Whatever budget you’re shopping with we’ve found the best of the best cream blushers out there. Prepare for perfectly flushed cheeks.
There are a few universal truths out there, one of which is that the best cream blusher will transform your look instantly and easily (the best budget mascara could also fall into this category). “Cream blusher has the ability to not only add a flush of colour to your complexion but it also can add another texture to your face which is really important to give your skin some moments of high and low,” says celebrity makeup artist Lisa Laudat.
What does she mean by that? “Once you’ve done your skincare and applied a foundation your skin can look the same and one dimensional, especially if you’re using a matte foundation. Nobody’s face is naturally the same all over so by adding cream blusher, which tends to leave a bit of sheen or gloss to the skin, you are putting back in some shape and structure.”
We got Lisa to share her top tips on how to apply cream blusher.
The best way to apply cream blusher
- Go in with your fingers. Creams are designed to be either applied or blended in with your fingers. The warmth from your hand will help make a cream blusher move around more easily.
- Pat and push. Cream blusher, more so than powders, can create a really natural flushed effect and again because of their consistency you can literally push them into the skin to make it look like you’re glowing from the inside out.
- Give it a minute. Apply your cream blusher and then move onto another element of your makeup and then come back to your blush. Sometimes you might want to add a bit more because cream blusher will sink in so by the time it has done that you may want to amp up the intensity with another layer.
- Sponges and brushes work too. Blending sponges and brushes can help diffuse the edges of your cream blusher to make it look natural and if you have ever applied a bit too much, use whatever you applied your base with and go over your blusher so any leftover product can dial down your blusher easily.
- Set with powder for staying-power. If you want your cream blusher to last all day then you will need to go over the top with a bit of powder blush. By nature of its consistency cream blusher will move and lift off but by setting it with powder it will last longer.
15 of the best cream blushers as tested by us
1. Best luxury cream blusher: Jones Road Lip And Cheek Stick, £34
Shade range: 8
Our verdict: Packed with hydrating skin ingredients such as castor oil and vitamin E, the formula is said to boost collagen and work on hyperpigmentation - we can’t speak for that but what we can say is it has a gorgeous texture that really sinks into the skin to give the most natural effect. The colours range from plum purples through some reds and a few different pink hues so it really does work equally well on the lips as well as the cheeks.
2. Best budget cream blusher: Elf Putty Blush, £6
Shade range: 6
Our verdict: Creamy to apply but with a semi-matte, velvety finish - this flattering pop of colour is an absolute steal (and a favourite of GTG’s Victoria Woodhall). Infused with Argan oil and vitamin E for a welcome hydration boost on drier skin types, it gives you the kind of flush that looks like you’ve been for a walk on a fresh day – no clown cheeks to be seen.
3. Best long-wearing cream blusher: Nars The Multiple, £30
Shade range: 9
Our verdict: Housed in a chunky stick format, this creamy blusher (but it can be used wherever you want) comes in nine of the brand’s most popular shades including a new version, Orgasm Rush, which has all the golden and pink tones of the original Orgasm but with more bronze undertones making it a great choice for summer. All of them dry down to a powdery finish very quickly so our top tip with this product is to dab it straight onto your cheeks and then buff into place asap.
4. Best hydrating cream blusher: Milk Makeup Bionic Blush, £21
Shade range: 4
Our verdict: With a really creamy consistency, this blush is very easy to move around the skin and blend in so it looks like second skin. It contains lots of hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and snow mushroom and it does feel like you’re applying a skincare product to your skin, it just happens to have pigment in it. Don’t be put off by the little tube, this is highly pigmented so a little does a lot and this will last you long enough.
5. Best cream blusher for colour payoff: Delilah Radiant Liquid Blush, £22
Shade range: 2
Our verdict: You only need the tiniest squirt of this is, as the pigment payoff is exceptional. It comes with a narrow nozzle which means there is no risk of squirting too much out. Start with a little and then build it up to however strong you like your blush. It's also creamy and hydrating enough to be worn on the lips. Our only gripe is that there are only two shades to choose from - the rosy pink pictured and a slightly more dusty rose hue.
6. Best cult blusher: Merit Flush Balm, £30
Shade range: 9
Our verdict: As well as being the cult beauty buy of the moment - US brand Merit has just landed on our shores so there’s a lot of (well deserved) noise around it. This is also the easiest blusher to use. The handy dome-shaped packaging means you can be quite directional with it - GTG’s Beauty Director, SJ likes to copy makeup artist Zoë Taylor’s makeup hack of how to lift your face with blusher using this as it makes it so easy to place the blusher where you want it.
7. Best pigmented cream blusher: Monika Blunder Liquid Flush Cheek Tint, £25
Shade range: 3
Our verdict: As with all the Monika Blunder products, they are so beautifully and well-formulated that the pigment payoff is something else. You need very little of this cream blusher to give the skin a beautiful flush but equally it’s very easy to build-up to whatever intensity of colour you’re after. The thick dabber wand is very pleasing to use and you can get a good amount onto the cheeks before using your fingers, brush or sponge to blend it out.
8. Best hydrating cream blusher: Max Factor Miracle Pure Infused Cream Blush, £9.99
Shade range: 4
Our verdict: Containing hydrating hyaluronic acid and moisturising squalane, this is very much a cream blusher but has more of a gel-like consistency which makes it very easy to blend and move. It feels slightly cooling and very refreshing on the skin and you can almost feel the skin getting drenched in moisture as it goes on.
9. Best sheer cream blusher: Ciaté London Dewy Blush, £19
Shade range: 4
Our verdict: If a wash of colour is your vibe, then this is the cream blusher for you. It has a very balmy texture which leaves a wash of colour and also a slightly sheeny effect on the skin which creates a dewy finish. You can theoretically build-up the colour intensity but your skin could end up feeling quite greasy so this is really about a light hint of colour on the cheeks.
10. Best cream blusher for beginners: Beauty Pie Supercheek Cream Blush, £12
Shade range: 8
Our verdict: These little pots of fool-proof matte cheek colour are super-blendable thanks to a unique mix of synthetic waxes and a ‘silicone elastomer gel’ making them a great option for anyone who wants to experiment with cream blusher after a lifetime of powder loyalty.
11. Best blendable cream blusher: Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush, £22
Our verdict: We’ve already been pretty vocal about our love for this Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush, which makes up part of the 25-product-strong beauty line from actress and singer Selena Gomez. And it turns out we’re not alone. So, why have beauty editors and TikTokers fallen so hard for it? It’s more cream than a liquid, with a blend of oils that help it blend into the skin without any dripping or chalkiness. You only need two dots for a full cheek flush as the colour payoff is incredible, and it stays put all day (make sure you’ve got a good oil-based cleanser on stand by for when you want to take it off!)
12. Best cream blusher for on the go: Trinny London Flush Blush, £22
Shade range: 6
Our verdict: This stackable makeup range has made quite a name for itself for being convenient and results driven. With nearly every product housed in a stackable pot, and an online matching tool that tells you which shades suit you best and allows you to buy an entire look. This cream blush is all you need for a dewy natural flush, and can be layered for intensity. It blends into the skin effortlessly without disturbing your base (our pet peeve!)
13. Best cream blusher for glow: Iconic London Sheer Blush, £21
Shade range: 5
Our verdict: It’s no surprise that the brand made famous for its glow-giving illuminators, then managed to create a liquid blush with unrivalled sheer dewiness. The ‘water-rich’ gel is effortless to blend in with fingertips, or if you prefer, gently buffed in with a stippling brush. The end result is best described as a gorgeous veil of colour that can be made to pop for the evening with an added layer or two.
14. Best cream blusher for a natural flush: Glossier Cloud Paint, £17
Shade range: 8
Our verdict: If you’re a Glossier fan and own every single product already, then we don’t need to preach to the choir. But if you’re only just considering your first Glossier purchase, this easy-to-use cheek colour is a great place to start (it’s a top-rated product on the Glossier site). A little goes a long way with this sheer, gel-cream formula: two or three dots blended along the cheekbone will give you a subtle, healthy-looking flush. The shade range is varied but wearable – we would happily pop them all on (separately, of course).
15. Best eco cream blusher: Rose Inc Blush Divine Radiant Lip & Cheek Colour, £25, refill is £14
Shade range: 12
Our verdict: Rosie made an eco-promise when developing her skincare and makeup range, which is vegan, cruelty-free, refillable where possible, and housed in eco packaging. The products are also really good, and this multitasking blush is our fave for creating the supermodel’s signature flushed-cheek look. Nourishing oils of squalane, vitamin E, and ceramides ensure maximum malleability, with no drying out on the skin and a flattering “blurred” finish. The pan can be refilled when you’re done, so you’re helping to save the planet as well as your hard-earned wages.