Saturday, December 26, 2009

Favorite Bronzers and Highlighters Part 1

Admittedly, I have a real thing for bronzers and highlighters. Most of the time I embrace my natural paleness, but often times I crave the effortless starlet look--sunkissed cheeks with a dewy glow. The problem is that I'm fish-belly white with rather flat cheekbones and so this face takes a lot of finesse and great products to achieve. I need bronzers that won't turn me too dark or orange and highlighters that actually show up (a pale product on pale skin is generally invisible) and make me look like I'm glowing, not greasy. I like to have a variety of formulations depending on the look I want and the other products I'm using that day.

Becca Shimmering Skin Protector in Opal ($41)- known for their skin-perfecting products, it's not surprising that Becca Cosmetics would produce a lovely highlighter. This is a delicately opalescent liquid with SPF 20 and antioxidants in a large pump bottle. It is a spendy product but the bottle is so large I can see it lasting basically forever if it's used as I choose to use it--as a spot highlighter. I pat it onto the high planes of my cheekbones and it really does create a lovely glow, notably when the light catches it. Being a liquid it's easy to apply and blend and looks natural. I have read of people using this product all over their face for both the SPF benefits and highlighting, but in my opinion it would be way too over the top all over, especially if worn without foundation.
Laura Mercier Gilded Garden Mosaic Shimmer Bloc ($38)-this product has the same level of shimmer and frost as Laura's regular Shimmer Blocs, but with a pretty embossed flower pattern. Lke the others, it features 4 shades that can be used alone or blended to achieve a custom color. Swirling the colors in this palette together creates a frosty light pink that's youthful and not at all 80s. I usually apply this with a fan brush over a cream blush for a touch of added color and radiance. This was limited edition but is still available on Laura Mercier's website.
Lancome Color Design Blush in Freeze Frame ($27)- this creamy product is a golden candlelight beige shade with a touch of peach. It's a slightly drier cream that lasts all day and I love the case with the adorable sliding lid. Lancome doesn't get a lot of love but I find their products to be high quality and this one is no exception.

Face Stockholm Highlighter in Radiance ($25)- Face Stockholm isn't widely available with only 4 boutiques in the US, all of which are located in New York. The line is based out of Sweden and is made up of high quality basics and their highlighter in Dignity is often listed by renowned makeup artists as a favorite product. Luckily, there is a website if you can't make it to New York. This highlighter is a pale shimmery pink cream, though the product is available in a whopping 11 shades, a very broad range for a highlighter. Dignity, mentioned above, is a white-gold shade that's pretty dramatic and definitely red carpet worthy. Radiance is more subtle and adds a slight pink flush in addition to the shimmer. This product is very dewy and does not set, unlike the Lancome.
More to come, but in the meantime you can click on the pictures to enlarge the images.

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