If you make one small beauty change this season, make it this one …
There’s been a definite shift in how we wear blush. Powders have given way to balmy sticks of soft colour, liquid and cream textures. And this is good news if you’re not 25 anymore. The advantages are many – first, we avoid another layer of powder, which has a habit of migrating into lines and sitting there. Powder can look flat on the skin.
Secondly, blushers are nearly always made predominantly of talc – look at the ingredients list and talc is invariably listed first. Do you really want a layer of talc sitting on your skin for the day? Most of us wouldn’t even put it on our bodies any more – that ended with our grandmothers’ generation. A mineral, made of silicon and magnesium silicate, often combined with corn starch, talc is known to absorb moisture and keep skin dry. Which isn’t what I want on my face.
It’s a bit of a revelation, once you make the change. A tinted balm or cream texture is such an easy, flattering way to add a little colour to the skin, not to mention more natural-looking. It’s all about that elusive healthy glow, and light-catching sheen. You’ll find that people compliment your skin and tell you how well you look. And this is precisely why Bobbi Brown’s Jones Road Miracle Balm is doing so well – that combination of colour (from bronze to soft pink) and moisture is a winner.
Plus a balm stick is quick to swipe on, handy to take with you, and nearly impossible to get wrong – just blend in well. We’re seeing more and more “lip and cheek tint” formulas, with a dual purpose, which is good from both a complexion point of view, and an environmental one, if it’s helping to cut down on the number of products we consume.
Here are the non-powder blushes we’re using, and finding most flattering:
THE LUXE ONE
Westman Atelier Baby Cheeks. This is expensive, but one of the absolute best. Not mad on the name – a bit weird – but the subtlety of the shades (I like Petal), and the texture, are both perfect. Glamorous yet practical. €52, at Brown Thomas.
THE SUMMER ONE
Chanel’s summer collection includes this luscious Baume Essentiel in Rouge Frais. I use their Baume Essentiel religiously, and this soft shade (less intense than it looks) is an instant skin pick-me-up. €42, at counters nationwide.
For summer blush styling tips see thegloss.ie.
THE CLASSIC ONE
Nars are unquestionably good at blusher – their Orgasm shade is widely flattering. And we’ve loved their multi-use stick The Multiple for years. The latest iteration, in a soft pink case (limited-edition), comes in two shades, Orgasm and Orgasm Rush, which is a bronzier take. It remains light and lovely to use, and versatile – use on eyes too. Not so appealing is the euro price – €47 compared with £33stg feels hefty (though I’ve spotted it on www.lookfantastic.ie for €34.95).
Gwendoline Christie wears NARS at The Met Gala 2023.
THE NEW ONE
Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Matte Beauty Light Wand (€38) liquid blush comes in four matte shades, delivering buildable colour, and contains light-reflecting pigments. Shades riff around the bestselling Pillow Talk soft pink-nude shade, with pink, peach, rose and raspberry hues.www.charlottetilbury.com
THE VERSATILE ONE
The Body Shop Freestyle Multitasking Colour is a versatile tube of paint in ten shades (I love cherry red Real), to use on eyes, lips and cheeks. Just go very, very steady – you only need a tiny amount, and blend in well. You can always add more. €12, www.thebodyshop.com.
THE FUTURE ONE
We’re intrigued to try Afterglow Liquid Blush, on the way from Nars in July (€37), with a rabbit-foot applicator to dab on.