You can drink all the water, eat all the green veggies, and soak up as much vitamin D as you want (and we're not saying to stop), but nothing beats the healthy, lit-from-within glow you only get from a trusty highlighter.
It's no secret why this illuminating beauty product has become a staple in everyone's makeup bag (or at least it should be!). With a bevy of options to choose from—from cream to powder to liquid highlighter—it makes achieving bright and nourished skin easier than ever.
Whether you have a fair or dark complexion; mature or sensitive skin; or you just need a bit of pep in your step, we've put together our highlights (no pun intended) for the best clean highlighters on the market, according to skin tone and type.
And who says you need just one? Even though each of these products provide a unique glow when worn alone, we recommend layering the different shades and formulas for a luminosity level-up!
Scroll down to meet your perfect pearlescent pal (or pals!).
Here are the best natural highlighters:
- Best Natural Highlighter for Fair Skin: Kjaer Weis - Lightslip Highlighting Powder Compact in Beam
- Best Natural Highlighter for Dark Skin: Alima Pure - Cream Highlighter in Alchemy
- Best Natural Highlighter for Oily Skin: Minori - Cream Highlighter
- Best Natural Highlighter for Dry Skin: ILIA - DayLite Highlighting Powder
- Best Natural Highlighter for Mature Skin : La bouche rouge, Paris - La Lumière Highlighter Set
- Best Natural Highlighter for Dewy Skin: RMS Beauty - Living Luminizer
- Best Natural Highlighter for Glass Skin: Rituel de Fille - The Alchemist
Best Natural Highlighter for Fair Skin
The best highlighter for fair skin is one with frosted silver, champagne, or pearly-pink undertones.
That’s why the subtle shine of Kjaer Weis ' shade 'Beam' is an excellent choice for you, fair-toned beauties.
Like a kiss of light streaming across the high points of your face, this powder highlighter’s cool-toned champagne color gives skin that satin pearl-like finish that doesn't overpower porcelain complexions.
Infused with emollient jojoba, sunflower, and sweet almond seed oils, plus ethically-sourced mica, it leaves behind a sultry moonlit radiance with a smooth-to-the-touch finish.
We like to use a fan brush to apply it delicately to the cupid's bow (you know, that cute dip above your upper lip?) and down the bridge of the nose for a soft glow.
Best Natural Highlighter for Dark Skin
Finding a shade with just the right amount of depth—and not too much shimmer—can be a challenge for darker skin tones.
Well, consider that challenge accepted because we’ve found a new go-to for naturally enhancing those with beautifully rich complexions.
This prismatic, muted rose gold highlighter has a subtle warmth that meshes perfectly with deeper tones and never looks stark.
Its creamy texture melts seamlessly upon application, which not only makes it a breeze to use but keeps it from moving or smudging makeup underneath.
Want to accentuate facial contours? Apply this highlighter using your fingertip to the inner corners of your eye and along your brow bones to illuminate those high points and tie your look together.
Best Natural Highlighter for Oily Skin
Regardless of how you feel about your oilier complexion, we want to remind you of the added benefit it brings to skin (uh, hello, free dose of glow!).
Not feeling the natural dewy look oily skin has to offer? That doesn’t mean you have to skip out on highlighter altogether.
This vegan, cream-to-powder formula works in harmony with the skin's natural oils to blend seamlessly along contours before it sets like a powder, leaving behind a velvety-soft shine that doesn't look too slick.
Available in two versatile shades (appropriately named for their celebratory and sun-kissed looks), 'Champagne' gives fair skin a light luminescence, while 'Golden' suits those with deeper skin tones who seek that golden hour glow.
Easily applied with your finger, its non-tacky finish stays locked in—so no need to worry about your carefully placed highlight sliding across skin and ruining your look (and your mood).
Best Natural Highlighter for Dry Skin
Facing the opposite problem to their shinier counterparts, dry skin types have difficulty finding highlighters that blend effortlessly without gripping onto dry patches or surface texture.
Now, we know what you’re thinking—a powder highlighter for dry skin types? No, thank you!
But what if there was a powder highlighter that provides the coveted supermodel glow without cramping dry skin’s style? This talc-free powder does just that.
Nourishing and lightweight jojoba seed oil gifts skin a hydrated, buttery-smooth finish without drawing attention to flakes, while silica beads create a soft filter that blurs the look of any texture.
Its compact also houses a built-in mirror for any time, anywhere application—perfect for on the go glow-seekers in need of touch-ups throughout the day.
Best Natural Highlighter for Mature Skin
It needs to be said that shimmer is a makeup no-go for mature skin types.
That's why this luxurious, shimmer-free one from La bouche rouge, Paris is a top choice among powder highlighters for achieving that lit from within appearance.
And while a highlighter can't exactly reverse the signs of age (we’re talking about you, fine lines and wrinkles!), there are definitely tricks to help you appear more youthful in the way you apply it.
You can choose to dust it all over the face with a fluffy brush for a soft, diffused glow or sweep it precisely along facial high points (think tops of cheekbones and brow bones) for a look that appears more lifted and bright.
Plus, this powder is infused with hyaluronic acid—a humectant that gets depleted from our skin with age—to help hydrate and plump, while rice powder keeps this mineral formula from settling into pesky creases. Talk about a star-powered powder!
Best Natural Highlighter for Dewy Skin
There’s a reason this makeup artist and beauty editor must-have cream highlighter is always flying off our shelves.
Its palm-sized pot packs an ultra-sheer, balmy formula that melts into the skin for a dreamy gleam—kind of like a natural post workout glow but without the sweat or smell (you know what we mean!).
Made with living ingredients, including ultra-moisturizing coconut oil and vitamin E, it helps skin appear nourished sans heavy shimmer or glitter.
Dip your fingertip into the pot and, using a light hand, dab the emollient texture across the tops of your cheekbones, brow bones, and onto your cupid's bow for a dewy sheen with minimal effort.
You can even glow the extra mile and add some of this iridescent pigment across your collarbones and shoulders for a flirty evening look.
Best Natural Highlighter for Glass Skin
We can thank K-beauty for the emergence of glass skin—a stunning, highlighted look that appears glazed and almost glass-like.
Achieving this look typically requires a lengthy list of beauty products like jelly cleansers, moisturizers, and serums before makeup application.
But wait, you’re in luck. We’ve figured out how you can achieve a similar look with just one holy-grail highlighter: Rituel de Fille 's "The Alchemist."
Like sunlight hitting ripples of water, this glistening cream imparts a striking, almost fragile looking sheen when blended into the skin that mimics the smooth look of glass.
Given its lack of color and powerful pearlescence, this highlighter works for any skin tone or type that wants to hop on the bandwagon of the slick, holographic effect.