Get ready to glow! Face highlighter can help create that hint of shimmer and radiance. Here’s everything you need to know about highlighter makeup.
Face Highlighter vs Illuminator
Both highlighters and illuminators help light up your face and make it look more radiant. However, these products work differently and are used to create different kinds of makeup looks.
Face highlighter is meant to be used on specific areas – typically, where the light hits your face. This includes the temples of your forehead, cheekbones, the cupid’s bow, and the inner corners of your eyes. It tends to have very rich, intense pigments similar to eyeshadows. Apply with a small eyeshadow brush so you deposit it only where you need it.
Illuminators, on the other hand, are meant to be used all over the face to give a subtle natural glow. They tend to be very fine powders (similar to translucent powder) or sheer liquids that can be mixed into foundation or blush. Illuminators are often used to achieve the “glass skin” effect.
Kinds of Face Highlighter
Highlighter makeup usually comes in the form of a powder, cream, stick, or pen. There are also highlighter and contouring makeup sets, or full highlighting strobing kits. If you’re new to highlighting, it’s best to stick to a high-quality powder. It’s easier to control how much you put, and blend it out if you accidentally apply too much.
Tips for using Face Highlighter
Keep it natural. Apply highlighter makeup only the “high points” of your face which would naturally catch the light. So you don’t overload your brush, tap it on the table to get rid of excess powder. Use a clean fluffy brush to blend.
Choose the right shade. If you have a warm undertone, pick face highlighters in gold, bronze or copper shades. If you have a cool undertone, pick those with silver or pale pink shades.
Use the right makeup brush. Eyeshadow brushes can give you more precise highlighter application. Use a flat angular blush or fan brush for wider areas, and a soft and dense blender brush for smaller areas.
Use face highlighter as concealer. Highlighters can be used to help neutralize dark circles and eyelid pigmentation. Mix a little cream highlighter into your concealer. This works best with highlighters that have light-reflecting particles rather than chunks of glitter.
Always check in natural light. If you’re using highlighter for the first time, check how it looks under natural light and other lighting conditions (such as office fluorescent lights, or in flash photography). Different highlighter formulas register differently, so testing it can help avoid makeup mishaps.
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