I love all things wonderfully British. And while the wonderful Francois Nars unfortunately is not, he knows how to name a product that is very suited to being at the upmost, excellently British. One of the best quintessential things about our lovely little island is that we are mostly a nation of pale skinned beauties. English Rose isn't a well-known phrase for no reason, it's well documented that a strong number of our female population (especially you lucky lucky ginger haired girls!) are beautifully full on rosy white. So to find a blush that compliments the skin tone perfectly is a constant aim of mine, what being all pale 'n that I am! Step in this gorgeous offering from NARS that i've had my beady eyes on for ages, Penny Lane.
I have eyed this up for about two years now and always for some reason stepped away. For this reason, I blame Illamasqua and MAC. Around the same time I was eyeing up Penny Lane, I got into MAC and Illamasqua's cream blushes and they were a little cheaper, and I found MAC's to be just okay but Illamasqua's to be mind blowingly pigmented. I've raved about this before. So NARS has unfortunately ended up getting pushed lower and lower down my 'wishlist' of things until I finally got the opportunity to try it.
A lot of NARS's blushes are darker in pigment and quite different to Penny Lane, I feel like Penny Lane is very different to all their others, being a very wearable shade for most skintones - but definitely more so for the softer, paler ladies among us.
It applies very well, being smooth and really easy to blend over foundation and/or tinted moisturiser (which is what I mostly wear.) I love the silky finish of it and it dries quickly and instantly feels like part of your full makeup - nothing worse than a greasy, hard to blend cream blusher, or one that feels weird on the skin. This feels just as soft as a lovely powder blush. I'm just applying it down my cheekbones with my fingers - it's so easy and one of the easiest cream blushes i've ever used. I think it's because it's such a soft shade it blends with minimal effort, and unlike some cheaper cream blushes - I love Topshop but it is harder to work - it blends without needing to be 'warmed up' on the fingers beforehand.
^ with flash
^ without flash
I absolutely love this blush and it's not left my side since. I have reached for it everyday since i've owned it and oh my gosh guys, Penny Lane isn't a cult favourite NARS product for no reason. I'm hooked on this blush, oooh deary me, giving Illamasqua a run for their money! Very happy to own this and i'd recommend it to pretty much every pale girl going, and as a great contour blush for darker skinned girls - olive tones etc. Yes it is a little pricey, I completely understand, I felt the same hence why I always swayed towards MAC/Illamasqua, but these last for ages. I've been using mine for a week and it genuinely hasn't dented at all.
NARS Penny Lane retails at £20.50 from Space NK, narscosmetics.co.uk and Selfridges.
What do you think of Penny Lane? Would you buy it? Is it not the kind of shade you go for? I absolutely adore it! One of my favourite Penny Lane references is of course, as quoted, The Beatles famous song, but one of my other favourite Penny Lane references is the excellent portrayal in 2000's film 'Almost Famous'. Both great reasons to embrace the Lane!