Why is natural-looking blush so hard to do?
In the grand scheme of makeup application, it’s not like eyeshadow, where sometimes you’re blending four or five colors on your lids. Blush is usually just one shade on a relatively large area. It’s not as precise as placing color in the upper crease, so why is it so freakin’ hard to make blush look natural?
This gave me a hard time for years and still does from time to time, but here are two tips that really help. When I learned these, it was like the clouds had parted, and I heard angels singing, AHHHHH! More importantly, I wasn’t rollin’ around town anymore with two tiny circles on my cheeks (WHICH, OMG, I’VE TOTALLY DONE!).
Anyway, here are two things I do when I’m going for the most natural-looking blush.
Reduce any redness, and prep your canvas first
This one is really helpful for the most natural-looking blush. As opposed to just applying blush over bare skin, always start by evening out your skin tone as much as possible by concealing any areas of redness at all (like from pimples) on and around your cheeks, because you want your base as close to flawless as you can possibly get it before you apply your blush on top.
If you put something pigmented like a blush on top of an area that already has color — like on top of a red pimple — your blush will emphasize the area even more, so prep your canvas first. Apply your foundation and/or concealer wherever you need it, and then apply your blush. That way it’ll look like a natural sweep of color going across your cheeks.
Apply your face powder before your blush
The next tip is to apply your powder blush (if a powder blush is your particular blush poison, and it happens to be mine) on top of your face powder, instead of the other way around. So, if you’re starting with primer, you’d apply your foundation and concealer next, then your face powder, and then your blush.
Because products like to latch on to creams, and foundations are creamy products, if you apply a powder blush directly on top of your foundation, any areas that have more product on them will grab more of your blush, leaving with you some uneven patches of more intense blush color on your cheeks.
Instead, if you apply your face powder on top of your foundation, your foundation will grab the face powder first (instead of your blush).
One benefit is that because your face powder color is probably similar to your foundation color, it won’t appear uneven. Another benefit is that the face powder gives your powder blush a base layer with a similar texture (a powder), like a cushion, and generally it’s easier to blend similar textures together, like creams with creams, and powders with powders.
That layer of face powder acts as a cushion for your blush and makes it much easier to scoot those blush grains along and blend them out. The result is more natural-looking blush. 🙂
All about that leggings life