I try not to get too caught up with seasonal colour categorizations, because life is too short not to wear products you like whenever you want. I’m generally more of a fan of arbitrarily-designated cool weather colours, anyway, which means that I’ll be wearing them more heavily than normal now that we’re moving into fall weather. (The cold has finally settled in here in Toronto, and I’ve been wearing my fall jacket regularly.)
I’ve also become something of a blush fiend in the past year or so. It never used to be a product that interested me much, but I guess my lipstick obsession has trickled over into enjoying all types of colour cosmetics. While rifling through my blush collection, I realized how excited I was to pull in some of my fall colours, and thought I’d share my favourite fall blushes. (Which, of course, can be worn year-round as well. Duh.)
Guerlain Rose Aux Joues Blush in Wonder Violette
Wonder Violette is a soft plum with a satin finish. It’s a soft, blendable texture that applies evenly. It has a very strong floral scent, as is common in luxury makeup products. The packaging is okay – it’s not as gorgeous as my Guerlain eyeshadow palette, but it’s very hefty and sturdy. I do wish high end brands would stop putting unusable brushes into their compacts; it just increases the size of the packaging and adds absolutely no value. Of course, the price is absurd. As with basically all of my luxury makeup items, I purchased this with Optimum points and have no problem saying that, while I use it often and think it’s a solid product, it’s just not worth the big bucks. You can get blushes that are just as good or better for significantly less. Worth some Optimum points if you’re into Guerlain, but probably not worth $60. (Okay, definitely not worth $60.) Sometimes I absurdly have Optimum point-spending regret with certain products; this is not one of them. I really love the colour and the formula is solid, and I’m glad I own it. I just can’t wrap my head around the price tag.
The Guerlain Rose Aux Joues blushes retail for $60 CAD for 0.22oz of product, or $272.73 CAD per oz.
H&M Pure Radiance Powder Blusher in Cherry
This is an amazing magenta colour unlike anything in my collection. I love to pair it with MAC Rebel and other magenta lipstick shades. It also looks great used an eyeshadow, and is in fitting with the current red/magenta/orange eyeshadow trend. Unfortunately, as I’m very fair and this is a deep and pigmented colour, it’s slightly hard to work with on the cheeks. Applied with a regular blush brush it generally veers into clown territory, but with a stipple brush it’s pretty patchy. This is probably not helped by the fact that it’s quite a dry and stiff formula – that is, it doesn’t blend easily. That said, the colour is stunning and would undoubtedly be better suited to deeper skintones. I also like the packaging for the pricepoint – it’s just flimsy, lightweight plastic, but the octagonal shape is interesting and I can’t complain since it costs a mere $12.99.
H&M Pure Radiance Powder Blushers retail for $12.99 for 0.18oz of product, or $72.17 CAD per oz.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure
To be fair, this is my most-used and favourite blush of all time because I find the colour immensely flattering and so versatile. If I’m not sure what blush to use, I pop on some Mood Exposure. If I’m travelling, I only need to bring Mood Exposure because I know it’ll go with everything. But the plummy mauve shade lends itself well to winter, I think. And, of course, the formula is exceptional: soft as a baby’s bottom without being powdery, blendable, and long-wearing. In the pan this blush isn’t worth paying attention to, but it brings the cheeks to life in the most glowy way.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes retail for $45 CAD for 0.15oz of product, or $300 CAD per oz.
NARS Blush in Sin
The first time I used this cool, purply plum with gold shimmer, I hated it. I thought it looked like a bruise on my cheeks. It was the first time I’d ever found a blush colour truly unflattering on me. But it’s grown on me quite a lot; I think it was just the starkness of a truly purple-toned plum that shocked me. If I use a light hand, it’s the perfect complement to berry lips. I like the formula of this blush a lot – it’s soft and fairly sheer, which is the level of pigmentation I prefer in a blush. This being my first NARS blush, I understand why people like them but I definitely wouldn’t say they’re the be-all-end-all. There are some really beautiful colours in the line and I can see myself purchasing more should I be particularly drawn to a certain shade, but the incredible softness and natural luminosity of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes puts them light years ahead of anything else I’ve tried.
NARS blushes retail for $38 CAD for 0.16 oz, or $237.50 per oz.
Sleek Blush in Flushed
I absolutely fell in love with this blush two years ago. It’s one of the first blushes I can remember thinking looked good on me. It’s a red-toned berry that gives me a gorgeous flush (an apt name!). The first year I had this, in the fall and winter of 2014/2015, I wore it constantly – and it’s been a well-loved addition to my fall blush rotation ever since. I also think this colour has enough depth that it would look stunning on darker skin – but with a light hand, it’s completely workable and lovely on my fair skin. (If you look up reviews of this specific shade you’ll see it gets rave reviews from women of colour, and with good reason.) It’s a slightly stiffer formula than, say, the Hourglass ALBs (but everything is stiffer than those!), but it has great colour payoff without being unworkably pigmented and blends easily on the cheeks. Plus, it’s an absolute steal and generously sized to boot. I’d pay much more for this formula than it’s going for.
Sleek blushes retail for £4.99 ($8.12 CAD at the current conversion rate) for 0.27 oz of product, or £18.48 ($30.07 CAD) per oz.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Natural Beauty
When I first got this bright reddish pink blush over three years ago, I thought it was a summer colour: surely something as bright and audacious as this wasn’t appropriate for the more subdued months of fall and winter? But then I realized that it gives the perfect “just stepped in from the cold” flush on my cheeks, making it perfectly-suited to winter. It’s different from your classic plummy winter blushes (which I have, of course, featured heavily in this post), but I think it works very well for this time of year – on my skin, at least. The name “Natural Beauty” for something this bright seems a bit silly, but, well, I don’t know about you, but I personally blush a reddish-pink, not any shade of plum. While my love for this colour is enough to bring this into my fall/winter rotation each year, I have to say I’m not a huge fan of the formula. It’s a very dry and stiff blush – not enough to truly impede working with it, but I prefer something much softer. This is easily the driest blush I own. The lasting power is reasonable, but not worth the hype it received back in the day. Once again, my Hourglass ALBs are the gold standard in terms of lasting power, and everything else.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blushes retail for $35 CAD for 0.2 oz, or $175 per oz.
And here are swatches of these six blushes:
By the way – I took these pictures in our guest room because it has great lighting conditions, and Jet was very intrigued by the whole process:
What are your favourite fall blushes? If I go to Murale soon to spend Optimum points, what NARS blush colours should I consider?
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