Tag Archives: coral blush

Make Up For Ever HD Blush #215 Review & Swatches

Press Sample – Affiliate Links
MUFE HD Blush 215

MUFE HD Blush in shade 215

Make Up For Ever recently released a line of new HD cream blushes, which I believe replace their old HD blushes (review from quite a while back). I was lucky to receive shade 215, which is the one I had my eye on. It’s a lovely pink-coral, and actually quite similar to the shade of the old-style HD blush I used to own (#6 Quickie). The color in the pan below is more accurate than the color in the photo above.

MUFE HD Blush 215 pan

MUFE 215

This blush blends out really beautifully – it’s just as easy to do a sheer application as it is to build the color. The finish is more matte than most cream blushes, but not as matte/powdery as most cream-to-power blushes.  I think the finish and texture would be great on most skin types – it definitely works well on my (normal-to-dry) skin.

MUFE HD Blush 215 swatch

Unblended // Blended

I only have this one shade, but I’ve swatched several shades at Sephora, and all seem to be easy-to-wear, flattering colors with the same excellent texture.


*I received the MUFE blush courtesy of the brand and The Makeup Show. This post contains one or more affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.

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Canmake Cream Cheek Clear Red Heart & Clear Sunset Review & Swatches

Purchased – No Affiliate Links
Canmake Clear Cheek Red

Canmake Clear Red Heart

I have some quick swatches for you today.  Canmake is a Japanese drugstore brand, and some of their long-time most popular products are the Cream Cheek blushes.  I’ve been tempted by them before, but always decided against purchasing due to the colors offered; mostly pastels, with a white base – something I tend to dislike in blush. A few months ago, I heard that Canmake had released a “clear” series with a few additional shades. Clear refers to the fact that these have a clear base instead of a white base, which gives them a translucent, jelly-ish quality. None of the Clear series blushes have any shimmer or sparkle.

I purchased two shades, [CL01] Clear Red Heart, a true red, and [CL03] Clear Sunset – reddish coral; note that this one was limited edition, but is still available on Ebay (and mine has a broken compact, which is why it looks odd).

Canmake Clear Cheek

Canmake Clear Red Heart // Clear Sunset

There are also two pinks – [CL02] Clear Love Song Pink and [CL04] Clear Pink Joy – I’m not sure how they differ. Canmake recently released a fifth shade, [CL05] Clear Happiness, described as a coral orange, but, per this blog post, is sheerer and not as nice as the others.

I think the best thing about these is the texture – pigmented, yet easy to blend, and with a great finish.

Canmake Clear Cheek Swatches

Clear Red Heart // Clear Sunset

They also work well on the lips.  I bought my blushes on Ebay; they are also available on Ichibankao for a dollar or two more.

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Milani Spring 2014 Coming Up Roses Blush Swatches & First Impressions

Purchased – No Affiliate Links

Milani Coming Up Roses Spring 2014 Blush

Last summer, Milani released four rose-embossed blushes and I bought & reviewed two of them – I was not impressed. So when I found this year’s set of four blushes, I thought I’d skip them. Luckily I posted a picture of the display on Instagram and several people commented that this year’s were worth it. I ended up deciding to buy all four. I haven’t had a chance to really play with them yet, so today I have swatches and my first impressions.

First, here are too many photos of the blushes in the pan. They’re just so pretty.
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Milani Coming Up Roses Blush Review & Swatches

Milani Flora Passion Warm Petals Coming Up Roses Blush

Flora Passion // Warm Petals

Milani recently released a new collection of four limited edition rose shaped blushes, the “Coming Up Roses” collection.  There are four colors available, and I purchased two of them: Flora Passion, a matte pinky-coral, and Warm Petals, a slightly shimmery orangey nude.

Milani’s permanent blush line (the baked blushes) are very pigmented and beautiful colors but are too shimmery for my preferences, so I had high hopes for the Coming Up Roses blushes.  Unfortunately, I was very disappointed by these.

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ELF Superstar and Showstopper HD Blush Review, Swatches, Comparison

ELF HD Blush Superstar; Showstopper

Superstar; Showstopper

E.L.F. recently released a new HD Blush as part of their studio line.  A few days after it showed up online, they had a “50% off Studio” sale, and I decided to make a purchase – two of the new blushes and several other items (see everything I bought here).  There are five shades of the HD blush available, and I had a hard time narrowing my choices down to two.  They were inexpensive enough for me to buy all five, but given my hit and miss experience with ELF, I wanted to make sure I liked them before buying several.  So, I ended up with Superstar, which I expected to be coral (but is more pink/coral), and Showstopper, which I expected to be berry, and is a purple-toned berry.

This review is two parts; first, I’m going to compare the ELF blushes to the very similar MUFE blushes. Second, I’m going to evaluate the MUFE blushes on their own merits.

MUFE vs ELF HD Blush comparison

MUFE vs ELF: the same packaging

So, how similar are they? The packaging is virtually identical; the only difference I noticed, besides the branding, was that the MUFE has a glossy lid and the ELF has a matte lid.  The pump mechanism seems identical to me (very functional, but you have to be careful not to pump out too much product.)

However, the texture of each brand’s blush is different.  Below, I have extremely heavy swatches of MUFE #6 Quickie and ELF Superstar.

MUFE HD blush vs. ELF HD blush comparison swatches

MUFE HD blush vs. ELF HD blush

Of course, the colors are different, but the reason I swatched them so heavily was so that you could see the texture. The MUFE blush is creamy, with an opaque base, while the ELF blush is more watery, with a translucent base.  The MUFE blush is thicker and takes slightly longer to dry down; the ELF blush is thinner and significantly more pigmented.  The MUFE blush is a little easier to work with because it’s not so pigmented and you have more time to blend. However, if you prefer a very pigmented blush, and especially if you have darker skin, the ELF is going to be your best bet.

And of course, the MUFE blush is $26, while the ELF blush is $3, or as low as $1.50 on sale.  Both are labeled as 10ml (.33oz); however, the ELF arrived full, while my MUFE blush did not – and Sephora.com says that the MUFE blush is .2oz, so perhaps they have adjusted the label to adjust for the quantity you actually receive.

And now, my evaluation of each blush:

ELF HD Blush: Superstar swatch

ELF HD Blush: Superstar

(The darkness on my arm is from a leftover eyeshadow swatch that I failed to remove completely
– sorry about that! I didn’t realize it would show up so clearly in the photo.)

Superstar is a very pigmented pink-coral.  It sets very quickly; you’ll definitely want to apply/blend one cheek at a time. I had the best luck if I put a little bit of blush on the back of my hand, dabbed some on to a fingertip, then applied/blended with my fingers, working quickly. I was able to achieve a subtle result with this method, as seen below:

ELF Superstar, applied

I’m also wearing Superstar on my lips in the photo, mixed with gloss – but I wouldn’t recommend that, as it really settled in to my lip lines. Also, I don’t know if it’s lip safe. And here’s a slightly heavier application so you can see the color better:

Next, Showstopper – this one is gorgeous, but was much harder to work with. It is very, very pigmented, and also sets quite quickly.  The heavy swatch stained my arm (by the way – straight up oil is awesome at removing swatches and stains from swatching).

ELF HD Blush: Showstopper swatch

ELF HD Blush: Showstopper

This is a purple toned berry; a really beautiful color. I think it would work particularly well on deeper skintones, where a more intense color would look natural.

I had a hard time making this work for me.  Even with well-moisturized skin, the color was just too intense.  So, I ended up mixing a little bit with some moisturizer (primer would work even better, due to the texture), and using my fingers to apply the mixture. This worked very well; I wouldn’t call the result natural, but it’s wearable.

ELF Showstopper, applied

Here, I’m wearing Showstopper on my lips. This worked really well – it had a nice finish.  Again, no idea if it’s lip safe.

Overall, these are fantastic products at a bargain basement price.  They require some work to use – I won’t be reaching for them unless I have time to play with my makeup, and time to correct mistakes (i.e. overapplication) if needed.  But, on days that I have the time, they are a really great option. Because they are so pigmented and you need so little, they look just like skin – they basically have no texture at all once applied. I am glad I bought them!

Sleek Blush By 3 Review & Swatches – Pumpkin, Sugar, Flame, Pink Sprint, Lace

Last February, I read that Sleek Makeup (a UK drugstore brand) had released five different blush palettes, each with three blushes.  Sleek has a fantastic blush formula, so I was immediately intrigued.  However, the blushes were not available at the time on Sleek’s website, and though they were on Ebay, they would have cost double the retail price so I decided to wait. Eventually, they showed up on Sleek’s website, but because shipping was so expensive and because I couldn’t decide which ones to get, I didn’t buy any.

Then, a few weeks ago, Sleek relaunched its website with a 20% off discount sitewide (now over, sorry!) and reduced shipping costs to the US (permanent).  I thought it was time to finally buy a couple of the Blush by 3 palettes.  Since they were on sale, I decided to just go for it and buy all five.  Picture heavy post ahead!

A few general comments: All five of the Blush by 3 palettes are smooth and blend nicely.  Four of them are quite pigmented; Sugar is less pigmented.  There are a mix of shimmery and matte shades, but most of the shimmery shades are fairly subtle and will add dimension rather than obvious shimmer particles.  I plan to use the matte shades as my main blush shades, then layer the shimmery shades over the top lightly to add dimension without too much shimmer.

Each shade has a name, listed on the back of the palette – it looks like this:

Here is a size comparison of the Sleek Blush by 3 with a single Sleek blush and a NARS blush – I cleaned the packaging, but they were hopelessly dirty!  NARS blushes contain 4.8g; Sleek single blushes contain 8g; the Blush by 3 palette contains 20g (6.7g per blush – more than NARS!).

I really like Sleek’s packaging – it’s very compact and efficient, and I’m always a fan of black packaging.   It would be ideal if the lids were clear for these so I could tell them apart more easily, but this works too, and there is a nicely sized mirror in the lid.

On to the swatches! Because there are 15 blushes total, I don’t have full-face swatches (sorry!).  I have flash and natural light swatches for each color.

Pumpkin 363 - lantern, squash, pumpkin pie

Pumpkin 363 – lantern, squash, pumpkin pie

Pumpkin 363 - lantern, squash, pumpkin pie swatches

Pumpkin 363 – flash / natural light

All three shades in the Pumpkin palette are nicely pigmented and smooth.  Lantern, on the left, is a red with subtle shimmer; Squash is a cool pink with a slight sheen, and Pumpkin Pie is a bright cool orange.

364 Sugar - Turbinado, Muscovado, Demerara

364 Sugar – Turbinado, Muscovado, Demerara

364 Sugar - Turbinado, Muscovado, Demerara

Sugar – flash / natural light

Each of the three shades in the Sugar palette is less pigmented than the other palettes. I even swatched it twice to make sure I hadn’t done something wrong the first time (how do you swatch incorrectly, though?).  However, they have plenty of pigment to work – they’re just not AS pigmented as the others.
Turbinado, on the left, is a matte berry red.  Muscovado, in the middle, looks almost brown in the pan, but swatches plum with gold shimmer.  Turbinado is is a muted peach/brown.

Flame 365 - Furnace, Bon Fire, Molten

Flame 365 – Furnace, Bon Fire, Molten

Flame 365 - Furnace, Bon Fire, Molten swatches

The Flame palette has three lovely red shades.   All three are very pigmented. Furnace looks very slightly patchy in the swatch, but gives no trouble when applied. Furnace is a soft red with some shimmer.  Bon Fire an orange-based matte red.   Molten is very similar to Furance, but slightly more muted.

Pink Sprint 366 - Pink Parfait, Pink Ice, Pinktini

Pink Sprint 366 – Pink Parfait, Pink Ice, Pinktini

Pink Sprint 366 - Pink Parfait, Pink Ice, Pinktini swatches

Pink Sprint – flash, natural light

Sleek Pink Sprint – flash / natural light
Pink Sprint is the only palette with three mattes.   Pink Parfeit is a soft berry rose; Pink Ice an almost neon pink; and and Pinktini a stunning, very pigmented dark raspberry.

Lace 367 - Crochet, Guipure, Chantilly

Lace 367 – Crochet, Guipure, Chantilly

Lace 367 - Crochet, Guipure, Chantilly swatches

Lace – flash, natural light

All three shades in the Lace palette are very smooth and pigmented. Crochet is a matte peach with orange tones, Guipure is a pink with gold shimmer – the strongest shimmer out of all five of the palettes – and Chantilly is a pink-coral.

Overall, I am totally in love with these palettes! I am going to have a lot of fun playing with them. Does anyone need 15 blush shades? Not really – and especially not me – but I am so happy to have them, and they add a lot of variation to my blush stash.

If you are in the US, Sleek Blush by 3 palettes sell for $12.49 each on Sleek’s website. Shipping starts around $5 for one palette, and goes up when you buy more.


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