It’s Lit: My Current Favorite Highlighters

Luminescence is what it’s all about, baby.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


I told you it’s lit.

Bold is Beautiful | Benefit Cosmetics

Get (brow) waxed to do good.


I would like to believe that everyone is philanthropic—everyone has a great desire to help. That’s why we hit ‘Like’ on posts of Upworthy, easily send virtual love to featured Humans of New York, and, conversely, why we’re in collective outrage over posts of animals being maltreated. I’d like to believe that at our very core we are actually good even if recent events have led us to think otherwise.

The desire to help is always ingrained in us. What hinder us, maybe, from acting on this noble desire are the misconceptions we have on what ‘helping’ really means and what it demands.

Charity is such an intimidating and concept. Think about it: how many times have you deliberately avoided a stall at the mall where volunteers try to get you to sign up for their cause? Charity always registers as an obligation—a duty that requires a lot of time and effort to fulfill. All of a sudden it feels like weekends will suddenly be booked helping kids or building houses under the harsh sun (not that those couldn’t be fun don’t get me wrong, I’ve tried both). But I think we have this notion that charity means sacrifice—and lots of it. It also sometimes feels like it demands a change in lifestyle, something we may not be ready for.

But helping doesn’t have to be as grand as dedicating all weekends to field work. And I especially appreciate when brands make it so easy to help others out that saying no isn’t even a consideration. Take Benefit Cosmetics, for instance. A cult favourite of beauty aficionados, Benefit Cosmetics, aside from having the cutest products with the most peacock-worthy packaging, is finally rolling out their outreach efforts here in the  Philippines after such huge success runs in the US.

The premise is simple. All proceeds from brow waxes during the month of May will go to help the local partner charity, Mano Amiga. Mano Amiga is a private, non-profit organization that offers affordable education for girls of low-income families. Each brow wax service costing PHP700 will provide one of the ff: a 2-hour leadership training session for girls, 3 months’ worth of school supplies (imagine that!), or a 4-month livelihood and empowerment program for a student’s mom, because part of helping families is also equipping the parents. Benefit’s Global Beauty Authority, Annie Ford Danielson, recently graced the launch of the campaign here in the Philippines and it was a huge success as everybody seemed to leave inspired and keen on helping.

with Jackie, Angela, and Marj at the launch

I’m extremely honoured to have been part of inviting people to have their brows waxed in May via the video we shot to easily make a huge difference in the lives of little girls everywhere. Empowering little girls and enabling them to pursue their passions is a great gift to anyone—to underprivileged kids with untapped potential even moreso.

For the video, they asked me what being bold means and what empowerment looks like to me. I said a bunch of things but in reality, when it comes down to it, I think empowerment is achieved by empowering others. And looking good is such an easy way to do good too, no?

Watch the video (above) and get your brows waxed this May! Both men and women are welcome.

Thank you so much, Benefit, for letting me be part of such a special project!

with my loves Angela, Nikki, and Jackie



Benefit Browbars are available in Greenbelt 5, Trinoma, Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, Alabang Town Center, SM Seaside City Cebu, BGC Central Square, Rustan’s Makati and Rustan’s Shangri-la and will run from May 1-31, 2017