FOUR HIGH END + DRUGSTORE BLUSH FORMULAS


I sometimes forget that not everyone has a secret leprechaun held hostage to keep their bank account afloat when spending the big $$$ on makeup. Peasants. 

In all seriousness though, obviously not all high end and drugstore blushes are created equal, and being the blush hoarder collector that I am, here are the four high end and four drugstore formulas I can't recommend enough if you decide to pick something fancy up! ʘ‿ʘ
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I do have to credit Shayne and Daph for the idea behind this post though, as they like to make my life difficult.

"oooo post your 50 blushes! :) and to make the post even harder rank each one of them :3" - Shayne

"you should do a if i could only have 5 blushes post. You know, for those of us that don't have a collection of 50 blushes" - Daph

(THESE MOTHER FUDGERS)
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THE HIGHENDS

Chanel (2.5g | $38 USD/$43CDN)

If it came down to investing one cream blush to last you 5ever, I'd probably advise you to pick up one of Chanel's cream blushes (or 'Le Blush Creme de Chanel' if you wanna get fancy). Incredible pigmentation for a cream blush, and I'm constantly surprised at the end of the day to find it still looking fresh on my face due to it's cream-to-powder formulation.

Only con is how difficult it is to blend out the bolder shades due to pigmentation, and as with other cream blushes, it disturbs your base underneath.

Illamasqua (4.5g | $26USD/$31CDN)


Someone needs to tell Illamasqua that it is downright illegal for their powders to be so darn soft. WHO EVEN GAVE THEM THE RIGHT? While there are few shades I like in the diverse permanent line, I am convinced they grind up angel wings to produce these powders, because it's impossible for a powder to be that soft, pigmented, and long-lasting.

Unfortunately, as with all fine pressed powders, it creates the most amount of fallout in the pan compared to Tarte and NARS.

Tarte (5.6g |$26USD/$31CDN)

Not quite as soft as Illamasqua (let's face it, how soft a powder is can make or break a purchase) but still immensely pigmented. I'm not sure how legit these 'Amazonian Clay' ~nutrient rich~ claims are, but these blushes are exceptionally long wearing, and I'm in love with most of the shades in this line because Tarte plays it safe with the shade range.

NARS (4.8g | $30USD/$33CDN)


Without a doubt, NARS has the most diverse (and outrageous) shade selection in this list. While I'm not a fan of the line's regular offerings (either too much shimmer or the colour is not my taste), they do produce the shades I like in their limited edition collections. Their powders aren't nearly as soft as Illamasqua or Tarte, but the pigmentation and lasting power is definitely there.

If you want pigmentation: All
If you want ridiculously soft powder: go for Illamasqua or Tarte
If you want long-wearing: Chanel, Tarte, Illamasqua
For shade diversity: Illamasqua or NARS
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THE DRUGSTORES
Bourjois (2.5g)


These the Chanel cream blush drugstore equivalent, dries down to a powder finish, and is nicely pigmented compared to the other cream blushes in my stash (non-silicone-y and much more pigmented). Easily one of the best cream blushes in my collection.

My only qualm is that there's only four shades available. (RUDE)

Essence (5g)

Oh, how soft thy powders are, Essence! I have a tendency to reach for one of Essence's 'Silky Touch' blushes on days where I don't know what to sport on my cheeks. Incredibly pigmented, ridiculously soft powder, and fairly decent wear time. Three out of the four shades are 'natural' looking, making them perfect for daily wear. Definitely underpriced and definitely puts some of the other high end blushes to shame.

Unfortunately, Essence's limited edition blushes don't exactly fare the same, or can be hit or miss, and like Bourjois' cream blushes, there's only four shades available right now.

NYX (4g)

Some of NYX's powder blushes can be a hit or miss, but when they get it right, they get it right. Shade selection is one of the most diverse in the drugstore, and if you get a good NYX blush, it will be soft/finely milled, pigmented, and wears for a good amount of time.

My only qualm is how chunky the packaging is, which means serious depotting time.

Wet n Wild (4g)


Sweet baby banana plants, I have forgotten how AMAZING Wet n Wild's blushes are! Ever since Pauline sent me 'Mellow Wine', my love for their blushes has been rekindled. (Long story short, I crushed 'Pearlescent Pink' and remolded it...and let's just say I would never advise you to remold a blush) BUT DANG, this stuff seriously competes with the high end in terms of quality and pigmentation!

Again, like Bourjois and Essence, there are only four shades in the line right now (what's with the sets of four?), and packaging is a bit chunky.

BUT, I DISCOVERED THIS RECENTLY:

If you pick up one of Rimmel's single blushes, they (nearly) perfectly fit in the brush holder space, and BAM, instant portable blush duo! (I'm sure you could fit other depotted powders in there, like eyeshadows!)

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And there you have it folks! These are all blushes I want to be buried with (quick, someone write that in my will!), and hopefully if you decide to pick up one of these, you don't be disappointed!

Which blush formulas do you swear by? ʘ‿ʘ

67 comments

  1. I don't have a massive blush collection, and I really enjoyed hearing your picks! Love NARS and Tarte (but I'm mostly unfamiliar with the other high end blushes). I also really like the Nyx and Maybelline Dream Bouncy blushes. Most of all, I find myself reaching for loose powder blushes from Fyrinnae and DreamWorld Hermetica, though!

    http://www.beautyloon.com/

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    1. Haha, thanks! If I had to recommend one high end blush of the bunch, I'd probably say go for Illamasqua!! That stuff's amazing!
      I really want a Dream Bouncy blush for the squishy factor, but I've heard numerous complaints about pigmentation.

      Ouu, brands I haven't heard of before! -goes off and googles-

      Delete
  2. I like NARS' blushes, but they're expensive and I find that there's always a cheaper dupe. That didn't stop me from repurchasing them though.
    Ooh, I keep swatching the Bourjois blushes but never took one home with me. I'm so tempted to, but I just got my hands on some Milani baked blushes and I am loving those to death. I think I need to stop buying blushes or I'll end up with 50 in my pile, too. How do you even decide which one to wear!?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yeah, there's actually quite a few dupes for NARS. Guess the shades are what other brush brands aspire to have????
      Shoppers' reaallly overprices them. I got mine off ASOS when they had a sale for $12! As much as I love Milani, I'm not too sure about the shades. I really enjoy Luminoso though, and I want to get my hands of Corallina!

      I DON'T ;-; THE STRUGGLE EVERYDAY IS UNREAL. Usually I'll give give up and pick one of Essence's blushes because they're so...natural looking?

      Delete
    2. I gotta get on that Essence wagon, seriously.

      Delete
  3. I am so impressed by the photography on your blog. DAMN YOU AND YOUR SKILLZ. I am a big fan of Illamasqua blushes but you have to be ever so gentle with applying them, otherwise you will look clowny. And clowns are scary.

    Kirsten | kirstenlearns.com

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    1. (More like photoshop skillz #NOSHAME)
      Agreed! But I feel like that's mean to clowns, they get so much flak.

      Delete
  4. OMGGG the Rimmel blush in the WnW blush is so cool! I really want a Bourjois cream blush xx

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    1. Haha, I'm pretty proud of myself for discovering it! Get one! :)

      Delete
  5. I love both Illamasqua and NARS blushes, they're so pretty and long wearing! Xx

    www.MissMakeupMagpie.com

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  6. Yes, hello, I am peasant you speak of. I'm such a cheapskate, but also me wiiiiiiisssheees I had a leprechaun to buy me pretty things! I find cream blush doesn't disturb the makeup beneath it if I apply it with a stippling brush! Also DANG GURL, you are so smart with that DIY blush duo ;) now I want a wetnwild and rimmel blush just so I can do that.

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

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    1. It's ok, I'm also a cheapskate. IF I CAN SAVE 10 CENTS, BELIEVE ME, I WILL SAVE 10 CENTS. I really need to try and perfect my stippling technique then!

      RITE? RITE? This is what happens when you have too many blushes and accidentally discover things.

      Delete
  7. Nars blushes are so nice ;___; <3
    In therms of drustore, sleek are a must try! They have tones of shades and are super pigmented. The only sad part is that they don't last all day like Nars or Tarte.

    Take care, have a nice day!!*

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    1. Haha, thy really are! Though I'm not a fan of some of their shades, they do have pretty good pigmentation!
      I have a few Sleek blushes, and I don't know if the entire line is like it, but I don't like how 'glowy' mine are? (Unless I accidentally chose the 'glowy' shades!)(I JUST REALLY LIKE MATTES OK)

      Delete
  8. I love Nars too! But I am always too scared to get hooked to the limited edition colors in fear I will not be able to get it for as long as I want to wear that color. I tend to find a color and wear the same one for years… Not very beauty blogger of me I know, haha.

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    1. I have that fear too! But at the end of the day, there's always going to be more limited edition blushes to try! (AND, IT'S JUST BLUSH ;))
      Nah, that just speaks to how much you love that shade....maybe?

      Delete
  9. SNAP! My mind was literally BLOWN AWAY by that travel duo thingy!! I need to try that out!! I told myself I shouldn't read this post because now I want, no NEED, Illamasqua and Chanel blushers! Do you know how many blushers I owned when I started blogging?! Like, 3 or 4! NOW I HAVE OVER 20!!! I need to stahp...but at the same time, I don't want to ;)

    www.lilting-grace.blogspot.com

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    1. RIGHT? I AM BRILLIANT, THANK ME LATER. ALSO, the Illamasqua and Chanel packaging fit together (because of the curves....I have no life)
      CAN'T STOP, WON'T STOP, PARTAY ALL DAY ERRDAY.

      Delete
  10. I absolutely love blush, and I loved this post! I love NARS blushes, and I'm wanting to try out a Chanel cream blush :)

    BeyondBlush

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    1. Heh, I know you do ;)
      Chanel's cream blushes are amazing!

      Delete
  11. what what what what?! that blusher duo thing you discovered just caused my brain to explode, and why the hell do we not have wet n wild stuff in the uk? And I've been wanting to tryout the Bourjois cream blushes and their little round pot ones, bc they just look SO cute!

    Yet Another Makeup Blog.

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    1. RIGHT? I AM GENIUs. It's my new fav discovery!
      I was actually really surprised by how small they were when they came.
      Like.
      Really surprised.

      Delete
  12. You are a genius! I shall try to fit something in the Wet n Wild compartment. Great post! The Illamasqua formula sounds like a dream. :3

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    1. Ok, I fiddled around with it, and you can fit either one of wet n wild's brow or lid shade, plus the definer shade in that compartment. Not too shabs :D
      ILLAMASQUA IS A DREAAAMMM

      Delete
  13. may we borrow your secret leprechaun! :) seriously if i knew illamasqua blushes were that soft i would have bought it over the burberry blush i ordered online. i only got it for that reason... ok not really, i also got it for its shiny packaging lol but these are next on my wishlist in colors chased / sophie or promise (cream blush). also eyeing the bourjois cream blushes and their bronzer. the blushes look like macaroons :3 im hoping diana would include them on our gift swap cause i cant find a way to buy them through my US shipping address hihi.

    and that rimmel / wet n wild combo, amazing! only you can discover such thing :)

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    1. I don't have a Burberry blush (yet...so I want your review on that!), but lawd, I love Illamasqua! SOFTEST POWDER EVER. I have Sophie pictured above and I looove it. Promise is a gorgeous shade too!
      OMG they do kinda look like macarons!

      OR, YOU COULD ASK ME TO SHIP THEM OVER ;)
      I know right. Sittin' on too many blushes.

      Delete
    2. yes pliss :) when do you want to do the swap? already made a draft of some things i want to send you lol excited much shayne. can we do it after i receive the package from diana? were suppose to ship it out both boxes next week :)

      Delete
  14. I feel like we should nickname you the "blush guru" Vanessa! I've never tried Wet n Wild blushes though I see them regularly displayed on my way into the drugstore to buy other stuff. I may just have to pick up one of two the next time I see them on sale. And how cool that you figured out a hack to get a blush duo out of that packaging. I'm trying to decide between getting a Chanel or Illamasqua cream blush next right now.

    We have an Ajisen in NYC too. There's one that's just two blocks away from my apt. :)

    Rowena @ rolala loves

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    1. WELP, that's better than what my other friends are calling me! ('Crazy blush lady', hahahha)
      You should! They're ridiculously pigmented + finely milled, though lasting power is not as long as highend blushes.
      If you get an Illamasqua cream blush, I'd love to hear your thoughts on it!! :D (Since, I haven't really read enough reviews on the cream blushes)

      I FEEL LIKE YOU LIVE NEAR ALL THE TASTY EATS

      Delete
  15. Eeeek, I love everything about this post! I own one NYX blush and 2 Wet n Wild, they really are great considering their price tag. I love Essence, and shame on me for never trying their blushes! Fab photos!

    www.natalielovesbeauty.com

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    1. OTHX ;)
      Yeah, NYX and Wet n Wild are pretty great considering they're from the drugstore!
      NOOO YOU NEED TO TRY ONE OF THEIR BLUSHES!!

      Delete
  16. I've nominated you for a Liebster award!
    www.luluisloving.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  17. LOVE this post! Got to see a variety of blushes from brands that I have tried (as well as brands that I haven't tried). Definitely swear by Tarte and Wet n Wild. Boy are those blushes from them are AMAZING! (speaking of with...why didn't you ask me to pick you up Pearlescent Pink?! I would've done so :P ) I need to pick up more NYX and Elf Blushes for sure (not to mention I need to get my hands on Illamasqua blushes. THEY.LOOK.SO.BEAUTIFUL. Can't wait to see more blush posts!
    <3 Pauline, ­­Addicted to Makeup

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    1. Oh, bless Tarte and their beautiful shade range :')
      Nooooo, I don't need another Pearlescent Pink in my life, haha! I grinded mine up, so it's basically sitting in loose powder form on my table!
      YOU NEED AN ILLAMASQUA BLUSH (I can't decide if I should've sent you a TheBalm blush or an Illamasqua one!)

      Delete
  18. Woaaah that WnW and Rimmel duo is amazing! :o Love Nars blushes! Exhibit A, Sin, and Luster are my absolute favorite blushes. I seriously want to try Illamasqua blushes now aaaahhh.

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    1. Right? :D
      Oh geez, I want to eventually pick up Exhibit A, but imagine all the blending I'd have to do!
      DO ITTTT

      Delete
  19. That Illamasqua blush is gorgeous. I too am a blush fanatic, so I'll definitely add some of these to my wishlist!

    Laura x | Life and Lipstick

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    1. Illamasqua blushes are never a mistake!

      Delete
  20. GENIUS!!!! (regarding how the wetnwild can basically be big spoon to rimmel's little spoon)
    after you made me touch the illimasqua...frick...so soft. how it this fairy magic even possible!!!
    though not listed. still lemming the clinique ones...
    Jenn
    A Beautiful Zen

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    1. HAHA love the big spoon/small spoon metaphor ;)
      RIGHT? I feel like I should make everyone touch an Illamasqua blush. Instant sale right there.
      Clinque is pretty cute, but not too sure about texture + pigmentation!

      Delete
  21. "grind up angel wings" that's a lovely image right there. Have you tried the Milani blushes? I only have one but it's so pretty! My favorite blushes are definitely the Tarte ones and the Bobbi Brown Apricot (which you should totally get!) x

    Daphne | subgenre of a dream | bloglovin

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    1. I've got three Milani blushes, though not gonna lie, I only like Luminoso of the bunch (the other shades are wonk).
      OK STOP CONVINCING ME TO GET APRICOT I'M ON A SPENDING AND BLUSH BAN ;-;

      Delete
  22. Beautiful picks, Vanessa! Sounds like you have a killer collection. NARS, Tarte, Illamasqua, and Chanel are all well represented in my collection too- and I really want to try those Bourjois cream blushes :)

    -Jen

    www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

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    1. DANG, SOUNDS LIKE YOU HAVE A KILLER COLLECTION TOO ;)
      Ahh, do it! Last time I checked, they were still $13 on ASOS!

      Delete
  23. A girl after my own heart. I don't know what's wrong with me, I just can't stop buying blushes (3 palettes this week alone). I've got only one Tarte (Natural Beauty) and I want to get them ALL! I've rencetly invested in a Stila convertible palette, which I have yet to try. I need a Chanel blush. NEED! And also, great drugstore picks, W&W blushes are SO pigmented. Okay, I will end this comment here, but I could talk about blushes all day!

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    1. I'M PROUD OF YOU ;)))
      I've still yet to try 'Natural Beauty'! A lot of people keep recommending that shade to me, so I know I need it!
      LIKEWISE. WE SHOULD JUST MEET UP AND TALK ABOUT BLUSHES, YEAH?

      Delete
  24. I am a huge fan of NYX cream blushes. I also got a Catrice blush through a swap and it is probably one of my favorites.

    katespitz.blogspot.com

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    1. I've yet to try a NYX cream blush, but I want to! Likewise with Catrice! Heard the quality is amazing.

      Delete
  25. I'm desperate to try an illamasqua blush, hurry up payday! x

    lillies and lipbalm

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    1. HA, hurry up payday indeed! You won't regret an Illamasqua purchase!

      Delete
  26. Such a brilliant post! Yaaay for Shayne and Daphne tehehe
    I love all the high end suggestions, especially NARS and Illamasqua, because I seem to be growing a larger collection of them both! LOVE how soft the illamasqua ones are gah!! I'm not entirely sure how I feel aboutcream blushers, I didn't get on with that very pictured bourjois blush at all because it didn't even show up on my skin?! RUDE haha and the other drugstore ones are all unavailable in the UK or very limited *sob sob*
    (but I suppose thats more to add to my 'one day when I get to the USA drugstore' list)
    ohhhhh you enabler you!
    Iqra |The Blushing Giraffe
    xxx

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    1. Ha, no wonder they have posts churned out so often THEY HAVE GREAT IDEAS.
      Oh man, Illamasqua totally has my heart now! More than NARS...thank god because there's like a $6 price difference between the two. I KNOW, I GUESS IT JUST DIDN'T WORK OUT FOR YOU :( (MUA/Topshop makes great cream blushes! I'm guess Bourjois was to 'natural' toned?)
      YES, COME TO THE STATES ONE DAY.

      Delete
  27. I want to try Illamasqua but I never find them! And I really like your plate by the way!!

    AH I have a NARS limited edition blush (still need to review after I go through my hoarded stash..) and love it. Actually, the colour is called LOVE. It's amazinggg!!!

    Macarons and Mischief

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    1. ....just now I was totally going to accidentally give you Toronto locations but then realised you don't live in Toronto, hah!
      The Bay online site sells them for $5 less than on Sephora site! (THANKS, I GOT THE PLATE FROM TARGET....LIKE THE OTHER 60% OF STUFF IN MY ROOM)
      omg!! I wanted that shade too! I picked up 'Final Cut', then looked up swatches of the other shades in the collection and wanted 'Love'

      Delete
  28. Ooohhh great tip! I have a wet n wild blush too but hate the brush. The blush itself is insanely pigmented!

    I'm having a giveaway right now and would love for you to enter!
    notanobession.blogspot.com
    Would appreciate if you checked out my blog :)

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    1. Hah, I think we all have a tendency to never use the brushes that come with blushes. (Sorry, Dior blush)

      I will most definitely check out your blog! :)

      Delete
  29. I nominated you for the Liebsted Award a week or so ago

    http://allthingsashleighblog.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Thanks! I will go check it out now! :)

      Delete
  30. Ah, gotta love our blogging friends ;) I can't wait to try a blush by Illamasqua! And NARS blushes are my favorite so far :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the Rimmel blush because I've never tried one!

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  31. Great post Vanessa! I haven't tried Chanel or Illamasqua blushes (out of my budget) but I do love Tarte and Nars blushes. Your drugstore options definitely fit in my budget so I'll be sure to check out Bourjois, Essence, and WetnWild. I had a few NYX blushes but wasn't thrilled about the quality (guess I picked all the misses). I don't even know where those blushes are anymore... Might have gave them all away.

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  32. those are pretty colors.
    i have yet to try one of the blushes from NARS since i
    am very curious about it.
    :D

    ❤ kei

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  33. First click on your blog and I am just blown over by how beautiful the photography is! You have a serious eye for colour and composition!
    Hannah xx

    http://be-beaut.blogspot.co.uk/

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  34. I've never tried that trick with the Rimmel blushes - I wouldn't even have guessed! But yes, Wet n Wild makes one of the best blushes and I'm in love! I've yet to try Illamasqua blushes but it's been on my wishlist for some time now, that it's only a matter of time before it's mine!!

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  35. I would love to try Illamasqua coz I wanna feel how grounded angel wings feel like! Essence ones do sound like a dream. I personally do not like cream blushes coz of our humid tropical weather but those cream to powder ones sound promising.

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  36. Oh, great overview! I think long wearing and easy to blend are the most important qualities I look for.. and obviously a beautiful color! I have a couple of powder blushes, a blush stick, cheek stains, and a creamy blush :) so.. I really play around with the type of blush too.

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