This season, we reviewed a variety of highlighters and picked our favourite 5 that are all very different but equally effective.
FAJO’s Beauty Editor Amy Pigeon has the full story.
Anastasia Beverly Hills
Nicole Guerriero Glow Kit
This limited edition glow kit is perfect for the non-committed makeup glutton who likes to sample or mix-and-match multiple colours (I swear, they made this for me).
With 6 shades at 4.5g per colour, you really do get an incredible amount of bang for your buck with this palette. In addition to value, the shade range is unlike anything out there with a completely unique composition of colours and at least 1 for every skin tone.
I was a little bit skeptical of this palette because of the prominent glitter particles in pan (I prefer a shiny highlight to a glittery one). However, I was pleasantly surprised when the glitter melted into the skin when swatched. As expected, this palette is divine (Anastasia products in general are absolute perfection).
I have tried other Anastasia Glow Kits before, and just like the others, the pigmentation and shine are next level in the Nicole Guerriero palette. For my very pale skin and adventurous taste in makeup, Forever Lit was the perfect shade with a white-blue shift for that blinding highlight.
Glo Getter and 143 were too dark for my skin tone; however, when mixed together, they make a stunning bronze shade on my cheeks or lids as an eyeshadow. Kitty Kat, Forever Young and Daydream make for stunning blushes on my skin tone.
The shades range is so wide that although they may not work as highlights for everyone, they can be mixed and matched for eyeshadows, blushes, bronzers or highlights depending on your skin tone and preference. If you really only care about highlighting with this palette, most of the colours will work best for those with medium skin tones. This formula is buildable, which allows for a softer glow or a full-blown, blinding highlight (especially when applied with a damp brush).
Sparkling Dust FEB, 02
This might be my new, favourite highlighter of all time—and that says a lot because I am a self-diagnosed highlight-junkie.
Don’t be fooled by the apparent glittery finish or lack-luster finger swatch with this loose powder—I promise you this powder is actually blinding and has to be one of the shiniest out there. The powder, when applied lightly or heavy handed, is incredibly wet-looking on the skin; it’s an effect that is highly desired, yet not often achieved in the highlighting world.
The powder does not apply with a frosty or glittery finish, which makes it look more natural on the skin—even if the shine is so wonderfully intense that you need to wear sunglasses to look at yourself in the mirror. The shade I tried in 02 is great for porcelain to light/medium skin tones, and applies with less of a yellow hue than one would expect from the product contents in the jar.
This product is safe for the face, eyes and body (hence FEB in the name), and comes in the perfect range of 4 shades for porcelain-ebony skin tones. The Sparkling Dust FEB comes in a large container with 2.5 g/0.09 US OZ of product, and has a sifter inside for distribution control. It can also be applied directly on the eyes as an eyeshadow, or mixed in with any liquid product to add a bit of a glow to other beauty steps.
All Over Glow Face & Body Shimmer in Powder and Face Glow Cream Shimmer, Light
These Natasha Denona highlighting products can be used on their own or as a stunning pair. When swatched, they have a subtle and soft, silvery-peach shade which didn’t blow me away until I put it on my face—and I saw right away that the hype was real!
Together, these highlights create the most natural yet intense, youthful, glow-from-within highlight that we see is so hot on the runways and in editorials these days. The cream shimmer can be used alone for drier, mature skin and will create that natural glow by itself. The cream is best applied with a damp beauty blender. Bounce it across the desired highlighting spots to blend it in (do not swipe if you have set the face with powder prior to the cream highlight application, or it will mix with the powder and create a chunky cake-face texture).
The cream shimmer stick creates a fresh and glowing look with a buttery texture that melts right into the texture of the skin (as such, beware of leaving this product in your car or hot places—it will melt).
For normal to oilier skin types, use the powder alone for a less wet-looking glow and a more subtle shimmer. For dry to normal skin types, set the cream shimmer using it as a base with the powder on top to help make it last longer, and get the best from both worlds with a more intensified, wet-looking highlight. Each product is available in 3 neutral shades that will work from light to deep skin tones.
Make Up For Ever
Star Lit Powder, 2 Frozen Gold and 5 Frozen Purple
Star Lit powders pack a lot of punch in a small package—but don’t be disappointed with the small size of 1.7g of a product, it’s all you’ll need with the outrageous colour payoff from these loose powders.
These ultra fine powders contain highly reflective pearls that are packed with colour pigmentation. This makes them the perfect highlight if you want to switch up your highlighting game with something that would showcase extra colour rather than shine alone. These powders are designed as loose pigments and can, therefore, be used as eyeshadows or highlights, with 8 shades ranging from duochrome-shifting hues (perfect for colourful highlights on fair-medium skin tones) to full-blown shimmering charcoal greys.
These powders looked quite different when applied dried versus wet, which is a wonderful way to control intensity if you prefer a softer, subtle colour-shift versus an intense hit of metallic, dramatic colour, respectively.
I tried the shades 2 in Frozen Gold and 5 in Frozen Purple—relatively white-looking hues in the container, but with strong yellow-gold and purple shifts, respectively. Frozen Gold worked on my cheekbones but it looked too yellow for highlighting the inner corner of my eyes on my translucent skin ton—this colour would work best applied everywhere on medium to deeper skin tones. The Frozen purple shade looked lovely on all of the highlighting areas of my face and would work right through to deeper skin tones.
3D Highlighter Palette, Gold Sands
This stunning palette is a wonderful one-stop shop for all of your glowy needs. The 3D Highlighter Palette has 4 colours (3 powders and 1 cream colour for dewier effects). All of these can work as a highlight if you have a medium-deep skin tone. Makeup collectors will appreciate how versatile this palette is within the spectrum of wearable hues, with a lighter champagne shade meant to blind onlookers, a pink-gold hue for those who prefer a bit of a peachy/pink colour to their glow, and another shade with bronzing properties.
This palette is not discriminatory against fair complexions, either—Fiji works as a wonderful cream base for Seychelles as a highlight, with Zanzibar dusted on the apples of the cheeks for a glowing and subtle hint of blush. Tahiti can be layered before or after the other shades to softly deepen fair skin tones for a soft, sun-kissed bronzed effect.
The pigmentation in these products is beautiful with a wet/semi-frosty finish.