If you’re on Instagram you’ve probably seen at least a few photos of shiny cheeked young women, standing in the sunlight, practically glowing. While many of these photos have been photoshopped to really emphasize that glow, there is an actual product they’re using to create the effect: highlighter!
No, not this:
Today I’m going to tell you why you should be adding highlight to your makeup routine, how to do it, AND I’m going to show off a few highlighters I use to help me get glowy, youthful skin, just in time for spring looks and fashion.
What Is Highlighter?
Just as a highlighter marker is used to point out or “highlight” portions of text in a document or book, makeup highlighter products accentuate the face by adding shape and dimension to specific areas. For this reason, highlighter products will tend to be very lightly colored (if colored at all), sheer, and iridescent so they reflect light that hits your face.
Where Do You Put Them?
As mentioned above, highlighter is used to accentuate certain facial features and add depth. According to L’Oŕeal there are 7 different places you should apply highlighter, but I’m going to focus on just the following five, so as not to overwhelm you too much:
The first, and most obvious, place you’re going to notice highlight is on the cheeks. Focus on applying the highlight along the upper cheekbones, brushing or blending up toward your temples, without going into your forehead. A small amount can be applied to cheeks as well, but be careful in this area if you’re older because highlight can settle into large pores on the cheeks, making them appear even larger.
Applying a small, thin strip of highlight to the bridge of the nose and then small dabs to the very end will make the nose appear smaller. This seems like it wouldn’t be the case, but by breaking up the flat color and texture of the nose, you’re creating dimension and the illusion of the nose being slimmer and more effeminate. (I have a large, wide bridge and a bulbous tip. I highlight my nose every day and the difference is pretty noticeable.)
3. Cupid’s Bow
A simple way to bring out your natural pout is by brushing highlighter across your cupid’s bow (the area just above your top lip) before applying your lipstick. This makes your lips look larger and really eye-catching. The subtle glow is very sexy.
4. Brow Bone
By applying highlight to the brow bone (right underneath the outer eyebrow and right above it), you’re drawing attention up and to your eyes. This added glow also helps lighten fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes, making the skin around the eyes look more supple and youthful.
5. Inner Eye Corner
A small dab of highlight into the inner eye corner will make your eyes look large and young. Even when doing a smoky eye, placing highlight in the inner corner brings more light to the center of the face, creating a soft glow.
Where Can I Find Highlighters?
Lucky for you, pretty much everyone makes a decent highlighter, regardless of your ideal price range. And even luckier for you, I’ve compiled a list of 18 highlighters that are highly rated, super easy to use, at varying price points (starting at drugstore prices which are a few dollars to high end products up to $50) and can all be purchased on Amazon right now. (Disclosure: I receive a small percentage of any sales made from this list, so if you found this blog post helpful and you decide to purchase something from my list on Amazon, I’ll get a few cents from Amazon for it. 😊)
Does Highlighter Really Make A Difference?
The short answer is: yes!! A resounding yes! Highlighter takes flat looking makeup looks and brings them to life. Because of necessary oils in our skin, we all have a natural shine on our faces. As we age, the oils (and shine) tend to deplete, so adding highlight to your makeup routine will breathe life back into your face and complexion! The result is a glamorous, youthful glow! And if you need more proof, compare the two photos below!
Same lighting, same pose, same makeup, BUT the one on the left has no highlight and the one on the right has highlight placed in the five places I mentioned above. Can you spot the difference?!
If you’ve been nervous about trying out highlighters, I hope this blog post gave you the extra push you needed to go for it. Your makeup looks will spring to life this spring if you add some highlight!
Big thank you to Naked Cosmetics for sending me their Holographic Highlighter Collection palette to try out and use for this How-To! If you’d like to try this palette out, or any of Naked’s other cruelty free products, grab my code, “TamaraCanup30” for 30% off your order!!