Thursday, February 23, 2012

Highlighters, my Favorites, and Least Favorites

When watching the 7 deadly sins of beauty tag all over Youtube and the blogosphere I heard the make up step many neglect due to laziness, and I was shocked to see how many people skip highlighter! Not I!

I apply highlighter just about every single time I wear make up. I'm quite addicted to the *glow* the appearance of that perfect skin as you turn your head to the side. Quite addicted. I'm more about *GLOW* pretty much when I turn to the side I like the effect of almost blinding people with my non existent cheekbones! (We all have our own tastes)
J Lo is one woman I think who understands!

The Favorites:

Best Powder: (all my opinion of course) By Candle light by MAC. You all must be tired of hearing me sing about the praises of this one. More details can be found when I went into a more in depth review in the past here!

Best Liquid: Becca's Shimmering Skin Perfector in Pearl (One day I AM getting Opal)
Something I have yet to review. This one is quite a gem. I believe Lisa Eldridge brought this to every one's attention when she used and raved about this product. When Lisa Eldridge states a product is one of her staples, well, it's best we all take a listen

This comes in three shades (Pearl, Opal which is peachier, and a Bronze shade)
It states SPF 25 plus but on my box it clearly stated SPF 20
This product is huuuuuge. 1.7 Fl oz. I usually need about 1/3 rd to a 1/2 of a pump for my entire face. This is quite a pricy product but let's see how long it takes you to finish one of these!
This starts off quite a flashy in your face pearl, but as you blend it actually starts reflecting light particles.
Most "pearl" highlighters can look frosty or have a yellow gold cast. Not this one. It's actually like a pearl. Depending on how you look at it from the sides it has EXTREAMLY subtle reflects of silver, white, gold. An actual pearl has a different color strength depending on the angle. This product mimics that effect.
It comes with an adjustable pump, getting my 1/3rd of a pump is a bit hard, I always wind up with too much but again, I am still never going to finish this.
Also the top lid is very secure, I have no fears of this product spilling when traveling.
Becca did quite a good job with this one!

The Least Favorites (Not the Worst, least favorites of my collection)

Powder Highlighter: Dior Amber Diamond (Please don't start throwing stones at me!)
This is about preference. I like quite an obnoxious level of highlighter

*Note* the above mentioned favorite highlighters when very sheered can be subtle, but built up to be quite obnoxious for night's out

Dior's Amber Diamond is pretty. The packaging is pretty, the product is pretty but when I apply this, it's so....natural. I usually am swiping like crazy to build this up but it always looks like a supremely natural sheen. Dior is outstanding in the fact that they can create this practically fool proof natural sheen without glitter or shimmer, but for me, this is just a bit too much time to build up to the level I prefer.

Cream Highlighter: Benefit's Watts Up

Another one that is not a bad product! The reason why it is my least favorite is the packaging.

I purchased this purely so I can have something to touch up with in my purse. Something light, preferably stikck form for the swipe and glow, and ease. This product itself, the actual highlighter is a lovely shade! Champagne light beige. No glitter, no chunks, a very fine sweep of sheen.

The rest of the item to me needs work. I know many people think the packaging is cute, but I am just not a fan of how it looks. Color and shape set aside which to me are ...eck
It's the sponge tip applicator that bothers me.

Do you see the sponge in the picture. Do you see how dirty it looks? I have never onced used it. The cap on the highlighter portion is pretty secure, but the cap on the sponge side comes off so easily in my bag every single day, it ruins the sponge, and I spend time looking for the lost cap. I wish they would have just skipped the sponge side all together.

Regardless I still keep this for touch ups. The shade is flattering, the application is easy, but the sponge will never be used by me.

Honorable Mentions

I am quite a fan of highlighters from Ms. Mercier!

The left was a limited editon shade called Guilded Garden which I can wear as a blush and reminds me of MAC's MSF in Petticoat (which was also limited edition but a reference)

The right side is the Peach Mosaic Shimmer Bloc. Laura Mercier has a few of these shimmer Bloc's in her range, all permanent and gorgeous. The shades swirled together in this particular shade can be worn as a shimmery peachy bronze blush. For highlight I usually sweep the lighter shades together with a fan brush over all my peach blushes.

I actually love the peach shimmer bloc but something I hate about it

The packaging and product are not well made. The highlighter is well made. Laura Mercier's casings are quite nice. But I have read numerous reviews from people online stating in her shimmer bloc line, many people have experienced breakage in the highlighter itself or faulty packaging.

I once watched a favorite products of the year video where the woman was announcing this product as her favorite highlight and the 4 triangles literally split open on camera. She then changed her answer to Dior's Amber Diamond!

This highlighter is gorgeous, the shades can be chosen and customized, but I don't think I would buy another one of these until she fixes what's not holding these products or packagings together.

I also do like MAC's Soft and Gentle sometimes, also as an honorable mention, for a quick sweep but this one does have a little more glitter.


These are quite hard to see ( They are highlighters) I did not swatch them too heavily as no one actually wears them that way.

R to L: Becca, By Candlelight, Amber Diamond, Watts Up!

R to L: By Candlelight, Amber Diamond, Watts Up!, Peach Mosaic, Guilded Garden

What are some of your favorite highlighters?

Do you skip the highlighter step in your everyday routines?


  1. Like you, I NEVER go without highlighter. My favorite is MAC Lightscapade. I use it every single day. I have to just pray that they release it in another collection eventually because I have no idea what I'll do when mine is gone! I've never tried any of the ones you mentioned, so maybe I'll give those a go!

  2. I love a good highlight but I admit I haven't been using them as much lately in my routine due to laziness and lack of time >.< I practically have all of your mentioned highlighters on my wishlist haha. I really want to try out some of Becca's products so that liquid highlight might be a good starting point. I have Nars' Albatross which is very popular and pretty but I don't reach for it often for some reason.... I always have this mentality where I want to save all my nice makeup which is utterly stupid :(

  3. I haven't used highlighter in quite some time, so this is a good reminder. My complexion has been far from glowy as of late (the JLo glow is but a distant dream). In the past I would never be without my Bobbi Brown shimmerbricks, but I stopped using them after realizing I was allergic to the BB blush (not same product, but just to be safe). I'm probably going to reintroduce NARS copacabana multiple into my routine after readings this :)

  4. I lovee highlighter, but I tend to like it a little more natural. I remember being mesmerized with amber diamond when I first got it, but now I hardly use it! I think I much prefer cream and liquid highlighters because I like to be able to put it exactly where I want it

  5. I love MAC Too Chic, which is a beauty powder. I don't think you'd like it because it's subtle. It's a complex, finely milled product of utter fabulousness. It gives me a great glow. I wear it mostly under my brow bone.

  6. The only highlighter I own is Mac's CCB in Hush and you've inspired me to take it out! It is true, I usually skip the highlighter step in my every day routine. :x

  7. I love highlighting - i mostly use the maquillage one though :)

  8. awesome post. i completely agree with amber diamond. foolproof, pretty, natural, a pain to build up so i barely ever reach for it! i quite like dramatic as well. my favorite highlighters are nars albatross and thebalm maryloumanizer. very easy to make in your face or subtle and both have a beautiful sheen. i want a becca skin perfector so bad! i dont know if i want pearl or opal more...still waiting for by candlelight to come out again so i can snatch it!

  9. You should try High Beam by Benefit, I think you will like it too.
    I want to buy Dior Amber Diamond, as everyone raves about it. Also since I live in a hot tropical country, I think a powder subtle highlighter is better for me.

  10. A great post! I felt inspired this morning and for once didn't skip the highlighter. I like Nars Luxor and Nars copacabana - the cream highlighters are easier to work with.

  11. What a fab post - Highlighters to me are the best bit about make-up. Makes my skin look about 10 years younger which I need lol. I had the Dior Amber Diamonds which I did like but it smashed all over in my bag and not happy especially at the price of it. Anyway have you tried Jemma Kidds Highlighters - FAB!! you need to try these out.

  12. my favourites highlighter are belightful & rose quartz by mac, but i want Amber Diamond by Dior <3 kiss

  13. I'm slightly obsessed with highlighters! I really like mac lightscapade, but i really want to try the amber diamond!

  14. You're inspiring me to go back to use my highlighter. I like the effect. I just need to motivate myself to apply it. I use Benefit Moonbeam.

  15. I skip highlighting during the day, but when I have gigs I usually add a bit to my brow and cheek's just amps it up! I'm a fan of MAC's Pearl Cream Color Base with the topper of Virgin from the UD NAKED palette. Also, Lorac has a pretty nice highlighter that I have a sample of (lasting me FOREVER)'s um...Spotlight I think?? You should definitely try it if you like heavy highlighters - it can really do wonders!

  16. I do skip it quite often but if I remember to put it on I go for No. 7 High Lights (a dupe of Benefit High Beam) which, like the Becca, comes in an amazing pump and I will never use it up. I was just noticing that Becca highlighter while watching Lisa Eldridge's videos last night! Timely :) The packaging is what made me hesitate about Watt's up... and since you're the first to admit how truly annoying it is with the icky sponge, I feel so much better about skipping it now, so thanks!

  17. I've been wanting to try MAC's By candle light but I think it's limited edition? I've never been into highlighters until recently! I've been using NARS illuminator in Copacabana and a little goes a long way to give that korean actress glow xD

  18. oOhhh i am a complete *noob* when it comes to highlighter ... with an oily t-zone i like to stick to a matte finish. however, the other day i felt quite dull and one-dimensional and tried a sample highlighter at the MAC counter and noticed a dramatic difference. since than i've been on the hunt for a perfect high lighter ... by candle light looks like it would be perfect. great review!

    LOL @ 'please don't throw rocks at me'.

  19. Thanks for the swatches babe!
    My favourite highlighter is NARS Albatross.. But I'd like to try Benefit's moonbeam next!
    In summer I tend to skip highlighter since I use blush with a tad of shimmer, but in winter I ALWAYS wear my highlighter!! :))

  20. oh didnt they just re promote Lightscapade? Well not "just" but in 2011? When they re promoted porcelin pink? Well the MSF's last YRS so u should be good for a while :D

  21. Oh I have NARS Albatrosse I NEVER use it.... it does have that yellow gold sheen i don't know its nice but its just not a all ur nice make up hehehe i used to be like that it took me a long time to learn I purchased this to be USED. I am still learning it :)

  22. OMG o no allergic to BB shimmer bricks :( I hope you re discover something great and get ur own lil J Lo out and about!!

  23. i totally want the Becca Opal shade u have!!

  24. sounds pretty!!! as long as u love it!!! it sounds lovely!

  25. ohhh I have wanted hush for a loong time!!! but never got around to getting it :( i kinda want to finish some of my highlighters before buying more *damn*

  26. that one looks gorgeous on u!!! and i saw u hit pan on it last yr! that's LOVE

  27. ohhh glad to know im not alone about the Dior!!! u and Jessica love that mary lou!! The becca is so pretty i had a hard time choosing the shade but i def want opal next i think opal would be GORGEOUS on ur skin

  28. ahhh i have tried high beam! it is nice but i gave it away bc i actually didnt like the packaging like the nail polish design for some reason....I thought Dior was ok..

  29. Those two are pretty! i have been interested in trying NARS Maldives!

  30. The Dior Smashed? OMG!!!! even though i dont use mine i would have been so sad! $$
    I TOTALLY WANT the Jemma Kidd ones but cannot dec on a color!! Ice or Rose Gold, which do you have or like?

  31. oh i have seen belightful on many ppl's favorites list and i rem rose quartz was PRETTY! nice choices!!

  32. Lightscapade seems popular!! maybe i missed out not getting it last yr!

  33. ohhh Benefit's moon beam has been wish listed. I did own highbeam but i think the moon beam has a more interesting dimension!

  34. hiya! wow gigs? u must have an exciting life! i have heard of spot light thank u for reminding me i have to try it!!!
    Pearl plus Virgin sounds nice!!!

  35. i wish i skipped out on WATTS UP haha i purchased it with hesitation. I have seen the No 7 one it looks BIG i dont think i could ever finish it either!!!

  36. ah yes By Candle Light was LE. It may get re promoted, they do that often. I purchased it during a repromote!
    Copacabana seems popular!! i want to try Maldives! Korean actress glow would be LOVELY to attain!

  37. hehehe everyone LOVES that Dior but im like really........

    Highlight is the best thing in the world to wake up a face!!! hope u find one perfect for u!!!

  38. Benefit Moonbeam is also on my potential wish list!!!!


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