above: wearing mua's highlighter | below: wearing elf's eyeshadow highlighter
as far as i know, highlighting products aren't all that popular on the high street, and altogether i could probably count up around 5 (benefit, topshop, urban decay, nars, seventeen) that i'm actually aware of, and between them, they're all either extremely pricey, or out of my reach as they're not cruelty free, so up until recently, i'd been using a white shimmery eyeshadow as my highlighting powder alternative. it was only recently when a mua highliter was actually in stock on superdrug's website that i decided to grab it while i could and give it a go, and since then, i've been a bit underwhelmed.
first up, let's talk about the mua highlighter: it's extremely shimmery, pink toned, and requires quite a lot of product on your brush for it to become noticeable on your skin. now, some might argue that a highlight needs to be subtle anyway, but i find that because of the predominant pink tones in the product, you have to build it up fairly heavily in order for the shimmer to become apparent, otherwise it can just look 'too pink' sat on your skin. i'm assuming someone's opinion of this highlighter may change based on their skin tone, but because i have pink undertones in my skin, most of the time i'm trying to counteract them and go for a more even, clear complexion that evens out the pink tones, so then adding a pink highlighter is obviously something of a backwards step for someone like myself, however it doesn't mean that this product wouldn't be perfect for someone with warmer toned skin. that said, i love the highlighter as a subtle summery eyeshadow – lots of shimmer with a hint of pink, perfect! – so the product won't be going to waste in my makeup bag.
moving onto the e.l.f. eyeshadow, i understand how scary the idea of applying a white eyeshadow to your skin may be to some, however the results may surprise you, especially if you have cooler toned skin like myself. i find that when i use this product, as well as the shimmer it provides, it also provides a nice, subtle highlight where the white of the powder stands away from the base i've created with my foundation; like a contour provides a subtle difference in shade, this does the same, but with highlighting qualities. where the pink of the mua highlighter interferes with my base, this white eyeshadow helps to compliment it and give my face the more angular, brighter look that i'm striving for. not so scary after all, eh?
to conclude, this isn't a "which is better?" style post and i'm not intending to stand them off against one another in terms of quality, i'm just simply highlighting (heh) the fact that there are other options available to consider when looking for a highlighter, which i think could potentially be useful as they're somewhat hard to come across, particularly on the high street as a CF shopper! so, what do you think? will you be giving this alternative a go or sticking to your everyday highlighters?