Before Oscar de la Renta’s spring runway show in New York City last fall, makeup artist Gucci Westman was practically cradling what she called her “new favorite baby.” Westman, the Global Artistic Director of Revlon, had spent almost a year developing the brand’s new Baby Sticks: chubby little sticks of sheer, layerable blush. “Just look at that texture,” she gushed. “All of the models’ cheeks are perfectly done--that never happens. It’s so easy to do too much and any other texture would have been so hard to work with.” True, the best part about cream blush is the effortlessness with which it blends into the skin, creating the most natural flush you can fake. That some formulas lend a glow, others stay all day, and still others pull double duty as lip gloss is just one more reason to read on for our favorites.
Kevyn Aucoin The Creamy Glow ($24) in Patrice
This sheer red blush delivers a burst of pink color to your cheeks. It looks glossy on your finger but blends into a matte finish.
L’Oreal Paris Magic Smooth Souffle Blush ($13) in Celestial
This jar of whipped blush delivers soft color that’s easy to blend.
Topshop Blush ($12) in Prime Time
A hot pink cream that’s perfect for summer (and works as well on your lips as it does on the apples of your cheeks).
YSL Crème de Blush ($38) in Baby Doll
YSL calls their blush “cream-to-powder”; it does, in fact, turn velvety on your skin, but is sheer enough to let your summer tan shine through. Think less bubblegum and more Belle du Jour than the Topshop one.
Revlon Baby Stick ($9) in Pink Passion
This fat pencil offers an almost glossy glow. It’s the sheerest of the bunch, making it perfect for that all-natural post-gym look (no workout necessary).
La Prairie Cellular Radiance Cream Blush ($70) in Peach Glow
A gorgeous palette with a pale peach formula that’s like bronzer and blush in one. The built-in glow acts as a highlighter, too.
Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge for Lips and Cheeks ($25) in Raspberry
Brown’s cherry red blush is the most opaque of the bunch and the fastest route to vivid, ruddy cheeks.
Maybelline’s Dream Bouncy Blush ($6) in Pink Plum
Maybelline’s Dream Bouncy Blush is similar to YSL’s formula: it looks and feels like cream until you start rubbing it into your skin, at which point it turns powdery. Pink Plum, the color pictured at left, has built-in shimmer.