The Exact Way To Apply Blush To Give You That Post-Yoga Glow
You know how some women perpetually look like they've just exited yoga class? For starters, they probably are the sort of people who take care of their skin, eat healthy, and move their body. (The easiest way to have perpetually illuminated skin is to treat it right.) And there's just a certain lit-from-within glow that no highlighter, moisturizer, or gloss can mimic.
That being said, there are many days when it is near impossible to get that naturally. This is coming from someone who does yoga, takes meticulous care of her skin, and eats, um, well-ish (I have many less-than-ideal favorite foods that I would ideally nix, but you can't win every battle). And despite my best efforts, life gets in the way of well-rested, flushed skin. And in that case? Time to fake it.
"A lot of people do blush placement wrong—too far in or too low. Start at the apple of the cheek—smiling always helps find this—then sweep back toward the top of the ear to create a lifting effect," says makeup artist Amber Talarico, who notes she uses a blush brush for this.
Now, how can you find your ideal shade? Talarico recommends not worrying too much about that: "I'm a firm believer that there's not an answer to what is 'your color'; it can change with the season or what you are wearing," she says. "You always know those people who can get away with wearing a crazy shade of blush, and it just looks amazing on them, but maybe it's not 'supposed' to be their color."
But if you're really at a loss, and want some color guidance, a good place to start is to see if you have hot or cool undertones, she says. "There is something to be said for undertones of the skin, and that certain colors tend to be more flattering," she says. Luckily for you, we already wrote about that, so feel free to check that out here. Once you've nailed down whether you're warm or cool, find a blush based on that. Warm undertones can pull off those sun-baked terra-cotta shades or golden pinks. Cooler tones look best with royal mauves or just-dusted-rose tones.
If you want to go the extra step, you can contour. "For contour, locate the tragus of the ear, and make a sweeping motion toward the corner of the mouth for the most flattering slimming of the cheek effect," she says. Just stick to that motion, until you've sufficiently built your color ("A lot of people don't use a shade that matches their skin tone," she says; just choose a shade or two darker than your skin tone and in the same undertone family). It casts the most subtle shadow effect—and makes you look like you just had a thorough gua sha session.
Alexandra Engler is the beauty director at mindbodygreen and host of the beauty podcast Clean Beauty School. Previously, she's held beauty roles at Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com. In her current role, she covers all the latest trends in the clean and natural beauty space, as well as lifestyle topics, such as travel. She received her journalism degree from Marquette University, graduating first in the department. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.