Blusher application. Easy right? Or, is it?
When I was a teenager dabbling with makeup I never paid much attention to blusher application. I guess I didn’t think it was difficult. This resulted in sometimes getting it right but many times getting it very wrong. Let’s say, if I was using a cheap and nasty powder blusher and/or forgot to tap my brush to remove any excess product then I would end up looking like a clown. Similarly, the same clown-like result could also be achieved by me haphazardly applying strokes of blusher all across my cheeks.
Later on in my makeup evolution, I was told at a makeup counter by one of the ladies there that the way to apply powder blusher was by forming the number 3 across the sides of my face. Starting from my temple, swiping the powder down across my cheekbone then swiping back up the cheekbone and down to the side of my jaw. Then repeat the motions on the other side of the face. But this isn’t really the correct way of blusher application as it assumes that all people have the same face shape and need to contour their forehead and cheekbones.
It was my makeup instructor at KLMA make up academy, Kiera Louise who finally debunked the mystery of blusher application for me. It happened in one of the makeup masterclass sessions I followed with her over 2 years ago and I still can’t believe how easy it really is. By following her advice the result can be consistently right.
So here’s what I now know on how to apply natural looking powder blusher:
- Using the right brush is key. A good quality, fluffy brush with light bristles that is not too big or too small in size for your face is very important. Personally, I prefer an angled brush. It helps enhance the natural contours of my not-very-defined-cheekbones AND adds colour on the cheeks without overdoing it.
2. Equally imperative is the use of a bronzer. (Are you as surprised as I was when I first realised this? No? Maybe it’s just me and my naivety then). A good bronzer helps contour the cheekbones without using blusher to accentuate them. That makes the result look a lot more natural. I highly recommend this step if, like me, you need to define your cheekbones and add depth to your face. This means, if you are very slim and/or have naturally defined cheekbones contouring them might not be the best idea. It could actually unnecessarily age you.
3. Apply the bronzer across the cheekbones using the angled brush, ensuring the longest side of the angled bristles is facing upwards. Best to start from where the bone meets the ear to find the right place for your contouring, and use upward strokes along the cheekbone. Don’t forget to blend, blend, blend. Once you think you’ve been blending long enough…blend some more 🙂
4. Finally, follow with blusher. (I had to bring you to step 4 to mention an actual blusher, didn’t I?) You can use a more rounded brush for this product but the same angled brush as before can be used in this step too. Personally, when I don’t have time to dabble with many different brushes I stick to my favourite angled one.
5. The secret to good blusher application is to pull a big smile with closed lips and apply the blusher in circular motion on the apples of the cheeks only while smiling your big cheesy smile. But don’t forget to tap away any excess product from your brush first. For the love of God though, don’t blow it off with your breath. Especially if you are using the brush to apply blusher on someone else. It is unhygienic to allow saliva particles to settle in your brush, not to mention highly unprofessional.
6. The last step is optional: highlighter. For this final step, I like using MUA’s Undress Your Skin in Pink Shimmer for a natural, healthy-looking dash of glow. But if I’m tanned and using a more dark blusher I might use MAC’s Mineralize Skinfinish in Gold Deposit.
Here’s how the end result looks on me with different blushers on different days having the same consistent natural look:
What’s your secret to good blusher application? I’d love to hear your tips.