6 Blush Tips You Need to Know


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Applying blush may seem like a basic makeup technique, but it’s surprisingly easy to mess it up—and, when blush goes on wrong, it’s one of the most noticeable makeup snafus you can make. On the other hand, when you get it right, the effect can be stunning. Here’s how you can avoid the most common blush blunders and transform your complexion for a beautiful natural glow.

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Expand Your Shade Range

If you've been using the same shade of blush for the last decade, it's time to expand your repertoire. Opt for a versatile palette that lets you maximize your options and custom-blend colors. Experimenting outside of your normal go-to blush color can lead to beautiful results and give you options for different outfits, seasons, and makeup looks!

Avoid Over-Applying Blush

Going overboard with your blush is easy to do. To be sure your blush is more on the natural side, or even a bit dramatic but without being overly intense, shake out the extra powder from the brush before stroking it on. Clean your blush brush at least once a month to prevent color buildup.

You can also soften a too-heavy blush application by blending a light layer of loose or pressed powder on top of it. Paula's trick is to first put the blush color on the brush and then dab it lightly into her pressed powder before applying.

Another option is to use a foundation brush or sponge that has a bit of leftover foundation on it to smooth and sheer your blush out.

To help avoid over-application of your blush in the first place, use a soft, fluffy brush that grabs the color evenly and builds intensity slowly.

Ditch the "Smile-as-You-Apply" Technique

Despite what you may have been told, this technique isn't always your best bet for a natural look. As you smile, your cheeks rise up, changing the shape of your face. When you stop smiling and your cheeks return to their normal position, your carefully applied blush ends up being lower on your face and closer to your mouth.

Next time, smile first to find the apples of your cheeks, relax your face, and then apply the blush while your face is at rest. It may seem like a subtle change, but it can make all the difference in your finished makeup look.

Fake a Face-Lift

Try this easy, two-step trick to give your cheeks a lifted and sculpted appearance. Apply a matte, neutral-tone bronzer in the hollow of your cheeks to define the bone structure. Above your bronzer, add a touch of blush just to the upper cheeks. That's it—in less than a minute, the result is a soft, realistic "lifted look" contour for your face.

Enliven Skin with Instant Radiance

Enlivening skin with a soft, luminous blush or highlighting cheekbones with a luminizing product can do wonders for making dull skin look supple again. Opt for softly glowing, finely milled shimmer, as opposed to glitter-speckled products, for a more natural healthy radiance. Save the glitter for that evening out when you want a more sparkly special effect.

Have Glowing Skin Before You Apply Makeup

For even better results, you can boost your skin's natural dewy radiance with a blend of our RESIST Moisture Renewal Oil Booster and RESIST Hyaluronic Acid Booster.

Prepping with these products helps revitalize skin for a smoother, supple, and hydrated luminosity. More to love, their impressively light textures absorb quickly for all-day comfort under your makeup.

The Best Skin of Your Life Starts Here: The same type of in-depth research used to create this article is also used to formulate Paula’s Choice Skincare products. You’ll find products for all skin types and a range of concerns, from acne and sensitive skin to wrinkles, pores, and sun damage. With Paula’s Choice Skincare, you can get (and keep) the best skin of your life! See Paula's Choice Makeup.

About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to busting beauty myths and helping you solve your skincare frustrations with research-supported expert advice—so you'll have the facts you need to take the best possible care of your skin.

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