Blush 101: Where To Apply And How, Based On Your Face Shape

Arielle Benasillo
Arielle Benasillo is a 23 year old New Yorker who's passion for makeup is real. Growing up with both parents as hair stylists, the skill ran in the family. She recently graduated from Make Up Forever Academy New York certifying her in beauty & fashion, theatrical, special effects makeup and body painting. Arielle is now a freelance makeup artist working on photo shoots, weddings and events, as well as being employed at Salon S for makeup artistry. On her free time she enjoys traveling, being outdoors, froyo night with her roommates, and taking advantage of bottomless brunch in Manhattan with friends.

Makeup junkie or not, blush should be a staple. It’s fool proof; you can just throw it on and be good to go.

BUT, you should keep in mind that placement can really make a difference. The way you apply blush can create the illusion of changing your face shape. Sounds more confusing than blush needs to be, but let me explain:


The Contour Blush

Apply your blush directly below the cheekbones and to the hairline, as if you’re contouring. Then you blend up into the cheekbone. One thing to keep in mind while applying — be aware of not going to far in toward your nose!


This technique works best on square face shapes, or any face with cheekbones like wow. I would suggest to use a blush without shimmer so you can successfully achieve the contour look.



The Classic

Apples of your cheek! I’m sure you’ve heard this one before, hence “the classic.” This is good on anyone. It softens any harsh bone structure you’re not into. To apply, smile, then dab onto the apple of your cheeks and blend in circular motions. Make sure to be aware of the application. Applying your blush too low can drag your face down and look unnatural.. Just think of where you naturally blush for this one and you’ll get the idea.



That Healthy Glow

This is like the classic, but turnt up. It’s still applied to the apples of your cheeks, but it’s larger and blended throughout the whole cheek in a circular motion.  This technique works best on longer face shapes, because the larger blush will create the illusion of a shorter face. Instead of doing big eyes, a pop of color on the lips and XL cheeks, I would try this look with a more natural makeup on the rest of the face.



Highlighted Blush

The placement for this one is right on those cheekbones and blended up to the temples.


This is ideal for those with a heart shaped face because it eliminates that blank space along the temple. It’s also perfect for those of you that are gifted with beautiful cheekbones and want an extra highlight. A product that would be perfect for this look would be a blush with some shimmer or glitter in it (ex: NARS Orgasm blush).