How to Apply Blush for Every Face Shape

Victoria Moorhouse
blush face shape tips

Photo: Imaxtree

Figuring out where to apply lipstick… yeah, that’s easy. But trying to pinpoint the precise spot to apply blush on your face? There’s a lot more room for error in that department. You don’t want your flush to go undetected but you definitely don’t want to overdo it and look like you just jumped off the treadmill.

You also want your blush to flatter and accentuate your face shape, in addition to bringing your complexion a healthy, lit-from-within glow. So we went to L’Oreal Celebrity Makeup Artist Sir John to find out where to apply blush for every face shape–check out his pointers and his best application tips below.

Round Face Shape
If you have a round face shape, Sir John suggests keeping your blush application to a minimum. “With a round shape, you want to do less blush then you would for other face shapes,” he says. “When you go to apply the blush, smile and wherever you have the most volume on your cheeks, and go a little higher when you apply your blush. You don’t want to go too low with this face shape.”

You also want to avoid applying blush too low or in the contour spot in general. “If you do go low, do a deeper mocha-ish color, and use it similar to a contour,” he says.

Unless you have a deep complexion, Sir John also says you shouldn’t use darker or deep hues like plum or raisin, but instead lean towards sheer colors that will help you highlight the top of your cheekbones.

Square Face Shape
Make sure to apply your blush towards the front of the apples of the cheeks and not the sides, notes Sir John. “With square face shapes, you don’t want to appear blocky,” he says. “Bringing more dimension to the front of the apples, verses the sides of cheeks, helps with this.” To finish off your look, he suggests contouring and highlighting, too.

Heart Face Shape
“Blush loves a heart-shaped face because they usually have fuller cheeks, a la Reese Witherspoon,” says Sir John. You can apply product to the front and the sides of the cheeks, but Sir John says to start with very minimal product and build from there. In fact, he notes that applying way too much product is one of the biggest mistakes you can make.

“Think of applying blush as painting,” he says. “Use minimal product and keep building to dial up the color and created a flushed effect. Too much product on the brush is always a bad thing, especially with blush.”

Oval Face Shape
Here’s a plus—Sir John says that it’s the easiest to apply blush to oval face shapes. He says that it’s the easiest because you can pretty much choose wherever you want to apply blush and it will look gorgeous. However, keeping in mind his other tips, be sure not to cross into the contouring area.

Sir John notes he’s a huge fan of cream blushes—especially for those with dry skin—and favors L’Oreal Paris Visible Lift Blur Blush ($12, target.com). We dig products like Wander Beauty’s On-the-Go Blush and Illuminator ($42, wanderbeauty.com) as well as Urban Decay’s powder-based AfterGlow 8-Hour Powder Blush ($26, urbandecay.com) for a long-wear look with high impact color.

Remember, if you’re going for a blush that does have a lot of pigment, Sir John says to use them in a minimal way. “Don’t be afraid to use blush on fresh moisturized skin even without foundation,” he says. “It looks like a glow from within or when you just came in from cold.”

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