Cloud Paint Is Not Actually For Painting Clouds.

I have a massive case of side-eye for Glossier, the ‘cool-girl’ minimalist beauty brand from Into The Gloss. While “Skin First. Makeup second. Simple always” is a fine motto, I associate the brand with a certain level of smugness about having won the genetic lottery — flawless skin, perfect coloring. Like, good for you, Cool Girl. You can keep your ‘skin tint’ and sheer pink gloss. I’ll just be over here with my pockmarks and redness and acne. I’m good.

Still, I couldn’t resist jumping on their recent promo for their new “Cloud Paint,” a gel-cream blush. They were offering any two shades for $30 total and free shipping, a $3/tube discount. I *love* a good blush (I’m anemic; it shows), the formula looked interesting, and I figured $15 for a good blush wasn’t absurd.

Glossier Cloud Paint
Photo :

First things first — I think Glossier did an awesome job with the packaging: a .33oz paint tube with a screw-off cap, which slides into a holo silver box with transparent sleeve. Good job, Glossier. It’s cute. (This one is peachy “Beam;” I also picked up pinky “Puff.”)

“BUT WHAT ABOUT THE PRODUCT?!” you ask. Direct from the tube, the product is thin, liquid, and opaque — more tempera paint than oil or watercolor, if we’re going with the paint motif. The color straight out of the tube (a bright pastel apricot-pink) did not inspire confidence.

Glossier Cloud Paint
It’s runny, but not sticky. This is more than I’d use in an application — a little goes a long way!

Application isn’t 100% intuitive. When my older sister borrowed Beam, I reminded her to use a tiny amount, squeeze it out onto a single finger and then transfer to the opposite finger; apparently, ‘tiny amount’ is subjective — she ended up with paint goop all over all ten fingers. (She had to wipe it all off and start over.)

Glossier Cloud Paint
Applied directly from tube vs blended. I used three layers for the “blended” photo so you could see it — I would recommend against applying that much IRL.

I like to put one small dot (the size of a colored plastic pin head) on my nondominant middle finger, then tap both middle fingers together so I have equal amounts on both. I dot the paint onto my cheeks at the same time, spread it around in circular motions, then tap out the edges to blend a little (all with the middle fingers). It’s sheer enough that an imperfect or uneven job doesn’t really show, which is awesome for lazy/rushed people like me (the blush for the selfies in this post was applied in my parked car with no mirror). It blends out into a sheer, bright-but-subtle peachy-pink on my skin. Indoors or in the shade, you can’t tell that it has shimmer; in direct sunlight, it’s like “BLAM! STEPHENIE MEYER VAMPIRE TIME!” (No glitter, but LOTS of fine shimmer.) In all these photos, I’m wearing only foundation + blush + mascara — no other highlight or contour.

Glossier Cloud Paint, indoor lighting
Indoors : sheer and subtle; the blush adds just enough warmth and color to make it seem like I go outside occasionally.
Glossier Cloud Paint, outdoors
Left : Wash of color + subtle sheen, even in the shade! Right : Oh hello, acne scars. Nice to see you again. But also, isn’t the blush pretty? You can’t see the shimmer particles from this distance, but it has a nice sheen!

I find it wears about six hours on my dry cheeks before fading a little (but it’s still noticeably and evenly present until the eight-hour mark). It will catch on any flakes or uneven dry skin; if that happens, just keep blending. (If you have a LOT of flakes, I’d use a synthetic stippling brush instead of fingers for better blending.)

Ultimately, I do really like Cloud Paint; I was just hoping it would be a completely revolutionary product that changes how I do makeup. I guess it sort of is — now I have a blush I can keep in my purse and apply in a parked car when rushing between seminar and work, and I’ve reached for it a lot lately — but I’m disappointed in the limited color range (light pink, light peach, muted medium rose, darker brownish rose). I get that the sheer, ‘natural’ shades are in line with Glossier’s “I’m too good for makeup” aesthetic, but I wouldn’t mind seeing a berry, red, or darker coral added to the lineup.

Glossier Cloud Paint swatches

  1. If you tend to overapply blush. (I accidentally end up with ‘clown cheeks’ all the time.) I guess it’s theoretically possible to overdo this one, but you’d have to do it intentionally!
  2. If you need blush for an overnight or purse makeup kit. This is small and convenient, and the lid is very secure — I’m not worried about it squirting all over my purse. It has definitely replaced the powder blush compact and travel brush in my purse.
  3. If you want a foolproof blush. Even though the application might not be intuitive at first, it’s pretty fast and easy to apply once you get the hang of it.
  4. If you need a go-to ‘everyday’ blush. This sheer peachy-pink will probably look good with most outfits and on most undertones (even cool undertones — my sister is very pink, and it looked lovely on her).
  5. If you have $18 and want to. You’re an adult. Make wise choices.
  1. If you want an extremely pigmented blush. This ain’t it. Try NARS.
  2. If you hate dealing with liquids and creams, or getting makeup on your fingers. This is very runny; and while you can blend it out with a brush, you’ll still probably need to do initial application with your fingers.
  3. If your skin is much darker than ‘medium.’ Glossier shows it on some darker skintones, but I’d be surprised if this could be built up nicely. Yes, it’s opaque straight out of the tube; but the base color isn’t nice and the formula doesn’t dry well if you use a thick layer. (I tested it.) If the formula tempts you, give Dusk a try!
  4. If you think $18 (or 2/$30) is an absurd price for a blush. (That’s what it costs, so.)

 Right here!

(As of publication, they’re still running the 2/$30 + free ship promo — use code 2BLUSH.)

NOTE: THIS IS TOTALLY AN AFFILIATE LINK. It’s not a fancy blogger affiliate link, just the one everyone gets when they open up a Glossier account. If you click through this link and buy something, you will get 20% off your purchase and I will get a $10 store credit. (Unless you already have a Glossier account, in which case all bets are off.)  Needless to say, we won’t ever lie to you about whether we think a product is great, meh, or “avoid at all costs” etc.

Et vous? Cream/gel blush, yea or nay? Got any favorites?