Liquid Highlighters: a journey from confusion to clarity

Liquid Highlighters

 When liquid highlighters first came to my attention, I didn’t understand what to do with them. I don’t want to look like Edward Cullen from Twilight – I don’t want to glow all over my face (or so I thought).  I want to look radiant – I didn’t understand that a liquid highlighter can give you a gorgeous all over glow without looking like a glitter ball.  Now that I have worked out how to get the glow with a liquid highlighter, I though I would share what I have learnt.

Liquid Highlighters

Choose the right tone

Whatever tone of liquid highlight will make you look like an alien without the addition of foundation will make you look like an alien when you add foundation.  I would not choose a white liquid highlighter because I will look like a weirdo.  Peach, gold and bronze  tones are my friend.

Liquid Highlighters

Choose the right intensity.

If the liquid highlighter is like glitter on steroids without foundation, it will be like glitter on steroids with foundation you need shimmer rather than glitter and sheen rather than greasy.

Liquid Highlighters

Choose the right foundation.

The more pigmented your foundation the more liquid highlighter you can add.  However, less is more.  Generally with a liquid foundation I would recommend one third illuminator to two thirds foundation.  With my rich skin tone it gives a nice glow but with my Marc Jacobs Re(Marc)able foundation for example the ratio is  equal parts foundation and illuminator because that foundation is extremely pigmented.  If you use an illuminating foundation you probably don’t need to add liquid highlighter.  With a BB or CC cream the ratio is more likely to be one quarter highlighter three quarters base product.

Blend Blend Blend.

Ensure that you blend the liquid highlighter and foundation properly otherwise you will end up with raspberry ripple face.

Liquid Highlighters

Choose the Right Light.

The lighting in my bathroom is notoriously bad.  In my bathroom, I can add two pumps of liquid highlighter to one pump of foundation and the balance looks right.  Then I go into the outside world… and I look like a disco ball. (this actually happened).  Find the place to apply your makeup where the light is right because looking like a disco ball on the bus is not a good look.

Liquid Highlighters

Alternative Application Technique

I like to mix the liquid highlighter with my foundation to create luminoisty and radiance.  I create dimension on my face with cream and powder highlighters. Sometimes, especially with a full coverage foundation I take a little bit of product to the top of my cheekbones and down the bridge of my nose.  The effect is subtle but pretty.

I’m still on my journey to liquid highlighter clarity so if you have any tips or product recommendations I would love to hear them.


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