Here's How To Use Glossier's Cloud Paint Blush

by Tynan Sinks

I've been riding for Glossier since day one — or, in the brand's official vernacular, Phase 1. Their newest drop is Cloud Paint, a gel-cream blush. Here's the thing about Cloud Paint that everyone's afraid to admit: People are super uncertain about how to wear it —at first. Don't be mad: I'm not trying to expose you. It's just that blush is one of those beauty products that has always been there, and we're all expected to just pick up and know how to use. Not so!

Glossier Cloud Paint, $18, Glossier

Blushes range in pigmentation, blendability (not sure that's a word but I'm going to run with it) and staying power. Even with the best powder blush, it's easy to get uneven, patchy coverage that's too bright on first application. I prefer cream blush, if I'm being honest, because I love how the look and wear on the skin. Cream blushes often look more natural, like the color is coming through your skin rather than sitting on top of it.

The downside of this is that many cream blushes are made for lips and cheeks, and fall into the category of lip cheek stain, meaning they'll be much too bright when you tap them onto your skin. They can also stain the first area they touch and be hard to blend out, making your skin look uneven.

I was stoked when I heard Glossier was releasing a cream blush and then proceeded to stunt on us by debuting Cloud Paint at the Oscars. But there's a lot of ways to get cream blushes wrong, so I wanted to see how they actually worked. Here's how to get down with it.

Glossier Cloud Paint, $18, Glossier

For starters, Cloud Paint is available in four colors: Beam, an apricot; Haze, a berry; Puff, a pink; and Dusk, a mid-toned beige-nude with a touch of warmth.

They seem to have a white base, instead of being sheer, like a stain. Glossier describes the formula as a gel-cream.

Here, I know you guys love a swatch:

But now let's put them on my actual face, they're not doing us any good on my arm.

As always, we're starting this barefaced and goofy.

I did my base using all Glossier products. It's kind of incredible how far the brand has come. Glossier's Phase 1 was a set of four skin care products that would set the stage for what the brand would do. Now, approximately two-and-a-half years later, Glossier has grown from a burgeoning line of skin care aspiring to have a place among the big guys in your medicine cabinet, to a full line of skin care and makeup — and one that just keeps growing. Check out all of this goodness:

Perfecting Skin Tint, $26, Glossier; Balm Dotcom, $12, Glossier; Boy Brow, $16, Glossier; Haloscope, $22, Glossier; Stretch Concealer, $18, Glossier; Priming Moisturizer Rich, $35, Glossier

Also, I'm sure Glossier would scream at me for saying this because it goes against their dewy look, but when I set the Skin Tint with a translucent powder it makes my skin look a-may-zing. Moving right along.

So I grabbed Cloud Paint and started tapping away, making my signature, hideous Blush Face™.

I thought I wasn't going to touch Beam, the apricot, because I hate warm tones, especially ones that lean orange, on my face, but it was actually the first one I grabbed. I tapped onto the apples of my cheeks.

Plot twist: I was actually about this color. It has much more red in it than the packaging, or even the cream blush itself, initially lets on. It doesn't really come out until you rub it in. This one, I think, is the most natural on my skin.

I have wanted to be a lot of things in my life but natural is not one of them. So I took Puff, the pink, and tapped it behind Beam, about halfway back and up, blending them both together like I was, I don't know, Jem?

Subtle? Yes. I could have built it up to be a neon, editorial, '80s moment, but pulling off blush subtly, and making it look natural is harder to do then just going all in. I love to bring the drama but I had things to do after this.

My problem with blush is that it never adds to my face, it always becomes the focal point, which is not...the point. When blush is too bright on the apples of my cheeks, it flattens out my face and makes me look like Thomas The Tank Engine. But Cloud Paint is easy to work with.

Also, I'm wearing Cloud Paint in Dusk on my lids, the hollows of my cheeks, and hair line.

Next, I grabbed Haze, the berry, and worked it into my cheeks.

Haze really shows what sets Cloud Paint apart from other cream blushes, gel blushes, and stains.

Most cream blushes in this deep berry color would be wildly pigmented and be difficult to get just enough and blend the way you want to, whatever that may be.

Haze goes on bright, for sure, but you can tap it in until you get it just right. Other cream blushes would set and stain the skin before you got a nice, fluid fade that looked natural (or not,) but Cloud Paint gives you more play time. I worked it into my skin for around 20-30 seconds to get it just right, and it still let me diffuse it exactly how I wanted until I was satisfied.

Like I said, it's not hard to find a cream blush that really goes there, but blushes shouldn't be like matte liquid lipsticks, where you're either wearing it or you're not, you know? Blush isn't a destination, it's a journey.

Cloud Paint is easy to work with, buildable, and versatile. For someone who is blush averse like me, it might just be my new favorite. Now that you're familiar with the product, don't talk yourself out of trying it.