The best natural highlighters

Blog, The Bella Edit


I love highlighters a lot. However, I don’t wear bold highlighters (*cough* BECCA champagne pop *cough*) often, and especially when I’m running late or on doing my makeup in a rush, I don’t have time to blend out a super shocking highlight.

I also wear mostly natural makeup, so these are my favorite highlights I wear on a daily basis for a glowing face. None of these have glitter in them either, which is great!

Quick note: all of these are natural highlights, so they tend to look fairly similar on the face. I would recommend looking through this list and picking one (some of these are palettes if you really want more options) that suits you.


The sheer amount of mirrors and reflective surfaces in this photo made it nearly impossible to shoot. I tried.

Clockwise from left: Tarte rainforest of the sea twinkle lighting palette, Hourglass ambient lighting powder in mood light, E.L.F. illuminating palette, RMS living luminizer.

View swatches and my thoughts below!

1. Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Twinkle Lighting palette

I adore this palette and I was really disappointed to find out that the Volume 2 that launched recently is not the same formula. That one has a formula comparable to the Tarteist pro glow (swatches here). Anyways, this palette has the most buttery formula I’ve ever used. It gives my cheekbones the perfect sheen. Filtered light (the middle shade) is a little more matte and it’s great for setting the under eyes or for using on the inner corner to just brighten up your eyes. Moonlight is my favorite shade for a quick highlight, but sunlight is also stunning. It’s really easy to apply– I just use a big fan brush, like this one, and swipe a little onto my cheekbones to look naturally glowing. If that’s not enough to convince you, take a look at the beautiful packaging. I highly recommend this!

See cool swatches of this palette here.

2. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in mood light

This highlight is stunning. It’s really expensive, but I find it to be the best foolproof face powder. It’s nearly impossible to apply too much, it doesn’t look powdery, and my skin looks glowy and bright with it on. The powder is incredibly finely milled and soft so it perfects, but is never cakey. My skin looks literally lit from with in the most beautiful way. Lastly, (seeing a pattern here?) the packaging is stunning and feel’s incredibly high end and beautiful.

3. E.L.F. Illuminating Palette

This palette does not have labeled shades so I’ve made up my own. H1 stands for highlight one. Creative, right? Anyways, they go from left to right, top to bottom. So H1 is the top left shade. Hope that clears things up!

These shades are quite similar to Hourglass Ambient lighting powders, and H2 is quite similar to mood light. They aren’t dupes, because these are much more highlight-esque than the Hourglass powders, but just keep in mind the shades are similar.

I recently reviewed the E.L.F. blush palette in light here, and I was pretty harsh on it. This, however is completely different. It’s made up of four incredibly soft, buttery highlights (beware of the fallout though). These look spectacular on the face and have no glitter whatsoever. At only $6, this is a complete steal that is worth every penny. It’s really amazing.

4. RMS living luminizer {review}

Not everyone loves powder products, which is okay! This is the cream equivalent of the Hourglass ambient lighting powders– it perfects and makes you look dewy without being as bold as the Winky Lux strobing balm. It blends seamlessly into my skin without lifting my foundation. I tap it onto my cheekbones and my cupids bow for a really luminous look. This is also in my daily routine as a quick product that a pull out when I’m in a rush or want a simple look, because I can depend on it to look simply stunning. Of the products on this list, I think this is the easiest to use. Keep in mind that this likely won’t work well for oily skin.

That’s my list of my favorites highlighters for a really simple, dewy look! What look do you prefer with highlight– subtle or visible from outer space?

Ciao bella!






*A note

All products discussed in this post were purchased by me.

This post contains affiliate links.

Read more about my affiliate link/PR samples policy here


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