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Parents' Guide to

Blush: The Search for the Next Great Makeup Artist

By Kari Croop, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Cosmetics contest could send kids wrong message.

Blush: The Search for the Next Great Makeup Artist Poster Image

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What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

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Applying an all-too-familiar reality contest formula to yet another creative profession, Blush: The Search for the Next Great Makeup Artist attempts to do for makeup what Project Runway did for fashion. And, in some ways, it succeeds. The show highlights the technical and artistic skill of highly creative people who can literally transform a person's face with strategic strokes of color, highlight, and shadow. It also pushes the envelope with out-of-the-box challenges that go far beyond beauty (in one episode, for example, contestants are asked to create an avant garde look using edible and natural ingredients, like blackberries, ice cream sprinkles, and flower petals).

But the biggest strike against Blush is that, despite the show's unique focus on the cosmetics industry, we've pretty much seen this all before. Take your pick: From Stylista to Top Design to Top Chef, these shows rely on the same mix of quirky (and a few serious) characters who are craving their 15 minutes of fame. And they'll do anything -- including appearing before the judging panel in a camera-unfriendly masquerade mask -- to get it. Put X number of creative people in a poshly decorated house, pit them against each other in a series of outlandish challenges designed to test their skills, offer them an arbitrary title, and poof! -- you have InstaReality.

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