'I tried the viral 'blush foundation' hack and I am not okay.'

Mamamia’s Tried and Tested series is your review of the latest to hit our desks in beauty, health and wellbeing. You won’t find any #sponsored content here, just honest, relatable and independent advice. This week, Mamamia's Senior Health and Beauty Writer trials the viral sun-kissed skin hack.

A thing you probably know: TikTok is full of whacked out beauty hacks. I've literally used lube as makeup primer because everyone on TikTok said it worked. It kinda did, but it was wildly unnecessary and I'll never forget sending my husband into our small, local pharmacist to get me a bottle of Durex in a very intimate exchange. What a time.

There are also those beauty hacks that look so incredibly wild and silly, but the results look so incredibly amazing, that it makes you just wanna give it a go to see if it's actually good or total BS.

But that's why I'm here talking (typing?) to you! Because there's one I simply must try.

It's called the 'blush foundation' hack. Heard of it?

Watch: Leigh Campbell tries the 'diamond lips' trend on You Beauty. Post continues below. 

Video via Mamamia

Influencer Rachel Madison Carlisle was one of the first content creators behind the beauty technique, which involves using liquid blush and applying it in a rather... unorthodox... way.

Please take a peek below.

@rachelmadisoncarlisle It’s the way the face oil makes your makeup look like skin #makeuphacks #makeup #makeuproutine ♬ original sound - Rachel Carlisle

How do we feel after that? Uncomfortable, probably.

It reminds me of the 'ski blush hack' I tried before (it went... badly) — only she uses blush as a form of 'underpainting' method (along with face oil to allow for blendability).

But in case you can't look past the hectic amount of blush, the idea is to give dull skin a rosy healthy, summery glow underneath your foundation. The hack has racked up thousands of views, and honestly — the results look confusingly... good?

So, I decided I should put the hack to the test. Right before I got a new ID photo   

Now, I've tried a lotta different hacks on the You Beauty podcast and Mamamia's Tried and Tested series. From the viral 'dot method' hack to mixing foundation with water, and *that* concealer hack — you name it, we've probably tried it.

But, there's always room for one more.

Here's exactly what happened when I tried the viral 'blush foundation' hack.

What is the sun-kissed makeup blush hack?

As mentioned, this particular 'underpainting' method uses blush as the base product, layering the rest of your makeup over the top (concealer, foundation, bronzer, etc.) and is meant to give you a really seamless, lit-from-within look, adding warmth and colour to your complexion.


Now, going by influencer Rachel Madison Carlisle's TikTok videos, she always starts by applying face oil to her skin (it looks like she always uses Bio Oil), before what can only be described as using a s**t tonne of liquid blush around her forehead, temples, along her cheekbones, either side of her nose and under her eyes.

She then applies concealer to the areas she wants to "brighten and diffuse" — the bridge of her nose, forehead and under eyes — and takes a fluffy blending brush and blends it all out.

"I use the tiniest bit of foundation to start pulling it all together," she said, applying three small spots of foundation to her cheeks and forehead, blending it in with a brush. "It'll give you a nice glowy, sun-kissed, skin-like look."

After her foundation is blended it, she applies a cream contour, blends and completes the rest of her makeup look, using a brightening setting powder and applying eye makeup. Before adding... you guessed it... MORE LIQUID BLUSH.

She outlines the entire process here:

@rachelmadisoncarlisle step by step of how i use face oil and liquid blush for a FLAWLESS base! #makeup #makeuptutorial #makeuphacks ♬ original sound - Rachel Carlisle

"You can obviously control how much blush you use," she said in one of her videos. "I just love blush."

You do! You really do.

"The blush basically acts as a colour corrector," she said, "And you can just melt it all together."


How did you go with it?

I decided to use a pinky/peachy-toned liquid blush — the Mecca Max Off Duty Liquid Blush in 'Peachy' looked like a good option (also, I didn't want to use the Rare Beauty ones because a mere spot of these are so intense).

As per Carlisle's process, I started by applying Go-To Face Hero to my face (to help everything 'melt' in), before reaching for the liquid blush and applying it... everywhere.

I love my job, I love my job, I love my job.


And can someone call mum? I'm scared.

I blended it in a little with a flat foundation brush, and reached for the Flower Beauty Light Illusion Concealer to apply on my under eyes, the bridge of my nose, etc. 

Concealer time!


I then blended in the concealer (the brush was just so full of blush, I was just...) and then continued blending in the blush, for what felt like 84 years.

Here's an accurate depiction of the process:

Pray for me.

My arms hurt. My face looked red. My hairline looked s**t.

It's even more alarming IRL.


Time for a lick of foundation!

I applied a minimal amount (just four small spots) on my forehead, cheeks and chin before — you guessed it — blending everything in.

My brushes are f**ked and everything hurts.


For some reason (probably the... blush?) everything still looked red.

After it was blended... enough... I applied cream bronzer, blush, highlighter and the rest of the crew.

Would I try this hack again?

My final look. Are we excited? Nervous? Went home?

Here's what my face looked like after trialling the blush foundation hack:




So, here's the thing. From far away it looks Not Too Bad and — gasp — maybe actually pretty seamless (?), but up close it looks like I'm wearing a big ol' load of blush. Which I... am. 

Notably, everything also feels heavier — and even though I used probably less foundation than I'd normally use, I think using the facial oil as the start and blending it all in, makes everything feel thick and heavier. Almost like if anything touched my face it would transfer.


So, would I try it again?

Honestly, probably not.

Not only is it really messy (every brush is covered in liquid brush) but I felt like it took agessss. I know it's a 'trust the process' thing, but the process is too long and it felt wasteful. Imagine doing that every morning?! Your blush would last for like three weeks.

Also, while this could work well for a certain skin tone (or perhaps maybe if I used a different coloured blush) in therms of colour correction, I feel like my skin tone and the fact that I already struggle with redness and eczema made me look like I was having some sort of hectic flare-up IRL. 

Lastly, it felt impossible to match my face to my neck which just really annoyed me.

As always, just because this doesn't work for me, doesn't mean it's not going to work for everyone. Like Rachel. Rachel loves it.

Given I'm a walking flake and have the skin tone of a new baby, this technique wasn't right for me. My preferred makeup look is quite lightweight, sheer coverage and letting my freckles sing, so I just don't feel like me.

BRB while I wash my face.

Have you tried this technique before? How did you go with it? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Feature image: TikTok/@rachelmadisoncarlisle; Supplied.

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