Blush, ever so gently

Zenoyise Madikwa

Zenoyise Madikwa

Retro 1980s make-up has made a comeback, but in a 2008 version.

Flushed cheeks are one of the loveliest trends that comes with this look. No look was complete without a blusher in the 1980s.

Until recently, black people were uncomfortable with blusher, but according to Vuyo Varoyi, a make-up artist in Joburg, any girl worth her salt must have blusher in her make-up purse.

"Blusher is back with a bang, but it is toned down. Make-up in the 1980s was all about applying more, to bring attention to a woman's facial features. This time around it is more quiet."

Varoyi says blushers are used to make the skin soft, smooth and to blush.

"Blush is used to give freshness and brightness to a dull face. Blushing is the best way to highlight facial features and make you look fresh."

Varoyi says your choice of blush is very important because its application in different ways can change the look as well as the expression of the face.

It can freshen up a tired face, but it can also give a cheery face a dull look.

He adds that the best blush colours to choose from are those close to the skin tone.

"The darker the complexion, the darker the blusher.

"Coral, rose, deep orange, burgundy and reds are best for darker skins. Avoid browns and peachy shades.

"For very dark-skinned people like Alek Wek, dark rose-pink for the day and shades of bronze, plum and wine for the night work well."

How to apply blush

When applying blush, Angel Masondo, a make-up artist for Mac, says you should put a little powder on the brush, tap off the excess and apply blush to the apple of your cheek.

To find the actual position of the apple, look into a mirror, smile and brush upwards in an arc from cheekbone to hairline.

Apply very lightly and then set with a light brush of translucent powder.

Masondo advises people to try applying blush before foundation, for a natural glow.

She adds that there are different types of blush available in a different variety of tones, consistencies and hues.

"Blushers are available in the form of creams, powders, gels or liquids.

"Powder blush is useful for oily or greasy skin, and combination skin. One must use gel and liquid blush for greasy skin, but for dry skin use cream blush. For moisturised skin, use only staining blushers.

"If you're thinking of buying a blush, remember that you won't find out the real shade until you try it out. Apply some on the inside of your forearm to find the right colour. If it doesn't stand out, then you have chosen the right colour," Masondo says.

She adds that experimenting with the right shade and colour requires a face in full make-up.

"This will let you know if your blush is balanced with your make-up," she says.

"Make sure that your blush matches the colour of your lipstick. Applying a little blush to the tip of your nose and chin will balance your look."