Hands down, I am a sucker of the latest beauty trend, but I am also realistic and know that with my less than perfect skin, (don’t get me started), some products are best left alone, especially when the beauty superstars of Instagram elevate them to superstardom. I am loving the Illuminator makeup trend at the moment. Anything that gets my skin glowing is at is top of my list. I used to possess it once upon a time but quite frankly it evaporated some time ago. So there began my search for the best highlighter for an instant glow. I have tried many versions from the famous Becca shimmering highlighter, Nars liquid highlighter through to the best high street highlighters. Sure, powder and cream highlighters are great and am sure work wonderfully on lighter skin tones, but those with deeper complexions will fail to notice any significant difference.
Those with deeper skin tones need to notch it up by using a liquid highlighter as it provides way more pigment and shimmer.
I succumbed to the hype and bought the iconic London illuminator in original. In a nutshell, this liquid will take your glow level up about 10 notches and the shimmer is out of this world! It’s the only one that I have found that works perfectly with my tanned skin tone.
Iconic London illuminator comes in three shades
SHINE Illuminator – pink based shimmer to add a pearly shine
ORIGINAL Illuminator – champagne toned shimmer to add a golden shine
GLOW Illuminator – terracotta toned shimmer, to add deeply a golden shine
It’s really hard to swatch these without the perfect lighting kit, but you can see how they look below.
Consistency wise, I can only describe them as metallic liquid gold. I opted for original as it complimented my skin tone better than the shimmer which was a little too light and the glow which was a little too deep.
How to apply this illuminator
Well, this is the interesting bit. I still haven’t fully perfected the best application technique. I tried the Instagram trend of slathering it all over my face under foundation and blending like hell. The result – I looked like an over glowing beacon of shimmer. Maybe I applied too much. This liquid highlighter is super concentrated, so a teeny tiny bit is all that is needed. I tried again using the tiniest bit of product and layered my foundation on top. I think that the foundation covered up the effects of the shimmer.
Next up, I used it as a highlighter on my cheekbones, brow, lip. I blended with a brush, but the product stayed put on the areas that I had blended so it looked a bit blotchy. Attempt 2, with a beauty blender. This did the trick, but the effects were dumbed down. I personally like full on high wattage glow, and this gave a more natural finish.
I am still trying out how best to apply the product, and am sure I will get there eventually.
Is it worth the hype? Hands down it is the best highlighter for an instant glow. Truly the best highlighter that I have used, even though I haven’t got the application spot on. Yes, it’s pricey for illuminator makeup but so worth it.
Have you used this? What do you think of it? If anyone can tell me how to best apply it, would be eternally grateful.