It’s Lit: My Current Favorite Highlighters

Luminescence is what it’s all about, baby.

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Ah, sheen. Aside from the word “dewy” being thrown around incessantly in beauty conversations, there has always been a fixation on glowing skin. Glow- as in real genuine glow- is apparently only achieved by religiously taking care of skin (and body). And if you’re anything like me and can’t seem to find the energy for or dedication to a 10-step skin regimen, the good news is that glow can always be faked, just like everything else.

I personally love the concept of a glow. To me it’s reminiscent of being blooming or having such a bright, infectious aura. And I doubt that anyone actually wants to portray an aura that’s more gloomy than not. There’s just something about the way sheen can lift the way one looks.

I have recently learned that sheen can be piled on. Which is great because the number of makeup items I own dedicated solely to illumination is becoming more and more embarrassing, so the more products I can use in one go to save my financially-conscious, cost-per-wear-computing ass, the better. And in order to save you guys the trouble of buying way too many products or, maybe more accurately, helping you find the best of the best, I’ve rounded up five of my all-time highlighter favourites based on consistency and it’s ability to make your face lit. Luminescence is what it’s all about, baby.

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The Cream: MAC Strobe Cream The story behind me falling in love with this product is your typical run of the mill beauty story- I saw it being used on someone else and needed to have it for myself. It has a light, liquid consistency which you can easily mix with your liquid foundation for a dewy base or apply after your makeup on the parts you want to accentuate. It’s pretty subtle so if you want to really pile on the sheen, use it as a sort of highlighter primer and add another product on top of it. This is perfect for a more natural look or a no makeup-makeup look. I just use my fingers to dab the product on my cheekbones and cupid’s bow.

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The Powder: BENEFIT Dandelion Twinkle I am absolutely in love with this product. First of all, it’s #PackagingGoals. Second of all, it gives off a nice natural pinkish lustre. A little definitely goes a long way with this powder. Like its sister, the original Dandelion Blush, it already comes with its own brush. Use as much as you want based on the wattage you prefer. It has a whole lot of shimmer so it’s perfect for those who want hints of glitter.

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The Palette: SLEEK Solstice Highlighter Palette If you want a combination of textures and colors, Sleek’s Solstice palette is the perfect product for you. I know a lot of people who have this product and wax poetic about it. It has two cream quadrants and two powder ones that really let you play with the finishes and extent of the highlight. I love to use the gold-toned powder when I’m going for a more sun-kissed look and the creamy pink formulation on days I want my skin to glow a little more naturally.

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The Stick: BENEFIT Watt’s Up! This is definitely the easiest product to use out of the bunch for me. It’s a cream-based stick so you have a lot more control in terms of application  and, at the same time, it has a sponge end to easily blend the product- minus the hassle of getting your hands dirty. The cream-to-powder finish boasts of a delicate champagne glow that works well for all complexions. But really, more than the finish and the luminosity, it’s the sponge that is a cake-topper in my book.

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The Multifunctional product: ESTEE EDIT Gritty & Glow Palette Okay, this isn’t actually just a highlighter- it’s a magnetic eye and face palette (eyeshadow side not pictured). It comes with 12 shades in two palettes that you can easily play with and I love a product that is versatile in multiple senses of the word. This particular palette features six highlight shades that I use for both my cheeks and my eyes. It’s ultra-pearlized and is flattering for all skin tones. If you can’t find the exact shade or glow you like, it’s especially easy to mix and match. I use the white ones for the inner corners of my eyes and use the pink ones for my cheekbones. It’s a really good palette and I, along with Kendall Jenner, recommend this highly.

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I told you it’s lit.

Nowhere Can Be Somewhere

What do you do with your what ifs?

What if?

Doesn’t that question haunt even the happiest of people? Those people who seem to have no regrets — risk takers, dream chasers, the kind of people we all secretly and some not-so-secretly wish we could be.

What if we took a shot. What if we took a different path. Different job. Different relationship. Different city. Different continent. What if we had the guts to look at life, take it by the horns, and just jump in. We’d probably still have what ifs. But they may not be as nagging. That’s what I love about life. Imagine an infinite number of universes all hinged on the different decisions you make where everything can change in an instant and everything hangs on a second. Imagine the power each second holds.

A couple of weeks ago we entered the realm of unlimited possibilities when we were whisked away on a trip to Laguna by my all-time favorite accessory brand, Parfois. As usual, we were fed copious amounts of food—starting on the ride over up until the moment we left.

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When we got to the venue, we were immediately whisked right into our what ifs— our potential alternate realities. The set up of the event itself was beautiful. An empty pool drained of water and instead filled with the new goodies from Parfois’ new SS17 collection, Nowhere Can Be Somewhere. Think: bags, shoes, sunglasses, and heaps of cute and trendy accessories inspired by nature. A delicate mix of minimalist and romantic pieces that draw inspiration from the 50s, 60s, and the 70s, the collection boasts of a bevy of materials and looks from denim to patchwork, quilts to metallics, and straw to raffia.

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Susana Coerver, who flew in from the Parfois HQ in Portugal, introduced the collection to us and talked a little bit about her own inspiring what if— a dream she then pursued much like the rest of the people in that group. Not all events require audience participation but Parfois’ events are always intimate and we did talk a little bit about ourselves and chatted with friends we haven’t seen in a long time. We were then treated to a sumptuous seven-course meal prepared by The Gypsy Chef. Each dish was both beautiful and photographable. From experience, Parfois tends to come up with interesting activities throughout usually starting with something edible—which really is the only way to start. Our first for the day involved having to design our own deconstructed pavlova masterpieces— a task we took seriously.

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In between eating and heading on to the next activity, we found our way to the trenches of the empty pool ogling the items and trying on the pieces that caught our eye. My personal favorites included tiered straw earrings, pineapple studs, gold insect-studded slip-ons, and a red purse covered in a blanket of floral applique.

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We then headed to my favorite part of the day—when we had to draw our self-portraits. I was lucky enough to be seated at a table with such artistic people that I remember having looked quite a few times over at their work and having felt a little competitive. I also spent an absurd amount of time trying to blend the pastels on my work and ended up really getting my hands dirty.

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We then huddled in a group so that the expert could discuss our work one by one and, lo and behold, her prognosis on how we saw ourselves were pretty accurate. She analysed the colors that we used, the shapes, down to the little intricacies of the features. It was actually a really cool exercise and I would definitely recommend it for a fun day of trying to be creative.

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I always, always love whatever new collection Parfois offers. I’m in that store almost every two weeks just checking out new items in stock. But what I especially like about this particular launch is that aside from the fact that the pieces are objectively dope, the story behind the collection resonates with me. “PARFOIS introduces a collection created with adventurous, free women in mind, women who live every moment, enjoy every moment, embrace change as if it were an old friend, and are always ready for the unexpected. A true declaration of independence that is up to each one of us.”

And that, my friends, is such a beautiful way to capture the heart of the modern woman, don’t you think?

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