Underblushing is the make-up technique to know right now if you're a fan of effortless glow

Crushing on underblushing

Paola Lacatelli wears burgundy jacket, brown bag, skirt, jacket outside Miu Miu during the Womenswear Spring/Summer 2024 as part of Paris Fashion Week on October 03, 2023 in Paris, France
(Image credit: Christian Vierig/Getty Images)

If you’ve scrolled through BeautyTok at all recently, you have most likely seen the underblushing trend doing the rounds. Videos demonstrating the method have racked up hundreds of thousands of TikTok views (and counting).

Seeing as both the best liquid blush and cream formulas have surged in popularity over the past few years, it’s not hugely surprising that a blush-focused technique is taking centre stage RN—and, fortunately enough, I've asked a pro make-up artist to explain it in more detail.


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Perhaps you’ve got a vague idea of how it works but want to know more, or you’ve simply heard the term and want a play-by-play. Either way, ahead is everything you need to know about underblushing, including how it differs from underpainting and the best products to master it. 

What is the underblushing technique?

“Underblushing is a technique where, by applying cream blusher in a sandwich between foundation and concealer, you create a diffused, ombré blush effect,” explains Carly Utting, senior artist for MAC Cosmetics.

You apply your best foundation first, as you usually would, followed by a generous flush of blusher to your cheeks that extends upward towards your temples. "Having foundation as a base means the cream blusher you apply blends beautifully into the creamy texture of foundation,” Carly continues. “The concealer is then applied under the eye and blended downwards, layering lightly on top of the blusher and creating a seamless, soft blur of blush.” 

What's the difference between underblushing vs underpainting? 

Despite their similar names, these techniques are quite different. “Underpainting is a technique where you apply all of your contouring and blusher as the very first products, then layer foundation over the top,” Carly explains. Underblushing, on the other hand, sees blush applied over the top of your foundation but under your best concealer—hence Carly's 'sandwich' comparison. 

The best products for underblushing

The type of blush you use plays an important part in this technique so as to blend seamlessly with your foundation and concealer. “Cream or liquid blushers are the ideal product for underblushing,” Carly confirms. “MAC’s Powder Kiss Liquid Lipstick, used as blush, or Glow Play Blush are the perfect soft-focus bouncy formula for [this technique].”

Sold on underblushing? Below are some of our favourite cream and liquid buys, along with Carly's recommendation, to shop now. 

Lucy Abbersteen
Beauty Contributor

Lucy is a freelance beauty editor and contributor at Marie Claire, and has written for titles including Glamour, Refinery29, Popsugar, woman&home and more. She was previously Marie Claire’s junior beauty editor. During her career, she’s covered everything from backstage beauty at fashion week to interviews with famous faces like Drag Race royalty and Little Mix. As for her beauty ethos, she’s a big advocate for not having to spend a fortune on beauty products to get good results, and when she’s not got beauty on the brain you’ll find her reading or hanging out with dogs.