Makeup Wars shines with favorite Highlighters and Illuminators

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

MAKEUP WARS is sharing some of the highlighters and illuminators that make us twinkle and shine, that make us glimmer and shimmer, that make us excited to be women in 2016.

Not every one of my highlighters is shown here, just the 3 newest and one all time favorite. There are many more that I really like but some just stand out more than others. Introducing 4 of mine: TOM FORD MOODLIGHT, HOURGLASS AMBIENT IRIDESCENT STROBE LIGHT, IT COSMETICS HELLO LIGHT CREME ILLUMINATOR, and BECCA MOONSTONE.

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight ($80) is one gorgeous illuminator. I resisted this for so long but the more I read about it and saw photos the more I desired it. This is amazingly subtle even if the photo doesn’t look that way. You are able to control the amount of illumination, easily building it up from an understated amount that brightens and lightens your face to a shimmery amount that gives more of a bronzing highlight. Tom Ford Moodlight (sometimes seen as Moonlight on a website) can be used separately or together. Use a big fluffy brush for an all over sweep of illumination or a blush brush to emphasize certain areas of your face.

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

There are 4 different Hourglass Ambient Strobe Powders. I chose Iridescent since it has a touch of pink that the others I’ve been using lack. Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light is described as an illuminating pink powder imparting a soft highlight. I have very fair cool toned skin and I thought this would add enough brightness without being overwhelming. And I was right. This is subtle yet lights up my face. The powder is angel soft to the touch yet doesn’t ever look powdery on me.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone ($38) is the golden highlighter that I have. I bought a set that contained a travel size of Moonstone and it was one of the best buys I made. Moonstone, one of 7 shades, is a pale gold. It is slightly sparkly so it’s not a daytime look for me. I prefer to apply this with my fingers instead of a brush. It has an almost creamy finish to it so my fingers pick up this very soft powder and I find that my face is more luminous when used this way. The formula is enriched with ultrafine luminescent pearls. If I had to pick one brand for highlighting and illuminating it would be Becca. They really do stand out in this field.

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

As someone who favors cream products I couldn’t leave out IT COSMETICS ($24). They’ve created two Hello Lights! Anti-Aging Illuminizers – Powder and  Creme. I love them both but IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer is my favorite.

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

Besides having wonderful anti-aging and hydrating ingredients (infused with peptides, hyaluronic acid, hydrolyzed collagen, silk and vitamins A, C, & E), it gives such a subtle and luminous glow. It’s perfect for spot highlighting like at the top of your cheekbones, above your eyebrows, and the cupid’s bow of your mouth. It’s a lit from within look and one I use often.

There are dozens more highlighters and illuminators that I enjoy using. Adding a bit of a liquid highlighter into foundation gives a beautiful dewy look, using an illuminating primer like COVER FX does all the work for you. Just don’t go without at least one of these wonderful products in your makeup collection.

Do you have a favorite in this category? Dare I ask what it is?  — Marcia


Makeup Wars loves Nude lippies

Makeup Wars and Top Ten Tuesdays have tempted you with pink lips, peach and coral lips, red lips but never true nudes. Now’s the time though and I was ready for this challenge. Most of my collection is nude lips. It got to the point that I had so many that I had to force myself not to buy new ones unless I was absolutely desperate for them. I was once a MACaholic and I’d buy every rendition of nude they had – and then I’d wear them twice and put them aside. I haven’t chosen any MAC to share with you since I don’t seem to grab for them anymore so instead you’ll see some of my favorites from other brands.

Makeup Wars Nude Lip favorites

Makeup Wars Nude Lip favorites

Nude lips are interesting because they all have different undertones plus what I consider nude might be too light for you depending on your skintone.

Makeup Wars lip crayons: Ardency Inn, Tarte (x2), Hourglass

Makeup Wars lip crayons: Ardency Inn, Tarte (x2), Hourglass

I’m a big fan of lip crayons but nude ones don’t overpopulate my collection. Ardency Inn Bowery, tarte exposed and Hourglass Nude No 3 are the ones I usually crave.

Hourglass Nude No3 and Ardency Inn Bowery

Hourglass Nude No3 and Ardency Inn Bowery

I bought Hourglass Femme Nude Stylo No3 because everyone was raving about these. Hourglass has an amazing reputation and these Nude lip crayons made beauty lovers so excited. No3 is described as “medium rose nude with hint of pink”. This has a pink undertone but it’s very light once on my lips, not medium to my eyes.

top Hourglass, bottom Ardency Inn

top Hourglass, bottom Ardency Inn

ARDENCY INN AMERICANA Natural Lip Color Pencil in Bowery was my next buy. These are $23 compared to the $30 of Hourglass so that made me happy. ARDENCY INN lip crayons seem to be truer nude shades too. Bowery is a light peach on my lips even though Sephora tells me that it’s a “light nude with pink undertones”. It just isn’t pink on me but it is pretty and I’m very comfortable in it. The consistency is smoother and a little more glossy than Hourglass.

tarte exposed - old vs new versions

tarte exposed – old vs new versions

Tarte Exposed was one of the colors saved when tarte revamped all their lip crayons. Tarte still sells LipSurgence but I didn’t find Exposed. The original fat crayon has a matte finish while the new tarte exposed is a glossier finish. The new pencils are called Power Pigments and Exposed is described as “nude with pink undertones”.

tarte exposed original version and new Power Pigment

tarte exposed original version and new Power Pigment

Power Pigment in exposed is glossier and slightly more pink while the original is definitely a matte on me and a little darker. Can’t go wrong with either but there is a slight difference between the two.

Makeup Wars Nude Lipsticks: Tom Ford, Lunasol, Armani, Gosh, Armani, Shiseido

Makeup Wars Nude Lipsticks: Tom Ford, Lunasol, Armani, Gosh, Armani, Shiseido

6 lipsticks made the cut for Makeup Wars: Tom Ford Pink Dune, Lunasol 25, Armani Shine 17, Gosh Darling, Armani 103, Shiseido RS701

GOSH Darling

GOSH Darling

GOSH Darling was a lipstick that everyone had to have. It was so hot on boards like Makeup Alley that you felt like you didn’t belong there if you didn’t own it.

Gosh Darling

Gosh Darling

I finally got it and was shocked at how much it looks like concealer. It’s so light and so beige that I couldn’t get it to show in a single swatch photo. I couldn’t resist putting this in even though it’s not a favorite, I’m including it for shock value.

Armani Shine 17, Lunasol 25, Armani 103

Armani Shine 17, Lunasol 25, Armani 103

These are the lipsticks that I reach for when I want moisturized lips with beautiful nude shades. Armani in particular makes outstanding nude colors for lips and I think they are among the finest lipsticks available. I get a little overwhelmed at an Armani counter because I want too much. All of these lipsticks were bought long ago.

from left: Armani 103, Lunasol 25, Armani Shine 17

from left: Armani 103, Lunasol 25, Armani Shine 17

Rouge d’Armani in 103 is my newest Armani and still available. 103 is the pink nude that I love to wear. It looks beige in the tube but once on it picks up pink.

Rouge d'Armani 103 (nordstrom.com)

Rouge d’Armani 103 (nordstrom.com)

Armani Shine 17 is an oldie but goodie. It’s more sheer than 103 but just as glossy.

LUNASOL 25 is also an older lipstick and I doubt it’s still for sale. Lunasol lipsticks were introduced to me by an old friend. I’d go nuts cosmetic shopping in Japan or Singapore! I have 2 LUNASOL lipsticks and they are so wonderfully creamy. They have a very similar consistency and look to the Armani ones I love.

Tom Ford Pink Dune, Shiseido RS701

Tom Ford Pink Dune, Shiseido RS701

Tom Ford Pink Dune barely has any color on my lips but that doesn’t stop me from loving it. It was a limited edition shade that I bought in the early winter but didn’t really wear at first. It felt too nude for winter but I can wear it now. Sometimes I’ll put it over another lipstick to ‘nude’ it up a bit.

Tom Ford Pink Dune, Shiseido RS701

Tom Ford Pink Dune, Shiseido RS701

I had to include Shiseido RS701 even though it’s not available. This was my first Shiseido lipstick and it reminds me of shopping with my blog partner Lisa. It’s one of my favorite lipstick buys. It’s a pink nude (RS stands for Rose) that has the perfect depth for me.

from top: TF Pink Dune, Lunasol 25, Armani 17, Gosh Darling, Rouge d'Armani 103, Shiseido RS701

from top: TF Pink Dune, Lunasol 25, Armani 17, Gosh Darling, Rouge d’Armani 103, Shiseido RS701

I’m sure these swatches all look alike but as a true beauty afficionado knows they are different as different can be.

What’s your favorite nude lipstick? There’s always room for one more! — Marcia

Join my Makeup War friends and see what they’ve chosen to delight and tempt us with.