The Best Cheek Stains and Balms for Winter

By Tara Thompson Rasmus

All of the “new year, new you” resolutions are well and good, except for one little thing: it’s the dead of winter, hardly the time when many of us are feeling motivated to become our very best selves by knocking back green juices and embarking on ten-mile runs. I prefer a shortcut to looking like I’ve detoxed and spa-ed my way to glowing skin, in the form of a winter wine blush tint. Looks scary in the package, but I promise—nothing mimics the look of a real flush like a deep rouge. Simply dab a bit on cheeks and in the center of your lips and you’ll feel like a svelte ski bunny that came straight off the slopes (even if you plan on spending January doing some serious hibernating!). Click ahead to scope my picks for the perfect winter flush—I promise they’ll brighten you right up even if your resolutions have already fallen by the wayside (guilty).

featured image via sephora


L.A. Lights Blendable Lip & Cheek Color by Smashbox

This handy, blendable stick in Malibu Berry is an entire glowing face in a tube—simply swipe onto cheeks, lips, and even eye creases and blend with the handy buffing brush.

Tata Harper Volumizing Lip & Cheek Tint

If your skin is feeling dry and lackluster (thanks, indoor heating), dab on this moisturizing lavender-and-minerals infused tint, which nourishes skin while it adds a glow. I love the Very Naughty shade.

Pop of Passion Blush Balm by bareMinerals

If deep wine scares you, try a mauve-ish nude like this vitamin E-infused blush balm from bareMinerals. The formula is designed to melt into skin, leaving a stainlike finish.

Lip2Cheek by RMS Beauty

One of my personal favorites, this all-natural balm in the Illusive shade is becoming my go-to blush this season. An interesting mix of mauve and berry with a hint of brown, this tint is like your natural flush, but just a bit more sultry.

Gotta Blush On You Cream Blush Stick in Hey Rosé by Bliss

Infused with avocado and jojoba oils, this nifty push-up blush stick glides onto skin and blends seamlessly, leaving a rosy flush behind.

Radiant Creme Blush in Just Jenna by La Bella Figura

This acai-packed gel is made with organic ingredients—it’s basically like a superfood-packed smoothie for your face!

Sheer Cheek Gel by Pixi

This product isn’t new, but I somehow only recently discovered it—and I’m glad I did! This silky gel has just the right amount of tint and moisture for cheeks and lips, and it really lasts. One of the most realistic-looking flushes ever!