From The Vault: Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelée – Josie Maran

I love a cream blusher and this months trip to the vault brings to light a product which was one of the first non-powdered cheek products which truly turned my head.

Josie Maran Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelée in Poppy Paradise (C$26.00) was kindly delivered into my possession a couple of months back following an excursion to New York by a relative. Having initially read about it on the British Beauty Blogger site, I was intrigued and pretty desperate to try it out.

The first thing that stuck me about the blush was how striking and perfect it looked. The vivid red gelée is opaque but there is a sense of translucency to it that is hard to describe and photos don’t quite do it justice; I could almost go as far as saying it looks quite beautiful.

Unsurprisingly enough the name Gelée does pretty much cover it when it comes to the texture; a firm jelly-like consistency with just a pleasing amount of bounce. It is the kind of product that you want to stick your fingers into and play around with – I have only just managed to resist poking hard enough into the jelly so as to break the surface and squidge it around between my fingers…

In the pot the gelée is a vibrant, almost luminous poppy red but it translates into a much softer fuschia pink on the skin. Pigment rich, you only need a small amount of product on your finger to give a pretty good amount of colour on the cheek and it is easy to blend away, so don’t worry if you feel you may have overdone the colour. On the flip side I found it was worth leaving the skin for a few moments once you had blended to allow the natural flush from rubbing the skin to fade – this will ensure you are happy with the results as it is easy to be heavy handed.

It is worth noting that although it applies easily to dry, bare skin, I found that using it over a freshly moisturised or prepared surface gave it a little more slip that made it easier to blend away where necessary.

The Josie Maran website claims that the gelée can provide up to 14 hours of colour however I have found that in all honesty about 4-5 hours is about as long as it lasts – certainly on me (over CC cream or moisturiser). It definitely needs topping up throughout the day and would certainly need to be watched for continuity purposes on a shoot.

Packed full of thirst-quenching coconut water and moisturising Argan oil, the gelée feels cool to the touch and hydrates the skin on wear. Despite what the name suggests, it doesn’t smell of coconut at all; in fact there is almost no scent whatsoever! On giving the jar a pretty big sniff, there is possibly a vague, slightly sweet scent but nothing that would be off putting to clients and certainly nothing that comes through when on the skin.

Not quite a perfect product, It is worth noting that there is a couple of ingredients on the list that do rate a little higher on the EWG database than I would like (namely Ceteareth-20), however the cheek gelée itself doesn’t as yet appear on the database and so it is difficult to get an exact gauge on this.

If you have never used a gel blush before then don’t expect to get the same type of results as when using a powder. The coverage is sheer and the finished look is more natural, healthy flush than contoured colour; think of it as a kind of cheek stain/cream blush hybrid.

Available in six shades, this is the first Josie Maran product that I have tried however I have been impressed with how the gelée performs. A product that is versatile and would work well under various conditions. Great on all skin types (although the amount of product you have to apply may vary), gels are a great option for when you are travelling or for location shoots thanks to it’s water tolerant nature and zero spill/leak potential.

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I had quite forgotten about this cheek colour which, as I am sure you can ascertain from that means I haven’t used it since. I used this little pot of gelée up and loved the colour and finish it gave me however as I mentioned above the ingredients list wasn’t quite as clean as I would’ve liked. Watercolour Cheek Gelée isn’t as natural as it could be and I do prefer to avoid Phenoxyethanol wherever possible – certainly when it is so high up on the ingredients list.

I wanted to use a product which was cleaner and one I could preferably purchase on these shores, looking around I chose the Tata Harper Volumising Lip and Cheek Tint in Very Naughty – a product which I do still use on and off to this day.

If you do fancy giving Watercolor Cheek Gelée a go, it is available in Sephora Canada and if you are in the UK you can purchase it Tax Free thanks to their UK shipping policy – you just have to spend £75.00…. Although believe me that is easily done.


(*Denotes organic ingredient)
Aqua, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Juice, Glycerin, Isopropyl Isostearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Isostearyl Hydroxystearate, Methyl Gluceth-20, Glyceryl Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Ceteareth-20, Butylene Gycol, Acrylates/C10-30, Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil*, Sodium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA
May Contain +/- Red 40 (CI 16035, Red 27 (CI 45410), Yellow 6 (CI 15985), Yellow 5(CI 19140), Red 33 (CI 17200), Blue 1 (42090)
Formulated without  Parabens, Sulphates  or Phthalates

Images: LJS – OMUA

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