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I've had a bit of an epiphany. I think I prefer cream blusher and bronzer to powders (highlighter, I'm still not quite convinced of...). For the first time in my life; I finally fully 'get it'. Creams aren't just these blotchy, patchy messes on my skin! I love the fresh, natural, healthy look they give my skin and these are the products that helped me make the jump...


I'm starting with an emollient, dewy highlight because I've really been enjoy the Nudestix Nudies All-Over Face Glow in Hey, Honey* | £30. This is a very natural highlight, but I love the fresh look it gives my skin. I personally like to apply it by running my finger over the surface of the product, to warm it up, and then dabbing it on with my fingers (as opposed to swiping it on straight from the stick). This is a light, slightly frosty gold colour, which isn't super-opaque, so once it's on the skin it just looks like you have a natural, dewy glow going on.

For an interesting, almost cream-to-powder formula, the Lilah B Gisten + Glow Skin Illuminator in B. Captivating | £55 | is beautiful. It's definitely not cheap, but it does have a beautiful finish and stunning packaging that feels very premium, if that helps you justify it! This is a gorgeous, quite unusual bronzed rose gold colour that works perfectly for my skin tone. I just dab it on and blend it out for a natural but stunning highlight. You can really sheer it out nicely too, without ruining your complexion makeup underneath. I love the sheeny, bronzed glow this gives my skin and the microfine glitz it contains.

I also have the Kosas Colour + Light Creme in Helios and Tropic Equinox* | £32 each. I absolutely love both the highlighter and the blusher shades in these compact duos, but let's talk about the highlighters first. This is a relatively sheer formula that's very dewy and emollient, but also really long-wearing. I don't know how they do it, but Kosas somehow get the perfect balance of a product that gives the skin that juicy look without disappearing within a couple of hours. Helios comes with this gorgeous, summery warm gold and Tropic Equinox has more of a muted, natural champagne pearl highlight.


Moving onto the blushers in these duos; they're also fantastic. It's that perfect level of pigmentation that doesn't go on too strongly but you can absolutely see the colour from initial application. These wear incredibly well; one of my issues with cream formulas (back before I really got into them) was that they'd go patchy or look greasy or totally disappear throughout the day, but not with this formula. They're also super easy to blend out with your fingers and get a natural flush of colour with. Helios comes with a summery reddish-orange colour and Tropic Equinox has a muted caramel-peach nude tone.

I also find myself reaching for the Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Desired Glow | 41 | time and time again. This is a sort of rosy nude colour on me, which is really versatile and goes with most of my makeup looks. This has a really fresh, dewy-look formula that can be applied in about 3 quick dabs on each cheek. You're never going to go overboard with this formula and it just always lifts my complexion and works for me when I'm putting in minimal effort. It also really lasts on my skin, even during some of the hot days we've experienced this summer already. I also love the packaging, which is re-fillable, so it's not only better for the environment, but also for your bank balance!

When I'm going for a bronzed, sun-kissed makeup look, I often use the Jillian Dempsey Cheek Tint in Sunny | £26.50. This colour is a very natural and muted tan, but also has a warmth to it that adds something to the cheeks that a standard bronzer really couldn't. The formula is a little different to the ones I've talked about so far, in that it's more matte. I definitely tend to associate cream blusher with those really creamy, emollient formulas we've discussed so far, but if glossy skin isn't your thing; this is a great option. I find it incredibly long-wearing and it applies evenly to the skin (I'd always imagined a more matte formula might cling to dry patches, but this definitely doesn't). My only slight negative is that you really do have to warm this up a lot with your fingers before you can pick up some product and apply it.

Next, I have the Nudestix Nudies Matte Blush & Bronze in Sunkissed | £28. I actually realised recently that this is 'supposed' to be a bronzer, but it's a really rosy-toned nude colour, so I use it as a blusher. Again, this has more of a matte finish on the skin, so you won't get that really dewy effect, but what you will get is a long-wearing formula. I apply this in the same sort of way as the Nudestix highlighter and I love the hint of natural colour it adds to my cheeks. It's one of my go-to products on a minimal makeup day; probably because you can just skip the bronzer with this one. 

My next product is actually a super-concentrated formula that can be used for the cheeks and the lips: the Ilia Colour Haze Matte Pigment in Stutter | £30. Unlike the other formulas I've discussed so far; you can overdo it with this one! You only need the tiniest dot of product for the cheeks, and it's actually really easy to blend this out, especially considering it's a pigment with a matte finish. It's also one of those few 2-in-1 products that really works in both respects for me. This is a beautiful corally-red colour that's perfect for a little pop of colour during the summer months.

I couldn't do this post without mentioning the OG Glossier Cloud Paint in Dusk | £15. This was genuinely the first cream blusher I truly loved! (Though the KIKO ones were also great.) It's a sort of cream-liquid so you don't need much product at all to get a natural flush of colour. The formula is neither matte nor dewy, it kind of just meshes with the skin and reflects whatever you've done with your base makeup. It's long-wearing, easy to apply and perfect for a natural makeup look. Dusk is a muted nude beige with a slightly peachy undertone.


For a long while, I was really into the YSL cream bronzer but it was sadly discontinued (along with the Cover FX bronzer drops - I know they were re-released but they're not the same!), though luckily the Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Cream Bronzer in Hunnie Glaze | £28 | was released shortly after and took its place for me. Fenty can do no wrong when it comes to bronzers; I absolutely love the powder formula and this cream version is just as amazing. The tone is spot-on for me too, warming my skin without being orange. The formula is neither outwardly dewy nor matte and it's incredibly easy to work with. I apply this using a dense synthetic brush with a stippling motion and it adds a beautiful, natural warmth to the skin. It has the tiniest little sheen to it, which just stops it from looking flat on the skin, but is pretty much undetectable with the naked eye. It's really long-lasting on my skin too and just easy to apply, making it a great minimal-effort summer makeup option.

I also have a more matte formula in the Nudestix Matte Blush & Bronze in Terracotta Tan | £28. This is a really beautiful warm caramel tone that adds a nice hint of colour to my skin without being too much. Sometimes I swipe this directly on my skin, but I always buff it out with a brush anyway, so I'll often just use that directly on the stick. You can't really over-apply this and it blends out naturally to really mesh with the skin. Like Sunkissed, the longevity is really fantastic with this one and, as it's not outwardly dewy, could also be an option for oily-skinned people wanting to try a cream formula. 

Are you a fan of cream cheek products?

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