This Is How to Apply Loose Blush Without Going Crazy—AKA Overdoing It

Caitlin S. Miller
lucy hale

Photo: Taylor Hill / Contributor / Getty Images

Blush is a blessing and a curse in the beauty world. Just the right amount and you can look sun-kissed, rosy, and even angelic. Too much and you can look like an escape carnival clown or worse, a ’80s soap opera star. Sadly, the later has caused many of us to forego blush in favor of highlighters, bronzers, and even color sticks for a little cheek action. Although all are fantastic, none compare to good old-fashioned loose blush powder. To learn how to apply loose blush like a pro, mark. celebrity makeup artist and the woman behind Lucy Hale‘s fantastic complexion, Kelsey Deenihan, shares her best insider secrets. Grab a blush brush and a note pad. You’re going to want to take this down.

Get the right tools.
Beginners to blush should opt for lighter colors and colors with a slight shimmer, as they will be easier to apply and will blend in more evenly.

But it’s not just the blush formula that makes the look complete. A good brush is equally important. “A big powder brush tends to be too big and will place product over a larger area with less control,” explains Deenihan. “A medium fluffy brush will allow you to control exactly where you are placing your product.” We like IT Cosmetics Live Beauty Fully Flawless Blush Brush ($28, But if you still don’t fell comfortable with a brush, even your fingers will work to blend, says Deenihan.

Apply carefully.
Avoiding overly rouged cheeks begins with the brush. “After swiping your brush along your desired powder blush color, tap the excess off the brush before applying to the face,” says Deenihan. “Start there and if you want more you can add more, but it’s easier to add than wipe off too much blush!” When it’s time to actually apply product, apply blush to the apples of the cheeks as well as the temples, as this is flattering on all face shapes. “I like to apply blush on the apples and the temples—the apples of the cheeks for a flush of color, and the temples to add slight dimension and tie in the cheek color,” she adds. Add more color and blend if needed.

If you do accidentally apply too much blush—hey, it happens to the best of us—you can actually salvage your makeup. “Taking a loose setting powder and blending it over your blush will diffuse the blush and is a quick way to lessen the look if you feel you’ve applied too much color,” Deenihan explains.

Look for other alternatives.
If loose powder just isn’t meshing with you, don’t panic. There are plenty of other fish in the sea that is the beauty aisle. “Begin with a powder blush and then move onto creme blushes and see what you feel comfortable with and what works for you and your skin!” Deenihan says. She recommends mark. touch & glow ($16,, a shimmer cream palette, for any beginner’s beauty bag. We’re partial to Urban Decay UD Gwen Stefani Blush Palette ($45, for its array of colors.

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