I'm no stranger to NARS blushes, but surprisingly I'd never tried one of their cream formulas up until a couple of months ago. I finally succumbed to the likes of Penny Lane, one of NARS' most popular (from what I can tell!) cream blushes. Simply described as a nude pink, Penny Lane looks pretty, yet inoffensive in the pan. There's a tiny bit of shimmer if you look really close, but it doesn't translate on to the face and must be what helps with the dewy effect when worn.
First things first, it's an absolute pain in the ass to photograph. Personally I don't think it really notices on my skin that much in these photos. A cream-to-powder type formula, it dries down but still maintains a sheen on the skin for a healthy glow. I used my Real Techniques Stippling Brush to apply; but as it's so hard to overdo it with the colour here, I'm going to use my fingers in future for better control and build-up without wasting any on the brush.
The texture is super soft and extremely easy to blend, almost therapeutic to apply. Lasting power isn't mind-blowing, but that could be down to the 'barely there' effect it leaves in the first place which could make you think you need to apply more. I think this would be a great blush to pair with a powder version of a similar tone over the top to increase the wear of both. It also looks really similar to Douceur (review here) so would be a great contour to use with this instead of a bronzer.
I'm also wearing it on my lips (it's a tiny bit too drying in my opinion for that though) which looks like a pale pinkish nude over my natural lip pigmentation. In retrospect I don't think having it on both areas does any favours for the product in these photos really; but it's the perfect blush to wear with bolder colours elsewhere in my opinion.
I think Penny Lane would probably look best on light to tanned skins, any darker and it could look quite ashy. Though not as extensive a range as the powder variety, there are a few more cream offerings available from NARS - Enchanted has me rather taken and I'll definitely take a look at it next time I'm at a counter (which probably won't be very long at all).
Overall I'm really happy with this purchase - a lovely blush to reach for either in a rush or just when you don't want to fuss around too much, and is a great contender in the "no makeup makeup" ranks. What are your thoughts on Penny Lane?