Metallic Blush Is The Makeup Trend Taking Over - Here's How To Pull Off The Shiny Look

Indie Sleaze dominated the late 2000s and early 2010s. The look — encapsulated by the Olsen twins and Effy Stonem from "Skins"— was all about smudged liner, ripped tights, and a no-nonsense attitude. "The way I would describe indie sleaze style is the disheveled party girl look with a rocker edge," TikTok creator Kathryn Margaret Rose explained to Byrdie, adding, "The makeup of the time was honestly an afterthought..." In other words, the more it looked like you'd spent all night partying, the better.

Today, almost as if in direct contradiction to the "clean girl" and "vanilla girl" aesthetics dominating our social media feeds, late-2000s grunge is on the rise. Urban Outfitters sells "Skins"-worthy distressed tees and jeans, and celebrities like Demi Lovato and Olivia Rodrigo are sporting a 2020s take on the trend. When it comes to makeup, metallic eyeshadows were a big part of the era. This time around, carry that glitter down your cheeks and experiment with chrome blush. From classic pink to statement silver, here's how to pull off the look.

You can't go wrong with pink chrome

If you're new to metallic blush, start simple with pink chrome — it's similar enough to traditional rosy cheeks that it won't take you too far outside your comfort zone. Experiment with this highly-reviewed Milani Baked Blush, and lift the pigment to your temples to elongate your face. Add extra highlights with a touch of NYX's rose face and body glitter, carrying a hint of that same color to your eyelids for a cohesive look.

Match blush with your silver shadow

Deb (known as @beatsbydeb on TikTok) uses Makeup by Mario's Master Metals Eyeshadow Palette — which retails for $50 — to create a metallic silver blush look. She starts by applying the heavily-pigmented silver to her lids before extending the color down her cheekbones and blending it in a circular motion. Deb notes that it's also important to use a cooler-toned contour to not clash with the silver. In a final bold touch, she adds the same shade of silver to her lips — with that, you're good to go.

Mix liquid highlight with your go-to shade

If you don't have metallic blush or eyeshadow readily on hand, DIY your own. Mix cream blush with your go-to liquid highlighter to achieve that subtle sparkle. TikTok swears by Rare Beauty's liquid blush and liquid luminizer, but you can also combine Maybelline's cloud paint dupe with Elf's Halo Glow for a fraction of the price. Finally, TikTok creator @janjan_1995 compliments her rosy cheeks with a blue-toned winged liner, glossy lips, and full brows.

Use Liquid eyeshadow as blush

Beauty influencers across social media platforms are repurposing their blush as eyeshadow. On top of saving time and money, it makes for a cohesive look. Given the resurgence of Indie Sleaze and everything metallic, why not turn the trend on its head and use glittery eyeshadow as a blush? Elf sells eight shades of liquid metallic eyeshadow — everything from green to gold. Of course, glittery cheeks should be accompanied by a late-2000s grunge eye. Smudge with your fingers, or blend out messily with an eyeliner brush.

Channel Kesha circa 2011

In the early 2010s, Kesha was known for her liberal use of glitter and the party girl persona. Though Kesha's aesthetic has undergone a true transformation in the past decade, pay homage to one of the singer's most notable red-carpet looks from 2011. For starters, apply a generous helping of gold and silver sparkles (or metallic eyeshadow) to one side of your face, bringing the pigment up from your cheekbones and onto your forehead. Like Kesha, compliment the sparkles with a heavy-handed black liner and undone braids. Keep your lips minimal to emphasize the eyes and cheeks. 

Try a multicolored aura look

Aura blush is certainly having a moment on TikTok. The technique, which layers multiple blush colors to achieve that ethereal glow, is blended toward the highest point of the cheekbones. Makeup artist Marika D'Auteuil (Instagram @lapetitevengeance) demonstrates a metallic aura-inspired look, captioning it, "skin dancing like the northern lights." Compliment the blue, purple, and pink chrome glow with a glossy lip and minimal eye makeup. The popularity of HBO's "Euphoria" — and months upon months of pent-up Pandemic energy — have resulted in a rise in these daring, multi-colored makeup looks.

Go bold with a deep purple

As makeup artist Bea Sweet (@beasweetbeauty) illustrates, a deep metallic purple blush is best accompanied by glittering gold eyeshadow. The artist applies the blush halo style, adding full coverage to the model's cheeks and bringing the pigment all the way up to the forehead. For starters, check out this Danessa Myricks Beauty multi-purpose wand (yes, you can also use it on your lips and lids). The purple blush trend of the 2020s has largely been driven by curiosity, TikTok creator Rachel Rigler explains to Allure. It's time to add variety to your red and pink collection.

Add unconventional embellishments

Finally, once you've experimented with everything from gold to silver to purple, try your hand at embellishments. Eye gems, in particular, are trending. Inspired by "Euphoria's" makeup artist Donni Davy, crystals can be used as eyeliner or placed in the inner corners of the lids for added highlights. Accentuate metallic blush like Instagram creator Rowi Singh (@rowisingh). Start with sharp siren eyes and apply evenly-spaced gems on your lower lash line. In another look, the creator uses golden pearls to accentuate a green-to-red ombre.