What’s Your Favorite Highlighter?

Published in: Just For Fun, Makeup, Makeup Tips/How To


G’morning, cuties!


The sunlight filling my apartment today got me thinking about face highlighters and this note in my email from Imelda:

Dear Karen,

I just wanted to ask you what your favorite face highlighter/luminizer is. Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you!



Hi Imelda, 🙂

I tend to switch products/brands every so often, but right now I’m really loving Illamasqua Bronzing Duo in Glint & Burnish ($30), MAC Cheeky Bronze Mineralize Skinfinish ($27), Benefit High Beam ($24) and the NARS Multiple Duo in Orgasm/South Beach ($45).

Ladies, is there a highlighter you can’t live without? Please list your favorite along with a quick description of your skin tone (I’m a MAC NC35: medium brown with slightly warm but mostly neutral undertones). Let’s make this post a great recommendation resource for peeps of all skin colors!

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 33 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. jojoba says:

    my favourite is make up for ever compact shine on powder #5.

  2. Tavia says:

    I’ve been using one from Beyu lately and I like it a lot. So this is it Beyu ligh reflecting.
    .-= Tavia’s last blog post… Trend: discreet shine with Lancome Juicy Tubes =-.

  3. Milan says:

    NARS Albatross for me or Benefit Gilded pencil…

  4. Brianna says:

    Smashbox highlighters are awesome on my fair with pinkish and neutral undertones

  5. Kelly says:

    I like the Nars Multiple in Orgasm as well, but I find it has a bit of a chalky texture on me and can sometimes read “dull” instead of illuminated. On my NW 15 skin (I am so pale…) I like to dust on Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Apricot. The colors suit me, and I reach for them instead of bronzer in the summer.

  6. NARS the multiple in copacabana. before that it was benefit high beam. when i’m going for a more bronze (as bronze as i can get, usually for competitions) look, i use orgasm (the multiple version) since it’s more gold.

    my skin is a fair asian creamy neutral tone (NC15/NW15-20, bobbi brown 1.5-2).
    .-= ines, felix and kitten (the office kitties)’s last blog post… Introducing the Ballroom Beauty Mascot – Cha Cha the Kitty =-.

  7. Glosslizard says:

    My complexion is cool and light (close to MAC NW20/25 but cooler-toned). My favorite highlighters are Benefit High Beam and the highlight side of Benefit’s “10” powder! I’m still kind of a highlight noob, so I haven’t explored a lot. Oh! And Moon Beam (Benefit again… what can I say? They do a good highlighter! 🙂 ) is lovely for evening or probably for day on warmer-toned cuties!

  8. Elle says:

    Ahh, Karen you’ve done the work for me.

    I’m a MAC NC35: medium brown with slightly warm but mostly neutral undertones

    I love Benefit High Beam, and I have a ton of MAC’s mineralized skin finishes…I know most/a lot of those are limited edition and I can’t keep track of what goes in and out of rotation, but I know Soft and Gentle is up on the MAC website right now and might be permanent. Not sure on that though, but I do like that one a lot, along with Cheeky Bronze and some of the older skin finishes like Light Flush and Redhead. Stila also makes a good liquid luminizer.


    I COMPLETELY FORGOT ABOUT BENEFIT 10 POWDER. i use this to completely contour my cheeks! gives me a nice scupted look that is not muddy/orange. you can use the pink highlighter on its own too.
    .-= ines, felix and kitten (the office kitties)’s last blog post… Introducing the Ballroom Beauty Mascot – Cha Cha the Kitty =-.

  10. Jess says:

    Definitely Benefit’s High Beam!! Next on my list to try is Nars’ the Multiple in Copacabana 🙂

  11. Redhead says:

    I like using an eyeshadow as my highlighter – Almay Intense-I Color Shadow Trio in Trio for Hazels (shimmery light neutral pink, shimmery neutral golden beige, matte warm dark brown). I use the pink on my cheekbones with cool looks, and the beige with warm looks. It doesn’t last too long, though, so I have to use a primer underneath.

  12. Christa says:

    NARS Copacabana- it’s not glittery and imparts a nice glow. I’d call it a pale ivory color, which is great because it doesn’t add pigment & act as a blush. On a scale of pale, from Sookie to Bill to Eric, I’m Eric’s albino cousin.

  13. Sylvie says:

    I’m an NC30 with golden undertones. I love using MAC’s Hush CCB (there’s also Shell but it was a little too cool for my taste) and MAC’s Soft and Gentle MSF. I used to like the Redhead MSF but that was before I found Soft and Gentle and in any case, the highlighting colours from Redhead didn’t really show up on me.

  14. Liza says:

    My skin is fair/neutral-toned and I really like MAC Vanilla pigment mixed into tinted moisturizer or lotion. Since you mix it yourself, you can determine the intensity, and the glittering particles are so fine that it doesn’t register as “shimmer.”

  15. Kristen says:

    BeneFit’s High Beam is near & dear to my heart. It’s the perfect silvery pink shimmer that just lights up my fair skin. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to part with it.

    I’ve also been rocking MAC Lustre Drops in Pink Rebel from the Style Warrior collection, and it’s a great shade with lots of shimmer, but the consistency is just a tad watery.

    For added shimmer (for a night out), I swipe Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Pink Rose over blush & highlighter.
    .-= Kristen’s last blog post… Update: Shiseido Mascara Base =-.

  16. Charan says:

    I am using the Sephora Luminous Glow and I like it. Its a cream based champagne colour with gold shimmers. I have a medium skin and it gives a perfect sheen on me.
    .-= Charan’s last blog post… Review : EOS Lip balm =-.

  17. Anna says:

    I’m pretty fair with cool undertones and I love MAC’s perfect topping MSF. It’s a cool toned pink that looks great on my cheek bones. If it’s during the day I just use a light dusting and a little more at night.

  18. Anna says:

    I love MAC Soft & Gentle MSF over any blusher, Refined MSF and also Benefit High Beam is a classic. I’m NC30 yellow undertones being oriental asian.

  19. sdpfeiffy says:

    NC30/C40 with strong yellow undertones.
    Cool looks, I rely on Mac Sunsparked Pearl beauty powder
    Warm looks, I’ve become obsessed with Mac Blonde’s Gold pigment.

  20. Beth says:

    I’m a MAC NW15 – don’t ask me what my undertones are, I’m not entirely sure!

    I really like Benefit High Beam and Smashbox Light Case Detail Highlighter. Both give you that gorgeous glowy sheen without looking like you’ve gone OTT.

    I’ve also just bought a Wet N Wild Mega Glow Illuminating Powder in Catwalk Pink, which given how cheap it was I’m extremely impressed with!
    .-= Beth’s last blog post… Dior Addict – Lip Glow Color Awakening Balm – Review! =-.

  21. gio says:

    I have very pale skin and I’m using Wet N Wild Mega Glow Illuminating Powder in Catwalk Pink. I love it. It gives a nice glow and it’s very cheap.
    .-= gio’s last blog post… QOTW: Do you wear makeup when you go to the beach? =-.

  22. cloudburst says:

    NARS Albatross hands down.

  23. Sarah says:

    I feel really silly asking, but what is a face highlighter? I’ve never heard of it.
    .-= Sarah’s last blog post… Too Cute: Kitteh Hits the Toy Gym =-.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Sarah,

      It’s a shimmery powder or liquid product that adds shine and highlights specific parts of the skin. Highlighters come in different shades; common colors are light pink, peach, bronze and gold. They’re usually applied sparingly to the tops of the cheekbones, the temples, down the bridge of the nose and/or the chin — basically, any area where the light would naturally hit and reflect off the skin.

  24. Tiffany says:

    I love this post because highlighters are my fave makeup product ever!
    My current faves are NARS Albatross and Illamasqua Illuminator in Halcyon. Gosh, I just realized both have great names as well as being great products, lol. My skin is naturally NW20 / fair with cool undertones; but right now it’s darker from self-tanning in summer.

  25. i’m nc30-35 and am currently loving nars albatross and bourjois highlighting powder as cheek highlighters! they give me a nice ‘glow from within’ 🙂
    .-= XOVINTAGELOVE’s last blog post… More giveaways! =-.

  26. Marisol says:

    I am an NC40 w/ Studio Fix Fluid or NC35 w/Studio Sculpt and my fave highlighters are:

    MAC MSF in Shimpagne. New Vegas & Pleasureflush
    Benefit High Beam
    .-= Marisol’s last blog post… Happy Anniversary! =-.

  27. salynn says:

    I am NC30-35. I love highlighters!
    My favs are Becca pressed shimmer powders.

    I also use Mac Sunsparked Pearl beauty powder for daytime, and Mac mineralize skinfinishes for night make up.

    For liquid highlighters, i love armani fluid sheer. I love it because it’s not greasy. I’ve no. 2 and 10.

  28. Yatty says:

    Hi all. My favs are MAC MSFs in Soft & Gentle & Perfect Topping. MAC lustredrops (frm Style Warrior) in Sun Rush & Pink Rebel. MAC creamcolor base in Luna. Chanel LE bronzer that came out this summer. My skin’s like Karen, a lil bit more olive/golden.

  29. Trude says:

    I love Benefit’s High Beam too, just a touch on the top of my cheekbones and under the brow. Looks lovely in photos! I’m a natural strawberry blonde with a tendency to get ruddy. 🙂
    .-= Trude’s last blog post… Lately… =-.

  30. Tami says:

    I’m a NC45 and my current fav highlighter is MAC Honey Light Hi-Light Powder. It gives me a nice glow but isn’t overly shimmery. I also sometims use MSFs. I own Brunette, Refined, So Ceylon, Light Flush (a lovely pink glow) and Triple Fusion.

  31. Iliana says:

    I use the Style Warrior Pink Rebel lustre drops, The Body Shop’s luminizing liquid, and a Rimmel eyeshadow I’ve had from years ago. 😛

  32. Marsadie says:

    I’m a MAC NW45 and even cream-toned NARS Albatross highlighter looks lovely against my dark skin! I find that if you have dark skin and gold jewelry looks good on you, choose a highlighter with a gold or bronze tone. If silver or white gold looks best against your dark skin, choose a cream-toned highlighter.
    .-= Marsadie’s last blog post… Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian Rock Print Tops =-.

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