Let’s make blush happen again! In the last few years I think we’ve forgotten a little bit about blush (just like bronzer), what with the contour and highlighter obsession that’s gripping people’s attention. However, I think blush still has an important place in everyday makeup routines, because it gives so much life and balance to the face!
You are not totally without cause to be a little wary of blush – when overdone it can look really ridiculous, and figuring out exactly which blush is best for your skin tone, and where it should be placed is no cakewalk.
Once you have figured out the right blush formula for your skin type, it’s also important to learn how to choose the right blush color for your skin tone. Below, we’ve got recommendations for the best blushes for every skin tone.
Best Blushes for Fair Skin with Cool Undertones
You want either a very pale berry or a light pink blush when your skin has a cool undertone, at least if you want to play it safe. They will blend into your skin perfectly, and look most natural, while still giving your cheeks that coveted glow.
If you want a matte blush, choose a lighter color, but if you want a bit of shimmer or glow, your blush can even be a medium shade. Overly orange or peachy colors can clash with your skin, but if your foundation is perfectly applied, that clash can actually look very modern and high-fashion.
Unless you’re prepared to blend forever, stay away from darker blushes.
1. Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush in Dollface
2. Benefit Posietint Lip & Cheek Stain
This long-lasting cheek stain is an excellent blush for days when you’re skipping the foundation, or want a soft, long-lasting flush. This ultra-soft pink is a lovely match for pale, cool skin. You can find it at Ulta, and Amazon.
Best Blushes for Light Skin with Yellow Undertones
For those with light skin and yellow undertones, peaches are the way to go – especially if they have a sunny, golden glow. These kinds of blushes will totally warm up your complexion, giving you a natural glow.
Your other option is a neutral, pale berry blush or a coral. On your warm skin, these neutral blushes will register as rosy and fresh, and will give you an innocent flush that is perfect for the colder seasons.
1. NARS The Multiple Orgasm Blush
This blush is the holy grail of many, with a flattering peachy shade and golden flakes for extra glow. It is available in a creamy stick formula at Net-a-Porter, and Amazon, where you can also find it as a powder or liquid.
2. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Diffused Heat
Best Blushes for Medium Skin with Yellow Undertones
Those same peachy blushes your light-skinned friends wear will also look great on your slightly darker, yellow skin, albeit they’ll look much softer and more natural – perfect for a daytime look.
You can get a similar but more sun-kissed effect with a pale golden-bronze blush. For a blush with more presence, you can try a well-pigmented coral, a burned apricot, or a darker berry red tone.
1. Too Faced Love Flush Blush in How Deep is Your Love
This bright and sunny coral has a lot of pigment and a buttery texture, so it’ll show up colorful and uplifting on your skin. The packaging is super cute, to boot! It is available for sale at Too Faced, and Amazon.
2. Anastasia Beverly Hills Blush Trio in Peachy Love
So this is a three-for-one recommendation, with three blushes perfect for medium warm skin. You get the gentlest pale peach, a brighter coral, and a muted warm-rose, in a wearable powder formula that will always suit your skin. You can purchase this blush set at Sephora.
Best Blushes for Medium Skin with Neutral or Cool Undertones
Darker cool blushes were basically made for medium skin tone with cool undertones. You can rock the same pale berries as just about everyone else, but they will nearly disappear into your skin (which hey, that might be what you’re going for!), but for real drama, mauves and plums are your friends.
True pinks are also an option for medium skin with cool undertones, as they will give your skin a bright, glowy flush.
1. Lorac Color Source Blush in Chroma
This deep berry shade is a perfect cool-toned blush for medium skin tones. It gives a feminine touch to the cheeks, and reinvigorates the whole complexion. It can be purchased at Ulta.
2. Chanel Joues Contras Blush in Rouge Profond
With a silky texture and a luxurious container, you cannot go wrong with a Chanel blush. This shade is a bright yet cool pink, with more than enough pigmentation to show up perfectly on medium skin! You can pick up this blush at Nordstrom, or Amazon.
Best Blushes for Tan Skin with Orange Undertones
Bronzy blushes are so beautiful on tan skin – something that has a lot of golden glow, and a peachy or even reddish tint. These blushes will make your natural tan look healthy and golden.
For a lit-from-within flush, you can choose a straight-up bright orange or peach, although remember that if their color is not strong enough, they will simply not show up on your skin.
For a more sophisticated look, you can opt for muted brown-red blushes that will define your cheekbones elegantly – pair them with a golden highlight for a three dimensional look. For a blush that will gently contrast against your skin, you could even play around with muted purples.
1. Charlotte Tilbury Cheek to Chic Blush in The Climax
This bronzy, frosted blush will give the perfect coppery definition and glow to your tanned cheeks. It is duo-toned, so you can amp up the peach, or use the brown outer ring for contour. You can find this powder blush at Nordstrom, and Amazon.
2. Make Up For Ever Artist Face Color Blush in H312
This perfect, shimmery bronze has just a hint of red in it to perfectly complement your tan. It gives an intense glow to the skin, with a silky-smooth formula. You can purchase this gorgeous blush at Sephora.
Best Blushes for Medium Skin with Olive Undertones
Olive skin tones are the hardest to match a blush to, as most colors in the red family work against the green undertones in your skin. Bronze and golden blushes are the easiest choices, as they will give definition and glow without even a hint of a clash.
Muted oranges will give more of a bright flush, like a true blush, while not being too far opposite the undertone of your skin. Muted mauve blushes will do something similar in the other direction, and are perfect for those with a cool olive undertone.
1. Urban Decay Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Blush in Rapture
If you like a cheeky blush name as much as the next guy, then Urban Decay has you covered almost as well as NARS. Rapture is a deep, muted mauve, with a gorgeous jewel tone finish that looks extremely elegant on olive skin tones. You can find it at Amazon.
2. MAC Powder Blush in Coppertone
Despite the name, this muted-apricot blush is not too shimmery. Instead, it gives an orangey flush to the skin that is well pigmented and long-lasting. This blush is available at Nordstrom, and Amazon.
Best Blushes for Dark Skin with Warm Undertones
If your skin is darker with either yellow or orange undertones, you will find that a ton of blushes will work really well for you. Bronzes and coppers will give a golden flush that is phenomenal for summertime, or to pair with colorful makeup.
Darker brick reds will give a sophisticated flush to your skin. Light oranges will brighten you up, and will require very little blending.
Magentas, reds, and plumes will give your skin the youthful flush brighter pinks give to those with fair skin. Play around, and have fun, because you have nearly endless options.
1. Becca Mineral Blush in Lantana Crimson
This crimson blush is intense, with an extreme pigmentation that’ll show up on any skin tone, and a loud yet not overly warm shade that will truly complement warmer skin tones. The formula itself is buttery smooth and lasts forever on the cheeks. You can purchase this blush through Amazon.
2. Glossier Cloud Paint Cream Blush in Haze
For that girlish flush, this airy formula is an incredible choice. It’s a neutral, berry shade that goes on sheer, but because of the brightness of the shade it shows up well on the skin. The gel-cream formula can be built up, if you want to go a little beyond a natural makeup look. You can pick up this charming blush through Glossier, or Amazon.
Best Blushes for Dark Skin with Cool Undertones
Those with very dark skin occasionally have a blue undertone to their skin. When your skin leans towards blue, you want to avoid overly warm blushes with a lot of orange, as they will clash oddly against your skin. Instead, purples are your friends here.
Lighter purples will give a gentle touch of color, while darker purples will have a bit more presence. If you do want a more summery, bright flush, try a plummy-blush that has a pearlescent finish.
1. Black Up Blush in NBL02
This bright violet is exactly the kind of blush that will give your skin with blue undertones a lit-from-within, innocent sheen of pinkness without even a hint of clash. The pigmentation on the blushes from this POC-owned company ensures that they’ll show up even on the darkest skin. You can purchase this blush at Macy’s.
2. Bobbi Brown Blush in Berry
This incredibly pigmented, cool berry-red is a blush that will seriously pop even on the darkest of skin tones. It has a long-lasting formula, and a wonderfully smooth texture that you will truly cherish applying. Pick up this gem at Amazon.
Photos via Sephora, Nordstrom