Nars Penny Lane Cream BlushNars Penny Lane Blush ($28) is described on the Nars website as a nude pink. It's a very soft and delicate bridal pink with neutral undertones. If you look closely, it has a little bit of a white pearl, but it looks mostly matte on the skin. It's a great every-day blush that you can't really do wrong with. It's very subtle, yet it gives your skin a hint of color that your cheeks need to look healthy and lightly flushed. It's very similar to the effect MAC Cubic Blush would give me (one of my favorite neutrals).
Nars Cream Blushes are a cream to powder formula, and are very soft and creamy to the touch, but they blend into a seamless powder finish on the skin.
For Penny Lane in particular, I've used a few different methods - a small stippling brush, a foundation brush and my fingers. Because the color is so light, it's not a shade that you can easily overdo. So, I don't find a stippling brush to be necessary, as it doesn't apply enough color to the cheeks unless I pack it on the brush. Although I rarely like using my fingers for application of makeup, I find that the fingers give me the best control and color.
To be completely satisfied with the color, I usually apply two layers. I think this blush is best suited for light skintones, but can also work well for light-medium and medium skintones. I'm around the MAC NC35 coloring right now, and I can tell if I were any darker, it may start to show up ashy. If you're darker than the MAC NC40 coloring (medium-dark/tan), you may want to skip, otherwise you can use Penny Lane as a base for a neutral blush that suits your skin better.
Wearing Nars Casino Bronzer all over my face, with Nars Penny Lane on my cheeks and MAC Superb across the top of my cheekbones.
In this photo I'm only wearing Penny Lane on my cheeks.
I often pair this blush with a pink highlight along my cheekbones and it looks gorgeous. I feel that it almost needs that little extra pop. I've been pairing it with MAC Superb Extra Dimension Highlighter, and have been loving it! I've also been using it as a base for Nars Madly Blush, and they seem to work really well together.
The lasting power is decent, but it's not particularly long wearing. I find that it lasting power sometimes depends on the foundation I'm wearing. For instance, after 4 hours it has almost completely faded when I'm wearing Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua, but it stays in tact much longer when I'm wearing Estee Lauder Double Wear.
Overall, I'm happy with Penny Lane and I know because of the light color and pigmentation, this is a blush I'll reach for often, and I'm pretty positive I'll easily be able to finish it up.
If you're on the lookout for a soft natural pink "no-blush blush" for every day, Penny Lane is a great choice. For a cheaper alternative with a similar effect, I like using L'Oreal Cherubic Magicsmooth Souffle Blush.
To read additional reviews for Penny Lane, check out Makeupalley.
- Very creamy, blends easily with the fingers
- Natural, powdery finish
- Gives the perfect amount of understated color to the cheeks
- Lasting power could be better when worn solo - I typically need a touch-up mid-day.
- May not show up on medium-dark, tan and deep skintones.
- Because the blush is pretty sheer, I need a couple of layers on my medium skin - with daily use I can see myself finishing this blush quickly.