5 Easy Tips for Achieving Natural-Looking Blush

May 30, 2023
Alanna Martine Kilkeary
By: Alanna Martine Kilkeary | Makeup.com by L'Oréal
person applying blush to the apple of their cheek

Applying blush can be intimidating, especially if you’re not after a bold look, but the right application technique makes it easy to achieve a natural-looking flush. It’s all a matter of experimenting with blush placement (like whether you prefer the product on the apples of your cheeks or your cheekbones) and textures (like powder or serum formulas). Ahead, check out pro tips for making blush appear more natural — plus, some of our favorite blush products. Keep reading for our tips on how to make your blush look more natural, plus some expert insight from NYC-based makeup artist Judi Gabbay.

Use a Fluffy Brush for Powders

It’s important to choose your tools wisely when applying blush — round, fluffy brushes are ideal for evenly blending out a pigmented powder. New York City-based makeup artist Judi Gabbay echoes this sentiment and recommends looking for a brush with densely packed bristles. We love the IT Cosmetics Love Beauty Fully Flawless Blush Brush. Gabbay’s favorite is the Bdellium Tools Golden Triangle 959 Powder Blending Brush. If you’re using a creamier product, your fingers are your secret blending weapon, or a beauty sponge, like the L’Oréal Paris Makeup Infallible Blend Artist Makeup Blender

IT Cosmetics Love Beauty Fully Flawless Blush Brush, Loreal Paris Infallible Sponge

Tap Off Excess Pigment

Remember that a little goes a long way with highly pigmented products. Dip your brush into the blush compact and tap off any excess before application. Use light, sweeping motions across the cheek for sun-kissed skin, and work the blush outwards until you get a diffused finish. If you accidentally get a little heavy-handed, blend again with a clean brush, or add a dusting of translucent powder to soften the color. For a pigmented pick, opt for the L’Oréal Paris Infallible 24HR Fresh Wear Soft Matte Blush.

Placement Is Key

Experiment with what you prefer on your face shape. If you have a round or square face, you might like the draping technique, or placing blush on top of the cheekbones to elongate them. If you have a long or oval face, apply blush to the apples of your cheeks (the roundest parts when you smile) to add subtle width. 

Experiment With Textures

“For a more natural look, using a cream matte blush is the way to go,” says Gabbay. The formulas offer a sheer wash of color that you can dab on with your fingertips or a sponge. We love the NYX Professional Makeup Bare With Me Luminous Cheek Serum for a bronzy, sun-kissed glow. The Urban Decay Hydromaniac Dewy Liquid Blush is another one of our favorites; it melts into the skin and comes in six flattering shades, including pretty apricot and berry hues. We also love the Kulfi Beauty Mehndi Moment Long-Lasting Radiant Cream Blush for a radiant, pigmented finish.

NYX Professional Makeup Bare With Me Luminous Cheek Serum, urban decay hydromaniac blush, kulfi cream blush

Add Highlighter

If you’re aiming for a glowy look, grab some highlighter to create a radiant, light-reflecting finish.  We love the Valentino Beauty Go-Clutch Refillable Radiant Setting Powder or the Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight. Dab it on the high points of your face for added dewiness.
valentino beauty highlighter clutch, rare beauty highlighter
Photographer: Chaunte Vaughn

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