Splurge or Save? NARS Luster vs ELF Peachy Keen vs MAC Margin


(Left to Right – MAC Margin, NARS Luster, ELF Peachy Keen)

All three of these blushes are a gorgeous golden apricot colour. A colour that I tend to wear throughout the year as it’s one of my favourites, but best suited to Spring and Summer. Luster, Peachy Keen and Margin are all very similar and it’s probably isn’t worth buying all three however there are some differences, and not just the price tag.

NARS Luster is the most expensive, £21.50. It’s also soft like silk, and it’s one of the denser, creamier blushes I’ve ever used. It’s remarkably versatile, a sheer wash of colour that can built up to suit both paler and darker skintones. It’s also just that tad more pigmented than MAC.

MAC Margin was my first ever blush from MAC – it has a soft spot in my heart and I love it so much I’ve hit the pan twice. NARS Luster is a relatively new purchase for me, so time will tell which one I prefer, but the £17.50 pricetag is cheaper, and the packaging is sturdy. Ever dropped a NARS Blush and seen it smash into a million pieces on your tiled bathroom floor? Heartbreaking! There’s no difference between Margin and Luster on the cheeks.

ELF Peachy Keen is the bargain of the bunch, £3.75 but ELF often run promotions so you could get it even cheaper. The colour pay-off isn’t as good as the other two, you really have to build it up for mid to deeper complexions but you also run the risk of it becoming chalky. Peachy Keen is probably best left to those on the paler end of the spectrum.

ELF Peachy Keen net weight is 4.75g, NARS Luster is 4.8g and MAC Margin’s net weight is a purse friendlier 6g.

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Sleek Pomegranate Powder Blush Review & Swatches

This is my first blush from Sleek. It’s a vivid berry colour that’s perfect for Autumn/Winter. It does have some fine gold shimmer however it’s barely noticeable and certainly doesn’t highlight pores.

Inside the sturdy packaging is a whopping 8g of powder blush. It’s silky and long-lasting. You wouldn’t have guessed this was a drugstore blush that cost £4.49! Sleek blushes are well known for being highly pigmented and I can’t disagree. I apply lightly, and then blend blend blend. If I feel I need a little more colour, I’ll dab it on tentatively, building the colour up. This blush is not for the heavy-handed!

Would look great on all skintones. Definately worth checking out the rest of their blushes.

MAC Legendary Powder Blush Review & Swatches

I’ve already swatched and reviewed MAC The Perfect Cheek which was the first blush I picked up from the recent Marilyn Monroe collection, and now I have Legendary to show you.

Described as a “pale, soft coral” I couldn’t agree more. The Satin finish means there’s a slight sheen, a glow, but no shimmer or frostiness. Overall a very lovely and natural finish. It feels so effortless to apply – it required very little blending and looked great on my pale-ish skin. I would imagine that once again this shade would need building up on darker skintones.

For me Legendary is the “grown-up” coral blush I’ve been looking for. Lots of corals are bright, or shimmery and work beautifully during the Summer months, but this one is glowy and works nicely in the colder months without looking like I’m trying too hard.

MAC The Perfect Cheek Review & Swatches

So I managed to grab a couple of goodies from the Marilyn Collection by MAC. This is the first of the two blushes I picked up. The Perfect Cheek is a repromote, this time with the lovely Marilyn packaging. Described as a “natural pink beige,” it comes in the matte formula and is so easy to wear because it looks natural and will pretty much work with any other makeup you’re using that day. The Perfect Cheek could easily be MAC Blushbaby’s paler cousin. Beautiful.

This blush looks amazing on my pale, but warm skintone (I’m a C1 in MAC lingo….) and it really somehow makes my blue eyes pop. I detect something mauvey about the colour, although it really could be just the beige, which makes it perfect for Autumn. I pair it with MAC Pink Rebel if I fancy adding a little highlighter/shimmer to this matte blush. It applies just the right pigmentation for my skintone, but would imagine darker ladies would need to build up this blush if they want more than just a subtle glow.

Revlon Photoready Cream Blush in Flushed Review & Swatches

Revlon Photoready Cream Blushes have finally hit UK shelves.  So far I’ve seen two shades, Pinched and Flushed (which I purchased). They’re part of Revlon’s Summer Collection for 2012, but I’m sure they’ll likely become firm favourites and stay as part of their general collection of makeup available on our local high street.

They come in little flat pots, not unlike Bobbi Brown’s potted rouge, with a screw top lid. They’re sturdy and are suitable for travel. I like the size, and the fact that you get0.44oz of product, which will last forever. They retail around the £7.99 mark, a bit cheaper at the moment as alot of shops (Boots and Superdrug) currently have them on a introductory offer. I feel this is a tad expensive for a high street/drugstore product, but it’s still cheaper than it’s Bobbi Brown counterparts.

As you can see Flushed is a bright,  fuchsia pink. Flushed doesn’t apply as bright as it does in the pan, to my relief. It’s not as vibrant on skin as they are in the pot. This could be extremely disappointed for some consumers who were expecting a bright pop of colour.  The product is very sheer, and even with a heavy hand, it still needs to be applied in layers. No clown faces here!


(Some pretty heavy handed swatches, on the right the product is blended)

It’s so lightweight that it leaves your cheeks with just a hint of a lovely natural flush. The “photoready” aspect means it looks seamless and flawless on your skin. The problem I have is that they don’t last very long on my skin. Roughly 3 hours before it all starts to disappear. 4 hours and it’s gone. I don’t like re-applying throughout the day. I’ve managed to get the blush to stay on longer by using a primer and setting spray, but honestly I expected more wear out of this cream blush.

Overall the formula and texture is nice, silky and soft. The natural finish is also a plus because of the sheerness of the product. However if you’re looking for a vibrant, long-lasting cream blush – these aren’t for you.

MAC Margin

Margin is a frosty/shimmery peach gold, and as you can’t tell from the picture but it’s probably one of my most used blushes. It’s similar to Nars’ Luster blush, but costs slightly less. All of MAC’s powder blushes retail at £17.50. I currently use MAC’S Face and Body foundation in C1 and have no problems wearing this warm shade. It’s a nice pick-me-up, and perfect for Summer.

What I would say is that a little goes a long way. Try not to be too heavy handed with this blush or you will end up looking like a clown.

Glesni x0

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