Where To Apply Blush

Here at Blushing in Hollywood I’m finally tackling how and where to apply blush!

This post was requested many weeks ago and I’ve watched tons of videos and tutorials to try to find just the right answer as to WHERE ARE WE “SUPPOSED” TO PUT BLUSH!? The answer was similar to the way I feel about many things in my life- wherever the fuck I want. Another question that came up when I started working on this post was am I actually better at applying blush now than I was a few years ago? Or do I just only get photographed with iPhones now (compared to digital cameras a few years ago) and all of the color is washed out of the pics making my heavy blush look normal? The world may never know. Let’s take a trip back to a few years ago:

My brother and I about 5 years ago. Also, a rare glimpse at my teeth.
My brother and I about 5 years ago. Also, a rare glimpse at my teeth.

Ah, Florida Lindsay. This was 5 years ago before I lived in LA and before I stopped tanning and bleaching my hair. Here I’m rocking a ton of bronzer on my cheeks (and all over my face for a nice natural Christmas Eve glow) and an intense blush. While I still apply my blush heavily and on the apples of my cheeks back all the way to my hair line, I noticed that I now do it in a different angle:

This arrow is showing the angle that I was applying my blush- more horizontal and only at a slight angle.
This arrow is showing the angle that I was applying my blush- more horizontal and only at a slight angle.

Back then I was doing more of a straight line blush and not putting it on the temples as much.

Umm have you heard of blending?
Umm have you heard of blending?

Here’s me a few years later fresh to LA (so about 3 years ago) about to go to da club with an incredibly harsh blush line happening. Yikes. My clip-ins aren’t blending too well either. Ok enough of the past let’s see how I’m doing these days:

Ok still kind of a lot of blush, but not quite as harsh.
Ok still kind of a lot of blush, but not quite as harsh.

So is it the camera and/or lighting or have a mastered a lighter hand and better blending skills?

Where I put blush on my cheeks
Where I put blush on my cheeks

Ok this is not actual orange blush it’s just me showing you where I put my blush now. So you can see it’s still on the apples all the way back towards the hairline, but now the angle is higher and more towards my temples than my ears. I started doing it at this angle after watching a few tutorials that pointed out that it “lifts” your eyes and face which makes you look younger (I think you can really see the difference if you look at the first picture vs. this one) and it’s a great way to cut the harsh look that wearing a light concealer in that big Kim Kardashian/Lily Ghalichi triangle under your eyes to highlight (which I often do). I’m basically blending it on top of my cheek contour. I smile then apply it in a small circular motion on the apple of my cheek and blend it back. I put a small amount on my nose as well to tie the blush in to the rest of the face. Before you go and do that, look in the mirror at your cheeks while smiling like you’re going to put blush on and put your finger on the apple of your cheek. Now keeping your finger in the same spot, put your face into a neutral position (stop smiling). If you’re older your finger might be a bit lower now and not where you would want blush. If this happened you can apply the blush while your face is in the neutral position or with more of a smile than a smirk so your blush doesn’t end up too low. You don’t want to be on the highway to the blush danger zoneeee!:

Blush Danger Zone!
Blush Danger Zone! There are no rules in makeup, but I recommend trying to keep your blush out of these darker areas.

Since I made this graphic, I’ve actually started putting blush not only on my cheeks and nose, but I also put a tiny bit on the top corners of my forehead, on my eyes in the crease area, and on my chin. Yes, I realize this sounds insane, but try it! Just use a small amount and a color that’s not super bold. I apply it with the same blush brush I use on my cheeks and I’ll put it on my eyes before or after I’ve done my shadow because I’m just brushing it on there gently and without any precision. I use a brush that came in a set like this from Forever 21 for $4.80:

Forever 21 Rose Cosmetics Brush Set. In case you were confused, I use the one on the far left to apply blush (even to my eyes!).
Forever 21 Rose Cosmetics Brush Set. In case you were confused, I use the one on the far left to apply blush (even to my eyes!).

When I went to the Nordstrom Fall Beauty Event last weekend I asked my artist where he thinks blush should go and he is in the “not on the apples of your cheeks”/further back camp. I tried out his way, but I ended up going back to mine and here’s why: putting blush on the apples of my cheeks covers my acne scarring. It also brightens up my face making me look awake, young, cute, fresh, etc. I loved this example that I read on Maskcara’s blog– if you spill wine on a white carpet it’s a lot harder to cover up than if you spill it on a tan carpet. She was talking about why she likes using self-tanner on her and her client’s faces, but I think it applies here as well. I can put tons of foundation or concealer on my scarring, but a nice pigmented blush is going to cover it up way easier than any foundation can.

As for my favorite blushes, I’ve been reaching for Milani’s Luminoso a luminous peachy pink color with subtle shimmer almost everyday since buying it. You may remember it from my July favorites. I agree with the website that it give you a nice, buildable glow and it shapes, contours, and highlights. I really love it and think it would look great on almost any skin tone and it’s available at the drugstore:

Milani Baked Blush in 05 Luminoso
Milani Baked Blush in 05 Luminoso

I also love MAC blush in Peaches and Fleur Power which are more orange and more pink (but both matte), respectively, versions of Luminoso. The MAC blushes are definitely the most pigmented out of any I tried. I know everyone loves NARS Orgasm, but I feel like I have to put on 20 layers of it to see it so I’m not a huge fan. Beyond peach variations I also use Barbie pinks like Milani Delizioso Pink and MAC Fashion Frenzy. Yes I still apply it on my nose, forehead, eye crease general area, and chin very lightly even with a pink color. I’m trying to experiment now with more berry type and purple-based colors.

Blush is an absolutely vital part to my makeup routine and I think my face with foundation alone looks way too flat and weird. I seriously don’t understand how someone could wear a full face and no blush. Do you apply blush in a different way than I do? Hate the stuff? Do you think blush makes you look like a clown?

Does wearing blush make you feel like this?
Does wearing blush make you feel like this?

If I apply too much blush, I’ll first try to blend it out with either a large clean duo-fibre brush or I’ll put powder foundation on a large fluffy blush and blend it out with that to soften the look. Cream blush on the other hand is scary and would probably make me look like the little girl pictured above so I haven’t mustered up the courage to tackle it yet. Plus I think it gives you a natural look and with makeup I’m always going for a supernatural “I’m not trying to trick you into thinking I’m not wearing makeup” look!

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