Milani Baked Blush in 08 Corallina - review and swatches

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We received this blush in one of our Maslow & Co boxes and it's taken me a while to test and review it because I've been focusing on my products for Project Pan and Pan that Palette 2016.

I was super pleased to see it because I've always wanted to try one of these blushes - Milani's fabled Luminoso shade in particular - and I was double pleased to receive this in a coral colour, which is my favourite cheek shade of all time.

While I do like it and have plenty of good things to say about the formula, it does have glitter flecks in it so it's not something I'll reach for often because I have an aversion to putting glitter on my face, no matter how finely milled it may be. More on that below.


Milani claims/product details:
  • Richly pigmented and highly buildable
  • Beautiful matte and shimmery shades 
  • The perfect cheeky pop of colour for every skintone
  • Sunbaked on Italian terracotta tiles
  • The warm finish adds a radiance that is the very essence of beauty
  • Shape, contour and highlight your best features
  • Corallina is described as a 'shimmering, vivid coral'
  • To use: glide brush through colour and lightly tap off excess powder; lightly apply to cheeks, forehead, chin and/or nose and blend well for a soft glow
  • RRP $15.95 AUD for 3.5g


As you can see, the compact lifts up to reveal a brush compartment that's housed beneath the blush itself (there's a mirror there too). 

The brush isn't good quality - it's stiff and scratchy against the skin - and it's not the kind of brush I would use for blush-application in terms of shape. I personally would prefer no brush at all and a sleeker compact, but of course that's personal preference.

There's a swatch, direct sunlight:


One more for good measure (you can see there's indeed quite a bit of visible shimmer, although at least it's finely milled):


Wearing a light dusting of blush (without highlighter), direct sunlight:


And in natural light (outdoors); I'm wearing it on my eyes here too:


And in natural light (indoors); click on any image to enlarge it:


Verdict

This is a great little blush for the price and I can see why so many people rave about these products: they're inexpensive, pigmented and easy to work with, plus this is one of the best budget blush formulas I've tried.

'Corallina' is a beautiful bright coral that leans orange (my favourite kind) and you can apply it more intensely or with a light hand so it's just a wash of colour that really lifts the face. A light dusting is my personal preference for a shade like this, and you'll see that's how I've applied it in the shots above.

The blush feels very soft and smooth to the touch, and do be careful when you first use it because if you go in too hard, it's so soft that you'll loosen some product in the pan (that's what happened to me when I first swatched it - oops!). I suppose you could say that it's almost a touch crumbly, but I personally don't mind this because I prefer softer products and this one manages to be soft without feeling too powdery or dry.

Now, for the visible shimmer. I really hate visible shimmer in things like blushes and bronzers - I would much prefer a sheen or just a straight matte formula. If I want to look glowy, I'll opt for a highlighter that's placed where I want it to be - I certainly don't want glitter flecks all over my face. That's just me.

While I have seen some reviewers say that you can keep buffing and blending this blush until the shimmer 'disappears', I haven't found this: yes it's possible to loosen a good deal of the flecks if you keep blending, but I can still see them on my face when I step into the light, no matter how much I've worked the product in.

Not only that, once you try to blend the flecks away, many invariably shift and stick to other areas of your face instead. So that's something to be aware of if like me you're not big on visible shimmer - but note also that this blush certainly doesn't have the worst display of shimmer that I've seen, so it's worth testing anyway if you don't like flecks in your blushes because you may be ok with this.

Otherwise I really can't fault this blush: it applies, blends and diffuses well, and it lasts well throughout the day. The colour is gorgeous and there are plenty of shades to choose from so you should find something to love in the range, plus you'd be hard-pressed to find a good formula like this at this price point.

Probably the only other thing I don't love about this is the packaging: it's too chunky and I think the blush compartment is completely unnecessary - particularly because the brush isn't good quality and I suspect that most people won't ever use it.

All in all, a beautiful blush but unfortunately the shimmer means I won't be reaching for it often.


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