I recently bought a new powder blusher. Casting aside thoughts of budget consciousness (did you ever think you’d hear me say that?), I handed over $20 for this generous pot of cheek color in a beautiful shade of peachy-pink. Mind you, I already have a bathroom drawer filled with compacts of abandoned blushers–some too fuchsia, some too orange, and all purchased in a quest to find a happy medium between the two shades.
Back at home, I eagerly opened the package and got to work, swiping my fluffy brush across the powder, expertly tapping off the excess, and attempting to apply it in a natural-looking sweep across the apples of my cheeks. I was successful in that it did, indeed, adhere to my cheeks. I was unsuccessful on the natural front; I looked, in the end, disturbingly similar to the Lady Elaine puppet from Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood. Several tissues and a couple of additional layers of neutral powder later, I was finally presentable enough to leave the house.
Not to get too technical here, but there’s a reason my high-end blusher delivered such bold results: Most of the pricier cosmetic lines manufacture products that offer a deeper level of pigmentation than their drugstore counterparts. This intensity is actually considered desirable, because often (say, in the case of eye shadows), you get a richer application of color with less product on the brush.
Sometimes, though, you just look like a clown.
My savior—if you could put makeup in the rescue category—was Cover Girl’s Cheekers Blush in a perfect peachy-pink shade called Natural Rose (#148; available for $4 at every supermarket in America; or go to www.covergirl.com). Interestingly, the very characteristic that renders it drugstore-y—namely, total sheerness—is exactly why it looks so natural when applied to the face. (To get an adequate application, skip the useless mini brush in the compact and apply with a quality flat-top brush, like Sonia Kashuk’s Synthetic Flat Blusher Brush; $14.99 at www.target.com.)
Best of all, this cutie’s got that faintly familiar, 1970s/Cover Girl/Noxzema-like scent to it. Roses it isn’t, but it does take me on a wistful trip down memory lane, back to the days when my cheeks blushed all on their own. Anyone else love makeup from the old days? (Don’t even get me going about Bonne Bell Lip Smackers….)