Blush Crush: New + Old Favourites ft. Aether, Lauren Brooke, Clove + Hallow, Fitglow + more!

Despite wearing masks that cover most of my cheeks whenever I leave the house these days, I’ve really gotten into blush over the last several months.  There’s just something about a flushed cheek that’s been doing it for me, and I’ve also fully embraced cream blush formulas for the first time. 

I wear powder foundation many days, so all of these have been been tested over both powder and cream/liquid base formulas without any issues.  

Clove + Hallow Hydratint Blush Serum (Blossom*)

AKA the one that started my recent blush obsession, and, in particular, my new love for cream blushes.  The Hydratints are a beautiful hydrating formula made with meadowfoam oil and hyaluronic acid, and they create the prettiest dewy flush on the cheeks without emphasizing skin texture.  The packaging, which looks just like a nail polish bottle, makes for easy application, either by dotting the blush serum directly onto your cheeks or onto a palette or the back of your hand.  I like using a denser blush brush like the Real Techniques Instapop Cheek Brush, but I've also played around with fingers and a sponge.  The product dries down nicely, if a little quickly, so, whatever method you choose, I recommend applying these one side at a time.  Blossom is the lightest shade in Clove + Hallow's range, but, as you’ll see in the swatch, it does deepen up a little as the serum dries to create a lovely and surprisingly pigmented flush.

Aether Beauty Crystal Charged Cheek Palette (Rose Quartz)

I treated myself to this palette as a quarantine present last summer, and it’s gotten a lot of love since then!  Rose Quartz includes an icy pink highlighter and two soft-focus blushes, and I love the versatility of mixing and layering the three shades together.  I've seen Aether's blush palettes described as highly pigmented -- to the point of sometimes being difficult to work with on lighter skin -- but that hasn’t really been my experience.  Heart, the highlighter, is very creamy and packs a glowy punch right off the bat, but Compassion and Self-Love, the two near-matte blushes, are dryer in texture and need to be built up, even on my fair skin.  That said, I like a buildable blush formula, so that’s not necessarily a negative to me.  Even layered and built up, the blushes don’t sit heavily or look like a lot of makeup on the skin, so it's a very workable formula, just not what I was expecting.  (It's also possible I got a weird palette -- I'd be curious to swatch these in-store to compare once we are able again.)  Aether’s recyclable packaging and focus on sustainability is another big plus in my book.

[P.S. If you’re in the market, it looks like this palette is currently on sale on the Aether website for $15 USD.]

(Top to Bottom) Aether Beauty Rose Quartz (x3), Clove + Hallow Blossom, Milk Werk, Lauren Brooke Honey Blossom, Pacifica Camellia

Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek (Werk)

Werk is the prettiest dusty rose with a natural finish -- no shimmer or sparkle -- and it’s become one of my everyday go-to’s.  Milk’s Lip + Cheeks are super blendable, and I find them to be one of the easiest cream formulas to work with.  You have time to move the product around, but it sets to a touchable finish that wears all day long within a minute or two.  I also love that the brand sells these more affordable minis, as after dozens of uses, my mini stick still looks barely touched.  I can’t imagine ever needing a full size, but I can definitely see myself picking up a couple other minis in different shades.

Fitglow Beauty Lumi Firm Cream Lip and Cheek (Joy)

The Lumi Firms aren't nearly as hyped as certain other Fitglow products, but they’re a truly standout formula in my opinion.  The ingredients include a probiotic peptide and vegetable collagen to “lift, firm, and sculpt,” and I really do think they give the cheeks a plump and fuller appearance.  Joy is a soft coral with a strong golden shimmer running through it, and I tend to reach for it more often as a blush topper than a standalone blush. Worn by itself, I find the shimmer can sometimes go beyond my blush preference before achieving the base pigment colour I’m looking for.  I like Joy -- I think it would make a gorgeous highlight on deep skin, and I’ve also used it as a sheer cream eye shadow with great results -- but I think I’d get more versatility from a creamier shade without shimmer, so that's likely what I would opt for next time.

Pacifica Blushious Coconut & Rose Infused Cheek Color (Camellia)

Camellia has been a favourite of mine for quite some time, as you can see from how well-loved my pan is!  Basically, it’s what I reach for if I'm unsure about a look or if I don’t know what blush to wear.  Camellia is a light peachy-pink that goes with everything, and it's one that I can apply quickly and without much thought.  It has a nice satin finish, a great formula, and is inexpensive too.  This particular colour is probably only suitable for those of us on the lighter side, but if that’s you, I definitely recommend it.  The plastic packaging may look a little chintzy, but I like how compact it is, and mine is still intact after a fair bit of banging around in my makeup stash.

Lauren Brooke Cosmetiques Botanical Colour Stick (Honey Blossom*)

These all over creams remind me of an elevated version of the early days of granola/homemade natural makeup, but I don't say that in a bad way.  The ingredients are very natural -- basically just oils, butters, and mineral pigments -- and the formula is emollient, with less of it's own dry-down than the other three creams in this roundup.  The Colour Sticks are glowy and moisturizing, and really melt into the skin.  The formula doesn't completely set by itself, but you can easily remedy that with a light dusting of powder blush or even a translucent powder.  A powder also helps it last longer -- without setting, I do find the Colour Stick fades and needs to be touched up about halfway through the day.  Honey Blossom was a limited edition shade from Lauren Brooke's 2020 advent calendar, but Natural Bloom, in the permanent line, looks to be in the same colour family.  The full size also comes in an easy stick form, not the glass pot pictured.

Have you tried any of these? Are you still wearing blush this year, be it at home or underneath a face mask?

*Press sample  
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