As a huge fan of nude/bronzy blushes, Benefit’s Dallas has been on my wish list for the longest time. Even though I live relatively close to an Ulta (right there. How could I not go in? I suddenly recalled hearing that Benefit’s planning on discontinuing Dallas soon if they haven’t already, so I figured if I ever wanted to test Dallas it was now or never. Finally, after all these years, I went inside.
I’m not sure what I expected but Ulta — at least the layout and displays — reminds me a lot of Sephora except with a more spacious, roomier floor plan and better lighting. Sephora feels like a dark, cramped cave in comparison. Seriously, the Ulta I was in had such high ceilings and bright lights.
I immediately made a beeline for the Benefit display and swatched away happily.
After hearing such positive, glowing reviews about Benefit’s blushes over the years I have to say that I was really disappointed. Yes, the boxed blushes are silky soft but I could tell right away that they contain a lot of talc. The Benefit powder blushes feel silky the same way baby powder does. Unfortunately, talc’s an ingredient that I find incredibly drying on my skin and I think it’s a big reason why the consistency of the Benefit boxed blushes are so powdery and crumbly. For the record, I’m not a fan of hard, firmly pressed blushes (e.g. Tarte Amazonian Clay, bareMinerals READY) but I’m not a fan of super soft blushes either because they kick up a lot of dust. In fact, the testers in the Benefit display were all powdery messes inside. Plus, the pigmentation wasn’t all that impressive and the blushes are scented (a big no-no for me).
I also tested Benefit Majorette and CORALista and ended up crossing both of them off of my wish list too. None of the Benefit blushes swatched well on my skin. CORALista was almost all frost with barely any color. I have fairly light skin and it’s more of a highlighter than a blush on me. You can barely see it on my hand in the swatches. Majorette was the biggest shocker however. It’s a cream-to-powder product and cream products generally work great on me but this went on so sheer, dry and patchy on my skin. That’s such a shame because I like the color, at least the little bit I was able to see.
Benefit blushes work on a ton of other people but sadly are a no go on me. Could it be because my skin type is incompatible with Benefit’s blush formulas? In my experience, blushes that are heavy in talc/silica/starch/kaolin clay don’t adhere well to my dry skin. Richer powder formulas that don’t contain those drying, oil-absorbing ingredients and are infused with squalane, vitamin E or plant oils tend to work better on me.
The main reason I wanted to swatch Dallas and stepped inside Ulta in the first place was to compare it with BECCA Sweet Pea and Bolero to see if they were dupes at all. I had both BECCA blushes with me in my makeup bag so I can definitely tell you that Sweet Pea isn’t remotely similar to Dallas. The former is a lot more pigmented and peachy compared to Dallas which is browner, more muted and sheerer.
Between the two BECCA blushes Bolero’s a lot closer to Dallas. Swatched heavily it looks pinker than Dallas (photo at the top of the page) but sheering out Bolero brings out more of its warmer, earthier tones so it starts resembling Dallas a bit. I prefer Bolero way more though. Not only is it matte compared to the shimmery Dallas but it’s a lot more pigmented with a better texture in my opinion. It’s soft but not as powdery as Dallas. Also, there’s something about the color of Dallas itself that looks muted and dirty, almost a little grayed, that I don’t find as flattering as Bolero which seems cleaner and brighter in comparison.
It took awhile but I’m happy to have finally laid my longtime Dallas lemming to rest. R.I.P.