This Under-£9 Product Will Sort Out Your Lacklustre Winter Complexion

Updated 01/28/18

Blusher—you’re either obsessed or you wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole. If you fall into the latter camp, know this: It will perk up colour-drained winter skin as quickly as it takes the caffeine in your morning macchiato to kick in. That’s no time at all, then. When it comes to creating the illusion that there’s actually blood flowing beneath your skin and your features haven’t frozen over into a blank greige canvas, blusher’s even better than bronzer in winter. That’s because unless you’ve been lucky enough to escape to the sunshine, bronzer can have a tendency to look obvious and streaky.

Blusher, on the other hand, can re-create that natural outdoorsy flush you’d get from just five minutes of embracing those biting winds and frosty temperatures.

Best drugstore blush: woman with flushed cheeks
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“During the winter months, blusher can give you the perfect flush of colour,” saysLisa Potter-Dixon, head makeup artist at Benefit. “Just remember, though, that cold weather tends to bring out the natural high colour on your cheeks, so avoid reds that could make you look overly blushed, and choose a balance of peachy corals and rose gold that will brighten your complexion instantly.”

Don’t be put off if winter is making your skin as dehydrated as your activated nuts either. Powders are now much less dense than in your mother’s era, but there are also cushions, gels and creams that press into skin to create a translucent wash of colour with staying power. And if you’re a fan of highlighting and strobing, you can still indulge; just choose a blusher with a hint of sparkle, as it will lighten and lift the skin in exactly the same way and without the need of multiple products.

Scroll through to see the drugstore blushers that will leave your cheeks ripe and rosy.

Best drugstore blush: CYO All Eyes & Cheeks Cream Shadow & Blush
CYO All Eyes & Cheeks Cream Shadow & Blush $5
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Some creamy formulas can look a bit wet and sloppy, but this has a matte finish so it appears super natural. Use your fingers to press it into place, or buff it into the apples of your cheeks using a flat stippling brush. You can even add some onto your lids if you’re a fan of the monochrome look. Available in five colourways, it’s a good option for most skin tones.

Best drugstore blush: Barry M Blusher Quad Palette
Barry M Blusher Quad Palette $6
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Barry M is so confident that this blusher will suit all complexions that it has only produced one version. Granted, it has four peachy pink shades inside, but the beauty is you can swirl them all together or use them individually to complement your skin tone and the rest of your makeup. Just remember, you don’t want to go overboard on eyes, lips and cheeks—otherwise you’ll veer into scary porcelain-doll territory.

Best drugstore blush: Bourjois Little Round Pot
Bourjois Little Round Pot $7
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There’s a reason a product becomes cult, and this has been a constant winner for the past 150 years. In a rainbow of 14 shades, the pressed powder doesn’t drop or fleck on the skin, and is ideal for creating spring/summer 2018’s hot flush that sees the colour migrating from the apples of the cheeks up towards the temples. Our only advice is that you can probably ditch the mini brush it comes with and use a fatter, fluffier one.

Best drugstore blush: GOSH Lumi Drops Illuminating Blush
Gosh Lumi Drops Illuminating Blush $9
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Creating a watercolour effect on the skin, this is sheer and dewy and full of antioxidants and vitamins, so it’s ideal if your cheeks do have a tendency to dry out in cold conditions. It’s also good if your pallor is pretty pale, as it won’t look obvious or artificial and because it’s a liquid you can work it into and over the skin. Try some around your hairline for a flattering halo of colour too.

Best drugstore blush: B. Blush Cheeky
B. Blush Cheeky $7
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From fuchsia pinks to russet orange tones, this powder blush has been designed with every colour complexion in mind. Soft and comfortable on the skin, it doesn’t feel or look heavy; instead it leaves you looking healthy, bright and human.

Best drugstore blush: L'Oreal Paris Infallible Blush Paint Chubby
L'Oréal Paris Infallible Blush Paint Chubby $7
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Not only do you get the novelty value of painting your face with a chubby crayon, the transparent tint this leaves behind will make anyones skin look fresher. Don’t be put off by the vibrant colours on the lid: This is actually very sheer, which means it’s a good one for blusher beginners. Plus the stick makes it easy to use (especially if you come from a contouring background).

Best drugstore blush: NYX Professional Makeup Baked Brush
Nyx Professional Makeup Baked Blush $7
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Baked makeup tends to be softer in texture and in pigment, so you might need a few sweeps to get the right colour imparted onto your cheeks, but it means you can play with the intensity. It also has a soft shimmer, which has a nifty way of making your skin look as though it’s basking in candlelight. You can also apply it with a damp sponge for a more direct burst of colour rather than a wash

Next up, discover the drugstore mascaras we’re stockpiling.

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