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How to Apply Highlighter: Should You Use Liquid or Powder (or Both)?

Highlighter is an up-and-coming product among makeup gurus. Traditionally, foundation and bronzer have been the go-to products for people who want to cover skin flaws and add a little healthy color. Highlighter can bring a lightness and brightness to your complexion that other products neglect, though. We’ve collected some information on both liquid and powder highlighters that we hope you will find useful in adding this illuminating product to your makeup routine.

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Choosing A Highlighter

Before you choose a highlighting product, think about what you’re trying to do. If you want to draw all eyes to certain spots on your face, a liquid highlighter is the way to go due to its thicker coverage. If you want a lighter look, a powder highlighter will give you more of a shimmer and applies well over a foundation or previously applied blush.

Applying Liquid Highlighter

Liquid highlighter should go on after you apply your foundation and before you put on any concealer. Dab it lightly onto your face where the sun would naturally touch and then blend it in with either your finger or a blending sponge. If you don’t blend or apply too much in one place, it will look streaky.

Highlighter can also be used to hide dark circles under your eyes or conceal puffiness. Dab a little liquid highlighter under your eyes and rub it down towards your checks. It’s great in a pinch if you’ve had a long (or short) night and need to look a little more alert for the day.

Applying Powder Highlighter

Powder highlighter should be applied after foundation just like liquid highlighter. Here, you should use a fluffy or angled brush to gently apply a light layer over your cheeks, the top of your forehead near the hairline, on your chin, and on your nose. Your look will be less contoured than it would be with a liquid highlighter, but you will have more of an overall color.

Applying Both

You don’t have to choose one or the other; liquid and powder highlighters go very well together. Liquid highlighter comes first—dab a couple of drops on your nose and cheekbones and blend it in. Dust a layer of powder highlighter over it to add some smoothness and shimmer.

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