There are basically three types of blush that I use: pressed powder, loose powder, and cream. All of them have their unique benefits depending on the look I want to achieve; however, there’s not a strong argument for one over another so I usually buy blush based on what color I like (that’s the designer in me…I enjoy colors).
Let’s start with pressed powder because this is probably the most common type you’ll find. It falls in a variety of price points making it accessible to everyone. There are also a pretty wide variety of colors to choose from, and they are available in different finishes – matte, slight shimmer, to full on glitter (which I’ve never been fond of, I don’t want my cheeks to blind people when I walk outside). Moving on. I find that the pressed powder gives the most control while applying. It can be very subtle when done with a light hand or it can be built for a bold look. That also depends on the color you’re starting with though, so test it out. I use a brush like the Sephora Angled Blush Brush to apply on the apples of my cheeks. First start with a stippling motion, then gently sweep to blend.
Loose powder is more often found in mineral makeup lines. I like how easy the powder is to pick up on the brush. You also have good control over the amount used since you’re not typically placing the brush directly in the product. There is some selection in regard to color and finish, but not as much as the pressed powder. One benefit I see to using a loose powder is that the colors seem to be highly pigmented, meaning I don’t need quite as much product. They blend well and are long lasting.
Cream blushes are somewhat new to me. I never tried them because they all look so richly pigmented that I was afraid it would make me look like a clown. And clowns scare me. Then one day I was browsing and thought to myself, “just try it already!” So I did, and I was wrong…it doesn’t make me look like a clown. In fact, it’s a very fresh and natural finish. I take a brush similar to this Real Techniques Stippling Brush dab it in the product, dab the brush on the back of my hand to remove any excess, then start in stippling motions on my cheeks. Depending on the coverage I’m looking for, I will sometimes go over my cheeks again using my finger to blend even more. I enjoy using cream blushes in the winter as my face tends to get dry. It helps retain moisture and the color stays put all day.
Overall, you can’t really go wrong, it’s just a personal preference and finding what you like.