If there’s one makeup product that can inject life into your skin in seconds, it’s blusher. Finding the best blush for your skin tone and type is easier than you might think, and while it has taken a backseat in many of our makeup bags over the years, it’s actually one of the easiest ways to look radiant and healthy.
In fact, there is science to back that up. We naturally flush when we’re excited or aroused, and it was our friends in the Georgian period who first noticed that applying some faux “rouge” was a rather nifty way to suggest robust health. Studies have since shown that a little flush on the cheeks indeed indicates our wellbeing to others.
“Blush is like an accessory,” says makeup artist Gucci Westman, whose Baby Stick Blush is an excellent melt-into-skin formula. “My advice is to match it to your mood and the statement you want to make that day – how much colour do you want to see?”
There isn’t one single place to wear it. While many of us buff a cream or powder formula onto the apples of our cheeks, that’s just the classic method. Others prefer to wear higher on the cheeks for a lifting effect, and some even apply on the bridge of the nose to recreate a sun-kissed feel (especially good in the summer months). The modern way is to consider how your skin naturally flushes – whether around the temples or below your apples – and applying to those areas, buffing and blending in for a seamless, natural finish.
Be it a bold coral, soft pink or warm peach, a bit of colour can make you look healthier and brighter with minimal effort. Here, Vogue rounds up some of the very best blush products on the market, from classics like Glossier’s Cloud Paint to new and exciting formulas like the Nars Air Matte Blush. From powders to creams, shop the very best blushers below.
Best Blush For Olive Skin: Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Stick Blush – No21
A formula that quickly melts into skin, this Chanel blush stick is an excellent one to keep in your handbag at all times and creates a healthy, dewy finish.
£35, available at Boots.com.
Best Blush For Fair Skin: Glossier Cloud Paint
A creamy, blendable cheek colour that instantly melts into the skin, Glossier’s Cloud Paint is inspired by New York sunsets. The Dusk shade is universally flattering and works particularly well on paler skins.
£15, available at Glossier.com.
Best Drugstore Blush: E.L.F. Primer Infused Blush Always Rosy
Infused with primer, this blush won’t budge and it offers great colour pay-off, particularly for the price.
£6, available at Boots.com.
Best Blush Stick: Westman Atelier Baby Cheeks Blush Stick
A swoosh-on-and-go cream stick, this blush works beautifully on all skin tones. Made by Gucci Westman, who has worked on countless supermodels’ faces over the years, it’s formulated with gentle ingredients and Ayurvedic oils to keep skin clear and healthy.
£44, available at Cultbeauty.co.uk.
Best Cream Blush: Nars Air Matte Blush
Super easy to blend, this new Nars blush is soft-focus make-up in a pot and makes a natural flush a breeze. It might even rival the brand’s iconic Orgasm blush…
£25, available at Lookfantastic.com.
Best Blush For Oily Skin: IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Blush
Within this oily-skin-friendly blush are blurring pigments which help soften the appearance of pores and blemishes, while brightening your complexion.
£24, available at Cultbeauty.co.uk.
Best Matte Blush: MAC Powder Blush
For a truly phenomenal shade range, look to MAC’s much-loved Powder Blush, which has hues for every skin tone. For a classic pink, try Pink Swoon.
£19.50, available at Lookfantastic.com.
Best Blush For Dry Skin: Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm
Those with dry skin should look out for creamy blushers, like this one, which is oil-free but contains ingredients like squalane to hydrate.
£21, available at Lookfantastic.com.
Best Blush For Medium Skin: Charlotte Tilbury Cheek To Chic Blusher
Charlotte Tilbury’s Cheek To Chic blush compact features two shades, with the outer one designed to be swirled over the cheeks and the core shade there to provide a pop of colour at the apples. Love is the Drug is a Vogue office favourite.
£30, available at Charlottetilbury.com.
Best Powder Blush: Vieve Sunset Blush
If you know influencer and make-up artist Jamie Genevieve, you’ll know of her ability to create the most flawless beauty looks around – and this blusher is just one of the products from her brand, Vieve, that she uses often. Imparting a soft, matte finish, it delivers brilliant colour that can be built up or blended in depending on your preference.
£23, available at Cultbeauty.co.uk.
Best Blush For Dark Skin: Dior Couture Long-Wear Powder Blush – 999
Darker skin tones will love this pigmented Dior blush, which imparts a beautiful flush while staying put all day.
£36, available at Boots.com.
Best Blush For A Dewy Finish: Chantecaille Cheek Gelée
With its unique, gel-like texture, Chantecaille’s Cheek Gelée in Happy blends easily into the apples of the cheeks for a seamless wash of healthy-looking colour.
£40, available at Spacenk.com.
Best Long-Lasting Blush: Benetint
A lip and cheek stain famous for its staying power, Benetint is also a brilliant blusher for those who like a rosy flush. It’s cult for a reason.
£25.50, available at Lookfantastic.com.
Best Blush For Holiday Skin: Tom Ford Sheer Cheek Duo
This blush duo is the perfect partnership. Both shades offer a light-reflective finish for a little shimmer and shine come nightfall – and are especially good set against healthy, holiday skin. Mix them together, wear alone or apply as eyeshadow.
£62, available at Lookfantastic.com.
Best Blush Palette: Anastasia Beverly Hills Blush Trio
One palette with three blush shades? Yes please. Use each colour alone or layer them up for a hue totally bespoke to you and a blush that will look totally natural.
£30, available at Cultbeauty.co.uk.