19 Top Highlighters On the Market in 2021

Glow Up

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Highlighter comes in every tone and texture, for a muted glow over cheekbones and eyes, or an all-over glitz perfect for highlighting the perfect neckline of your favorite little black dress. Available in powders, creams, or concealer hybrids, you’ll find a way to add the glow of young, healthy skin, and mitigate the less glamorous everyday realities of eye bags, dark spots, or dull complexion.

What You Should Know

  • Cruelty free product, no animal testing
  • Perfect for holiday parties and evenings out
  • Not recommended for contouring/concealing

A great choice for an all-over highlighter, Diamond Bomb adds a bright sparkle to the face, shoulders, and décolletage. A more polished and refined way to get your glitter fix, Diamond Bomb melts into skin without the usual grit that accompanies anything with a sparkle, and like all Fenty products, is designed to complement every skin tone fabulously.

What You Should Know

  • Heavenly texture
  • Many hard-to-find-shades available
  • Easy to overdo it

BECCA has a highlighter for many skin tones and every season. Whether you’re into faint neutrals, glowing jewel, or pearlescent shine, this pressed highlighter goes on like a glowing blush over the cheeks and nasal bridge for a healthy flush any time.

What You Should Know

  • Just right for beginners
  • The right size for touch-ups on the go
  • Less glittery than other brands

Great for experimenting, this variety palette has both powders and creams, so it’s perfect for beginners. Comes with a mix of shades for color correction, contouring, and highlighting. Use light layers for a natural look, or build your way to airbrushed perfection

What You Should Know

  • Highlights without concealing, so it’s your skin but better
  • Hyaluronic acid plumps skin and lips
  • Great for crows’ feet and laugh lines
  • Won’t cake

Glow up without glitter or shimmer with with YSL’s Radiance pen. With vitamin E and Hyaluronic acid, it actually improves the underlying skin while giving it healthier radiance; you aren’t covering up problem areas, you’re actually addressing the problem directly. Bring your inner glow to the surface.

What You Should Know

  • A little goes a long way
  • Can go over eye shadow or lips as well cheek bones
  • Paraben, Sulfate, and Phthalate free
  • Never tested on animals

Kat Von D’s contribution to the highlighter market is a standout selection. It features four holographic shades, intended to layer over eye shadow and lipstick. The formula is the first of its kind, with refractive pearls that work overtime to catch the light. This works wonderfully as a highlighter, just brush across your skin and enjoy the glow.

What You Should Know

  • Antioxidant infused
  • Dermatologist tested
  • Contains Talc
  • Glitter Free

Tarte’s antioxidant rich Rainforest line broadens the overlap between skincare and makeup, now with an algae infused highlighter palette. The set includes white gold, champagne, rose gold, and pearl highlighters.

Review Highlights
“Super pigmented, the color pay off is so beautiful. It has a light vanilla scent, not overwhelming, but enough to notice and appreciate it. It can be chalky, but using a setting spray helps blend it to a more seamless finish.”

What You Should Know

  • All BECCA products are cruelty-free
  • Range of colors makes it suitable for all skin tones
  • Helps achieve a healthy, natural-looking glow

This liquid highlighter mixes easily into liquid or cream foundations, for a subtle, all-over glow, or stands out on its own as a top layer to conceal dull or tired skin. Can also be mixed into moisturizer or primer for a natural looking dewy glow over the entire face. Comes in a wide assortment of natural skin tone shades, as well as a pearl white untinted version. Reviewers appreciate the healthy glow it provides, without looking too shiny.

Review Highlights
“Of all the liquid highlights I’ve tried, this one in the shade moonstone is by far my favourite. I either use it on its own for a really natural, glowy look or use it as a base for the pressed powder highlight in the same shade. I love how shimmery it is without being overpowering.”

What You Should Know

  • Bronze or highlight
  • Brightens without glitter
  • Smooth powder texture

Get a golden hour glow, any time of day. Hourglass’s Ambient Lighting highlighters give a movie star gloss without any distracting or overwhelming colors. Like walking under warm tinted lights, you’ll have photo perfect skin anytime.

Review Highlights
“I bought mood light and it’s absolutely gorgeous. It’s very flattering. It basically makes you look like you have very flattering pink light reflecting on your face. I got so many compliments.”

What You Should Know

  • Travel sized
  • Comes with liquid and powder
  • Choose between a subtle or intense shine

A travel sized version of BECCA’s liquid highlighter and shimmering pressed highlighter, it’s a great way to try new products or carry your favorites with you anywhere. Layer together or use on their own, the liquid highlighter has a pearl finish, perfect for a dewy glow, while the pressed powder is an intense shine.

What You Should Know

  • Highly reviewed
  • Comes with blending sponge

Get a professional makeup artist’s look with this highlighter wand. Blends cleanly and easily into foundation, with a rose gold tint that glows like you’re under the lighting on a movie set. Reviewers rave over the products, how it surpasses the competition, but commonly suggest a container upgrade for ease of use.

Review Highlights
“My obsession with highlighters is insane but since purchasing this one all my other highlighters have been just collecting dust. My only con would have to be the packaging but I can get past it since the product is stunning inside.”

What You Should Know

  • Includes five forms of coconut
  • Cruelty Free

Creamy and luminous, this gel like highlighter blends well into primers but also holds up well standalone, perfect for a no-makeup look that exudes healthy looking glossy skin. Available in two shades, it has a pleasant coconut scent.

Review Highlights
“I don’t usually wear foundation, but everybody likes a little glow sometimes. I mix this with my shangpree CC cream and tatcha sunscreen, and my skin just looks glowy and not all shimmery and sparkly.”

What You Should Know

  • Available in three shades
  • Color Correcting
  • With Geurlain’s iconic handcrafted pearls

A fantastic highlighter for any level of makeup user, these shimmering pearls color correct and give a luminous look without looking damp or glittery. Fantastic for blending with bronzer, they’re suitable for all skin tones and are subtle enough for workday use- just the right touch for a healthy glow that shows up even over video chats.

Review Highlights
“It was introduced to me from one of my aunt and I was hooked. My face looked luminous healthy and glowing. The shimmer on this is perfect, not too much. It’s expensive but little goes a long way. You can just wear it alone for a natural glow or over any other make up.”

What You Should Know

  • Available in four colors
  • Suede like texture
  • Buildable color

Save a ton while still getting quality products with Sephora’s house brand. This soft powdery highlighter features punchy colors that start off subtle but can build in intensity. If you’re layering it over blush or bronzer you’ll need to work carefully to color match, but with four shades to choose from there is lots of versatility available.

Review Highlights
“I love this product. I bought it with the intention of using it as a blush topper and it’s amazing for that purpose. I have a lot of matte pink blushes and I’m into the glow right now so this is perfect. It leaves a light shimmer over the areas you apply the product. it compliments my skin tone very well.”

What You Should Know

  • Long lasting
  • Ideal for night use
  • Better for medium to dark skin tones

A major savings over Tarteist’s PRO Palate, this three tray travel companion gives you just enough versatility for day or night wear, and is super long lasting. The matte contouring powder increases your options, and the luminous results are fantastic.

Review Highlights
“I bought this before a trip because it fit nicely in my make up box and had the shimmery highlighter as well as the contouring shadow. [It’s] still my go to palette. It blends so nicely and isn’t over powering in shimmer.”

What You Should Know

  • Free of parabens, sulfates, and pthalates
  • Mini sizes available for traveling or trying a new look
  • Naturally moisturizing

Avocado oil and mango butter give this highlighter a decadent texture and rich moisture that fans of any Milk Makeup product is sure to know and love. It applies quickly, perfect for a light touch before heading out the door. Available in two shades and two sizes, you can mix and match this versatile highlighter and find your perfect way to wear it.

Review Highlights
“Absolutely love this highlighter! It is subtle and light and hydrating all at once. Leaves my skin with such a glow! I often use it with no other makeup and like it even more then with makeup!

What You Should Know

  • Shimmering and iridescent
  • Color is more dramatic on light skin tones
  • Available in three color options

This prismatic highlighter can help you create a mesmerizing, color shifting look that captures light and is immediately intriguing. There’s nothing subtle about this glow, though the color contrast is a bit more vivid the lighter your skin tone.

Review Highlights
“A little goes a long way and it shifts colors. It is beautiful on all skin tones and the consistency is nice. Very fine milled and lovely. “

What You Should Know

  • A more natural, dewy glow
  • Resists cracking or caking
  • Cruelty-Free

If you’re looking for a highlighter for daytime use at school or work, this is a more natural choice that imparts a healthy glow, without going for a full face color changing iridescent sparkle. This highlighter blends well with other options from the bareMinerals line, like their lightweight foundations or their bronzers.

Review Highlights
“Very natural, not bright. Applies okay. Perfect for someone wanting a subtle highlight. If you want a bright highlight, don’t get this!”

What You Should Know

  • Five duo and four single color options
  • Great on all skin tones
  • Cream/Powder hybrid

Available in single or double color options, these highlighters come in such vibrant color options that they not only are great for playful highlighting and experimenting with colors, but they also make for great, long-lasting eyeshadow.

Review Highlights
“Every time i wear it I get major compliments cuz you can like see the BAM shine from across the room. Wattabrat is as if you took diamonds and expensive sparkling rosé and made a highlighter. I live, I love.”

What You Should Know

  • Five colors available
  • Suitable for all skin tones
  • Powder highlighters are great for building layers

Available in five color options, Dior’s most versatile highlighter comes in subtle champagnes, pinks, and more subtle choices that all perform wonderfully no matter your skin tone, but Holographic Glow is the one that really shines. Literally.

Review Highlights
“If I could own only one highlighter for the rest of my life it would be this. The texture is so creamy on these that I can apply them with a powder brush and with my fingers kind if like a cream. 03 Golden Glow is my summer highlighter and 01 Nude Glow is my winter highlighter.”


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