To be completely honest with you, it wasn’t until about a year ago that I really started getting into highlighters. I feel like the makeup world went into a highlighter (and contour) craze and new products and kits began releasing aimed at helping us attain that highly sought after “glow-from-within” look. And I ain’t mad at it! Along with finding my HG concealer last year, discovering highlighters has been my saving grace on days I look (and feel) run down.
So what’s a Highlighter?
Highlighters (or illuminators) come in either powder, liquid or cream form. They’re used to simulate the areas sun or light would naturally hit your face. If done correctly, this will make skin appear healthy, dewy, and it will bring dimension to otherwise “flat” or “matte” looking skin.
Whatever area of the face you place highlighter on will instantly be brought “forward,” or for lack of a better word, highlighted. You might already be highlighting without even knowing it (how many times have you placed a lighter shade under your brow bone and inner tear duct and instantly looked more awake?)
Just like with all other makeup products, they come in a variety of shades. Choosing the right one for you will depend on your skin tone, but most importantly, preference, because at the end of the day what matters is choosing a highlighter that makes YOU feel your best.
There are some highlighters that seem to work across the board. I often see these three raved about by women of most all skin tones:
- NARS “Blush” in Albatross // $30
- BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal // $38
- MAC Mineralize SkinFinish in Soft and Gentle // $32
Where to Apply Highlighter:
Best Brushes for Application:
There are two brushes that I love using to apply my highlighters. I often alternate between my MAC 129SE travel size brush and my e.l.f Studio Small Tapered Brush, which is a great bargain at $3. Another brush I hear great things about is the Sigma F35 Tapered Highlighter Brush but sadly I do not own it.
My technique for applying highlighter is the same with both brushes; I’ll pick up the product by placing the side of the brush into the pan, I tap off excess product, then sweep across the desired area. I then go back with the head of the brush and in small circles will begin to disperse the highlighter so the appearance is a bit more natural and not so concentrated.
Highlighters are not a necessity but they really do elevate your “makeup game;” They’re the difference between just looking good and looking amazing. I focused mostly on powder highlighters because they’re my favorite at the moment but liquid and creams can really work well with drier skin types as well as serve as “primers” for your powder highlighters (that’s how I use Benefit’s Watt’s Up!).
Did I mention your favorite highlighter? Leave a comment below with your skin tone and highlighter must-haves!