Top 3 Best Drugstore Blushes 2021:
- Top Pick: NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Ombre Blush
- Runner-Up: NARS Blush, Orgasm 0.16 oz.
- Budget Pick: COVERGIRL Cheekers Blendable Powder Blush Pretty Peach
When it comes to makeup essentials, blush is one thing you shouldn’t go without – it adds a lovely pop of color to your cheeks, and gives you that perfect rosy glow. It doesn’t matter if you had a late night, and you feel (and look) a bit washed out – the right blush can take care of it almost instantly!
And no, you don’t need a high-end brand to achieve that healthy, flushed-cheeks look – drugstore brands are consistently launching fantastic, budget-friendly alternatives.
However, if you want to find the best drugstore blush, you have to be extra picky. You have to separate the wheat from the chaff first – and that’s where this guide comes in!
Keep on reading, and I’ll show you some of the best products the market has to offer!
26 Best Drugstore Blushes In 2021: Detailed Reviews
Buying makeup online can be a tricky business. I mean, how many times have you bought something based on the pictures alone and were disappointed to find that it looks nothing like it in real life?
That’s why I did the hard part for you, and put tons of different brands to the test here, only to see which one of them made the best drugstore blush! It’s time for you to pick the one you like the most!
1. Milani Baked Blush – Luminoso (0.12 Ounce) Vegan, Cruelty-Free Powder Blush that Shapes, Contours & Highlights for a Shimmery or Matte Finish
No one likes the idea of products being tested on innocent animals. So, right off the bat, the Milani Baked Blush won me over with their vegan, cruelty-free formula.
The blush is pigmented with a very subtle shimmer, goes on smoothly, and blends beautifully, without leaving that chalky or streaky finish. It is sheer on the first go, but don’t let that fool you – the formula is buildable.
Oh, and another thing – it’s available in 12 rosy shades, both shimmery and matte.
You get a lot of product here, plus, it comes with a mirror and a mini brush, and even though I’m not the biggest fan of the latter, I still think it’s a steal at this price.
I didn’t like the packaging, though, as it seems cheaply made – but then again, it’s what’s inside that counts, so, I wouldn’t call this a deal-breaker.
2. e.l.f. Cosmetics Powder Blush Palette, Four Blush Shades for Beautiful, Long-Lasting Pigment, Light
Have you checked your Instagram feed lately? If you have, chances are you’ve seen at least one “makeup guru” that mentioned e.l.f. Cosmetics – and with good reason, too.
First off, their products are both cruelty-free and vegan-friendly, which is always a plus.
The Powder Blush Palette includes four different, yet complementing shades, which gives you plenty of room for customizations. You can mix and match these shades to create a custom pop of color, or you can keep things simple, and use them individually – it’s entirely up to you.
The colors are highly pigmented and very vibrant, so make sure you start with a tiny amount of product and build your way up to the desired intensity because things can get out of hands pretty fast.
I did find them to be a bit chalky, though, which, combined with the intensity of the colors, has the potential to leave you looking like you’re wearing clown makeup if you don’t blend it properly.
If you have overly sensitive or oily skin and tend to break out easily, one of your most important goals when choosing not only the best drugstore blush but any makeup product, in general, should be to find something that won’t irritate your skin.
Enter Physicians Formula Powder Palette Blush – a hypoallergenic blush that’s both fragrance and oil-free.
The formula goes on smoothly – not too cakey or powdery – and since a little goes a long way, you can expect it to last a long time.
The blush is available in only four shades, which is a relatively limited range, but the mosaic-like combination of complementary hues makes up for it to an extent, as it allows you to mix things up a bit.
However, on certain skin tones, it may come off more like a bronzer, than an actual blush. It still looks natural, but if you prefer a rosy hint, it may not be the best choice of blush for you.
Another excellent choice for my gals with sensitive skin is Burt’s Bees powder blush. It’s made with 100-percent natural ingredients, and even though some natural cosmetics brands struggle with getting the formula to be “just right”, it doesn’t seem to be an issue with this one.
And not only is it natural – it’s cruelty-free, as well, and that’s always a huge plus.
The natural ingredients in it – bamboo, honey, as well as the addition of vitamin E – give the formula a lightweight and nourishing feel, so that it goes on creamy smooth and blends rather well, instead of feeling dry.
The staying power was impressive, too, but I wasn’t too thrilled about the pigment.
The highly pigmented formula is generally a good thing, but in this case, the color is almost overpowering, and a bit darker than expected, so you have to be extra careful when you apply it, as to avoid going overboard.
Okay, this NARS Blush is probably the most expensive one out of the bunch, and I figured I should show it to you early on in the round-up so that you have a “high-end reference point” to see how the budget-friendly options compare to it.
Right off the bat, you can expect two things from NARS – black, minimalistic packaging and “suggestive” shade names – and this blush shade “Orgasm” is a perfect example of that.
It’s a highly-pigmented, peachy pink shade with a dash of golden sheen in it, and it’s one of their most-talked-about shades, too. If you’re interested in seeing what all that hype is about, I encourage you to give it a try.
And in case this shade doesn’t do it for you, there are 22 more to choose from here!
The only real downside is the price. I’m well aware that it’s not budget-friendly, but then again, it lasts a very long time – you can use that as an excuse to treat yourself!
Next, we have a brand you’re probably familiar with – Maybelline is one of those drugstore brands that have been around for so long, consistently launching top-notch products, and even if you’ve never used makeup before, it’s highly unlikely that you haven’t heard of this brand.
And since the idea behind their Fit Me line was to make products that will work on various skin tones, this blush is no different – it’s available in ten different shades, and I’m sure you’ll find something that suits your skin tone, too.
The blush has a lightweight, velvety-smooth feel, and blends easily, giving your cheeks a natural-looking glow and pop of color.
However, the shimmer, although quite subtle, tends to exaggerate skin texture, which might be a deal-breaker for those who are attempting to cover up their pores, rather than draw more attention to them.
If you’re a fan of natural-looking highlighters, though, this might be the perfect addition to your makeup collection.
Much like the brand I just talked about, L’Oreal Paris is another massive name in drugstore makeup that’s built its reputation by making high-quality products available at budget-friendly prices.
The True Match Blush looks a bit shimmery at first glance, but almost none of that shimmer translates to the skin. I’m not saying this as a good or a bad thing – that’s up for you to decide. It still gives you a radiant, natural glow, though!
The texture is smooth and finely milled, so it’s effortless to apply, and blends well, even if you use your fingertips.
Unfortunately, though, it seems very fragile, as I’m not the only one who received it in a crumbled state. I gave it another go, thinking that it might’ve been a shipping-related issue, but it wasn’t too long until it formed a hairline break, and fell to pieces.
It’s a good blush, by all means, but you have to handle it with extra care.
If you’re looking for a blush that you can use on the go, when you don’t have any brushes or makeup sponges on your hand, you might want to consider the Honest Beauty Crème Cheek Blush.
With a compact packaging, an included mirror, and a formula that’s made with fingertip application in mind, this is a blush that could quickly transform your look no matter where you are.
It goes on smoothly and blends well – even if you’re using your fingers.
It’s somewhat sheer at first dab, but the color is very buildable, as well, which gives you the option to play around with layers, and achieve a more dramatic effect if you wish to transition from daytime to nighttime makeup quickly.
I have to point out that their color range is quite limited, though, with only four shades available. You might still find something that works for your skin tone, so don’t write it off immediately!
One thing that people often forget about drugstore blushes is that they don’t necessarily represent inferior-quality makeup products. Granted, that may have been the case in the past, but NYX Professional Makeup is proof of a significant change:
They’re making high-quality products available to the average user, and keeping beauty addicts on their toes with every new launch!
And the Ombre Blush in the shade “Mauve Me” is a perfect example of NYX doing their thing.
The blush is highly pigmented and has a slight shimmer to it, which gives it a satin-like finish in the pan but translates into a radiant glow on your skin. The formula is smooth, not too powdery, and blends into the skin very well, so don’t worry about going overboard with it.
The bright shade of lilac that slowly transitions into a shimmering mauve allows you to blend them into a multi-dimensional pop of color, or to use the shades separately – as a highlighter, and a blush.
Either way, your cheeks will look lovely!
Compared to the other drugstore blushes you’ve seen so far, this one is on the pricier side, especially when you factor in the amount of product you’re getting for the money. But the real question here is:
Is it worth it?
Right off the bat, I can tell you that it comes in a wide range of neutral colors – 12 shades, to be precise – and whichever one you choose, you’re sure to get a natural, sun-kissed look with the most subtle sheen to it.
The formula is lightweight and allows for smooth application and easy blending, but more importantly, it’s long-lasting, so you don’t have to re-apply it throughout the day.
The packaging looks cute, but it does feel flimsy, so I wouldn’t expect it to last as long as the blush itself.
However, the biggest downside is the sample-size amount of product you’re getting here. Sure, it’s a beautiful blush, but there’s not a lot of it for the price.
Next one up is a blush from a brand you’re already familiar with – the Physicians Formula – and much like the product I already talked about, their Mineral Glow Pearls Blush is something I’d highly recommend to anyone with sensitive or oily skin.
The formula is hypoallergenic, approved by dermatologists, as well as fragrance and paraben-free, so that it won’t cause any irritation or break-outs. They boast including real mineral pearl extract, too, which gives the skin a youthful glow with a luminous finish.
Oh, and it comes with a mirror, as well as a brush that’s hidden in a “secret” compartment under the blush. I was pleasantly surprised with it, too, as it performs better than most other blushes you’ll find included in the package.
However, if you’re not a fan of shimmery blushes for day-to-day makeup, you should probably stay away from this one. It could still work for evening wear – but that part’s up to you.
One of the main things that this bareMinerals blush has to offer is a highly-pigmented, antioxidant-rich formula. If break-outs are a concern, I’m pretty confident that you – and your skin – will be happy with this one.
You can choose between eight shades, and since they’re all neutral, with a subtle glow, I’m confident that they could work for a variety of skin tones. The color is sheer, but buildable, too, so you can use as much – or as little – as you’d like.
More importantly, the texture is silky, glides on the skin, and blends well, without leaving a streaky finish, and it’s relatively long-lasting, which is essential if you’re looking for a blush that will hold up well throughout the day.
It comes with a brush, which might come in handy when you’re on the go, but other than that, I’d say that it’s way too small for proper blush application. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you!
Do you remember the Milani Baked Blush I talked about at the beginning of this round-up? Well, if you prefer something with a bit more shine to it, this is the one you should consider, instead.
Even at first glance, it’s evident that this blush is all about making you glow – its “marbled” design, with streaks of gold, shimmering tones is hard to ignore! I loved that it doesn’t leave you looking like you’ve spilled glitter all over your face – it’s subtle and natural, giving your cheeks a sun-kissed look.
The blush is slightly less pigmented than I expected, but that might be a good thing – the color is buildable, allowing you to adjust the intensity as needed.
It comes with a mirror and a brush, but overall, I have to say that I’m not too happy about the packaging – again, it feels flimsy and cheaply-made, so I’m not convinced that it could survive being thrown at the bottom of your purse.
I know you’re more than familiar with the brand by now, and you’re probably aware of what they have to offer when it comes to blushes – after all, three of their products made it to my round-up so far!
Rather than having a powder-like consistency, the formula is creamy and soft, almost butter-like, and hits the perfect balance between a cream blush and a powder one. Plus, it’s packed with some skin-loving ingredients coming straight from the Amazon rainforests, including Murumuru, Cupuacu, and Tucuma butter.
It smells divine, too – like wearing a dash of summer on your cheeks!
Also, since it’s a sheer-base pigment with lots of shine and sparkle, you could probably make it work not only as a blush but as a highlighter, as well, so you’re getting a two-in-one product for a rather budget-friendly price here.
I wasn’t impressed with its staying power, but it comes with a mirror and a sponge applicator, so touch-ups aren’t an issue.
Next, I’d like to show you another drugstore blush from the bareMinerals line – a perfect choice for someone who prefers powder formulas over creamy ones.
The blush comes in a small container with a sifter of sorts, that lets you control the amount of product you’re using, and prevents the powder from spilling all over the place.
If you’re not used to this kind of products, it’s going to be a bit messy at first – but you’ll get the hang of it.
Now, I have to say that the name of the product, Blush Highlighters, was a bit confusing at first.
I wasn’t sure what to expect; I was worried that it might end up being too shiny, but it only has a touch of sparkle to it – both the color and the sheen are very subtle, nothing crazy or over-the-top.
I wouldn’t exactly call it a “blush highlighter” – it sounds a bit misleading if you ask me.
If you’re interested in loose powder formulas, but you’re not too thrilled about messy containers such as the one mentioned above, I’d like to introduce you to another best drugstore blush coming from L’Oreal Paris – the True Match Loose Powder Mineral Blush.
One significant advantage is that this is natural, 100-percent talc, fragrance, and preservative-free formula that won’t irritate your sensitive skin or clog your pores, and cause break-outs.
Both the color and the resulting glow are very subtle, perfect for natural makeup looks, but it’s very buildable, too, so it gives you the freedom of choosing how subtle or bold you want your blush to be.
The blush comes with a relatively decent built-in brush (compared to some other ones I’ve tried, anyway) which is convenient, but it makes the entire packaging very bulky, and that’s pretty much the only issue I’ve had with this product so far – it’s not as compact as the others.
Another excellent choice for those who prefer matte finishes is the COVERGIRL’s Classic Color Blush in the shade “Iced Plum”, a mauve-pink color.
Since it only has a subtle glow, rather than a full-blown shimmery finish, it’s a fantastic blush for aged skin, as well, as it won’t draw unwanted attention to fine lines and pores.
The powder feels soft, which makes it easy to apply, and it blends very well, too, but more importantly, it stays on throughout the day.
Also, I’m a big fan of COVERGIRL’s packaging – the clean lines, the solid black color with a subtle brand logo, and even the inside layout remind of the classic Chanel blushes, and I know some of you will surely agree with me on this one.
However, I feel like this blush lacks pigmentation, which means you have to load the brush pretty heavily if you want it to show – especially if your skin tone is in the olive range or darker.
Okay, by now you’re undoubtedly aware of my obsession with natural and cruelty-free makeup products, so you shouldn’t be surprised that I included another Burt’s Bees drugstore blush in my round-up.
Again, this is a 100-percent natural compact blush, formulated without synthetic fragrances, talc, and other skin-irritating ingredients. Instead, the focus is on using nourishing, natural ingredients, such as honey, bamboo, and added vitamin E, that will bring out the best in even the most sensitive of skin types.
And while a three-shade range is limited, I’m under the impression that it could still work for a relatively wide range of skin tones.
One thing I’d like to point out, even though it’s not necessarily a flaw, but a matter of preference, is that the formulation and the pigment itself are relatively lightweight and sheer, and even though the color is buildable to an extent, it still seems better suited for natural, “no-makeup makeup” looks.
Although I already talked about one of COVERGIRL’s best drugstore blushes on the market, as soon as I saw this one, I knew it would be a shame if I didn’t try it – and show it to you, as well.
What makes it so unique, you ask?
What you’re getting here – and for a very affordable price, might I add – is not merely a blush but a complete cheekbone contouring kit, complete with a bronzer, a blush, and a highlighter.
The colors are subtle, and a bit frosty, so the accent is more on the shimmer, rather than the actual pigmentation.
It comes with a brush, too, but it’s mediocre at best, so I highly recommend using your go-to brush for application.
My biggest issue with this product is the amount of chalky fallout – even if you’re extra careful with the brush, there’s still a lot of “powder dust” all over the place, which leads to color flow-over and messy application.
Next one is coming straight from Japan – the Canmake Cream Cheek Blush.
Since it resembles a gel, the texture is silky soft and goes on very smoothly – it glides on the skin, so it’s super easy to work with, whether you’re using an applicator or your fingertips. You can layer it, as well, without worrying about it messing up your foundation. See Also: The Best Foundation For Textured Skin
The formula is highly pigmented, and I feared that it might look too clownish, but it blends wonderfully and creates a naturally flushed look with a matte finish.
One thing I didn’t entirely like was the packaging. Granted, it could be a matter of personal preference, but I never liked the Canmake containers that much – they always have a cheap (and somewhat tacky) feel to them.
But as long as the blush works – and it does – I say go ahead! It’s an excellent choice for those who are entirely new to this type of formula, as well as long-time fans of cream blushes.
If you’re particularly picky about the color of your blush, or you’re working with a very tight makeup budget, the COVERGIRL Cheekers Blendable Powder Blush is a makeup line you’re going to love!
You see, this blush comes in 18 different shades, which is impressive by any standard!
The formula has a satin feel to it, with a very subtle shimmer, but it’s not very pigmented, so you’ll have to apply a few layers if you genuinely want to get that pop of color. Luckily, it’s buildable and blends well, so it shouldn’t be an issue.
The blush is very fragile, though, and if you’re not using a soft enough brush, it crumbles and turns into fine dust, leaving a lot of fallout all over the place.
So, using the brush that comes with it is out of the question – and even with a proper one, you’ll have to extra careful not to end up with too much product on your cheeks.
When I first introduced you to the Maybelline’s Fit Me Blush, I’m pretty sure I mentioned that it comes in ten beautiful shades – and “Pink” is one of them.
I know I already talked about this blush, but before you skip on to the next one, remember that many makeup products struggle with getting the same consistency and formula throughout the entire shade range.
That was one of the biggest reasons why I wanted to take a moment to mention this particular product again:
The shade “Pink” lacks pigment compared to some other shades in the Fit Me line – it looks beautiful in the pan, a lovely bubble gum pink tone, but the payoff is minimal. You have to truly dig in there with your brush if you want it to show on your cheeks.
It still feels velvety to the touch, so it’s a bit disappointing that the powder acts as a solid block of color that refuses to transfer to the blush.
23. Milani Rose Powder Blush – Tea Rose (.6 Ounce) Cruelty-Free Blush that Shapes, Contours and Highlights Face with Matte or Shimmery Color
Next one up is a beautiful, rose-petal-shaped powder blush by Milani, with a well-pigmented and buildable formula that allows you to play around with the color’s intensity.
Moreover, it’s super soft and buttery, so it feels great, too.
The blush comes in four shades, but they all have a pink undertone to them, so I’m not sure how they might work on different skin tones. They work wonderfully on fair skin, though, and add some natural-looking rosiness to your cheeks.
Unfortunately, Milani dropped the ball on this one – the blush has a terrible chemical-like smell, and even though it’s not overpowering, it’s hard to get away from it when it’s sitting right there on your cheeks.
Also, the packaging is a little “stiff”, so opening it can be tricky – be careful not to pull on the lid too hard, or it may cause the hinges to snap.
I know that it seems a bit expensive compared to most other drugstore blushes on this list, but I promise that it’s worth every penny – it might end up being the best blush you ever owned!
First of all, I’d like to mention that the Baked Blush-n-Brighten is one of the very few best drugstore blushes that can brag about being hand-finished into the beautiful, silky-smooth swirls of pigment that you see here.
It does sound luxurious, doesn’t it?
The blush is available in six shades, and while it does have something in store for every skin type, I’d say that medium skin tones are at an advantage with this one.
It has the most subtle shimmer to it, but it’s not the tacky, glitter type – if anything, I’d say that it brightens up your entire face with a touch of luminosity.
Even if your skin is aged, don’t shy away from this product – a light touch will give your cheeks a healthy glow.
The Mineral Fusion Blush isn’t a budget-friendly option, either, although it costs a bit less than the one I talked about previously. Don’t get too excited before you read the rest of the review, though.
I like that the Mineral Fusion’s formula is hypoallergenic, as well as cruelty-free, but it doesn’t end there – it’s free of gluten, fragrance, as well as other ingredients that could cause skin irritation, too. So, if you’re looking for a natural blush – both regarding ingredients and overall results – this is it.
It goes on smooth, blends well, and a light touch gives a natural-looking glow to your cheeks.
But here’s the thing: The blush is ridiculously small!
I’ll state the obvious here – you’re paying for something that looks more like a sample-size product, than a full-size one.
You’re getting way too little product for your money.
A tiny amount goes a long way, though, so it might hold up nicely in the long run, despite its size.
26. Milani Baked Blush – Dolce Pink (0.12 Ounce) Vegan, Cruelty-Free Powder Blush that Shapes, Contours & Highlights for a Shimmery or Matte Finish
I started this round-up with a Milani Baked Blush, and I figured it would be nice to end it with one, as well – the “Dolce Pink” shade, a warm, medium pink with a golden shimmer finish.
Based on the pictures alone, I was worried about the amount of gold shimmer that swirls through it, but now that I tried it out, I can say that it’s not nearly as overpowering as you’d expect it to be.
Sure, the shimmer transfers to your cheeks, but if you blend it well – and the formula makes it easy to do so – it turns into a slight sheen as if you mixed some highlighter in with your blush.
The staying power is fairly decent, too – you’ll probably get a solid six to eight hours of wear time out of it.
I can tell you that it accentuates pores a bit, though, so I wouldn’t recommend it to someone who’s trying to mask them, in the first place.
Which One’s The Best Drugstore Blush?
As the name of this section suggests, this last bit of my guide is reserved for announcing the best drugstore blush out of this shimmery bunch. Without further ado, let me introduce you to my top three picks:
Top Pick: NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Ombre Blush
- Okay, this one was a tough choice – I came across some high-quality products, and I wish I could have a few top picks, but it doesn’t work that way. So, considering the bang you’re getting for your hard-earned buck, the NYX blush seems to be the best drugstore blush for makeup addicts on a budget!
Runner-Up: NARS Blush, Orgasm 0.16 oz.
- I wish this could be my top pick, but I know a lot of you would be quite uncomfortable with the price, so I figured I should give it the title of the runner-up, and let you know, one more time, that this blush is worth every penny. If you want to treat your cheeks, go for the “Orgasm”.
Budget-Friendly Pick: COVERGIRL Cheekers Blendable Powder Blush Pretty Peach
- Again, the whole point of this round-up was to show you that there are some fantastic drugstore blushes out there available at ridiculously low prices, and this COVERGIRL blush is the perfect example of that.
What do you think? Which one of these deserves a spot on your cheeks? Let me know in the comments below!