Whenever you’re feeling blah, swiping on some blush has a magical ability to brighten your face and mood. Whether you skimped on sleep last night or you just tend to feel a bit colorless once the days get shorter and darker, it’s easy to infuse some life back into your face.When deciding which color is best for your skin, makeup artist Stephen Dimmick says it’s all about consistency: Choose a color with the same undertones as your skin. If you have a warm complexion, go for a color with a yellow or orange hue; if your undertones are cool, blue-based colors should be your go-to.Don’t know your undertones? Look at the veins on the underside of your forearm. If they’re mostly blue, you’re cool; mostly green, you’re warm.As far as application is concerned, Dimmick recommends applying blush in more places than just your cheeks. “If you add the color around everywhere, it takes on a more natural appearance,” he says. “The color kind of becomes part of all of you.” To get that overall, flattering wash of color, tap off your brush after swishing it in product. Then, once you’ve applied to your cheeks, don’t double dip. Just use what you have left on the brush to dab a little underneath your chin, on your décolletage, and a little on the top of your forehead. Using a cream blush? Dimmick likes applying with his fingertips, since the warmth of your fingers against the face helps really melt the creamy formula into the skin. Plus, you have a bit more control when you can feel the cheekbones as you apply.To help you out, we handpicked the season’s best blush for each skintone. Read on to find your perfect match.
Fair CoolGo with a light bright pink. Even in the winter, when you might think you should try deeper tones or a bronzer so you’ll look more tan. “If you’re a pale girl, celebrate that paleness and play it up and be the most beautifully pale you can be,” says Dimmick. A bright pink will complement your undertones while also giving you a natural flushed look.Try: Mineral Fusion Blush in Smashing, $22
Fair WarmWhen you’ve got warm undertones, add more warmth. Brighten your face with a more neutral, natural-colored blush, or even a satin or matte bronzer, Dimmick suggests. “Hit it all around the face just to warm it up,” he says, like the temples, hairline, jaw and underneath the collarbone. “A lot of times when warmer skintones go pale, especially olives, they can look sallow,” Dimmick notes. By applying a warm, bronzey color to areas that the sun would hit, you’ll re-infuse some life back into your face and warm it up just the right amount.Try: Urban Decay Naked Flushed in Streak, $30
Medium CoolFuchsia looks good on everyone with cool tones, since it’s more of a blue-pink. To get a pretty pop of color without ODing on the pink, just make sure to always get the excess product out of the brush (if you’re even using one). Really tap the extra product off, Dimmick advises, so you’re applying a light wash and avoiding cartoonish pink cheeks.Try: L’Oréal Paris Visible Lift Blur Blush in Soft Berry, $13
Medium Warm“You want a warmer pink for a warmer skintones, otherwise it’s going to look really contrasty,” Dimmick says. Bright, yellowy pink works wonderfully on warm skintones, so choose a peach that still looks a bit pink. Peach is also perfect for medium skintones. Just remember, it won’t be as bold as a bright pink or red, but it’s still doing it’s job and brightening your complexion. “It’s not something you necessarily need to see for it to have an impact.”Try: Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm in Robust Rhubarb, $21
Dark CoolLadies with a darker skintone can confidently use a bright, bold blush that’ll pop gorgeously on their skin. Try dusting a bright purple-pink on the apple of the cheek, or a bold, blue-based red that’ll add a flushed color and compliment your tones at the same time.Try: Josie Maran Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelèe in Getaway Red, $22
Dark WarmThink woods, New England fall colors, deep ambers and rusts. Just like a peach blush on ladies with medium tones, woodsy colors are flattering on ladies with darker skin because they brighten and bring out your natural glow, but they won’t necessarily make a bold statement. Dimmick also suggests using a stick foundation to apply a blush base, and then adding a pop of a shimmery pink on top of it for those who want something a little more noticeable.Try: Japonesque Velvet Touch Blush in 06, $22 MORE: The Best Bright Blush Shade for Your Skintone