highlighters for dewy skin

The 8 Best Highlighters for a Subtle, Lit-from-Within Glow

Dewy skin in a flash? No problem.

By: Hannah Baxter

Glowing skin is the hallmark of healthy, youthful complexion, this we know. Developing an A+ skin-care routine full of hydrating serums, botanical oils, retinol, and lots of sunscreen is priority number one for getting the dewy skin of your dreams—after that, a highlighter can help take your glow to the next level. But within the world of cosmetics, there are highlighters that deliver a blinding, sparkly, dramatic look, and those that are more of a minimalist luminescence. These eight are the latter, for the days when you want to look like you drink eight liters of water in between your hot yoga class and organic vegan lunch.


Tom Ford Soleil Neige Glow Drops Liquid Highlighter, $50

Tom Ford is an expert at the luscious, have-to-touch-it skin effect (just take a glance at any of his ad campaigns or runway shows to see what we mean). These glow drops are essentially that look in a bottle, and the creamy formula never leaves you with an overly glittery effect—only luminous skin for days.

RMS Beauty Living Luminizer, $38

Ask any makeup artist what they use for that subtle touch-of-glow effect, and they’ll inevitably pull this organic highlighter pot out of their kit. Founder Rose-Marie Swift formulates her products with all-natural clean ingredients, and thanks to the coconut-oil base, your skin will be equal parts nourished and dewy.

CHANEL Beauty Baume Essentiel Multi-Use Glow Stick, $45

There are two shades of this multi-use stick: a lighter translucent shade that gives any skin tone that covetable wet look, and a bronze that’s ideal for darker skin tones (or giving a tanned effect to lighter ones). Whichever you choose, be prepared for friends and strangers to demand the secret to your enviable glow.

Westman Atelier Lit Up Highlight Stick, $48

Not only is the texture on this clean highlighter stick totally dreamy, but the effect is a hypnotic iridescent that we rarely see in a minimalist cosmetic. It looks clear in the bullet, but applies with a subtle violet that can only be seen in the *right* light. It’s absolutely stunning.

MAC Strobe Cream, $35

If you want a creamy, pearlescent highlighter that won’t blow out your selfie camera, this MAC formula is your new secret weapon. A little goes a long way with this formula, but we even like adding a drop or two to our moisturizer for a pretty all-over glow.

Rituel de Fille Rare Light Crème Luminizer: Solaris, $29

Few brands understand luminizer quite like Rituel de Fille, to the point that beauty editors hoard their products for when they inevitably sell out. The cream formula gives your skin an otherworldly highlight, and while there is a range of colors, this peachy Solaris shade is our favorite for a universal dewy skin effect.

Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand, $38

The brand describes this highlighter as the secret to “candlelight beauty”—you know, that come-hither glow old movie stars have on the big screen. Light-reflecting particles provide a high-gloss effect without any trace of sparkle, so your skin looks radiant whether it’s on HD camera or in real life.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Highlighter, $38

Beauty devotees know that when it comes to highlighter, Becca is the gold standard. And Champagne Pop might just be their most beloved shade in both liquid and powder form. We love that although this formula promises shimmery skin, it never looks fake or glittery. It’s ideal for applying under the brow bone to help lift and draw attention to your eyes.

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