The best blush you can buy

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Cloud PaintGlossier/Business Insider

  • Blush is our secret weapon to looking fresh and awake, but choosing the right formula can be like playing a game of beauty roulette - you'll never know what you'll land on and like.
  • We've tried a ton of blushes in various formulas, and have landed on Glossier Cloud Paint as our overall favorite because it's easy to use, not too expensive, and depending on the color that suits your skin tone, looks oh-so-natural.
  • But since everyone has different skin tones and textures, and might have budget and formula concerns, we also tried and like blushes from BECCA, Bite, Hourglass, and L'Oréal.

If you had told me - a fair-skinned lady with naturally-flushed cheeks - even two years ago that I would eventually become obsessed with blush, I would have scoffed at you. I'm not even entirely sure how to scoff, but I would figure it out so I could do it in your direction.

The right blush can help bring an entire makeup look together, wake up your complexion on tired mornings, or reinstate some life on your cheeks after you've blotted out your natural color with foundation. But until very recently, I avoided blush of all colors and formulas. I was intimidated by it and didn't understand what it could do for me. After all, I already had naturally-rosy cheeks, and isn't that the entire point of using blush anyway?

But one of the major perks of writing about beauty is getting to try a lot of makeup, so eventually I decided to give blush a shot. After some trial and error, I found some Holy Grail blush formulas that look natural on my skin tone and texture.

My favorite blushes are relatively fool-proof and easily buildable in terms of coverage. I have fair skin so I always apply with a light hand (it's easier to use add more blush as you go rather than to take it down a notch), and all the picks on this list can be layered and built up to be more dramatic and opaque.

Here are the best blushes you can buy in 2019:

Updated on 5/15/2019 by Jada Wong: Updated formatting, prices, links, added L'Oréal True Match Super Blendable Blush and removed Catrice Strobing Blush as it's been discontinued.

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The best blush overall

The best blush overall
Glossier Cloud Paint is the easiest blush you'll ever use, and it comes in a small, but wide range of colors that suit different skin tones. Simply squeeze a little out of the tube and blend it out with your finger tips.

If you follow me on Instagram or have met me in real life, you know that my daily makeup routine is about 95% Glossier. It's a tough call, but Cloud Paint might be my favorite product from the brand.

First of all, the packaging mimics real paint tubes and is 10 times cuter than the average blush compact. But Cloud Paint doesn't just look good on the shelf.

The formula is a collagen-infused cross between gel and liquid that blends like a dream, leaving behind a natural-looking flush and dewy finish, minus the streaks or patches you get with drier cream blushes. I typically pat it on with my fingertips as it helps distribute the color on my cheeks easily and quickly. You can also use a flat stippling brush, especially if you apply too much product (which can happen because the tube is opaque so you won't know you've squeezed out too much until it's too late).

Glossier is known for light coverage, but these babies are super pigmented. I've use at least one of the six shades almost every day for more than a year and I haven't run out of a single one. And speaking of shades, they are Beam (a coral/peach), Puff (bright pink), Haze (berry purple), Dusk (terracotta nude — I use this as a bronzer and blush combo for a sunkissed look in the summer), Dawn (bright orange), and Storm (deep rose).

I do use all six depending on my mood and overall makeup look, but some are more intense than others. For deeper skin tones, I especially recommend Haze, Dawn, and Storm.

Pros: Easy to use, buildable, lasts (maybe) forever, great for makeup beginners

Cons: Opaque packaging makes it hard to see how much you're squeezing out

Buy Cloud Paint at Glossier for $18

The best glowy blush

The best glowy blush
The stunning Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush gives you that coveted "glowy but not glittery" look with one easy swipe.

I don't typically advocate spending close to $40 on a blush, but I'll make an exception for Hourglass. The brand's powders are stunning. I had a hunch I'd fall in love with the brand's Ambient Lighting Blushes before I even tried it because Hourglass makes my favorite bronzer of all time — the Ambient Lighting Bronzer in the shade "Nude Bronze Light." One swirl later and I was hooked.

Like the bronzers, Hourglass' blushes are swirled through with the brand's cult favorite Ambient Lighting Powders for a natural, luminous glow that won't enhance pores or texture. Powder blushes can suck the life out of your complexion, but the subtle luminosity of these prevents it from looking flat.

The Ambient Lighting Blush formula comes in four shimmery shades and six radiant shades. My favorites are Dim Infusion and Luminous Flush, but they're all really beautiful, buildable, and delightful to use. These are also hugely popular with makeup lovers — they have a 4.5 Sephora rating based on 1,700+ reviews.

Pros: Gorgeous luminous finish, easy to blend, versatile shades

Cons: Expensive, packaging is a little bulky, packaging also doesn't include applicator brush

Buy Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush for $40 (originally $38)

The best mineral blush

The best mineral blush
BECCA Mineral Blush is a seamless powder that gives you a gorgeous flush all day long.

Before Glossier, BECCA Mineral Blush was the first blush I really played around with. The brand's Shimmering Skin Perfectors get all the attention, but the blushes are fantastic too.

Like Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush, these are buttery smooth and blendable. They're a bit more pigmented and intense, making them a great choice for people with medium to deep skin tones, though people are more fair can still use but with a light hand.

There are eight shades, and my personal favorites are Flowerchild, which is a dusty pink with golden shimmer, and Wild Honey, a peachy nude. Sephora only stocks half of the colors, while Lantana is only available at Dermstore.

The formula is infused with good-for-your-skin vitamins and antioxidants. While I wouldn't suggest relying on makeup alone for the skin-care benefits, it's a nice bonus. BECCA Mineral Blush has a 4.7 rating with more than 550 reviews on Sephora and 4.8 with more than 480 reviews on Influenster, and has been featured on "best of" lists at Best Products and Allure.

Pros: Easy to blend, pigmented, comes in six versatile shades

Cons: Super delicate and breakable

Buy BECCA Mineral Blush for $32

The best multitasking blush

The best multitasking blush
For a one-and-done makeup look, dip into Bite Beauty's gorgeous array of Multisticks.

I'm obsessed with all things Bite Beauty (Amuse Bouche is my favorite lipstick formula of all time), and nothing beats the brand's Multistick formula for days when I just can't be bothered to use separate products on my eyes, lips, and cheeks.

Multisticks are made for people who always start their makeup five minutes after they should've left the house and still manages to look amazing. I apply it directly from the bullet onto my cheeks and blend it in with my fingertips, or warm it up with my finger and then pat it where I want the color.

The formula is actually 35% powder, making it drier than products like Cloud Paint, which is great news if your skin is oily and cream products never stay in place. These seriously stay put even in hot weather.

In my opinion, the Bite Beauty Multisticks perform best as blushes, but they work nicely in a pinch as subtle eye color and lip stain and I love using them for creating monochromatic looks too. Their multifunctionality also makes them a great choice for travel.

Another plus side? The shade range is fairly extensive, with 20 matte shades ranging from a lilac beige Cava to dark mahogany Almond.

"I love the formula and Bite really nailed it," writes one Sephora customer. "It blends easily, it's highly pigmented, it dries to a powder-y finish (not exactly powder but not tacky anymore) and it's super comfortable to wear."

Pros: Multitasking product, cream-to-powder formula, completely matte

Cons: Formula is on the drier side so it can take a little work to blend

Buy the Bite Multistick for $24

The best drugstore blush

The best drugstore blush
L'Oréal's True Match Super Blendable Blush offers natural buildable coverage and flattering shades at a great price.

Blush can be one of those makeup things that you wouldn't want to spend money on. You can technically use lipstick or even eyeshadow in place of actual blush, and for those blessed with naturally-rosy cheeks, you might not even need it. But if you still want to give blush a try (and I highly suggest you do), forking over $11.99 for L'Oréal's True Match Super Blendable Blush seems like a reasonable compromise.

The blush is part of the brand's shade-changing True Match line, though it doesn't have any shade-changing technology that adapts to your unique skin tone. But with 12 blendable and buildable shades that range from peach to plum, there's no need. The colors are so realistic that you might just be convinced to join #teamblush.

I find that some of the shades are so sheer and light that I need to build up the color, which makes me use up the product faster. But at $11.99, it's not a big deal to me. I actually care more about the outdated packaging than hitting the pan sooner than expected, but hey, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. — Jada Wong

Pros: Under $15, sheer colors are buildable

Cons: Outdated packaging compared to others on this list, compact doesn't include mirror or brush

Buy L'Oreéal True Match Super Blendable Blush for $11.99

Check out our other makeup buying guides

Check out our other makeup buying guides
The best mascara you can buy

If there's one thing many women never leave home without, it's mascara. It makes your eyes pop and brightens up your face in an instant. We tested dozens of mascaras to find the best, and Chanel Le Volume Mascara is our top choice because it delivers long, lush lashes that last all day.

Here are the best mascaras you can buy in 2019:

The best long-lasting lipsticks you can buy

One of the major grievances I have with lipstick is that you apply it only to find your lips are bare the next time you look in the mirror. The solution is to amp up your beauty arsenal with a long-lasting lipstick that will stay put all day or night long.

In this guide, you'll find everything from cult favorites to drugstore steals. For luscious lips that last all day, read on in the slides below to discover our top picks.

Here are the best long-lasting lipsticks you can buy:

The best blush you can buy for any skin tone

Blush can add some color to your cheeks no matter your skin tone. These are the best blushes we've tried.

The right blush can help bring an entire makeup look together, wake up your face on tired mornings, or reinstate some life on your cheeks after you've blotted out your natural color with foundation.

Here are the best blushes you can buy:

The best makeup setting powder you can buy

A good makeup setting powder must cut down on shine without caking, look natural but last for hours, mattify but enhance luminosity, and remain undetectable on most skin tones.

The right formula will lock your makeup into place and cut down on shine without mattifying you within an inch of your life or making you look cakey and overdone.

Hopefully this list of my five favorites will help you cut through the noise and find the one that's right for you.

Here are the best makeup setting powders you can buy:

The best concealer you can buy for any skin tone

Finding your ideal concealer shade is tricky, so we tested a bunch to find the best concealer you can buy.

The best formulas can make you look airbrushed with very little product required. I put a bunch of highly rated concealers to the test over several weeks. This list features my top five favorites.

Here are the best concealers you can buy:

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