These Are The Differences Between Cream And Powder Blush

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Here comes the blushing bride! We have all heard this term used to describe the beauty of women when they have rosy cheeks. According to Psychology Today, we tend to perceive rosy cheeks as a sign of health and as an attractive feature, but the biology of why we blush is quite interesting. Basically, our face flushing results from powerful emotions like fear or embarrassment when our blood vessels dilate and come closer to the skin's surface, giving us a rosy appearance (via The New York Times). Some may think it's cute, while others become self-conscious about it.

However, over the years, our brain has been wired to find it appealing to look at, and in the world of beauty, using a swipe of color on your cheeks can make you look younger, probably because many babies have flushed cheeks. And, there is no scarcity of options when it comes to blushes that can help you create a natural-looking, youthful glow.

Furthermore, New York City-based makeup artist Taylor Fitzgerald told Byrdie some of the best places to use blush. "Blush on the apples for a natural flush, or above the cheekbone for a lift, or applying it on the nose for a sun kissed finish," she explained. There are even ways to wear blush according to your face shape to make the most of it. Still, when it comes to powder or cream blush, the most obvious difference is the texture (one is powder and one is cream), but they can also ultimately provide different results entirely.


According to WebMD, people have been wearing blush since 3,000 B.C., but now more than ever, they come in various forms. Raychel Wade, a New York makeup artist and color ambassador for La Prairie, told the publication, "Perfect blush application is all about placement." So, considering your face type can be super helpful to create the most flattering look.

Cream blush is considered easier to wear than powder blush because it is "more user-friendly" since you can use your fingers or brush to apply and blend it for a natural flush of color, per Women's Wear Daily. According to Beauty Mag, it is easier to go overboard with powder blush because the brushes they usually come with aren't the best quality, so you will need to get a better quality brush for seamless application. It is easier to maneuver a cream blush, as it gives you more control than a powder blush, which can look intense if you wear too much.

Skin type

Knowing your skin type can help you choose a blush that will work the best for you. If you have dry skin, your skin lacks moisture, so cream blush is better for you as it will be more hydrating and "glowing" and make you look overall better, per Beautymag. Powder blush can look more masklike and be more drying or cause irritation. Similarly, if you have oily skin and already struggle with a shiny face, powder blush is a better option as it will last longer and help you look less oily.

Cream blush is better for mature skin because its formulas can be more hydrating as skin tends to get drier with age (via Daily Vanity). This skin type is prone to having more fine lines and wrinkles than younger skin, and cream blush will blend more seamlessly, whereas powder blush can settle in the lines, accentuating them more. You are lucky if you have normal or combination skin because you can rock both cream and powder blush, per Style Craze.


Now that you know that your skin type plays a major role in which blush texture will work best for you, another vital factor to consider is the weather because it can affect your skin as well. Of course, your choice of blush selection is totally up to you. On this, celebrity makeup artist Jenny Patinkin told Coveteur, "I prefer cream blush all year-round, but especially in the winter, when any added sheen or reflection on dry skin gives a more hydrated appearance." 

Many brands add hydrating ingredients to their blush to help quench your dry skin's thirst and give you a dewy look. StyleCaster shared that cream blush is probably not the best idea for hot and humid weather as it might just melt off of your face unless it's waterproof. They consider powder blush a smart choice for summer, but too much powder can look harsh. It's all about balance.


Do you want a more natural glow, or would you prefer your cheeks to be the center of attention? Well, that's where you need to consider a blush's pigmentation. In general, powder blushes look lighter because they are less pigmented and can be a perfect go-to for people who want to look naturally flushed, per LifeSavvy. Layering too much powder can look a bit chalky as well. 

Similarly, if you like to layer on the colors for a more dramatic effect, cream blush is perfect for you because you can blend it more easily and personalize the color. Since cream blush has more pigment than powder blushes, it might show better on tanner skin since powder blush can be too light to show (via Asking Lot). If you really want the color to pop and last forever, you can wear both simultaneously. Beautiful with Brains recommends applying the cream blush first and setting it with the powder blush on top to make it look more intense and last forever. 


Blushes come in many gorgeous colors, and how bright they look can depend on their pigmentation. Cream blush can be more hydrating and dewier looking, but a con about it is its lack of longevity. Cream blush can last a good few hours, but if you want something to last all day, it might not meet your expectations as most of them last up to seven hours, while powder blush can last much longer (via Beautiful with Brains). 

Cream blush will look pretty all day if you are cool with multiple touch-ups throughout the day; otherwise, it will fade as the day goes by, per Difference Between. If you want a blush that can stand the test of time, your best bet is a buildable powder blush like Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush because it can last up to 12 hours and is super pigmented. 

Plus, powder blush with a radiant finish looks less drying. Just don't wear too much blush hoping it will last longer, as it may look a little silly, which is just one of the blush mistakes you may be making. Ultimately, you can get the best of both worlds with your flushed cheeks if you choose a deeply-pigmented powder blush.

The most beloved powder and cream blushes of all time

Based on your preference and budget, there are tons of beautiful blushes in the market to choose from. However, some blushes have reached cult-classic status because many love them and can't live without them. You can't enter blush territory without mentioning the iconic Nars Blush in Orgasm, a universally flattering powder blush that is a winner of multiple Allure Best of Beauty Awards. On this blush, makeup artist Aleetha Clanton told Byrdie, "Nars is hands down the best choice since it flatters all skin tones and gives an amazing flush of color to the skin." 

For fans of cream blush, you need to try Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush because it is highly pigmented and easily buildable. Women's Wear Daily loves that this creation from Rihanna is incredibly inclusive of skin tones, as it is available in 10 shades that work like magic on every skin tone ranging from fair to deep. 

Still, a magical creation in the blush world is the cream to powder blush, which combines the power of both textures into one. Curious? Take Vogue's recommendation, Shiseido Minimalist Whipped Powder Blush, which feels super light and "blends like a dream." It's actually a cream blush that transforms into a soft-matte powder after applying it.