When you have sensitive skin, shopping for makeup can be tough. But as long as you know what type of makeup to buy, you should be able to keep using it, if you want. For today’s lesson on sensitive skin-friendly makeup, we’re focusing on blush: According to board-certified dermatologist Dr. Christel Malinski, M.D., the best blushes for sensitive skin are mineral-based, and noncomedogenic, for starters. Avoid thick, oily blushes with comedogenic (aka potentially pore-clogging) ingredients, she tells Bustle, and always use a clean sponge or brush to apply your makeup (this last part is key).
Dr. Malinski says the choice between cream and powder blushes is up to the individual, depending on the kind of makeup they prefer. She tells Bustle that she likes both cream and powder blushes for her sensitive-skinned patients, and notes that the quality of the ingredients is much more important than the delivery of the product. Finally, Dr. Malinski suggests applying your moisturizer and sunscreen prior to makeup to ensure adequate sun protection. (If you’re looking for the best moisturizers for sensitive skin and some great, gentle sunscreens as well, you can find them through these links.)
To shop five of the best blushes for sensitive skin, scroll on — and you can find even more of the best makeup for sensitive skin, here.
1. The Expert’s Pick
Dr. Malinski carries jane iredale products in her office for her patients. “I truly feel it is skin care and makeup in one product,” she says. Case in point: the company’s PurePressed Blush, which contains minerals and antioxidants that are delivered to your skin as it creates a gorgeous, natural-looking flush. It comes in 14 beautiful shades that are classified according to their undertone (cool, neutral, and warm), and — like all jane iredale products — the blush is cruelty-free, noncomedogenic, and has been tested for sensitive skin.
2. The Fan Favorite
Mineral-based makeup is often the go-to choice for people with sensitive skin, since it’s typically made from gentle ingredients that are derived from the earth (aka minerals). And Mineral Fusion is one of the most popular mineral makeup brands out there — so it makes sense that their powder blush would be ideal for sensitive skin. Available in eight buildable colors, this blush is free of fragrance, parabens, phthalates, and talc (it’s also hypoallergenic and cruelty-free). Instead, it’s made with good-for-skin ingredients like pomegranate, sea kelp, white tea, and aloe vera, some of which are rich in vitamins C and E. It’s even gluten-free, in case that’s a priority to you.
3. The Best Blush With SPF
Here’s another mineral-based blush for your consideration: These Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Color Balms, which are creamy, multi-use balms that can be used on your cheeks and lips. The cruelty-free formulas are noncomedogenic and free of fragrance, parabens, and gluten, and they even offer SPF 50 sun protection — a major bonus. These are infused with nourishing ingredients like jojoba esters and squalane to keep your skin comfortable and hydrated, and it also means they blend like a dream.
4. The Best Loose Powder Blush
If you prefer the versatility of a loose blush, check out this one from Alima, which is also mineral-based. The fine, loose powder is free of most common, potential allergens, like fragrance, gluten, synthetic dyes, and nut-derived ingredients. It’s sold in 12 pretty colors and two finishes: shimmery or satin matte.
Some other reasons to support Alima: The brand is woman-owned, vegan, Leaping Bunny-certified cruelty-free, and a certified B Corporation, which basically means they meet the highest possible standards in terms of environmental and social practices. They’re also carbon neutral and donate 1% of their annual sales revenue to environmental causes.
5. The Best Drugstore Blush
As far as drugstore makeup for sensitive skin goes, Physician's Formula is always a reliable choice. These hypoallergenic blushes comprise lots of different colors that, mixed together, create one stunning shade of either peach, pink, berry, or brownish-rose. They’re noncomedogenic, fragrance-free, and oil-free, so, like all of the blushes on this list, they shouldn’t aggravate sensitive or acne-prone skin.
Dr. Christel Malinski, M.D, a board-certified dermatologist