Bye bye, contouring, and hello, strobing! If you take a quick peek at Google Trends, “highlighter” has more than doubled in searches since April 2015. (It doesn’t hurt that beauty brands like Jeffree Star and Kylie Cosmetics are launching highlighters left and right and viral videos are hitting the web like, every day.)
So, why opt for a highlighter? If you’re trying to get an instant brow and cheek lift, this is the product to invest in. The shimmery powders and creams attract light, which automatically draws the eye to the highest points of your face for a slimmer effect, and it makes places like your pout appear larger.
What are you waiting for? Get ready to glow up!
1. Tarte Glow Girls Bronze & Highlight Duo
Get Kardashian-level cheekbones in seconds with Tarte’s bronzer and highlighter duo. The set comes with a (vegan and waterproof!) clay matte bronzer in “Hotel Heiress” and clay matte 12-hour highlighter in “Exposed.” Start with a swipe of the deep bronze powder and top with the nude highlight for dimension. Don’t forget to dust above your brow!
2. Laura Mercier J'adore Le Soleil Sunrise Highlighter Crayon
Lazy girls, unite! Skip the brush altogether and use Laura Mercier’s highlighter crayon—it’s a cream stick in a light pink blush that’ll give your face a pearly glow. To accentuate, swipe it along the bridge of your nose, cheekbones, brows, and the jawline—anywhere where the sun would naturally highlight your face. It’ll help make your nose appear narrower, your cheeks appear higher, your pout appear bigger and it’ll give your brows a natural lift. Toss it in your bag for touchups throughout the day.
3. Make Up Forever Star Lit Powder
The ultra-fine, loose powder comes in eight colors from simple “Frozen Gold”—it’s your basic highlighting powder—to a blue “Ultramarine” for when you’re feeling, well, a little blue. (Okay, blue highlight might look a little strange on the tip of your nose, so use the darker colors in subtler places like your brows for a pop of light and color.) The powder can be applied dry for your basic highlight or wet for a more dramatic look.
4. Benefit Cosmetics Watt’s Up! Cream-to-Powder Highlighter
Up your face’s wattage with Benefit’s cream-to-powder highlighter. Even better: It’s a 2-in-1 tool so no extra brushes required! Swipe on the creamy champagne-colored highlighter and use the bottom buffing tool to blend it all in.
5. Josie Maran Argan Enlightenment Illuminizer
Josie Maran’s liquid illuminizer is full of pure argan oil, which hydrates while it highlights. Use just two small pumps and dab along your cheeks, brows, and cupid’s bow for a dewey pop of light. Or, if you’re ready to up the glow, try this trick: Add a pump to your daily moisturizer and mix together. Apply like normal and be prepared to be wowed by your all-over glow.
6. Too Faced Love Light Prismatic Highlighter
If you can’t decide between a cream, powder or liquid highlighter, you’ll want to grab Too Faced’s formula, which is a liquid freeze-dried to create a powder that goes on creamy and smooth for flawless coverage. Pick from three trendy shades (rose gold, champagne and gold) to brighten in all the right places. The best part? The adorable heart-shaped packaging.
7. Kevyn Aucoin The Neo Highlighter
The Neo Highlighter combines three of Kevyn Aucoin’s top-rated highlighters in Candlelight, Starlight, and Sunlight. The ultra-fine particles hide imperfections while illuminating bone structure and creating a soft-focus effect—no Instagram filters necessary!
8. Laura Mercier Lightstruck Prismatic Glow Palette
The palette comes with Aurora, a creamy powder that works as a full-coverage complexion corrector, and four highlighters hues dubbed Prism, Beam, Reflect and Ray. Start with Aurora and then apply your highlight of choice, which you can wear separately or layer on for a unique glow. And OMG would you look at that packaging? It’s called “Prismatic” for a reason!
9. Bobbi Brown Illuminating Cheek Palette
Bobbi Brown’s latest line, Havanna Brights, is a line of shadows, sticks, liners, and our personal favorite—the cheek palette—in bronzy hues and tropical pinks and warm nudes. So stop buying blush, bronzer and highlighter separately! Grab a brush and start using this trio to achieve a multidimensional sun-kissed bronze, pink flush and bright highlight all at the same time.
10. Make Up For Ever Glitters
If you’ve been following the Coachella tag on Instagram, then you’re probably aware of the latest way to highlight—with glitter. Choose from 10 lightweight glitters from Make Up For Ever and apply with a wet brush for a little sparkle on your cheek, brows and even lips. It might not be the most practical highlighter for your everyday look, but for music festivals or nights out, glitter highlighter will be your new highlighter.
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