Highlighter is one of my absolute fav makeup products (behind bronzer and brow gel). I cannot live without the glow! It’s such an easy way to bring any makeup look to life.

There are so many gorgeous highlighter shades on the market; personally, I tend to gravitate towards pale gold and bronze-y shades. Classic champagnes and pearls are pretty, too, but I’m all about looking sun-kissed 24/7.

A few of my go-to brands also have some surprisingly wearable statement shades that I really love. Milk Makeup’s Holographic Highlighting Powder in Mars (shown above) is a heart-stopping peach shade unlike any other. I’m also really into BECCA’s Light Chaser Highlighter in Opal Flashes Jade and, of course, Fenty Beauty’s Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter in Trophy Wife (an instant classic that doubles as eyeshadow)!

To celebrate all the stunning highlighters in my collection, I put together this glam makeup look featuring Mars. I played up the peachy tones with the help of ColourPop’s All I See Is Magic palette (no longer available) and Buxom’s Full-On Lip Cream in Peach Daquiri.

Mars looks okay-at-best in the pan, but as soon as it goes on the cheeks, the color becomes bold and multidimensional.

As far as formulas go, I can’t get enough of ColourPop’s Super Shock Highlighter. They’re extremely intense, buttery smooth and long-lasting. (Plus, there’s tons of great shades to pick from.) They’re best applied to the face with the ring finger.

Glossier‘s Haloscope is an easy, on-the-go product that’s natural-looking and made with skin-loving ingredients. If you’re looking for a dewy glow, this is it!

The first-ever highlighter I purchased was Benefit’s Watt’s Up! Cream-To-Powder. And it’s still an amazing product. The “luminous champagne” shade is universally flattering, and I know I can count on it for “no-makeup” makeup days and full-glam days alike.

NARS Highlighting Blush in Hot Sand is a stunning, warm pale peach that gives my cheekbones a delicious, wet look (beware, though, this product has a tone of kick-up, but it’s worth it). I love that NARS also carries an all-over illuminator and a lip gloss in Hot Sand–perfect for creating a monochrome beach-y look. (Still need to get my hands on that gloss!)

My go-to everyday highlighters

Most-loved statement-making shades

Tools

  • ColourPop Fan Brush, for a subtle and buildable glow
  • Real Techniques Setting Brush, for an intense and blinding glow

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Back again with another easy, daytime beauty look for spring! I love dewy skin, so for this look, I decided to ditch to powder products all-together (except for a tiny bit of Wowder to set the concealer under my eyes and around my nose), and pile on Face Gloss instead.

Like I just mentioned, putting this makeup look together was super-easy. I used Bali Body’s BB Cream (I’m in the shade Natural), Tarte’s Shape Tape concealer (Light Neutral) and Glossier‘s Wowder (Light/Medium) to create a flawless base with medium coverage. To ensure my face stayed as dewy as possible, I angled the Wowder brush carefully to maintain full control when setting my under-eye concealer for precise application. With the same technique, I also set the concealer around my nose, where I tend to get a little redness (especially during allergy season). I “melted” the powder into my skin with MAC’s Fix+, my fav setting spray.

Cream bronzers and blushes are the best! Fenty Beauty’s Match Stix Matte Skinstick in Mocha is the best for contouring and rinsing up the skin. It blends like the dream and always looks really natural. I used this on the hollows of my cheeks, my temples, along my hairline, in the crease of my eyes and across the bridge of my nose to create a glowy, sun kissed effect and add a little definition. Normally, I would add a powder bronzer on top (my go-to is BECCA’s Capri Coast), but decided to skip that step for this look; a natural look is key.

In place of blush, I went in with Fenty’s Match Stix Shimmer Skinstick in Rum on the apples of my cheeks. This really amped up the bronze-y glow.

I used the tips of my fingers to press Milk Makeup’s Face Gloss into the skin on the cheek bones, orbital eye bones, brow bones and cupid’s bow–all the places I normally add highlighter. This product catches the light just as well as a highlighter–if not better than a highlighter–but with an ultra-dewy, never shimmery finish. A little goes a long way with Face Gloss, so it’s best to start with a small amount and layer more on top where you want more.

Glossier‘s Boy Brow (in Brown) is the brow product I use, and it goes perfectly with the rest of the makeup I used today. Two coats always gives me bolder brows with a natural, feathery look.

After combing and curling my lashes, I added two coats of Milk’s new KUSH mascara. This was my first time trying it out, so I am really excited to see how it holds up throughout the day. (I can’t seem to find a mascara that doesn’t smudge under my eyes…)

To polish off the look (literally), I applied two coats of Fenty’s Gloss Bomb (in the shade Fenty Glow). This gloss is intensely shiny, which was my goal, with the most gorgeous pink-peach-nude undertones. It applies evenly and weightlessly, and has a smooth, fresh, never-sticky feeling.

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I *looove* a good lived-in makeup look. Surprisingly, though, they took me a while to perfect (or, should I say, imperfect). But I’ve been practicing a ton, and I am so happy with how this daytime glam look came out!

To start, I used my standard base combo: Bali Body’s BB Cream (I’m in the shade Natural), Tarte’s Shape Tape concealer (Light Neutral) and Glossier‘s Wowder setting/blotting powder (Light/Medium). I also took some Shape Tape onto my eyelids for a more even base.

I love the subtle cat-eye shape I created with the help of Chanel’s Le Crayon Yeux eye pencil in the shade 01 – Noir.

Seldom to I wear eyeliner the “normal” way. I typically smudge it on my lower lash line, the create a wing on the upper lash like to accentuate my eye shape. I love creating a super-tiny wing, like this one, to make the look more appropriate for daytime.

My hack is to hide the less-than-perfect lines by smudging a matte black eyeshadow on top. (I used the shade Let’s Do It by ColourPop, which seems to no longer be available.) I applied it with a standard pencil brush, then used a small fluffy brush to really blend it.

Instead of eyeshadow, which can be really time-consuming, I put two layers of Natasha Denona’s Chroma Crystal Top Coat in Nude on my lids. This is one of the most stunning, sparkly products I’ve ever used. I am in love with the diffused glow–perfect for using all-over the eyelid.

I finished up the eyes by adding a matte bone shade (by ColourPop) to highlight my brow bones and inner corners, added two coats of Glossier‘s Boy Brow in Brown and two coats of mascara to the top and bottom lashes. (Recently, I’m not thrilled with any mascaras I’ve tried, so send recommendations my way.)

All my readers know how much I love a glowing, bronzed look, but I feel that doesn’t really work with these old-school glam vibes. To warm-up my face without going full-glam, I added a small amount of Fenty Beauty’s Match Stix Matte Skinstick in the shade Mocha to the hollows of my cheeks, my temples and along my hairline. This product is super easy to blend out with your fingers! For a more diffused look, I added theBalm’s Bahama Mama matte bronzer/contour on top using a fluffy powder brush from ColourPop.

I can’t go without highlighter! For this look I went with theBalm’s Bonnie-Dew Manizer, a new take on a classic favorite, and pressed it into my cheekbones and Cupid’s bow for a softer, lit-from-within glow. This highlighter is intense, making it is extremely easy to go overboard, so I worked using very light layers until I achieved my ideal golden glow. Then, I set everything with MAC’s Fix+.

Terracotta lip colors are definitely a favorite of mine, but for a more casual occasion (such as work), I like to go for a more “melted” look. I always prep with Glossier‘s Balm Dotcom in Coconut before I start my makeup, so that my lips are ready for color by the time I’m all done.

By blotting the lipstick (today I’m wearing Fenty Beauty’s Mattemoiselle in Freckle Fiesta) in the center of my lips, then rubbing them together, I can easily create the diffused, daytime look I’m after–no lip liner necessary! I do this 2 or 3 times for more color payoff.

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I definitely live by Glossier’s “Skin first. Makeup second” motto. (I suppose that’s why they thought I’d make a good Rep!) So, I am always thrilled when I find a makeup product that works great *and* has added skincare benefits.

At the beginning of the year, I took a poll via Instagram (@maduhlyn_) to better gauge the interest of all my followers. In addition to more personal style content, Haute Mess readers requested I do more skincare-related posts. I thought skin-loving makeup would be a topic my community would really enjoy!

Bali body BB Cream: Most HM readers know that I much prefer BB creams and lightweight skin tins over traditional foundation (and that I talk about this product in particular ad nauseam on here). In addition to natural-looking coverage, Bali Body’s formula is loaded with essential skincare. Hyaluronic acid provides long-lasting moisture, while marine collagen restores elasticity and green tea fights bacteria and inflammation. All three of these ingredients work together to create a smooth, plump and even base.

Glossier Cloud Paint: Much like Bali Body’s BB Cream, this gel-cream blush contains collagen. This ingredient holds a ton of moisture to soften and plump the skin, restoring its youthful appearance. Cloud Paint‘s build-able consistency really enhances your natural complexion and gives you that flushed-from-within glow!

Glossier Haloscope: Even though this one-of-a-kind highlighter was my first-ever Glossier purchase, I don’t talk about Haloscope nearly enough on HM.

This dual-effect highlighter delivers shimmer (thanks to its outer ring made of real crystal extracts), as well as a naturally dewy glow (because its inner core is a mix of coconut and castor seed oils).

Similarly, Haloscope contains sweet almond oil, an intensely nourishing and moisturizing ingredient that smooths and softens the skin. Because of this, Haloscope never emphasizes texture–unlike so many other highlighters.

Glossier Balm Dotcom in Birthday: The best lip balm ever! A double dose of emollients castor seed oil and lanolin lock-in moisture and provide relief for sensitive skin. Meanwhile, cupacu fruit extract (rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) provides long-lasting hydration that melts into the skin; beeswax not only moisturizers, but it also creates a barrier to protect the lips.

Antioxidant extracts from rice bran and rosemary lead combat skin damage caused by free radicals. Balm Dotcom in Birthday does all this while leaving your lips with a gorgeous holographic shimmer and a good-enough-to-eat birthday cake scent.

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Don’t get me wrong—matte lips are all right. But I totally prefer a glossy lip (or something with at least a little sheen).

I have been indulging in the world of lip gloss since I was about 10-years-old, so trust me when I say that I know my stuff.

While matte lips can easily look dry, crusty and messy if they are not applied/maintained properly, you really can’t go wrong with a gloss. They make your lips appear fuller and require less precision and babysitting (ideal for the on-the-go lives we millennials seem to live)!

Although I love just about every lip gloss I meet, some are definitely better than others. The following are my absolute favs 😉

Kylie Cosmetics Sugar Plum: Every shade in Kylie’s In Love With The Koko set is truly gorgeous, but the gloss is something else! This gorgeous warm nude is insanely shimmery and shiny, creating a high-impact look. Loaded with gold reflects, Sugar Plum pairs perfectly with all those bronze-y makeup products–perfect for transforming yourself into a glow-y goddess. From the In Love With The Koko set, Kylie Cosmetics, $40

Glossier Lip Gloss: Like MAC’s Lip Glass, but better! With no shimmer, sparkle or pigment of any kind, this Lip Gloss will leave your lips with a crystal-clear glassy shine. The Vitamin E-rich formula means that this guy is non-sticky and never goopy. (Plus, it won’t cause your lips to peel!)

Lip Gloss works great over pretty much any lip color (especially Glossier’s Generation G range), but I really love wearing it on its own. $14, Glossier

NARS Lip Gloss in Orgasm: This is the first “grown-up” lip gloss I ever owned. And with a name like Orgasm, it definitely isn’t the gloss I had as a kid.

If you love the post-bedroom flush NARS’ cult-favorite cheek color gives your face, you’ll totally be into the lip gloss version!

Although I have yet to do so, I would definitely be down to try this lightweight formula in other shades. (I’ve had my eyes on Hot Sand for the longest time!) $26, Sephora

NYX Butter Gloss: I own way too many of these. But, they have such rich color payoff for a gloss, so I really can’t help it! Bold colors, killer shine and complete lack of shimmer/sparkles instantly made Butter Gloss my favorite lip product from the drugstore.

Tiramisu is a universally flattering nude shade that I know I can count on time and time again. $4.99, Ulta

Kathleen Lights x ColourPop Ultra Glossy Lip in Moon Child: When I wrote about this product in a monthly favorites post not too long ago, I mentioned that it was the best lip gloss ever—and I definitely stand by that claim now!

Moon Child is a light pink-ish nude with the tiniest gold reflects throughout. It isn’t super-pigmented, but the creamy color is definitely noticeable–making this gloss perfect for throwing over any nude lip liner (my go-to is ColourPop’s Oh Snap) and heading out the door. $6, ColourPop

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