How to Choose a Highlighter Based on Your Skin Tone

September 09, 2021
Alanna Martine Kilkeary
By: Alanna Martine Kilkeary | Makeup.com by L'Oréal
How to Choose Highlighter Based on Your Skin Tone
There’s no way to deny the highlighter trend that has dominated our Instagram feeds over the past few years. And considering that all-over dewy, radiant skin is officially a year-round staple in the makeup category, highlighter is becoming as essential as lipstick and mascara. But with the endless number of shimmery options out there, how do you know which highlighter is right for you? Ahead, we rounded up our favorite highlighters for fair, medium and dark skin tones.

Highlighter for Fair Skin Tones

If you have pale to light skin, you should opt for highlighters with a pearlescent, icy silver or champagne sheen. The light pigment adds the right amount of radiance to your complexion. You also want to avoid going with shades that are too warm or contain dark red undertones, and look for shades that have a bit more of a light pinky-peach finish. For fair skin tones, we absolutely love YSL Beauty Touche Éclat All-Over Brightening Pen for a lightweight, glossy touch that you can apply over your favorite foundation or CC cream. If you prefer a more glittering finish, try the Lime Crime Sunkissed Glimmering Skin Stick in Beachy Keen.
best highlighters for fair skin

Highlighter for Medium and Olive Skin Tones

If you have a warmer skin tone, keep your complexion from looking too frosty by going for a highlighter that has a gold-bronze or copper undertone. A daily go-to for olive skin is the NYX Professional Makeup Born to Glow Icy Highlighter Duo in High Key Flex. This icy highlight is sparkly and blendable, but has a golden undertone that complements neutral or olive undertones. We also love Glossier Solar Paint in Ray for extra warmth.
best highlighter for medium skin

Highlighter for Deep Skin Tones

Rich variations of rose gold or bronze work wonders on darker complexions. Just be sure to look for options that pack a ton of pigment and steer clear of frosty, opalescent shades, as they can cause the skin to appear dull instead of lit-from-within. You want to keep your focus on warm hues. We are enamored with the Giorgio Armani Beauty Fluid Sheer, which is a liquid formula you can easily blend into your foundation or face product for some extra sheen. The UOMA Beauty Double Take Contour Stick in Black Pearl is another stunning option if you want some sparkle.
highlighter for deep skin
Photographer: Chaunte Vaughn

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