Usually when I post swatches for new products I try to either take as many pics in store or buy a wide selection of colours I think will work for women of colour. NARS’ Dual Intensity Blushes were unfortunately not a product I could do that with. With two shades, varying levels of intensity wet or dry, and a high price point it simply wasn’t possible. So I went in with the goal of getting just one. I ended up visiting Holt Renfew at Yorkdale Mall to purchase one, which came to $58.76CAD with tax (eep), but price per ounce they’re about the same as other mid-range blushes such as MAC. I didn’t get the name of the artist who helped me but she was lovely, helpful and applied the blush in a very flattering way (as opposed to the stripes I often get at Sephora).
[Shade Analysis for Dark Skin]
I went in with the intention to try both Panic and Fervor but based on the artist’s recommendations and playing with the blushes this is what I found.
Panic – Initially the pink seems too cool but on the skin it’s fine. The red-orange is quite unusual and extremely flattering alone, or when mixed with the pink on warm skin.
Jubilation – These would be lovely highlights. But flattering highlights aren’t very hard to find for darker women, and you certainly don’t need to spend $52 to do it.
Fervor – I was really excited to try the deeper muted plum as I hadn’t really seen anything quite like it before. Unfortunately none of the pigment showed up on my skin, just the shimmer. But I can’t say how this will perform on fairer skin.
Craving – A bronze/highlight duo, the darker colour would be a waste for darker skin tones and the light, easily replaceable.
Adoration – The deeper pink may be nice on darker skin, but it is quite cool and I did not try it.
Frenzy – Now this was the one the artist was really trying to push me to try because she thought it would be gorgeous on my skin. But because I already have Taj Mahal I didn’t think I should tempt myself with any other oranges, but if you don’t mind that then this would be a great option to try.
Applied dry on the left and wet on the right.
Now these got quite bad ‘grade’ review from Temptalia. But I’m basing mine on how it works with my skin type and skin tone, rather than how it compares to the company’s claim.
I think the finish is impeccable. As someone who worries about pores being emphasized by products with a lot of sheen, this did not do that. Here’s a close-up to show you the difference between the wet and dry product. You can also click the photos above to zoom in and see a more detailed difference. But I don’t think it emphasized my pores or made my skin look any worse than other blushes and I found the metallic sheen to be unusual and appealing.
When using the blushes wet, make sure to use a synthetic brush. The artist recommended a small dense brush to really buff it in. I used ELF’s Studio blush brush. Although it seems counterintuitive using the product wet actually sheers it out. I used MAC’s Fix+ to try it out and I did find that it was difficult to get a consistent finish across the cheek. But I did love the finish, it was less shimmery and more natural looking. Overall, I like the blush and the wear time (around 7 hours). I especially love the orange half of the blush which is quite unique. Whether you decide to buy it will depend on whether the few shades in the range that work for darker women of colour fit your collection.
Also on the face…
In the pictures I’m wearing Covergirl Whipped Cream Foundation 365 and NARS Lip Pencil in Rikugien (the Sephora 2015 birthday gift) which is a surprisingly flattering nude for woc.
Hope this was helpful.