Blush is usually the last or second to last step in most makeup routines. It ties together the entire look and provides a subtle flush to face that says "I have a natural glow". Here I share with you two blushes that came home with me which have become regular staples.
I believe Chanel currently offers 13 different shades of Joues Contraste on the website. Each of these retail at $42USD for 0.21oz/6g. They come in the usual sleek black plastic Chanel packaging with the white logo etched on top.
Each of the Joues Contraste blush compact is housed in a black velvet pouch to minimize dust. The pouch also has the Chanel logo in white etched on top.
I appreciate Chanel printing the ingredients right on the box so we know exactly what is in the formula. Those of you who are allergic to Talc or Parfum in cosmetics may want to steer clear of this product. These two particular blushes are manufactured in France and is the baked European formula.
Unlike the lipsticks, Chanel actually prints the name of the blush on each compact so it's easy to identify even after the packaging is gone.
First up we have Orchid Rose, a medium pink blush that has very slight shimmer. The shimmers are apparent in the photo but you cannot see it once applied on the cheeks. All of the Joues Contraste compacts come with a soft brush and mirror for application. If you put your nose close to the blush, you will smell a strong rose fragrance. However, the smell goes away upon application. Rose Orchid is a permanent shade from the Chanel Joues Contraste line.
Pink Explosion came out with the latest Chanel Fall 2010 Collection and I believe is also permanent. This is a much brighter pink compared to Orchid Rose. It too has shimmer that is definitely more noticeable in the swatch. Similar to Orchid Rose, the shimmer is fine enough that it doesn't blatantly show upon application.
Here is Orchid Rose and Pink Explosion side by side for comparison.
Although Pink Explosion looks very bright in the pan, it is actually a wearable pink color that's suitable for all skintones. The formula is silky smooth and finely milled with very obvious shimmers on the hand but not on the cheeks. Each swatch took 2 swipes from the pan. You can build the intensity of the color by using a stippling brush or a 109. Orchid Rose is a much more muted pink on my skin tone. It is a nice elegant color for night time special occasions. Pink Explosion I wear more for a pop of color during the daytime. None of these make me look like a disco ball and the wear time is 8-9 hours.
Here are the swatches of Pink Explosion and Orchid Rose in dark lighting.
Swatches of Pink Explosion and Orchid Rose in outdoor/brighter lighting. Pink Explosion is very pretty in daylight especially on light to medium skin tones for a light flush on the cheeks. Orchid Rose is suitable for medium to dark skin tones for a more refined glow.
I know there have been some discussion about the US vs. European Joues Contraste formula but I personally did not have any problems with these particular blushes. I really love the feel of these on the cheeks and am very impressed with wear time. A typical NARS/MAC blush will fade by half of my work day (4-5 hours). I once wore Orchid Rose to work from 9AM and it was still visible by 8PM by the time I got home.
Each of these blushes give a very nice subtle glow-from-within look, are not powdery or chalky, and have good pigmentation. I know $42USD is quite a bit of money for a blush but I think these are of high quality, not just another blush from a brand name. If lasting power and texture are important factors in a blush for you, definitely check these out at your local Macy's or Nordstrom counters. They will not disappoint.
Have you tried Joues Contraste before? What determines an HG blush for you?