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Updated March 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Buying guide for Best liquid blush

Blush is a makeup product that can instantly help you look healthier and more youthful. The rosy glow it adds to cheeks is the perfect finishing touch to any look. If powder blush looks too harsh, heavy, or dry on your skin, liquid blush is an ideal alternative.

As its name implies, liquid blush has a light consistency that blends easily into the skin. Some products are somewhat sheer, providing an incredibly natural flush to the cheeks. Others are more concentrated, requiring just a small amount to deliver a lovely glow. There’s a bit of a learning curve to applying it correctly, but you can use clean fingers, a sponge, or a brush to achieve the look you want. 

Confused about how to find the best liquid blush for your makeup bag? First, decide whether a gel- or water-based formula is best for your skin and what type of pigmentation you want. It’s also important to consider the shade options and packaging you prefer to make sure you wind up with the right product for you.

liquid blush
Because liquid blush is usually highly concentrated, you only need to apply one or two dots to each cheek. If you want more color, you can add another dot. 

How to buy the best liquid blush

Liquid vs. cream

Liquid and cream blush formulas are somewhat similar but not exactly the same. 

Liquid blush usually has a thinner, lighter-weight consistency. Because it isn’t as heavy on the skin, it offers an extremely natural look that’s ideal for those who prefer a “no makeup” makeup look. The liquid can be blended into the skin with clean fingers, makeup brush, or makeup sponge, depending on your preference. It also works well on nearly all skin types, including oily skin. 

Cream blush is typically thicker and creamier than liquid. As a result, it usually has a heavier look on the skin and offers more pronounced color to the cheeks. This formula generally contains more emollient and hydrating ingredients, so it works well on normal and dry skin. It isn’t the best option for oily skin, and it doesn’t tend to wear as long on the skin as liquid blush. 

Water-based vs. gel-based

Water-based liquid blush usually offers the thinnest formula. It dries extremely quickly and typically provides the longest wear time on the skin. Water-based formulas are the most common type and are ideal for oily skin.

Gel-based liquid blush, sometimes known as serum blush, is slightly thicker and often contains more hydrating ingredients. As a result, it takes a little longer to dry but offers the most flattering look for dry or mature skin. Gel-based blush doesn’t have the same wear time as water-based formulas, but it typically lasts longer than cream blush.

Pigmentation

It’s important to understand pigmentation in order to find the right formula blush for you. In general, liquid blush is sheerer than powder or cream blush. That’s why it looks more natural on the skin and provides a glow that looks like it’s coming from within your skin and not just color on the surface. 

That doesn’t mean that this type of blush isn’t pigmented. These liquids are usually more concentrated than powder or cream blush, so a little goes a long way. You can use a small amount of liquid blush to give your whole cheek a healthy flush of color that lasts all day.

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Staff Tip
Liquid blush dries fairly quickly, so it’s important to blend it immediately after applying it. 
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What features should I look for in liquid blush?

Shade range

This type of blush usually isn't available in as many shades as powder or cream formulas. Still, there is some variation among brands regarding the number of shades offered. Some only come in one or two, but others offer as many as a dozen. You’ll have an easier time finding a shade that complements your skin tone if the brand has a more extensive shade range. 

Light to medium skin tones usually look best with light, neutral blush shades, while tan to dark skin tones look best with bright or deep blush shades . 

It’s also important to consider your skin’s undertone. Warm skin tones work better with warm blush shades like peach, coral, and red. Cool skin tones work best with cool blush shades like mauve and berry. All skin tones can usually wear blush in neutral pink shades.

Finish

Liquid blush is available in both a matte and a radiant or dewy finish. 

Matte blush doesn’t contain any shimmer or glitter, but it typically doesn’t look as flat on the skin as matte powder blush. As a result, it’s an excellent option for oily skin.

Radiant or dewy blush has a shimmer or soft sheen, giving the skin a healthy glow. It’s an ideal choice for dry or mature skin. 

Packaging

Most types of liquid blush come in a bottle or tube. They have a sponge-tip applicator or brush built into the lid, so you can quickly dot a small amount onto your cheeks and use a larger makeup brush, sponge, or your fingers to blend it in.

Other types of liquid blush come in a squeeze tube. You have to dispense a small amount of the product onto your fingers or the back of your hand and then apply it to your skin. This type is usually the messiest to use, but it still works well. 

Cruelty-free

If you don’t like to use makeup that’s tested on animals, look for a cruelty-free liquid blush. The brands that make these products don’t use animal testing, and many avoid working with suppliers who test the individual ingredients on animals. Cruelty-free blush typically features a bunny logo on the packaging. You can also find some blush with a vegan formula that doesn’t contain any animal products at all.

If you’re new to using liquid blush, it might help to apply it with your fingers. You’ll have greater control over its placement and get a more natural look. 

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What accessories do I need with liquid blush?

Makeup brushes

While many types of liquid blush include a built-in applicator in the cap, you still need a makeup brush to blend the color into your skin. Brushes with synthetic bristles are usually the best option for use with this type of blush.

Makeup sponges

You can also use a makeup sponge to blend the blush into your skin. Some people feel that a sponge works best for applying these products because it’s not as likely to cause streaks as using a brush or your fingers. 

How much does liquid blush cost?

Inexpensive

The most affordable liquid blush usually comes from drugstore brands. These don’t contain the highest-quality ingredients and won’t last as long on the skin as some higher-end formulas. They generally cost between $6 and $13.

Mid-range

Mid-range liquid blush typically features higher-quality ingredients that are moisturizing and good for the skin. These formulas also offer a longer wear time, up to 10 hours. These products cost between $15 and $22.

Expensive

The most expensive liquid blush comes from luxury brands and contains high-quality moisturizing ingredients. These products usually offer the longest wear times and cost between $24 and $36.

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Did You Know?
Some liquid blush is multipurpose, which means you can also use it on your lips and eyes. 
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Tips

  • Apply liquid blush before applying powder makeup. Liquid products apply best over other liquid products, so you should apply your blush over your foundation. If you’re using a setting powder or powder bronzer or highlighter, apply it after the blush. 
  • Use a light hand to apply and blend blush. You don’t want to ruin your foundation by blending the blush too roughly.
  • Start with a small amount of blush. Less is usually more with these products, so you’re better off using a small amount and applying more if you want to build up the intensity of the color. You can always add more, but it’s difficult to fix if you’ve used too much. 
  • Use the same brush or sponge for foundation and blush. The leftover makeup on the brush can tone down the blush if you accidentally apply too much. 
liquid blush brush
If you’re using a makeup brush to apply and blend your liquid blush, look for one with synthetic bristles. They don’t absorb as much product as natural bristles, so you won’t waste as much. 

FAQ

Q. Is liquid blush good for oily skin?

A. This type of blush can work well on oily skin if you choose the right formula. Make sure the blush is oil-free, so it won’t make your skin look shiny or greasy. You should also opt for a noncomedogenic blush that won’t clog pores and possibly lead to breakouts.

Q. How long does liquid blush last on the skin?

A. It depends on the formula you choose. This type of blush dries, so it can last for quite a while. Water-based blush typically wears the longest, lasting for up to 12 hours on the skin. However, gel-based formulas are highly emollient, so they may only last half that long on the skin. 

Q. Does liquid blush expire?

A. Like other liquid and cream makeup products, blush generally has a shelf life of a year after you’ve opened it. Consult the packaging for a specific expiration date. It’s also good practice to throw away liquid blush or any makeup product that undergoes a change in color, scent, or consistency no matter how long you’ve had it. 

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