When it comes to cheek products you’d be hard pressed to find a more iconic name than Nars. Their wildly popular “Orgasm” shade put Nars on the map and made them synonymous with quality blushes. And while their choice of shade names tend to lean somewhat on the lewd side, their formula is undeniably excellent.
Way back when, when I first started on my journey from a average makeup user (one makeup bag with like 8 products in it) to full blown makeup enthusiast/addict (six overflowing drawers and counting), Nars Orgasm blush was one of my first purchases. And though makeup has come a long way in the past decade with an explosion of new items available on the market, Nars blushes still rank as one of the most popular products in their category.
Nars blushes retail for $30 each and contain 0.16 oz of product. The blushes come packaged in a streamlined black compact and there are 32 shades available. The shade selection varies based on which retailer you purchase from, but the entire line can be found on the Nars website.
Nars also has a few mini duos available for $24 which contain two cheek products, usually Orgasm blush and Laguna bronzer or a highlighter.
It is worth noting that the brand releases limited edition blush palettes several times a year, usually containing six blushes and they typically cost around the $60 mark. Most palettes are comprised of limited edition shades however they sometimes include shades from their permanent range as well.
Nars Blush Review
I think the popularity of Nars’ Blush line is due a combination of several factors. They’ve got a very user friendly formula that’s easy to apply and has good longevity. Their broad shade range includes colors suited for all skin tones and they’ve curated an exceptional selection of colors that flatter the face when applied. The blushes also come in several finishes which adds to the uniqueness of the final color.
Nars Blush Formula
The Nars blush formula is unique in that it strikes a perfect balance between being pigmented enough for the color to blend out easily, without veering into that category of color so saturated that you end up looking like you’re about to perform at a kids birthday party.
The powder is firmly pressed enough to allow the user to build the product easily, but is not so stiff that it’s difficult to blend or has a hard time showing up on the skin.
Nars blushes come in several finishes, including matte, and satin, with the majority of their line being a shimmery finish.
I know a lot of users try to steer clear of shimmery finishes for fear that it’ll emphasize texture or make them look like a disco ball, which some brands are definitely guilty of (I’m looking at you, theBalm Hot Mama!). As you’ll see though, most of my favorite shades are a shimmer finish because those are some of the most interesting colors in the line.
Top Five Nars Blush Picks
So here’s a bit of beauty blasphemy: I’m actually not a big fan of Orgasm. I know, I know, every authority out there, from Influenster to Allure has been touting Orgasm as the holy grail of blush for the last decade. Orgasm was the first Nars blush I ever purchased but I actually ended up exchanging it for Deep Throat. While both Orgasm and Deep Throat are a similar shade of peachy pink, Orgasm actually has a lot of gold glitter in it, which can be very visible on the skin. By contrast Deep Throat‘s shimmer is so subtle that it translates to a barely there sheen when applied to the skin. It’s my oldest and most used Nars blush, and for good reason. The peachy pink hue goes well with so many looks making it the perfect every day blush.
This shade looks so, so boring in the pan that you might even mistake it for a bronzer but it’s deceptively beautiful. I purchased this color to solve the issue of what blush to pair with a red lip, something I think a lot of makeup users struggle with. The neutral warm tone of this blush is great at emphasizing the cheeks without competing with your lip color.
This is the newest shade to my collection and it’s a gorgeous, pale warm pink with a smooth shimmery finish. This color almost acts like a highlighter on my skin tone, and would work really well for those with fair skin.
Sin might be my all time favorite from the Nars blush line- it’s tied with Unlawful, but seriously it’s one of the most unique blush colors I’ve encountered. Looking at it in the pan it’s almost reminiscent of the color of a bruise but it looks so stunning once applied. The cool toned plum shade has the most gorgeous gold sheen to it and it warms up slightly on the cheeks. I love pairing it with a metallic, bronze smokey eye; the contrast of the cool and warm is really beautiful.
This is the shade I pull out a lot when I’m doing evening makeup and I’m going for that smokey, bombshell look. It’s hard color to describe, like a dusty, neutral mauve but what puts it over the top is the almost metallic finish that glows slightly pink when the light hits it. The shimmer is not a blinding, see-your-reflection-in-it metallic, but it gives a gorgeous sheen to your cheeks that makes you look like you stepped out of a magazine. This shade does contain a silver sparkle running through it but it’s pretty dispersed so I don’t find that it interferes with my look though it may be a deal breaker for some.
Best Nars Blushes for Fair/Cool Skin Tones
Bumpy Ride (Shimmer)
Deep Throat (Shimmer)
Best Nars Blushes for Medium/Warm Skin Tones
Dolce Vita (Shimmer)
Best Nars Blushes for Deep Skin Tones
Best Nars Blushes for Asian Skin Tones
Dolce Vita (Shimmer)
Deep Throat (Shimmer)
Cruelty Free and Vegan Status
Nars claims it does not test on animals or ask others to test on their behalf except where required by law. The brand is sold in China, which mandates that all cosmetic brands sold in physical stores pay and participate in post-production animal testing.
Though some items are vegan, certain products in Nars’s line contain animal byproducts. The brand recommends contacting customer service to determine a particular products vegan status.
Where to Buy Nars Blush
Nars blush shade selection varies based on retailer. The full line is available on the Nars website.
Sephora – Free shipping on orders over $50 and free returns.
Regardless of where you choose to buy from, make sure to check if Rakuten (ebates) is offering cash back. Sephora offers cash back for anywhere from 2% to 8% so it’s definitely worth looking into. If you haven’t signed up for Rakuten yet, you can do so here, it only takes a minute and then you’ll earn cash back every time you shop through their link. They also have an extension which I recommend installing, that activates cash back on all eligible websites with one click and it also scans for coupons.
Pros of Nars Blush
Pigmented color is easy blend
Easy to apply, even for a novice
Variety of finishes
Large color range which includes shades for all skin tones.
Product lasts a fairly long time
Cons of Nars Blush
Some shades contain glitter
Not all shades are available at all retailers
Unnecessarily lewd shade names
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