my MUA reviews: blush(er)

Aaagh.

Deep breath.

Back to sensible and serious things: make-up!

Four years’ worth of reviews, but very few products. Skin tolerance and taste have changed, but I’d still reckon any of these would be worth a look-see-try to the pale of hue and/or gingerry of tress.

 Korres – Zea Mays Powder blush in 16 Pink  rated 5 of 5 gingerrama on 4/17/2011 8:55:00 PM

An unreserved 5 lippies for a great, great blusher. This is a true pink: slightly blue-lilac in undertone, can be built up if need be or just fluffed on delicately. No guarantees on what skin tones and depths this stuff will work for, but it’s stupendous on pale skin, with undertones so cool it can look pale blue, and some freckles to confuse matters with a bit of warmth…
A slight touch is enough to liven up pale skin: won’t make you look overdone, or clownish, or rosacea-flushed. Just, well, a little more alive. No glitter or shimmer at all. Fine-milled. Natural-looking. Perfect for every day. Lasts all day, too, which was impressive. The packaging uses the words “velvety”, “luminous”, and “smooth and even finish.” Full marks for not lying!
Similar tone to other lavendery-pinks, but gentler, and matte without being flat : Clinique Blushing Blush in Iced Lotus (which is way more silvery-shimmery), BeneFit Dandelion, various other good pale pinks around the place. No bismuth oxychloride, no fragrance, no irritation on me (but then, while my skin is sensitive to some things, it’s often OK with talc and always OK with mica, dimethicone, corn starch, and indeed everything else in here).
I’d previously been using the Silk Naturals dupe of Dandelion–a much more sensitive-friendly formula, but it’s a loose powder which is not my best friend first thing in the morning. The SN is a keeper, don’t get me wrong: not least as it’s always fine on my skin, even with eczema or raging spring-time allergies. But it’s better suited to times when I have a little more time for application, and, especially, not for first thing in the morning, when I tend to drop things, tip loose powders all over the place, over apply, dust off powdery stuff all over myself, and generally create much mess. Compared to a pressed powder, a loose one already takes double the time with the Ginger-am factor, and you can triple or quadruple that with the clean-up time afterwards…
My klutz-proof application: using the old mini-brush from an old Clinique Iced Lotus. Swiped onto apples of cheeks, do a fake sweet smile, buff blusher around. Skin having previously been cleaned, moisturised, sunscreened, and had some Silk Naturals Perfecting Powder patted on vaguely.
Korres Pink it is, henceforth, as blusher of choice, for morning use. Thoroughly recommended.
In a nice white plastic recyclable compact, solid construction, closes with a satisfying snap. Which is packaged inside a paper sleeve, and it’s inside another one. Otherwise minimalist, no gam and glitz. 7g / 0.24 0z. Costs CAD32.00, which is shocking, considering the strength of the CAD compared to the USD these days, tsk. Mush much much cheaper in the EU, and especially in Greece. Cruelty-free.
INGREDIENTS: Talc, Mica, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Nylon-12, Zinc Stearate, Dimethicone, Chlorphenesin, Potassium Sorbate, Silica, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Zea Mays Starch, Octyldodecyl Lactate, Octyldodecanol, Isononyl Isononanoate. May contain: CI 77891, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499, CI 77007, CI 75470, CI 77742, CI 77288, CI 77289, CI 77510, CI 15850, CI 73360, CI 15985, CI 19140, CI 42090.

Silk Naturals – Petal (Benefit Dandelion Clone)  rated 5 of 5 gingerrama on 4/15/2011 1:32:00 PM

A lovely blusher, suitable for very pale people with skintones verging on the pale blue to lilac (redhead here). Petal is a very pale true pink on the skin: very very very like BeneFit Dandelion (which is a gorgeous colour but irritated me), and the same cool-pink colour family as Clinique’s old Ice Bloom and that very nice one from Chanel that’s either discontinued or hard to find. Or a mythical beast. Or something. Anyway, back to Petal. Do not be alarmed by the sight of it in the jar, where it looks more pigmented.
The shade is particularly good through winter: matte, works well with light that’s not very intense, when sparkles would be de trop. Pairs well with a redder lipstick: I wear this with Lipstick Queen Saint Rouge of an evening, or otherwise their Medieval or else Silk Naturals Bitten (Medieval dupe)
Application: Careful as a little goes a long way. Only available in one format, a loose powder. This can be made into a pressed version, by some kitchen-sink chemistry including waxes… I’ve been using an old stumpy kabuki-style brush, the Body Shop one for mineral foundation; fluffy, soft bristles. Can’t remember what it’s made of except it’s not animal. Loose blushers will take a little longer to apply than pressed ones, but if your skin is sensitive, sensitised, and reacts to everything, they’re well worth a try: SNs’s formulation are fantastic, so minimalist they really are just functional pigments for the most part, mica and silk powder being the nearest thing to “fillers” in here. Also explains the density of pigment in the jar.
Cruelty-free. While this one isn’t vegan–contains silk powder–SN do make vegan blushers too; nearest shades would probably be Stellar (but more glittery), a smidge of Be Mine, or the lightest touch of Apple. Costs $6.50 for 1 to 1.5 teaspoonfuls (around 7 ml volume) in a 10g sifter jar, or $1.25 for 1/8 teaspoonful in a 5g sample jar. Online only, decent shipping prices (even to Canada).
I’m not ecstatic about the jar, so I moved it into a larger one with more sifter-holes and added a disk of plastic on top; otherwise I end up with all the blusher on top of the sifting holes, rather than under them in the main part of the jar, and then I run a very high risk of spilling it all everywhere (then when I scoop it back in adding crumbs, carpet fluff, and so on; and yes, that’s even in a fairly clean home…)
INGREDIENTS: Mica, Silk Powder, Silica, Iron Oxide, FD&C Color. Like the other SN blushers, contains no talc, powdered starches, clays, bismuth oxychloride.

TheBalm – Hot Mama  rated 5 of 5 gingerrama on 4/15/2011 12:52:00 PM

Well, spring is in the air and it’s time to review blushers. Spring, yes, even in rainy Vancouver.
Excellent fast blush for the PPP, and others too. Hot Mama is a pale peachy-toned pink with shimmer. It is not coral. It is not orange. But it does warm you up. Worth knowing if you’re actively looking for these, or trying desperately to avoid them. Applied lightly, you get a nice warm glow. Applied with a heavier hand might better suits someone with a more, well, lively complexion.
I’ve seen this stuff tested out by SAs on customers in Sephora: while I usually run away and have as little to do with their SAs as possible, they do have some (Vancouver branch) who have a good eye and hand. In this case, it was fascinating to see how this blush does actually suit a wide range of skin tones. And, on all, it’s fast to apply.
I reckon it’s *nicer* than NARS Orgasm and the various Orgasmalikes around the place. Less glitter, more pink, and without the assorted ingredients that caused assorted reactions on me, from immediate to spottiness by the end of the day.
Worth reporting back: no irritation (on me, YMMV), and no bismuth oxychloride or talc. This blusher’s ingredients are often misreported online; see below for what’s actually on the Mama herself.
Depending on what I’m wearing for lippie, this is one of my regular daily blushes. Especially given the rapid application. I pair The Mama with Silk Naturals kisser slicker in Nectar (Clinique Black Honey dupe, but better texture and longer-lasting). My other usual pairing is SN blush in Petal–a pale cool pink, same family as BeneFit Dandelion and Clinique’s old Ice Bloom–with Lipstick Queen Medieval or Saint Rouge, or SN’s Bitten. (Review for Petal coming up shortly…)
Packaging is neat: small cardboard-covered booklet, featuring 50s-style pinup in red bikini and heels, an ice-cream, and palm-trees on skyline of beach at sunset. Inside: the blusher on one “page” and the mirror on the other, and a magnetic closure. Very lightweight: good for travel, maybe less good for carrying around every day in a bag as it’ll not be as durable as heavy metal compacts. For a brush, I’m using an old mini one that came with a Cllinique blusher.
Cruelty-free, and vegan (substituting synthetic wax for the more usual beeswax).The packaging is recyclable. Costs around CAD19.00. Here in Canada, available from London Drugs, Sephora, some other pharmacies/drugstores and various others.
INGREDIENTS: Boron Nitride, Polyethylene, Isoeicosane, Caprylic / Capric Triglyceride, Silica, Polyisobutene, PTFE, Synthetic Wax, Dimethicone, Sodium Dehydroacetate. May contain [+/- Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Carmine (CI 75470), Iron Oxide (CI 77491)]
I copied these from the product packaging; note that the ingredients listed by some online sellers are different.

Lancôme – blush subtil miel glacé  rated 5 of 5 gingerrama on 1/26/2009 2:09:00 PM

This is no. 23 in the “Blush Subtil Shimmer” range.
Just adding my “oooh” to all the “aaahs” here. Truly wondrous on the very pale of skin, very lightly freckled, and red-haired. My trusty Clinique Aglow let me down – turned orange on me – and I can’t wear second favourite, Aveda Apricot Glow, for more than a few hours without some irritation starting up. So I turned to the good people of MUA for help in finding a new everyday YBB blusher.
Miel Glacé looks quietly beige in the pan, applies like a dream, and looks like a hint of natural colour once on the face: a delicate pink-beige-peach. Less of the peachy-orange and brownish-mud than in many blushers that are half-way to a bronzer (ex. Clinique Aglow before it turned on me). Light, slightly glimmery, but no discernible glitter and certainly none of those glittery sparkly bits. Very slight pleasant rose scent – if you stick your nose close to the pan.
As I’ve always found with Lancôme so far, zero reactions (and my skin tends to be sensitive). Contains neither talc nor bismuth oxychloride (ci 77163).
100% recommended for the similarly-complexioned: pale blue, cool- to neutral-toned, with the warming elements of slight freckling and red hair. It is a very close second to my current favourite blusher, Clinique Iced Lotus: pale cool pink; easier to apply perfectly fast than the Miel. That’s really my slight peeve: the Clinique Blushing Blushes some with a very good brush, the Lancôme brush included is not very good, and it takes quite a lot of finicky swirling and blending and so on to get it on right. My best solution was to use the brush from an old Clinique Aglow. Still working on it, and so the Iced Lotus remains my favourite for sheer ease and speed of application – a no-brainer for mornings before work, when one has no brain – while the Miel is for when I have a little more time for makeup.
Part of the current North American Lancôme range; no longer available in Europe, but it does turn up on eBay fairly regularly. I happened to get one here in Dublin as some pharmacies have been getting rid of their old stock and Christmas gift specials; after hunting in a couple of places, I struck gold, and at 50% off. Well worth hunting down. Lancôme blushers tend to be about EUR 33 to 35 here, for a good-sized 6 g. Nice and solid packaging.
Delighted to see that the company’s animal testing policy has been changing progressively over the last few years, some of the products no longer being tested at all at present, and with a view to the new EU legislation coming in.
INGREDIENTS (from the box): PTFE, nylon-12, zinc stearate, calcium aluminum borosilicate, boron nitride, dimethiconol, triisocetyl citrate, trimethylsiloxysilicate, isopropyl titanium triisostearate, acrylates copolymer, cetyl dimethicone, fragrance, isobutylparaben, methylparaben, phenoxyethanol, propylparaben, ethylparaben, butylparaben [± red 36 (ci 12085) – red 6 (ci 15850) – red 7 (ci 15850) – yellow 5 lake (ci 19140) – blue 1 lake (ci 42090) – red 21 (ci 45380) – red 30 (ci 73360) – carmine (ci 75470) – ultramarines (ci 77007) – barium sulfate (ci 77120) – chromium oxide greens (ci 77288) – chromium hydroxide green (ci 77289) – iron oxides (ci 77491, 92, 99) – ferric ferrocyanide (ci 77510) – manganese violet (ci 77742) – titanium dioxide (ci 77891) – zinc oxide (ci 77947) – mica]

Clinique – blushing blush powder blush iced lotus  rated 5 of 5 gingerrama on 10/3/2008 6:12:00 PM

A great blusher for those of us with pale-blue skin and freckles. UPDATE: current main everyday blush (03/2009).
I tried this after reading reviews here. And promptly bought it. It’s not a colour I’d have tried in a million years – it looks pinky-lilac – as I’d been going for the pale pink-peach gilded-champagne types of shades (Bourjois Lune D’Or, Clinique Aglow, Lancôme Miel doré, and assorted Orgasmalikes). Freckles usually fare best with a slightly golden glow.
I don’t understand how The Iced does it, but it looks marvelous: slight flush, not like rosacea or consumption, nor like clown cheeks. Very slight glimmer (not outright glitter, on me anyway). Warms up cool-toned skin, without clashing with freckles. I’m usually a sceptical sort and like to question and understand how things work; in this case, I’m just happy to leave the magic alone to do its mysterious thing …
And, please note, it looks natural. Just normal but healthier. Yes, violet blusher would look weird. This doesn’t look remotely violet on (on me anyway, and applied lightly). Maybe something to do with blending in with the blue undertones in pale skin? Maybe doing the opposite to many blushes and why they go wrong and look like bad orangey bronzers?
Texture and application: Finely-milled and soft, easily picked up with a brush, needs but the lightest fastest dab-and-sweep on apple/cheekbone. Looks like it’ll last some time, given how little is needed. A word of warning – it’s quite pigmented, so I found I needed a bit of practice to find out how much to use. In my case, for each cheek: two sweeps of the pan, onto the apple in a C, one swirl around, then other cheek. Rub cheeks lightly with palms of hands. Done. Once in the habit, takes seconds. Like the other Blushing Blushes, the Iced comes with a small, soft, angled-head brush that I love: same quality as Clinique’s full-sized brushes, and I prefer a short handle for ease of application.
Absolutely no reactions. No parabens, nor oils here, nor lanolin derivatives (the latter two might have been a contributory irritant for poor old me in blush experiments over the last year – how we suffer to be beautiful…).
Lovely shiny compact, with huge mirror inside and mirrored outside, and the brush. My one complaint is the brush takes up half the space inside – but that’s just me being greedy for even more product.
Costs USD 18.50 / GBP 18.00 / EUR 28.00.
INGREDIENTS: talc – dimethicone – silica – zinc stearate – nylon-12 – lauryl laurate – tetrasodium edta – potassium sorbate – chlorphenesin – [± mica – titanium dioxide (ci 77891) – iron oxides (ci 77491, 92, 99) – bismuth oxychloride (ci 77163) – yellow 5 lake (ci 19140) – carmine (ci 75470) – red 7 lake (ci 15850) – ferric ferrocyanide (ci 77510) – blue 1 lake (ci 42090) – red 22 lake (ci 45380) – red 36 lake (ci 12085) – manganese violet (ci 77742) – red 30 lake (ci 73360) – red 33 lake (ci 17200) – red 28 lake (ci 45410) – red 34 lake (ci 15880) – ultramarines (ci 77007) – yellow 6 lake (ci 15985) – red 6 (ci 15850)]

Aveda – Petal Essence Cheek Color in Apricot Glow  rated 4 of 5 gingerrama on 8/7/2008 1:20:00 PM

A delicate peachy-pink with some glow/glimmer (not straight-up gilded glitter, more subtle). Lovely on pale freckled skin with red hair. Peach enough for the freckles and ginger tresses, pink enough for the pale blue skin. Very nice in summer; less good now, due to different glasses. Only 4 as it is way too expensive for way way too little product.

Same colour family as Clinique Blushing Blush in Aglow – but slightly paler; side by side, Aglow looks more bronzy (and slightly beige) and Apricot Glow just looks plain glowy, with some shimmer. Also akin to Nars Orgasm (which is deeper and more pink), The Body Shop Golden Pink, Bourjois Lune d’Or (which is lighter, more glitter) – and many many more Orgasmalikes. Thank goodness for the old Orgasm: every other range now has its Orgasmalike, and this is blooming marvellous for the pale of hue.
I have taken this down to a 4 cos of the price and slight reactions: I can’t wear this all day or bumps appear on cheeks, though an evening (and cleaning face before bed) is fine.
Worth every cent, but alas, it’s expensive: EUR 20.50, GBP 12.50, USD -well, massively less! And half the size of Clinique Aglow – so if that suits you fine, and you’re happy with its bulkier compact, I’d go with it instead.
Like other Aveda products, no animal testing, lots of ethical goodness, etc., etc. No talc or lanolin. A little scented but only if you rub your nose in it.
Packaged as a pan in a little plastic closeable sleeve that’s perfectly serviceable. Easy to apply – even with fingertips – currently using Body Shop retractable blusher brush. I can also recommend buying two Glows and the medium-sized “total face” Envirometal magnetic compact: put the two pans in longways in the upper half, leaving you a 4-square-long space in the lower half that exactly fits a small blusher brush (in this case, from one of the Clinique Blushing Blushes). To mimise powdery dust in the compact, keep the greaseproof-paper layer that comes with it, and place under the pans; also keep the other thicker papery thing and leave on top of contents.
INGREDIENTS: mica, dimethicone, squalane, zinc stearate, magnesium stearate, silica, magnesium myristate, rice starch, cymbidium orchid flower extract, jasmine flower wax, rose geranium wax, caprylic/capric trigyceride, ascorbyl palmitate, tocopherol, methicone, soybean oil, lavender oil, linalool, sodium dehydroacetate, methylparaben, propylparaben, [± titanium dioxide (ci 77891), ultramarines (ci 77007), red 7 lake (ci 15850), manganese violet (ci 77742), yellow 5 lake (ci 19140), red 22 lake (ci 45380), red 30 lake (ci 73360), bismuth oxychloride (ci 77163), red 33 lake (ci 17200), ferric ferrocyanide (ci 77510), iron oxides (ci 77491, 77492, 77499), red 6 (ci 15850), red 28 lake (ci 45410), blue 1 lake (ci 42090), red 34 lake (c 15880), yellow 6 lake (ci 15985)]

Clinique – Blushing Blush Powder Blush in Aglow  rated 3 of 5 gingerrama on 6/30/2008 2:04:00 PM

UPDATE: it went ORANGE on me!!! What happened to true love? Fortunately, found the last Lancome Miel Glacé in all of Dublin (long story: long discontinued over here).
This was, for a long time, a great blush for everyday purposes. Not just a good one, but a great one. Used off and on for months; I may fall in and out of loves with full-on Orgasmalikes, shimmery peaches, and delicate pinks – but Aglow is the one I return to, and turn to most days as it’s reliable, goes on fast, doesn’t need any thinking, and so can be applied in seconds between mouthfuls of coffee while in process of getting ready to leave in the morning.
Aglow is a delicate champagne-nude-peach-pink, with only a touch of pink to it, and some sparkle, but very little. In colour, once on the skin it’s a deeper version of my first blushing love, Lune d’Or from Bourjois. Somewhere between a blusher and a bronzer, many say – a healthy flusher? No, sounds colonic… Let’s just call it an enhancer.
On the inside of my arm or on a sheet of paper (similar hue!), Aglow and Lune d’Or are both in the “apricot + touch of dainty pink” family. On my face, they both retain enough of the peachiness to blend beautifully with freckles, enough pink to go with my pale-blue skin, and enough pallor to fit with skin (NW15 / N1 / PPP on a brightly glowing day = no room for manoeuvre between looking clownish and the YBB glow). Lune d’Or is lighter, more golden, and more sparkly: indeed, compared to Aglow it looks like a spangly slightly metallic illuminator.
The peachy-pink-ness and glimmer would seem to place this in the approximate Orgasm family: but Aglow is less pink, due to the nude-beige-brown in the mix. Placed side by side on bare skin, Orgasm looks more fuchsia-lilac in comparison. Aglow is also much less glittery.
(If you’re looking for something between the champagne-y and the Orgasmic: Aveda Apricot Glow.)
Finely-milled and soft, easily picked up with a brush (either one of my nice bigger synthetic ones, or the one that comes with Aglow), needs but the lightest fastest dab-and-sweep on apple/cheekbone. Little is needed: bought in April 2008, used frequently, now (January) back to daily, and I’ve hardly scraped the surface. Thank heavens there are some financial advantages to being pale…
Also, absolutely no reactions: skin had been being sensitive, other blushers were not helping, but all is fine with this one. No parabens, nor oil here, nor lanolin derivatives (I think the latter might have been a contributory irritant in NARS and The Body Shop).
Lovely shiny compact, with huge mirror inside, and a small, soft, angled-head brush that is actually quite handy if you are short-sighted and/or have small hands. My one complaint is the brush takes up half the space inside – if that’s not being a bit greedy for even more product.
Costs USD 18.50 / GBP 18.00 / EUR 28.00.
INGREDIENTS: talc – dimethicone – silica – zinc stearate – nylon-12 – lauryl laurate – tetrasodium edta – potassium sorbate – chlorphenesin – [± mica – titanium dioxide (ci 77891) – iron oxides (ci 77491, 92, 99) – bismuth oxychloride (ci 77163) – yellow 5 lake (ci 19140) – carmine (ci 75470) – red 7 lake (ci 15850) – ferric ferrocyanide (ci 77510) – blue 1 lake (ci 42090) – red 22 lake (ci 45380) – red 36 lake (ci 12085) – manganese violet (ci 77742) – red 30 lake (ci 73360) – red 33 lake (ci 17200) – red 28 lake (ci 45410) – red 34 lake (ci 15880) – ultramarines (ci 77007) – yellow 6 lake (ci 15985) – red 6 (ci 15850)]

The Body Shop – Cheek Colour 04 Shade- Golden Pink  rated 4 of 5 gingerrama on 6/17/2008 5:55:00 PM

Gorgeous light peach-pink blush, with slight gilded sparkle. Many have spotted this as a Nars Orgasm dupe; I find it to be paler and less glittery, and roughly midway between Orgasm and my other favourite and usual everyday blush, the very light peach-champagne-gold (and rather glittery) Bourjois Lune D’Or (35). The Golden Pink’s colour is closer to Lune d’Or, when applied delicately: though it’s easy to over-apply. Excellent on the pale (NW15 max / pale blue + freckles). But it is a 4 rather than a 5 as I’m still looking for a non-reactive version of Lune d’Or

Of the other shades available, Apricot Shimmer (12) is pale and glittery, contains no pink – a well-named pure apricot – might work for other pales out there, but looked orange on me. The other shades available are a lot deeper and darker, more pigmented, and mostly more matte; from testing them out, full marks to TBS for catering for a wide range of skin tones.
Goes on nice and easy with a good synthetic blusher brush – currently using the Body Shop’s retractable one and one from Muji (using synthetic for cruelty-avoidance reasons – also happen to be nice and soft on skin). Reasonable staying power. Like other TBS products, no animal testing; like the rest of their cosmetics, no fragrance.
EUR 13.50, GBP 8.50, USD 15.50.
UPDATE (2008-06): I *have* had a slight irritation issue: this was due to a known irritant in another product (that I used anyway, stupid me), and this was one of the items I was using that didn’t help. Stopping using it helped. Going back to it – skin broke out a bit on the cheeks. I’m keeping this for Special Occasions, but for everyday purposes, it’s over to good solid reliable Clinique.
INGREDIENTS: Mica (Opacifier), Talc (Absorbent/Bulking Agent), Boron Nitride (Bulking Agent), Zinc Stearate (Binder), Synthetic Wax (Binder/Emollient), Lauroyl Lysine (Skin Conditioning Agent), Isoeicosane (Skin Conditioning Agent), Glyceryl Laurate (Emulsifier), Lanolin Oil (Skin Conditioning Agent), Sclerocarya birrea (Marula Oil) (Skin Conditioning Agent), Silica (Absorbent), Carnauba (Copernica Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax) (Stabiliser/Viscosity Modifier), Tocopheryl Acetate (Antioxidant), Methylparaben (Preservative), Methicone (Skin Conditioning Agent), Propylparaben (Preservative), CI 77891 (Colour), CI 77491 (Colour), CI 15850 (Colour), CI 77492 (Colour), CI 77499 (Colour).

NARS – Orgasm Blush  rated 3 of 5 gingerrama on 5/16/2008 4:54:00 PM

UPDATE: Well, it’s very nice, but there are now plenty of Orgasmalikes out there, and plenty that don’t irritate or make pores look big or glittery. But I’ll leave this up, as my first proper blush …
Here are some dupes that I found less irritating (when used daily – and yes, cleaning my face properly at night). Also a little lighter than Orgasm – same colour family, but less … intense … or nympho … for everyday purposes:
(1) Aveda Petal Essence Cheek Color in APRICOT GLOW (186). Zero irritation, ever. Join favourite – overall favourite, as more pink, better on pale-blue skin.
(2) Clinique Blushing Blush in AGLOW (101). Zero irritation, ever. Joint favourite in this colour family.
(3) The Body Shop Cheek Color in GOLDEN PINK (04).
NBBB: Like other NARS things, the colour in the pan is much more intense than it is on skin, and the way it applies to skin varies considerably from individual to individual. I can’t overemphasize the importance of trying this before you buy – unless your store will take back used MU items. Do check what this looks like ***on your skin*** and ***in different lighting conditions, especially outside*** – and take your time about it. If you’re pale but have freckles on your face, make sure you test out blush on a freckled area (rather than just on the classic inside of wrist, where freckles are rare or lighter, due to being out of direct sunlight). I can’t return MU items where I live (unless I have a massive allergic reaction or worse), and wanted to make sure I got this right, so I set aside a good half hour for this.
And now, for the rest of the review proper.
Applied gently, with a good soft brush, this does indeed give one the 5-minutes-after-the-event look/glow. More a flush than an outright blush. Delicious. And it’s incredibly easy to apply. Even on this super-pale redhead skin, PPP, where MAC’s NW15 or N1 looks a bit obvious. Struggling to match cool/warm tones, between the pale blue and embracing the freckles. Blushes are difficult – things labeled as “highlighers” and invisible on anyone else can look clownish on me.
I am amazed. It is amazing. Poems should be written.
I’d read reviews here on MUA, and lusted, then gave in to temptation. At least to try it, I told myself. I had deliberately gone in wearing no makeup, to see what the effect would be. In the interests of proper scientific experimentation, of course, you understand. The MUA at Nars here (Brown Thomas, Dublin, Ireland) was very nice as I tried Orgasm and Deep Throat out on my wrist and in a discreet corner of face, then I wandered around in the store and outside looking at the effect. I was surprised to see that the O looked better on me – I was expecting DT to – more naturally flushed. I went back inside and the MUA swept the O onto me very rapidly.
When I looked in the mirror, I was really quite astonished. It was YBB, flushed, healthy glow, subtle but definitely there. I went “ooh” and made other appropriate noises, and bought it on the spot.
Then got chatted up several times between making the purchase and getting home. That was not my intention at all – I “just” wanted the perfect blush, something that would take seconds to apply and make me look more alive in the mornings. Warning, ladies… And my Best Beloved noticed I looked “good,” without noticing what it was.
Technicalities: remember, how it looks on ***you*** will depend on ***your*** skin and application. On the Ginger, applied with just a quick sweep, it’s a natural-looking delicate pink/peach flush, with a very little glimmer rather than outright glitter. Wayyyy lighter than it looks in the pan. Peachy enough to go with freckles, pink/lilac enough to go with blue skin, and pale enough to look normal. No oxidation and changing colour to orange – but I’m just wearing this on top of physical/mineral sunscreen.
Slight downside: need to be careful about not over-applying, as then it looks garish. Slightly more serious: it hardens in the pan rapidly, and there are quite a few dupes for this colour out there – some might even be slightly better on the very pale (search The Boards for more on the dupes). UPDATE: yup, moved on to dupes and other relatives.
Costs EUR 29.00 – I think USD 25.00. Not tested on animals; not completely vegan; unfragranced. Some people have been bothered by the packaging – the rubber doesn’t stay clean – and others have found this protects the blush from assorted accidents. I’ve had no issues either way so far.
UPDATE (2008-06): I *have* had a slight irritation issue. Stopping using it helped. Going back to it – skin broke out a bit on the cheeks. No regrets – it’ll always have a place in my heart as My First, but now, over to the beauteous Aveda and reliable old Clinique.
INGREDIENTS: talc – polyethylene – zinc stearate – silica – tricaprylin – caprylic/capric triglyceride – beeswax – peg-150 distearate lanolin – laureth-4 – tocopherol – disodium edta – methylparaben – propylparaben – butylparaben – ascorbyl palmitate – [± may contain: mica – ci 77491, 77492, 77499 (iron oxides) – ci 77891 (titanium dioxide) – ci 77742 (manganese violet) – ci 77007 (ultramarines) – ci 77891 (titanium dioxide) – ci 75470 (carmine) – ci 77163 (bismuth oxychloride) – ci 15850 (red 6, red 7 lake) – ci 45410 (red 28 lake) – ci 17200 (red 33 lake) – ci 45370 (orange 5) – ci 19140 (yellow 5 lake) – ci 15985 (yellow 6 lake) – ci 42090 (blue 1 lake)

Bourjois – Rose de Jaspe  rated 3 of 5 gingerrama on 5/8/2008 5:41:00 PM

Fair to good blush on the very very pale. Slightly too pink on me; I find a warmer peachy-pink better. This isn’t unusable, though.
I’ve recently been adventuring for the first time into the dark regions of blush. This is scary for a pale blue person. I thought I could never pull off any blush, ever, and was condemned to looking like death year-round.
95 Rose de Jaspe is one of two I finally bought (the other is 35 Lune d’or). Thanks to advice from Satinette and Georgiasweety on the Boards for pointing me towards this one! Rose Jaspe is one of the lightest Bourjois blushes: pale rose-pink. It’s a dusky rose – so with a little more beige-brown in the mix; a little glittery, but not nearly as much as the “d’or” series; easy to apply a faint wash that just makes you look very slightly flushed. As Jojoba points out in her review, Rose de Jaspe is very close to Chanel’s Joues Contraste 99 Rose Pétale.
It’s more peachy than the other paler Bourjois blushes, so works well on the pale blue of hue. Anything with more blue-violet in it brings out my natural blueness; so the more “pure” pinks, like the otherwise beautiful Rose d’or and Lilas d’or, came out a bit artificial-looking on me. Going the other way, anything with too much coral/rust (Rose coup de foudre, Tomette, Brun poudré) comes out orange. My favourite remains Lune d’or for an everyday rapid blush – Rose de Jaspe is a close second as it’s less immediately easy to work with and effective, it has more colour and less glitteriness, maybe more appropriate for meetings? I’m still playing around with these, anyway.
Bourjois blushes are lovely little pots of joy; beautiful packaging, matching the colour inside. The mini mirror inside is useful, the fitted teeny brush is not. The contents are domed, and baked. Quite hard, but work fine with a blusher brush: good results here with the Bourjois dinky stubby bronzer brush or The Body Shop’s retractable blusher brush (soft, synthetic, lovely). As others have noted, this blush can be hard to pick up as it’s dry-baked: easily solved by scraping the top gently with a dry toothbrush.
This is perfumed: the classic Bourjois scent: rose, vanilla, peach, violet flower, maybe some lily of the valley. Love it or hate it (I love it, and am highly allergic to many smells – but this scent is happily nostalgic for me).
Nice and cheap here in Europe (around EUR 10.00). Not tested on animals. No irritations on this otherwise rather irritable skin.
I’d buy this again – though it looks like it’ll last a long time – but not as good as Nars Orgasm or its dupes, as quite the most extraordinary and life-changing gently flushing blush. Mmmm…

Bourjois – Lune D’or  rated 4 of 5 gingerrama on 5/8/2008 3:51:00 PM

Go-to blush on the very very pale. I’ve recently been adventuring for the first time into the dark regions of blush. This is scary for a pale blue person. I thought I could never pull off any blush, ever, and was condemned to looking like death year-round until I found this.
Bourjois blushes are lovely little pots of joy; beautiful packaging, matching the colour inside; complete with mini mirror and mini brush (might be useful for touch-ups on the go, not as good as a proper brush though).
Perfumed: the classic Bourjois scent: rose, vanilla, peach, violet flower, maybe some lily of the valley. Love it or hate it (I love it, and am highly allergic to many smells – but this scent is happily nostalgic for me).
35 Lune d’or is the most delicate wash of peachy-pink, with lots of gold shimmer. Barely shows even on pale skin, so cannot be over-applied. Might also work on darker skins as a highlighter. This is my new daily blush – I love it, makes me look more alive with only the slightest hint of discernible colour.
If you’re super pale and even the moony Lune is too harsh, it might be worth trying some of the eye-shadows (lovely little pots of joy again) as whisper-light blushers that are even more delicate. More pearly than gilded, for the most part, these three might work on you:
Rose peau 15 is palest pink,
Rose perle 03 and Ambre nude 16 are light nude / beige / peaches,
and Beige rosé 08 is slightly deeper.
See http://www.bourjois.com for colours (click “continued” for links).
Practicalities: These blushes are domed, and baked. As others have noted, hard. Can be hard to pick up or seem dry. Scraping the top gently with a dry toothbrush helps (for me anyway), but it does need some work with a blusher brush: I managed to irritate and scratch my skin (hence down to a 4), and resorted to using (clean) finger-tips, which works well for the apple of the cheek.
Nice and cheap here in Europe (around EUR 10.00). Not tested on animals. No irritation to start with or when used occasionally; some little bumps under the skin with continuous use (and yes, I do wash my face at night!). Certainly worth trying, bu sensitives be wary.
UPDATE: I’m also using Rose de Jaspe (pink, more pigment) very occasionally, Nars Orgasm (perfect… love it…), and – between Lune and Orgasm in colour – The Body Shop’s Golden Pink (04). Down to 4 as I’m looking for a blush that’s the same colour as Lune d’Or but has a softer texture and can be applied with a brush…
UPDATE (2008-06): I *have* had a slight irritation issue: this was due to a known irritant in another product (that I used anyway, stupid me), and this was one of the items I was using that didn’t help. Stopping using it helped. Going back to it – skin broke out a bit on the cheeks. I’m keeping this for Special Occasions, but for everyday purposes, it’s over to good solid reliable Clinique.

Bourjois – Blush  rated 4 of 5 gingerrama on 5/8/2008 3:45:00 PM

Lovely little pots of joy; beautiful packaging, matching the colour inside (except the oldest one, Cendre de rose brune). Many colours available, there should be something there for most people: check Jojoba’s review for the fullest run-down on the whole wide web! Here’s the full set c/o http://www.bourjois.fr (click “continued” for link to work).
The contents are domed, and baked. Hence minimal ingredients list. The mini mirror inside is useful, the fitted teeny brush is not. I haven’t yet found a use for it, but put it in the tool box in case my BH can dream up some McGyverish scheme for it. As others have noted, this blush *is* hard and can be hard to pick up or seem dry. Scraping the top gently with a dry toothbrush helps (for me anyway), but it does need some work with a blusher brush: I managed to irritate and scratch my skin (hence down to a 4), and resorted to using (clean) finger-tips, which works well for the apple of the cheek.
The powders all carry the classic Bourjois scent: rose, vanilla, peach, violet flower, maybe some lily of the valley. Love it or hate it (I love it, and am highly allergic to many smells – but this scent is happily nostalgic for me).
I’ve recently been adventuring for the first time into the dark regions of blush. This is scary for a pale blue person (NW15 or N1 on a more colourful day) with freckles. Anything with more blue-violet in it brings out my natural blueness; so the more “pure” pinks came out a bit artificial-looking on me. Going the other way, anything with too much coral/rust comes out orange. Sigh. I spent many happy hours trying colours out on my arm and corner of jaw, consulted MUA Productville and the Boards (thanks Satinette and Georgiasweety!), and found some colours that are lovely on the fairest of the fair:
35 Lune d’or: the most delicate wash of peachy-pink, with lots of gold shimmer. Barely shows even on pale skin, so cannot be over-applied. Might also work on darker skins as a highlighter. This became my first ever daily blush – I love it, makes me look more alive with only the slightest hint of discernible colour. Works brilliantly with freckles.
33 Lilas d’or and 95 Rose de Jaspe were the next lightest: pale rose-pinks.
33 Lilas d’or was another of the golden-glitter family (hence “d’or”), slightly more of a mauve so with more pink-violet, and darker. It was hard to apply without verging on the garish – i.e. too strong for me.
95 Rose de Jaspe I prefer (and bought and wear): more of a dusky rose – so with a little more beige-brown in the mix; less golden sparkle; easy to apply a faint wash that just makes you look very slightly flushed. It’s more peachy than the other paler Bourjois blushes, so works well on the pale blue of hue. Not a hundred miles from Nars Orgasm – Rose is, well, a touch more rose-pink.
34 Rose d’or was slightly darker, with more violet/lilac in it, very cool-toned. It’s goldenly glittery again. Too strong and pink on me. A true pink, if you’re looking for that sort of thing.
I tried others out on my arm, just for fun, but it was clear they’d be too pink/purple, or dark, or simply clownish on me. But this is to do with the combination of pale blue skin and freckles, tricky for colour matching! There are the most beautiful pinks; and rusty browns like Rose coup de foudre, Tomette, Brun poudré; some gorgeous shades that look like they could be used as bronzers too.
Some of the eye-shadows (lovely little pots of joy again) could be used as highlighters. More pearly than gilded, for the most part, they could work as whisper-light blushers that are even more delicate than Lune d’or:
Rose peau 15 is palest pink,
Rose perle 03 and Ambre nude 16 are light nude / beige / peaches,
and Beige rosé 08 is slightly deeper.
See http://www.bourjois.com for colours (click “continued” for links).
Costs a blissful EUR 10.00 ish in Europe; not tested on animals; no irritation on this otherwise rather irritable skin.
UPDATE (2008-06): I *have* had a slight irritation issue: this was due to a known irritant in another product (that I used anyway, stupid me), and this was one of the items I was using that didn’t help. Stopping using it helped. Going back to it – skin broke out a bit on the cheeks. I’m keeping this for Special Occasions, but for everyday purposes, it’s over to good solid reliable Clinique.

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