Blush, Bronzer, and Highlight, what do I have to say about them? Honestly, I love them! They are truly some of my favorite things ever when it comes to cosmetics. Foundation and concealer do such a great job to cancel out any discoloration or uneven skin tone BUT… it also does a tremendous job of canceling out any “flush” or natural blush to the cheek, and may result in looking two-dimensional or almost plastic. That is not what you want on your wedding day, and certainly not what you want on a day to day basis at the office!

First off, let’s chat about blush placement. I love to apply blush to the apples of the cheeks and then buff up and out. This is dependent on client, face shape, etc. but by concentrating the color beneath the eye on the apple of the cheek, and then buffing up and out towards the hair line and temple. This builds the cheek bone and gives a naturally lifted appearance to the cheek. I also buff the blush into the bronzer so that you cannot tell where the blush starts, and where it stops. This is so important because you never want to look like you took a scoop of neapolitan ice cream and streaked it across your cheek. BLEND, BLEND, BLEND! In addition to applying blush to the cheeks, I like to create a beautiful and flushed look overall, so I like to buff a tiny bit of blush across the center of the nose as well to create a naturally flushed look and ensure that the highlight and contour is never too stark of a contrast.

Next, which blushes do I use? I love powder stains. Generally speaking, throughout the day blush is usually the first thing to disappear from your makeup look. To combat that, I take specific steps such as priming the foundation to lengthen overall makeup life, and then following up with setting powders and setting sprays. But the most important step I take when using blush is to ensure I use a formula with a staining effect. By using a cheek stain, it ensures a long wear finish and an all day long soft flushed look. Trust me, cheek stains are a game changer! The blush stains that I use are actually powders, and I thoroughly enjoy the formulations from both Beautycounter (link here) and Tarte (link here). Both formulations are heavily pigmented and offer so much color pay-off. Be careful though, it is easy to go a little too heavy handed with the products but fear not, it is easy to blend the blushes in if you use circular sweeping motions within the first 30 seconds – one minute.

Blush is super important to bringing your look to life, but you always should be incorporating a bronzer and highlight as well. I like to use a bronzer with a terra-cotta undertone, but more bronze than orange. This assists in creating a sun kissed glow and soft dimension, but be careful not to use anything too red or orange, as it will create an unnatural coloring to the skin. Two of my favorite bronzers are the Beautycounter Radiant All Over Bronzer in shades Dune and Cabana (link here) or if you are searching for something without any shimmer, I really enjoy the Tarte Park Avenue Princess Bronzer (link here). When applying the bronzer, you should sweep along the hair line, on the cheeks, and under the jaw – then also bring it down the bridge of the nose. Mimic the shape of a three and an “E” along the perimeter of the face. Please do not confuse bronzer with contour, that’s a lesson for another time!

For highlight, the soft highlighter that I use for myself on a daily basis is the Beautycounter Luminous Powder Highlighter in shade Halo (link here). I really enjoy the soft rose gold undertone, as it creates a natural glow and warmth to the skin – but it isn’t a chunky and unnatural highlight for daily use. If you do invest in this highlighter, do take care to tap the natural fiber brush into the powder gently as it is a very soft powder and can crumble a bit if you are too aggressive with your brush. The highlighter that I use on most of my clients is actually the Sundipped Glow Kit from Anastasia Beverly Hills (link here). I enjoy the Sundipped Glow Kit for my bridal and private clients because it has 4 different shades that I use to customize the highlight for each of my clients. This is a great option if you are someone that loves a natural highlight but enjoys variety. Be sure to apply the highlight to the high points of your face – along the center of the nose and then upon the tops of the cheeks.

Above are just a few of my favorites when it comes to creating soft dimension for special occasions or on your day-to-day basis. Let me know if you have tried these and what you thought! I have had fantastic luck using these on my fair to medium complected clients, but if you are someone that has deeper skin tone, feel free to use the darker shades in the glow kit, and opt for a more apricot bronzer to give warmth to the skin. You will love the result! Each of the products above will work wonderfully, we will just have to find a deeper shade (than listed above) for you but I would LOVE to help! I’ll see you in the next blog!