Guerlain. It was one of the concessions that I always used to walk past in the department store. The perfumes are amazing but the makeup display was always so… terracotta. I
needed wanted a blusher and for some reason the Guerlain counter kept calling me every time I went through my local department store. It turns out that beneath the bronzers and terracottas, I happily discovered a vast array of sophisticated colour.
Blusher is the product that I hesitate most about when I buy make up. I remember a time when black women did not wear blusher every day. We did not seek to recreate our inner glow on our cheek and because I am old skool like that, blush is the colour product, that despite wearing a full face of make up most days, I don’t always wear.
Blushers can be problematic. It is not necessary to do with application but to do with pigmentation. When my friends with lighter skintones go for a run, they get a redness in their cheeks. When I go for a run, my cheek colour stays the same, I just get hot and sweaty. When I first met my mister one of the first tokens of affection that he bought me was a slice of cheesecake. He walked past many work colleagues with a small M&S bag in his hand and brought it to my desk (yes really). Did I blush? – of course, but my skin did not change colour. I did not go red. Did I feel my face getting hot, yes, but no there was no discernible colour change. Do I think that black women look amazing in blusher. Yes, absolutely. – me included. Do I think that a very pigmented blush needs to be applied with care, even by professionals? Yes. Why? Because it is a very fine line between inner glow and being rouged like a doll.
I can and do wear orange, red, pink, brown blush… but I am not a model for an editorial feature, so I wear it with care… which brings me back to this Guerlain blusher and pigmentation. This does not appear to be the most pigmented blusher on the market. There are many reviews that dismiss this product because when you rub your finger in the product and show it to camera /take a picture it is not super bright. However, rubbing it on your finger is not the same as wearing it on your face.
Generally I demand high levels of pigmentation. In eyeshadows, lip colour and foundation it is a must. However, having used NARS powder and cream blushers and more recently Sleek blushers I am really happy with this Guerlain blusher because the colour is buildable. Even with a heavy hand and the terrible brush that it has been supplied with…you can build up the colour which means that you are not going to leave the house looking like a doll. Not only do you have two colours, but two textures as well (matt and shimmer). The texture of the shadows is very very fine and quite dry. There is a pinky red (the main colour ) and an orange red. On their own or used together, on the cheeks the effect is beautiful. These colours are also great transition colours for the lid, or as your mobile lid colour. I love the fact that the colours are not super shimmery/glittery/shiny. . This blush is also very long lasting – it does not slide down your face and after twelve hours your blush is exactly wear you left it.
As well as the pigmentation being considered an issue, the smell was said to be overwhelming. It’s true – the parma violets smell is strong. I have only been using this product for a few weeks so I don’t know if it will reduce over time, but when the blush is applied to the face you really can’t smell it.
Last be not least lets look at the packaging. The box is black and light gold or silver depending on the light. The colour of the compact is not reflected on the box, which I don’t really understand as the compact is a definite gold. The ingredients are listed on the box, which is great but in a mid tone grey which provides no contrast against the black box and written in quite small writing. I really don’t understand why this decision was made. If they did not want to spoil the look of the box, they could have put a paper insert into the box but anyway… Once you open the box, there is a velvet pouch which as Guerlain embroidered into it, which houses the heave gold palette. Also branded with Guerlain, it is so easy to open yet so secure. No using your thumb nail to get into it.
The Guerlain emblem is embossed onto the pinkier of the reds and Guerlain is in full on angled brush which is supplied with the blush duo. The bristles of the brush are coarse, however the shape of it does work well on the cheek if you need to apply it on the move. The mirror is large enough to see two thirds of your face which is important when applying blusher. The purse factor of this product is AMAZING. The gold is a real antidote to the contemporary matt black packaging that lots of brands are using. If like me, you are looking for a one blush fits all looks option, this blush duo is worth looking at.