I used to be strictly on the powder blush train for the longest time. It wasn't because I hated cream blushes; mostly, I stuck with the powder versions because I found them easier to apply. All you need was a good brush for a couple of swipes and you're all set. To me, cream blushes meant more blending, which left a lot more room for human error. And as someone who is pretty low-maintenance when it comes to makeup, I was hesitant.
But all of that changed in the past year as I started covering beauty. I had to try things that were outside of my comfort zone in order to write about these new and new-to-me products. All for the sake of good journalism, right? So I was introduced to a couple of cream blushes and now I reach for them a lot more than my powder blush. They just give that dewy, glowy look that pretty everyone is aspiring to these days. And as for the application difficulty level, I would say I definitely thought it would be harder than it really is. Just a light touch really goes a long way and you can build up the color if you want.
So now that I'm totally obsessed with cream blushes I asked some of my colleagues to share their favorite recs. Here's what they said.
"Merit's Flush Balm Cheek Color has quickly become one of my favorite makeup products. Right off the bat, I found it super easy to use. The rich cream formula glides right on and gives off a naturally dewy, hydrated look. While it is technically a balm, I like playing around with other ways to apply it and have been dabbing some onto my eyelids and even using it as a lip color to create one cohesive makeup look."—Anna LaPlaca, associate editor
"I've been a fan of this Nudestix blush for years. It comes in a stick, which is great for so many reasons. First, dispensing the product is so easy, whether you're using your fingers, a brush, or even tapping the stick right onto your skin. Second, you can toss this in your bag and bring it on the go to reapply anywhere. For a monochromatic look, you can easily tap the hue into the lips and eyelids, too."—Courtney Higgs, beauty editor
"Rihanna's makeup artist Priscilla Ono taught me how to use this blush balm, and if not for her, I would have been so intimidated by the bold color options. Thanks to her coaxing, this deep red shade is my favorite. It's such a pretty color, but completely buildable, so it can look as subtle or as vibrant as you want." — Higgs
"This pretty blush is meant to create 'the soft, flushed look we get when we feel the most vulnerable,' and it totally does. It's lightweight and so easy to apply with fingers or to pat on with a brush."—Higgs
"Glossier Cloud Paint will live on forever as one of the best blush formulas of all time. It's like applying a pillow to your face! I'm so obsessed that I own every dang color, and oddly, they're all equally flattering depending on the look I'm going for. I blame it on the brand's signature Special Blurring Pigments, which deliver a super-wearable, soft-focus effect."—Erin Jahns, senior beauty editor
Jahns also recommends this formula that she describes as a mix of a gel, cream, and stain. It's sheer and long-lasting, leaving a radiant glow.
I love this multitasking product that works on both your cheeks and lips. I haven't used it as an eyeshadow yet, but you can also apply it to your lids too! The creamy formula is easy to blend and build color. Bonus points: It comes in the most compact container so it easily fits in any purse or clutch.
Another two-in-one product, Tower 28's tinted balm can be applied to your lips and cheeks. The color is great and it manages to leave my skin hydrated—it contains green tea and aloe vera extracts.
Other Cream Blushes to Try
This product is a blush on one end and a highlighter on the other end. It's a cream-to-powder formula that's also infused with nourishing ingredients like vitamins A, C, and E.
If you like to play around with different blush colors, this palette has four different shades. You can even mix a few of them together to create a personalized hue.
If you're a fan of Nars's iconic Orgasm powder blush, you'll be happy to know that you can also get it in cream form. The mousse-like blush is lightweight and leaves a matte finish.
Maybelline's gel-cream blush will give you a natural, flushed look that's completely buildable, depending on how saturated you want the color to be. And because it's an oil-free, water-infused formula, it glides on so easily.
Here's another multitasking product for your cheeks, lips, and eyes. The color is long-lasting (up to 24 hours!), water-proof, and crease-proof. What more can you ask for?
This blush is so subtle and natural, leaving you with a radiant finish. The product is moisturizing, too, as it's infused with argan oil.
Laura Mercier's cream blush has a soft, velvety finish. It has sheer coverage, but you can easily build more color.
Another two-for-one, Bobbi Brown's cream color will look so good on both your cheeks and lips. You'll be left with a subtle rosy glow and just-bitten lips.