When it comes to blush, which way do you swing? Cream or powder? Both have their pros and cons, so it ultimately comes down to personal preference and skin type. Or maybe even your particular mood on any given day.
Honestly, I swing back and forth between the two like a well-weighted pendulum. At the moment, I’m all about cream blush. (Shhhh, don’t let my powder faves hear that!)
So, what are the real differences anyway? Let’s take a look together, shall we?
Generally, cream blush is more hydrating. It creates a dewy finish to the skin.
Cream blush is fantastic for our more mature friends (not me, I still have the personality of a 12-year-old!) Even better if you have super-dry skin, too.
It will help smooth any fine lines and wrinkles. And the best thing is you can apply the cream blush with your fingers. This makes it a brilliant, quick, and easy option if you’re on the go.
On the other hand, powder blush is great if you or your client/model/actor have oily or combination skin. Why? Because it helps control shine and oil production. Powder has absorbing capabilities and is a perfect solution if your skin produces a lot of oil.
It can also last longer on the skin than a cream blush.
Powder blush can be applied with your favorite fluffy powder brush. This will take your precision to a whole new level, meaning that your product goes where you want it to, and will also build up the color intensity, too.
Ultimately, both cream and powder blush have their own unique benefits and it’s up to you to decide which one works best for you and your skin type.
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What Are The Differences Between Cream and Powder Blushes
Cream blush can give a more dewy, natural finish. They can also be better for dry skin (surprise, surprise).
Powder blushes have a matte finish and can be a better choice to use if you have oily skin.
Cream blushes are also easier to blend and build up color with. At the same time, powder blushes can offer more staying power and be longer-lasting.
The Pros of Cream Blush
- provides a natural-looking flush to the cheeks
- can give a soft and subtle, healthy glow to the skin
- is easy to blend
- is buildable, allowing you to control the intensity of the color
- is versatile and can be used on the cheeks, lips, and even eyes for a monochromatic look
- works well on dry skin as it doesn’t accentuate texture or dry patches in a way that powder blush sometimes can
- tends to have a longer staying power than powder blush, making it ideal for long days or special events.
Different Cream Blush Formulations
Stick cream blush formulations typically have a creamy texture that allows for easy application and blending. They are often formulated with skincare and moisturizing ingredients to provide a hydrating effect on the skin.
Stick cream blushes can offer a more natural finish to your complexion, too. The best thing is, they can be applied directly onto the cheeks for a subtle pop of color.
A stick cream blush is perfect for on-the-go touch-ups.
Cream blush palettes typically contain a variety of shades that can be used to add color to the cheeks.
Made with a creamy texture, cream blush palettes blend easily, providing a natural, dewy finish. A palette can give you options with various shades, and allow you to play a little with color range, or even get creative and wear a bunch of different shades at once.
Cream blushes are great if you have dry or mature skin as they provide hydration and a youthful glow.
Some of the most popular cream blush beauty products right now are NARS, Bobbi Brown, and Milk Makeup blushes. More on those later.
Cons of Cream Blush
Yes, cream blush is definitely not perfect. There are times when they can be harder to blend than powder blushes. Have you ever had a cream blush that just grabbed to your foundation weirdly?
- can be difficult to blend
- can grab to foundation products
- they can melt away quickly
- can fade or just disappear entirely into your skin
- may not be the best choice for oily skin
Additionally, cream blushes may not be the best option for those with acne-prone skin or those who prefer a matte finish.
Best Cream Blushes
Glossier Cloud Paint
The one and only Glossier Cloud Paint is available in 6 shades: Puff, Beam, Dusk, Haze, Storm, and Dawn. I have to admit, I love Haze, but they’re all pretty dreamy.
Glossier Cloud Paint is designed to be user-friendly, and blendable. It also gives a natural, flushed look to the cheeks.
Cloudpaint has a lightweight formula, so you can apply as much or as little as you like. It’s also a super-popular choice for those who want a natural, dewy glow.
Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek
Milk Makeup Lip and Cheek Tint is a hard-working, versatile product that can be used on both the lips and cheeks. Not only that, it’s also vegan, cruelty-free, and made with nourishing ingredients like mango butter and avocado oil.
Lip and Cheek Tint provides a natural-looking flush of color and comes in a variety of shades that complement a range of skin tones.
Shades available are Werk (dusty rose), Quickie (berry), and Swish (bright pink).
Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush
With a name like “Cheeks Out” you can only expect some standout shades in this Fenty Beauty product, right?
This cream blush is loved for its lightweight and buildable formula, which allows for a natural-looking flush on the cheeks.
Available in 10 shades that range from soft pinks and bold oranges to deep berry tones. This ensures you that there is a shade for every skin tone, including yours!
It’s also vegan, cruelty-free, and made without parabens, phthalates, or fragrance – this means its making it a perfect choice if you’ve got sensitive skin, too.
Tower 28 Beach Please Lip + Cheek Cream Blush
Tower 28 BeachPlease Lip and Cheek Cream Blush is a popular cosmetic product known for its versatility and ease of use.
It comes in 4 shades: Golden Hour, Happy Hour, Magic Hour, and Rush Hour.
The cream blush is vegan, cruelty-free, and free of common irritants like fragrance and essential oils.
Beach Please is formulated with green tea and aloe vera extracts that are guaranteed to soothe and hydrate your skin.
What makes this Tower 28 product such a star is its buildable formula that allows for a natural-looking flush, as well as its ability to be used on both lips and cheeks.
RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek
RMS Lip2Cheek is a versatile cream product designed for use on both lips and cheeks. Available in a variety of shades, including natural-looking neutrals, bright pops of color, and rich, bold tones.
RMS Lip2Cheek is a high-quality cheek cream product in its blend of nourishing organic ingredients, such as coconut oil, beeswax, and shea butter. These ingredients help to hydrate, soothe, and protect your skin. All while looking fab and glowy in the meantime!
The formula is also free of harmful chemicals and synthetic preservatives, which makes it a great choice for your skin.
RMS Lip2Cheek is a great option to consider if you’re looking for a versatility and a high-quality cream product that provides a natural flush of color to the lips and cheeks.
Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush
Another highly pigmented and blendable cream blush here from Rare Beauty – its Soft Pinch Liquid Blush.
A highly pigmented and blendable blush that provides a natural-looking flush to your cheeks.
Soft pinch Liquid is fantastic because it has a lightweight, long-lasting, and non-greasy formula that easily blends into the skin, giving you a seamless finish. The blush is available in eight shades ranging from soft peach to deep berry.
Ilia Beauty Multi-Stick is a versatile makeup product that can be used on the eyes, lips, and cheeks.
Notorious because of its natural and organic ingredients, easy application, and the ability to create a natural, dewy look.
The multi-stick is available in eight different shades: At Last, Cheek to Cheek, Dreamer, I Put a Spell on You, Lady Bird, Tenderly, All of Me, and A Fine Romance.
Danessa Myricks Colorfix 24-Hour Cream Color
Danessa Myricks 24hr Colorfix cream makeup is a highly-regarded product for its versatility and long-lasting wear.
Use it as a a lip color or a cheek color. Not enough versatility for you? Try using it for your eyeshadow or eyeliner as well! Talk about an all-rounder!
The formula is waterproof and smudge-proof, so it’s going to last and last and last.
The Colorfix line offers a wide range of shades to choose from, so the best lip and cheek shades will depend on your skin tone and personal preferences.
Some well-known, popular shades for cheeks include “Nude 5,” “Wild Orchid,” and “Phoenix,” while popular shades for lips include “Iconic,” “Gossip,” and “Cultured.”
The Pros of Powder Blush
There is definitely a soft spot in my heart for a good, old-fashioned powder blush.
Powder blush is quick and easy to apply and easy to blend well. There is no lack of choice when it comes to shade availability.
They also tend to be longer lasting and can give a more matte finish compared to cream or liquid blushes.
Cons of Powder
Some of the cons of powder blushes may include the potential for a less natural look compared to cream or liquid blushes. Hello, shimmer!
They can also give the appearance of sitting on the skin, and not actually being the natural flush of your skin.
And sometimes, a powder blush can end up emphasizing dry patches on your skin. This will only increase the need for touch-ups throughout the day.
However, the effectiveness of powder blushes can vary depending on your own individual skin type (or the person you’re making up) and your or their personal preferences.
Best Powder Blushes
NARS blush is popular for its smooth and blendable formula that provides a natural-looking flush to the cheeks.
Available in a wide range of shades, from soft pinks to bold corals and deep berries, to accommodate various skin tones and preferences.
Some of the brand’s most popular shades include “Orgasm,” “Deep Throat,” and “Dolce Vita.” I’m pretty sure we all have at least one NARS “Orgasm” in our kits, right?
Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso
Milani Baked Blush is available in 12 shades, ranging from soft pinks to deep berries and warm bronzes.
It is a highly pigmented, long-lasting, powder blush with a shimmery finish that gives a beautiful, soft glow to the cheeks.
It has a unique baked formula that makes it easy to blend and build up the color for a customizable look.
And to top that off, Milani Baked Blush is known for its affordable price point and high-quality performance, making it a favorite among makeup fans.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush is a highly popular makeup product because of its long-lasting formula and natural, buildable color.
It is made with mineral pigments from the Amazon River. 12 hr Blush is infused with Amazonian clay, which helps balance and nourish the skin. Great for oily skin as well.
It comes in a range of shades, including “Exposed” (a nude pink), “Paaarty” (a dusty pink), “Blissful” (a warm peach), and many more.
Maybelline Fit Me Blush
Maybelline Fit Me Blush is a popular powder blush product that is highly sought after by makeup lovers and professionals alike for its versatile and blendable formula. One of my drugstore faves, for sure.
It is one of the best-selling blushes on the market due to its affordable price point and wide range of shades to choose from.
Fit Me Blush comes in shades that cater to different skin tones, which allows users to find the perfect match for their complexion.
Some of the most sought after shades include Rose, Peach, Mauve, and Burgundy.
Overall, Maybelline Fit Me Blush is a great option for those looking for a high-quality blush that won’t break the bank.
Benefit Cosmetics GALifornia Blush
Benefit’s GALifornia blush is well-loved because it has a beautiful golden-pink shade that can complement a variety of skin tones.
I’m also a sucker for Benefit’s packaging of these powder products. OMG the Benefit Hoola Bronzer, swoon! This might be up there, though.
GALifornia also has a soft shimmer that adds a natural-looking glow to the skin. Its formula is blendable and buildable, making it easy to achieve the desired level of depth on your face.
MAC Powder Blush
There’s nothing like a MAC Powder Blush, right?
It’s so popular because of its high-quality formula that provides long-lasting color. MAC powder blush also gives a smooth, blendable finish.
Some of the most popular shades include “Melba,” “Peaches,” “Gingerly,” and “Pinch Me.” That doesn’t mean you should feel limited to these picks though – there’s plenty to choose from in the range. However, the most purchased shades can vary depending on individual preferences and skin tones.
Clinique Cheek Pop
Clinique Cheek Pop is a popular blush product that is much-loved due to its vibrant colors and long-lasting formula.
It’s great because it is easy to apply, blends seamlessly into the skin, and gives a natural-looking flush. The formula is also buildable, allowing you to achieve the desired intensity of color.
Clinique Cheek Pop comes in a range of shades, including Pansy Pop (a bright pink), Ginger Pop (a warm peachy shade), Cola Pop (a deep berry shade), and more. The shades are designed to complement a variety of skin tones, making it a versatile product for all.
NYX Professional Makeup Powder Blush
NYX Powder Blush is a popular makeup product loved by the masses because of its highly pigmented formula and affordable price point.
The blush is available in over 20 shades, ranging from warm neutrals to bright pinks and corals, so there’s a shade for every skin tone and every party.
The finely milled powder blends easily onto the skin, providing a natural-looking flush that lasts all day. Its also cruelty-free and vegan, if you’re on the lookout for ethical products that won’t hurt your back pocket.
Covergirl Cheekers Blush
Maybelline Cheekers Blush is a highly-rated drugstore blush that comes in a variety of shades to suit every skin tone.
The range includes classic shades like “Rose,” “Plum,” and “Cinnamon Spice,” as well as brighter options like “Pink Passion” and “Golden Pink.”
Cheekers is praised for its blendability, long-lasting wear, and natural-looking finish.
Plus, its compact size makes it easy to carry with you on-the-go. Love it.
L’Oreal Paris True Match Blush
True Match Blush by L’Oreal Paris has a range of shades that cater to various skin tones, including apricot kiss, baby blossom, bare honey, innocent flush, mauve chiffon, and more.
This blush checks all the boxes – its blendable, buildable, long-lasting, and provides a natural-looking flush to the cheeks.
Additionally, it is formulated with a vitamin-rich formula that nourishes and hydrates the skin, giving it a healthy glow.
Cream Blush FAQ’s
Q: Tell me exactly what is a cream blush?
A: Cream blush is a type of blush that has a creamy consistency, as opposed to a powder or liquid formula. It is applied directly to the cheeks and can create a natural-looking flush.
Q: How do I apply cream blush?
A: You can apply a cream blush with your fingers or a brush. Start with a small amount and blend it into your cheeks until you achieve your desired level of color.
Q: Is cream blush good for dry skin?
A: Yes, cream blush is a great option for those with dry skin because it adds moisture to the skin and doesn’t accentuate dry patches like some powder formulas can.
Q: Can I use cream blush on top of a powder?
A: It’s generally not recommended to use cream blush on top of powder because it can cause the powder to break up and look cakey. However, you can apply powder blush on top of cream blush if you want to set it or add more color.
Q: How long does cream blush last?
A: The longevity of cream blush can vary depending on the formula and your skin type, but it typically lasts around 4-6 hours before needing to be touched up.
Q: What colors are best for cream blush?
A: The best color for cream blush depends on your skin tone and personal preference. Generally, peachy or pink shades work well for fair to medium skin tones, while deeper berry or bronze shades are great for darker skin tones.
How to Apply A Cream Brush Like A Pro
To apply cream blush like a pro makeup artist; you can start by placing a small amount of the product on to a makeup palette.
Then, use your clean fingers or a brush to apply the blush to the apples of your cheeks. Blend it in a circular motion toward your temples. Be sure to blend well for a natural-looking finish.
You can also use a makeup sponge to pick up a small amount of product. Then, gently dab the blush onto the apples of your cheeks and blend it outwards towards your temples for a natural-looking flush. You can also build up the color gradually to achieve your desired level of intensity. Remember to blend well for a seamless finish.
You can also layer the cream blush with a powder blush for extra staying power and intensity of color, too.
Powder Blush FAQ’s
Q. What is powder blush?
A. Powder blush is a cosmetic makeup product that is applied to your cheeks. It helps to add life and color and contour to the face. In this instance, it is in a powder form and usually applied with a brush.
Q. How do I choose the right shade of powder blush?
A. When choosing a powder blush, be sure to consider your skin tone and also the look you want to achieve.
For fair skin, choose a light pink or peach shade. For medium skin, go for a coral or rosy shade. For dark skin, opt for a deeper berry or plum shade, and a coral or orange shade can look beautiful, too.
Q. How do I apply powder blush?
A. To apply powder blush, use a large fluffy brush and lightly dust the product onto the apples of your cheeks. Blend outwards towards your temples for a natural look.
Q. Can I use powder blush on oily skin?
A. Yes, powder blush is great for oily skin as it can help to absorb excess oil and keep your makeup in place for longer. Applying a primer beforehand can help control shine.
Q. How long does powder blush last?
Powder blush can typically last for up to 8 hours before needing to be reapplied.
However, this can vary depending on factors such as your skin type and activity level.
Q. Can powder blush be used as eyeshadow?
Q. Absolutely! Powder blush can double as eyeshadow in a pinch. Just be sure to choose a shade that complements your skin tone and use a blending brush to apply it to your eyelids.
You don’t want to look like you’ve been socked two times, or like you’ve had a major crying session after your favorite Euphoria episode.
How to Apply a Powder Blush Like a Pro
To apply powder blush like a pro makeup artist, you’ve got to start by choosing the right brush.
A fluffy angled brush works well. Dip the brush into the blush and tap off any excess.
Smile and apply a little bit of the blush to the apples of your cheeks. Now, blend upward and outward towards your temples.
Build up the color gradually to avoid an intense makeup look. Remember to blend well for a natural-looking finish.
What Is the Best Blush Type for Me?
The right blush type for you depends on your skin tone and personal preference.
For fair skin, light pink or peach shades work well. For medium skin, rosy pinks, and warm apricots are great options. For deeper skin tones, rich berry or deep plum shades are flattering. If you’re dying to know my blush picks for darker skin tones, you can find them right here.
Cream or powder formulas also depend on your personal preference. And as we’ve discussed here, cream formulas tend to be more hydrating and dewy. And if your skin is more on the oily side, then perhaps a powder blush is your best bet.
Powder offers a far more matte finish.
In the end, it’s entirely up to you.
It’s best to try a few shades and formulas to see what works best for you.
Featured Image by Ira G