Listen, guys: I’m really into highlighters/illuminators. I really love the way they can leave your skin dewy and bright and I can’t have enough of them in my makeup collection (no, seriously, I have way too many and can’t stop buying them). I’m sure there are a million out there that I’ve yet to experience in the flesh (on the flesh?), but for now, here are ten of my favourite bronzers/illuminators/highlighters that I literally can’t decide between using on a daily basis.
Chantecaille Les Pétales de Rose – $74 at Chantecaille
Chantecaille makes quality products – and the price tag often reflects this – and I think Les Petales de Rose is the best thing they’ve ever come out with. The powder, inspired by rose petals (of course), offers a kaleidoscope of colours to offer a “subtle veil of radiance”, and it does exactly that. The effect is extremely subtle, but it provides a really lovely glow that’s completely natural and makes it look like you’re wearing nothing at all but that you’re one of those gorgeous supermodels who has a perfect glow naturally.
Guerlain Météorites Pearls in Clair – $60 at Nordstrom
Oh, Guerlain. I have to admit it: I’m obsessed with this brand and 95% of the money I’ve spent on makeup in the past 3 months has gone towards Guerlain products. One of my absolutely favourite products IN THE WORLD is the Meteorites pearls. Redesigned for spring 2014, they come in three colours. Because I’m pale as hell, I got the lightest shade, Clair, and oh MAN, it’s so gorgeous. I use a kabuki brush to apply and it provides the most beautiful shimmering glow to my skin that is almost like airbrushing. Sure, the price is a bit high, but it’s honestly worth every single penny and I would recommend it to EVERYONE. I’m so in love with these.
NARS The Multiple in Maldives – $39 at Nordstrom
I suppose this isn’t technically a luminizer or highlighter, but it certainly has that effect on my skin. I’m in a serious golden/glowy phase with my makeup, and NARS’ Multiple is FANTASTIC at providing a really gorgeous, natural bronzed glow. Copacabana and Luxor are also really good shades with a similar effect, but Maldives is the shade I’ve been adding to my everyday makeup ritual and I love it a lot. You can wear this as a blush and/or a lip colour, but I stick to using these on the cheeks as I think it works best there.
theBalm Cindy-Lou Manizer – $24 at theBalm
Technically, Cindy-Lou Manizer (get it?) is a highlighter, shimmer AND shadow in one, but I’m here for the highlighting goodness. This is really similar to the Mary-Lou Manizer, just a lighter shade for us paler girls. The packaging is super cute, and the product is fantastic. It provides a really natural glow and wears really well – the texture makes it really easy to apply and it’s got great wear time. BIG fan of this stuff.
Milani Baked Bronzer in Glow – $8.99 at Milani
I know I use a lot of high end products, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t find budget lines that don’t function just as well. Such is the case with Milani’s baked bronzer. I (again) use the lightest shade, and I really like the coverage it provides. It’s super pigmented and will REALLY lend a nice, summery, sun-kissed look to your skin. This is FANTASTIC if you’re super pale like me but want to pretend you’ve just been on a fancy vacation to someplace sunny.
Rimmel London Natural Bronzer in Sun Shine – $1.99 (!) at Ulta
I love Rimmel’s offerings. I have several of the Kate Moss lipsticks, some of their mascara AND their bronzer, which several of my friends use, as well. The powder is pretty pigmented and while it’s not the smoothest application, it provides really good coverage and a nice glow. You’re not going to get the same quality as Guerlain or NARS, but it’s perfectly good – especially for the price.
Urban Decay Naked Illuminated – $29 at Urban Decay
Urban Decay has got the natural glow game on lock – between the Naked eyeshadow palettes, the new Naked BB creams and now the Illuminated powder, they’ve got your bronzed, sunny look on lock. The texture of this stuff is amazing, and it applies effortlessly and provides that summery shimmer ALL DAY. I seriously put this on at 8am one morning and could still see the difference in my skin when I went to wash my face at the end of the day.
NYX Radiant Finishing Power in Brighten – $9 at NYX
NYX is another brand that consistently puts out absolutely sound products with great pigmentation, excellent texture and application at a REALLY good price. I keep the radiant finishing powder in my bag with me for a quick fix up when I’m going to be out all day – a nice little swipe across your face takes away shine but gives you a great pinkish glow (though the powder is actually transparent) and will make you look brighter and more awake.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Mood Light – $45 at Hourglass
If you love your makeup, chances are you’ve already heard of (or used!) many an Hourglass product – particularly their ambient lighting blushes and powders. Mood Light powder is my shade of choice, and it’s absolutely beautiful. The light hits it in the most wonderful way, and lends a soft, gentle glow that is so lovely that I can’t get enough of it. No wonder it’s so often sold out everywhere! It’s well worth hunting some down, that’s for sure.
Benefit High Beam – $26 at Sephora
Y’all know I love Benefit products, and High Beam is a standard for me. It was a product I originally got a deluxe sample of but loved so much after the very first application that I immediately went online and ordered a full sized bottle. I love the nail polish bottle packaging, and the application on this one is simple: swipe a few stripes across your cheekbones (up towards your temple) and blend. Is that the “proper” way to apply? Who knows, but my way works for me and the effect is fantastic. Love this stuff.
Which highlighters, illuminators and bronzers am I missing? What do you love?