Review: NARS Exposed Cheek Palette & Comparison to Hot Tryst

If there’s one thing that makes me weak at the knees, its a new NARS cheek palette. Seriously! No matter how much I resist, I cannot get away from them. Thus was the case with the new NARS Exposed cheek palette. I thought I could resist it since so many people said it was similar to the holiday Hot Tryst, but after seeing reviews and looks on it, I just could not pass it up.

As per NARS:

“Exposed cheek palette is a palette of six lightweight pigments encapsulated in a break through NARS formula that delivers a sheer wash of color to accentuate all skin tones. Apply dry for a silky veil of second-skin color. Apply wet for a high-impact glow.”

The packaging of this palette is the same size as all of their six-pan blushes. The only difference I’ve seen throughout the years are the outer design. Until now, I felt that Hot Tryst was the nicest design, however, after this release, I am certain that the design of Exposed is now the prettiest, at least in my opinion. The compact can be thrown into your bag without fear or shattering any of the shadows.

The colors in here range from a magenta-dark pink color to a light peachy/tan and it comes with a highlight. The highlight shades are never really my favorite since I feel that they tend to look a little frosty on me since they are always light. This highlight was just a tad darker than their holiday release so I appreciate that.

I have not had the opportunity to use the blushes wet, so I cannot comment on how the application/pigment on them are in that way. I prefer to use them dry and have used all the shades after using it exclusively for a week. I used a small blush brush from Sonia Kashuk to apply them and I agree with their description – they are on the sheerer side and do appear like second-skin color. I love that you can build up the color with these.

Sometimes I can be a little heavy-handed and have to spend time blending the blush colors out or diffusing with my bronzer, but that hasn’t been the case with any of these blushes. I have used them alone and have mixed some of them together and I like them both layered and on their own. They wore well for about 6-7 hours before noticing some fading. I rarely wear face primer on my cheeks – I concentrate it on my t-zone so this wear time was without use of primer.

I definitely have been enjoying it and feel like if you like the colors offered here you will surely enjoy this palette. Now, if you already own Hot Tryst – do you need this palette? There was definitely talk about how this palette was just Hot Tryst repackaged.

I do think that the colors in Exposed are just a bit more wearable for everyday than Hot Tryst. I recently used Hot Tryst in a rotation and felt that some of the shades were just too bright for the makeup looks I was trying to do. This, of course, was an issue that is personal to me and my needs, so you might feel different.

I also felt that the shades in Hot Tryst weren’t my favorite – especially the light pink blush and highlight shades. They were super frosty on my skin tone and I found that I either skipped them during my rotation or had to use other colors to help them look a little better on myself. Like I said, I cannot resist the NARS blush palettes so this was an issue I discovered after having purchased it.

In the end, I think if you have Hot Tryst but have similar issues to what I experienced, then you might enjoy Exposed a little more. If you find that all the shades in Hot Tryst are a good fit for you, then you are really just missing out on the brown and peach tones in the Exposed palette.

I have really been enjoying the new NARS Exposed palette and would recommend it if you love their blush palettes, have nothing like it, or have been considering it. What do you think about this palette and how it compares to the holiday version? Will you be picking it up?! Let me know!

Thank you so much for reading!


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