Highlighter is an essential part of every makeup routine, and every beauty junkie should have one in their makeup stash. Highlighting is the perfect way to add some extra glow to your skin and will definitely take all of your selfies to the next level. Lucky for you, highlighters come in a variety of finishes, shades and consistencies — meaning there’s one for everyone, and every budget.
We’ve rounded up our favorite highlighters ahead, but be careful — you might be tempted to buy every single one.
$10 and Under
This highlighter has a fandom all its own, and we think it’s totally deserved. This affordable highlighter is perfect for getting that high-shine glow but can also be super natural when blended. You can pick this up at virtually every drugstore and it now comes in four, smoldering hues.
Perfect for highlighting all over, this liquid illuminator layers nicely under face makeup and looks stunning when placed on the high points of your face. This is our go-to for a no-makeup highlighter look and looks good all year round.
If you tend to go for a natural, glowy look that gives you a natural finish, you need this little bottle of highlighter. The glow is subtle but pretty and at $5.50 a tub, you can afford to pick up one in every shade.
For $15, the Lumi Glotion Enhancer definitely punches above its weight. Perfect for highlighting all over the skin (you can even rock this one on its own), it’s the key to getting healthier, brighter skin in just one step. The lotion-y consistency is also super hydrating so feel free to use this as the final step in your skincare routine — you’ll be obsessed with the results!
Highlighter doesn’t necessarily have to be natural. It can be icy, glittery or blinding — it’s really up to you. For a dramatic, duochrome glow, we’re reaching for the NYX Love You So Mochi Highlighting Palette in Arcade Glam, a three-pan palette with enough glitter and glow to make you stand out in a crowd.
If the goal is a buildable glow that lasts, this should be at the top of your shopping list. This loose powder highlighter has incredible shine and is finely milled so you can shimmer without a glittery finish. We recommend the shade Sunlight, a rosy gold shade that looks good on just about everyone.
This hybrid powder applies like a powder but feels like a cream making it incredibly easy to blend and apply. Available in five shimmery shades, these cult-fave highlighters are worth the $26. To get the most out of this highlighter, apply with a damp brush — you’ll get a natural looking finish and a wet looking glow.
We love anything we can customize to our liking, so the Dermablend Liquid Highlighter definitely fits the bill. Formulated with 20% pigmented pearls (which is a LOT of pigment), you can mix this into your foundation, apply directly to the skin or add a few drops into your moisturizer. We love the shade Pearl, a rosy pink hue we reach for time and time again.
Designed to give you maximum light with minimal effort, these highlighting duos are perfect for an everyday glow. It’s also ideal for babes who want good-for-skin ingredients — this one is formulated with mica, silica and iron oxides, which are perfect for creating soft, buildable color.
Why have one highlighter when you can have three (and three complementary blush shades, too!)? We love the Sin Afterglow Palette for its pretty, shimmery shades and bomb formula (seriously, they last 8 hours!). Inspired by the best-selling highlighter shade Sin, this six-pan palette is perfect for the beauty junkie who wants a versatile line up she can reach for every day.
This dual-effect highlighter is a beauty splurge that’s totally worth it. The formula is ultra creamy and smooth so getting a natural glow is super easy — and you can definitely take it up a notch if you want something a little more blinding. We recommend the shade Luminous Gold to start; it’s pretty much the perfect shade.
These finishing powders are perfect for getting a subtle, shimmery glow. The color-correcting particles refract light and create invisible coverage, meaning you’ll look like an ethereal goddess no matter the lighting. If the $46 price tag makes you weep, try the mini size before you buy — it’ll only set you back $22.