Kitty Blackadder

A Scottish blog about making art, too much eyeshadow and becoming a grown up.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

5 Affordable Highlighters that are Beautiful for Pale Skin

Budget Highlighters for pale skin

I never realised I had a problem with finding highlighters to suit my pale skin, that is until recently when I KonMari-ed my home and looked at the stack of highlighters that just didn't bring me joy, then, something finally clicked.

I feel as though I've spent so much time over the years trawling the Boots website and reading blog posts all about the best bronzers for pale skin, in an effort to find something that didn't result in me looking like I'd smeared a bar of Dairy Milk across my cheeks (because seriously, what a waste of chocolate). I've read tips on applying blush to pale skin, tips for natural looking brows against pale skin - but I mean highlighters, well, they're designed to be super pale, right? Well no, not really. Just as with all makeup, different shades suit different complexions - with my skin tone, I need a highlight that's not too far off white, whereas of course that would often look bizarre on someone with a much deeper skin tone, and vice versa for deeper toned highlights - and while this may have some of you smacking your foreheads and screaming 'd'uh' at the screen, what can I say, I honestly thought a highlight was a highlight, or rather, I never took the time to think otherwise.

Budget Highlighters for pale skin

Swatches of highlighters for pale skin

This was also not intentionally a budget list but that's honestly how things have turned out - although Benefit's Watt's Up and High Beam did very almost make the list. So here we are, in no particular order (because narrowing things down enough to make a list is tough, trying to put them in order would easily take a whole packet of biscuits worth of concentration, and frankly, even my fleecy PJs are starting to feel a little tight) my favourite budget highlighters for pale skin are: 


I heart makeup Goddess of Love

Goddess of Love Triple Baked Highlighter by I <3 Makeup - available here for £4.99

So now is probably a good time to mention that I have very fair skin with cool undertones, because of course 'pale' isn't actually a full description of a complexion - neither is 'Casper-esque', 'translucent', 'dead looking' or 'blue', though it's never stopped random strangers on the internet telling me that's my skin tone. This highlight I love and I consider to be very much an 'everyday' product as it doesn't look too frosty or have the glitterball effect, meaning it's easy to wear to work - I do need to use a light hand but it adds a lovely finish to my cheekbones when I have a full face of makeup on, which I typically do. The highlight looks quite a neutral shade in the pan but when applied actually highlights with a pink tone - though only when the light hits it a certain way - for that reason this may not be one you want to go for if you're fair with very warm undertones, though it's far from the most pink on the market. Packaging is, to me, bulky and annoying, but I can see why it might also be kind of cute - if I was trying to squeeze it into a makeup bag everyday it would probably bother me a lot more than it actually does.


MUA Undress your skin Iridescent Gold

Undress Your Skin Shimmer Highlighter in Iridescent Gold by MUA - available here for £3.00

If the first item on the list was too cool toned for you then look no further than this bargain, golden highlighter. I wear a lot of golden eyeshadow looks, and a lot of warm shades on my lips (yes I'm aware that with my colouring I probably 'shouldn't', but what can I say, I am just SUCH a rebel) and sometimes I just don't want an icy finish to my cheekbones. It can be really hard though, being fair skinned, to find a golden highlighter that isn't basically a bronzer when applied to your face - goodness knows I've tried many (many, many). The only way I can think to describe this one is that it's a white based gold - very pale when applied to the skin, but reflects with a golden warmth when the light hits it - the fact it has no glitter particles and is low down on the shimmer-spectrum probably helps enormously with wearability. I mentioned already that this is probably a great product for fair skin with warm undertones - I can imagine it can be very difficult to find a warm, super pale shade; the drugstore market at least doesn't always seem to have cottoned on to the fact that 'pale' isn't one shade fits all - but as I already mentioned I have very cool undertones and I still love the way this looks on me when I wear certain looks, as long as I use a light hand of course (which I probably don't need to keep saying, I mean, we're all fair skinned, I suspect we're pretty used to having to 'use a light hand' when applying eeeevvvvverrrything.).


Makeup Revolution Pink Lights

Vivid Baked Highlighter in Pink Lights by Makeup Revolution - available here for £3.00 

Frome one extreme to the other, this is a highlighter that is definitely cool toned, and icy at that. Pink Lights is, somewhat unsurprisingly, a pink highlighter - but don't panic, it's nowhere near as terrifyingly lilac on the face as it appears in the pan! On my complexion at least this is not so much an everyday look as while it's definitely without sparkle, it ranks pretty high on the ol' shimmer-o-meter. Nothing wrong with that of course, it's certainly nice to have something to wear on a night out or a day in the house in my pyjamas when I've decided to do full on smokey eye makeup and ombre lips (because I'm not the only one who does that, hopefully), and one thing that I love about this product in particular is that if I am using it with an all-out makeup look I can use this highlight everywhere. Well, everywhere you'd normally apply highlighter that is. It looks great on the cheeks, the cupids bow, the brow bone and the inner corners of my eyes - largely thanks to the lack of glittery bits, hurrah. 


Makeup Revolution Radiant Light in Exhale

Radiant Light in Exhale by Makeup Revolution - available here for £5.00 

Now this is probably the easiest to wear highlighter I have ever come across. Shade wise, it's a slightly pinky toned nude, nothing overly remarkable, but where this is a champion is the finish it has. It's almost, almost a satin finish, barely much shimmer happening at all. Now, don't get me wrong, I love some serious glow as much as the next person but on days where I'm just slapped on the basics that can often be a little jarring. Makeup Revolution markets these as being 'Illuminating Baked Powders' rather than highlighters, and I can totally agree with that - this adds glow without shine, light without shimmer and depth without sparkle. In the past when I was having a no-contour, no-eyeshadow sort of a day I would have just skipped highlighter altogether, but now I have something that really works for me on those days. I have the Radiant Lights palette and while I do mostly use Exhale (in the middle), the shade on the left, Breathe is also very nice - it's more warm toned, though slightly darker, but even so it's probably one you want to look at if you're fair skinned with warm undertones - the shades can all be bought separately, as well as in the palette, as I have them.


Essence soo Glow Look on the Brightside

Sooo Glow Cream to Powder Highlighter in Look on the Brightside by Essence - struggling to find it on the Wilko site, but it's still in my local store and is £2.80

The only cream to powder highlighter to make the list (though if you're looking for a a cream highlighter specifically, I'd suggest the Topshop Glow Highlighter in Polish which you can get here - I do like this one, but just couldn't put it on the list as in the end I do find it a bit awkward to work with, especially now compared to this product...).  This is a very champagne toned highlighter that can be built up easily - I apply a little dab with my fingers and blend it out for everyday, or 'to work' sort of wear, but I have also experimented with applying and building it up with a blush and that can really be done very nicely too (also a plus with this product in particular is that if you do accidently apply too much - which I do on a semi regular basis with highlighters - it's really easy to tone it back down with a sponge, or even a clean brush) . I would say this is a true cream to powder formula in that it applies like a cream but, thankfully, wears as long as any powder highlight does. It's champagne shade is fairly neutral which makes it easy to wear for a lot of skin tones, and while I said this list was in no particular order, I think if I had to only pick one, this might well be it.


Best Drugstore Highlighters for Pale Skin

So there we go, my take on some of the best highlighters out there for fair complexions that just happen to be budget friendly too (yay). Of course these are just my opinions, and of course there are many out there I haven't tried; so with that in mind, what are your favourite highlighters for pale skin? 

 

 

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