peach Highlighter ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, light pink-peach base with light, peachy-gold shimmer that gave it a more...

05.

05. Cantata Sydney Grace

Sydney Grace

PPermanent. $9.00/0.25 oz.

A

Sydney Grace Cantata Highlighter ($12.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, light-medium peachy-pink base with a strong, gold metallic shimmer. The base...

Sydney Grace Cantata Highlighter ($12.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, light-medium peachy-pink base with a strong, gold metallic shimmer. The base...

06.

06. Peach Kisses Sydney Grace

Sydney Grace

PPermanent. $9.00/0.25 oz.

A

Sydney Grace Peach Kisses Highlighter ($12.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a light-medium pink base (with warmer, yellow undertones) with warm, golden shimmer...

Sydney Grace Peach Kisses Highlighter ($12.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a light-medium pink base (with warmer, yellow undertones) with warm, golden shimmer...

10.

10. Alba Natasha Denona

Natasha Denona

PPermanent. $38.00/0.35 oz.

A-

Natasha Denona Alba Duo Glow ($38.00 for 0.35 oz.) is a light-medium pink-coral with warm, golden shimmer for a luminous sheen. It had good...

Natasha Denona Alba Duo Glow ($38.00 for 0.35 oz.) is a light-medium pink-coral with warm, golden shimmer for a luminous sheen. It had good...

11.

11. Satin Coral Essence

Essence

PPermanent. $2.99/0.17 oz.

A-

Essence Satin Coral Satin Touch Blush ($2.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a medium, coral-orange with warm undertones and a satin finish. The more I blended and...

Essence Satin Coral Satin Touch Blush ($2.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a medium, coral-orange with warm undertones and a satin finish. The more I blended and...

12.

12. Georgia Persona

Persona

PPermanent. $22.00/0.18 oz.

A

Persona Georgia Super Blush ($22.00 for 0.18 oz.) is a brighter pop of medium coral-orange with strong, warm undertones and a semi-matte finish. It...

Persona Georgia Super Blush ($22.00 for 0.18 oz.) is a brighter pop of medium coral-orange with strong, warm undertones and a semi-matte finish. It...

Medium Corals

I have another 15 picks for more light-medium to medium-depth coral highlighters and blushes (though, most of these are officially blush shades).  Again, I’ve tried to provide a list of high-performing options across price points, finishes, and undertones so that you can rediscover a favorite you already own (or something similar!) or narrow down to something on your wish list.

Pro tip: For those who feel they’re too heavy-handed, try a less-dense brush–a highlighting brush, fan brush, etc.–to pick up and to apply color.  It is always easier to build up color than it is to take down, but if you ever go too heavy, here are two tricks: 1) use leftover foundation (on a brush or sponge) and gently dab over the edges to soften, 2) dust translucent or flesh-toned loose powder to soften.

Blushes like Make Up For Ever B308, B210, and B314 offer really skin-like finishes with really nice vibrancy and true-to-pan color.   Cream blushes like Fenty’s Strawberry Drip along with ColourPop Totes / Sidewayz have both brighter color paired with almost dewy finishes that are perfect for getting all the summer vibes.


01.

01. Bloom Time Wet 'n' Wild

Wet 'n' Wild

PPermanent. $4.99/0.19 oz.

A
06.

06. My Sun and Stars Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $7.00/0.21 oz.

B+

Colour Pop My Sun and Stars Pressed Powder Blush ($7.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a bright, medium-dark pink-coral with subtle, warm undertones to its base and...

Colour Pop My Sun and Stars Pressed Powder Blush ($7.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a bright, medium-dark pink-coral with subtle, warm undertones to its base and...

07.

07. Hot Mama theBalm

theBalm

PPermanent. $21.00/0.25 oz.

A+
08.

08. Mykonos Buxom

Buxom

PPermanent. $22.00/0.13 oz.

A

Buxom Mykonos Wanderlust Primer-Infused Blush ($22.00 for 0.13 oz.) is a bright, medium coral with a balance of pink and orange undertones and faint,...

Buxom Mykonos Wanderlust Primer-Infused Blush ($22.00 for 0.13 oz.) is a bright, medium coral with a balance of pink and orange undertones and faint,...

13.

13. Totes Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $8.00/0.33 oz.

A

Colour Pop Totes Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a rich coral with warm undertones and a barely-there pearl paired with a dewy finish. The blush...

Colour Pop Totes Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a rich coral with warm undertones and a barely-there pearl paired with a dewy finish. The blush...

14.

14. Sidewayz Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $8.00/0.33 oz.

A

Colour Pop Sidewayz Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a medium coral with warm undertones, but leans pinker, and warmer, coppery-gold pearl. It had...

Colour Pop Sidewayz Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a medium coral with warm undertones, but leans pinker, and warmer, coppery-gold pearl. It had...

15.

15. Summer Love Sydney Grace

Sydney Grace

PPermanent. $9.00/0.25 oz.

A

Sydney Grace Summer Love Pressed Blush ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, medium-dark orange-coral with warm undertones and fine, golden shimmer that...

Sydney Grace Summer Love Pressed Blush ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a bright, medium-dark orange-coral with warm undertones and fine, golden shimmer that...

Rich Corals

The deeper a coral gets, the closer it gets to orange, copper, or red! I’ve included a mix of medium-dark to deep coral hues (a few that are officially categorized as copper or red, actually!).

Pro tip: A color can look less and less like it does in the pan when applied with a lighter hand or is really blended out (e.g. applied more sheerly). It’s important to assess what color you want on your cheeks and not just what a blush might look like heavily swatched or in the pan.

Heavy swatches are great for showing color payoff, undertone, and finish, but you will want to look at an as-applied or really blended out swatch to see how the base comes out.  A good example is with red blush: bluer-based reds can look pinker when sheered out instead of true red!

Products like Flower Beauty’s Melon and ColourPop Mic Drop offer a cream/liquid format, which can be more forgiving when working with a deeper hue.  I also find that cream formulas can look a bit truer-to-color even when sheered out.

I’m a huge fan of MAC’s Extra Dimension Blush range for a blush that offers a luminous finish with color impact (Cheeky Bits, Telling Glow, Faux Sure).  These also work well as highlighting blushes (depending on your skin tone).


03.

03. Invite Only Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $8.00/0.33 oz.

B+

Colour Pop Invite Only Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a medium-dark, coral-red with faint pearl and a subtle sheen. It was less dewy compared to...

Colour Pop Invite Only Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a medium-dark, coral-red with faint pearl and a subtle sheen. It was less dewy compared to...

04.

04. Melon Flower Beauty

Flower Beauty

PPermanent. $9.99/0.3 oz.

A

Flower Beauty Melon Blush Bomb ($9.99 for 0.3 oz.) is a medium-dark, true coral with warm undertones and a dewy sheen. It appeared slightly pinker...

Flower Beauty Melon Blush Bomb ($9.99 for 0.3 oz.) is a medium-dark, true coral with warm undertones and a dewy sheen. It appeared slightly pinker...

11.

11. Mic Drop Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $8.00/0.33 oz.

A+

Colour Pop Mic Drop Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a bright, vivid pink-coral with subtle, warm undertones and a natural finish. It had rich...

Colour Pop Mic Drop Blush Stix ($8.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a bright, vivid pink-coral with subtle, warm undertones and a natural finish. It had rich...

12.

12. Yes She Did Colour Pop

Colour Pop

PPermanent. $8.00/0.15 oz.

A

Colour Pop Yes She Did Super Shock Cheek ($8.00 for 0.15 oz.) is a medium-dark, reddish-copper with warm undertones and a matte finish. It had a...

Colour Pop Yes She Did Super Shock Cheek ($8.00 for 0.15 oz.) is a medium-dark, reddish-copper with warm undertones and a matte finish. It had a...

13.

13. Thinking of You Sydney Grace

Sydney Grace

PPermanent. $9.00/0.25 oz.

A

Sydney Grace Thinking of You Pressed Blush ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a rich, deep coral with strong, warm orange undertones and a matte finish. It was...

Sydney Grace Thinking of You Pressed Blush ($9.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a rich, deep coral with strong, warm orange undertones and a matte finish. It was...

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Lots of lovely picks! Some of which I have (Essence Satin Coral, Maybelline Rose Gold Molton Highlighter, Flower Beauty Melon) or intend to get. Then there’s a few shades of coral that I have that, while not amongst these, I really enjoy using and love the look of too: MAC Spring Flock, Nars Fetishised, HG Lucid Glow. Coral blush (and lipstick!) always feel like they herald the arrival of summer!

Some really pretty blushes here. I also really like the Milani Luminoso, which I think would fit in very well with some of these others. I really wanted to Sydney Grace Peach Kisses but I couldn’t find it on their site. (so I picked up some others)

Such beautiful picks. Anyone who is fair and uses Hologlam, what brush are you getting the best payoff with? My husband got this for me for Valentine’s Day (what timing!!!), and in spite of how pale I am, I don’t even look like I am wearing blush when it is on. Any tips or tricks are appreciated, because it swatches beautifully.

I can’t speak to Hologlam specifically (and I don’t have fair skin), BUT I have found that when you’re looking for a ‘heavier’ powder application, best options are natural brushes, or a makeup sponge or puff. Using a sponge or puff can be a bit trickier to blend out, but you can use a brush around the edges to help with that. Hope that helps!

This is just fabulous Christine – what a stunning array of coral blushes!. I think coral shades are the most flattering on all skintones and what I most like about the above list is how they are all subtly different. I tend to hover between the light and medium shades, although for a blush I would go for Hot Mama and Peach Pop.

Coral just isn’t a great colour on me for the most part. I have Hot Mama (it came in the Balmbini palette, so wasn’t a choice) and have considered buying Dior’s 999 for quite some time but never took the plunge. But years and years ago, Sephora had an amazingly affordable cheek trio of their Los Cabos bronzer, and 2 blushes – Blushing Pink, which I thought would be an all-time favourite, and Coral Punch, which I figured I’d never use but which turned out to be the huge surprise, in a good way. It leans more toward the pinky-red side of coral – a lot like 999 or Strawberry Drip. And seeing this post, I’m thinking I’ll dig that trio out and start using it some more.

Coral (and orange) is my big weakness too! In particular when we are talking about lipsticks? Do you planning to do something similar about lipsticks? In that case I bet you that I’m going to have most of the shades you’ll mentioned, no matter if light or deep coral, if pinky, orangish or reddish corals, I have almost every shade! About blushes, I tend to gravitate toward medium and dark corals. I’m not deep by any means, I’m light, l medium when I got tan (which it’s quite easy for me) but most of the blushes meant for light skin, barely show up on me…

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!