Adding a little bit of highlight to the face can make such a difference, but if you are over 40, you might run into some issues with most traditional shimmery highlighters. What seems to happen as we age and develop fine lines and wrinkles is that our beloved highlighters (even our holy grail ones from our 30s!) now creep into said fine lines. Not cool, man. Not cool at all.
You know what I’m talking about, ladies. Tiny little glitter particles settle themselves right into those lines, which does what? ACCENTUATES THEM. Downright unfair, if you ask me.
Well, I’ve searched the clean beauty sphere up and down for the best highlighters for ladies of a certain age and I’m here to share them all with you, as well as give you my tried-and-true application technique!
Best Highlighters and Technique For Mature Skin
Here’s the deal – for many of us, ahem, older women, we have developed a bit of character on our faces, such as fine lines and wrinkles, age spots, dark circles, and lip lines. The key with highlighter is to create a lit-within-glow without drawing attention to the aforementioned areas of our faces.
So here’s how you do it – focus on the high points of your face. Your cheekbones, the bridge of your nose, inner corner of eyes, and your cupid’s bow. The sheen naturally reflects light on these areas and gives you the most natural glow.
“Yeah yeah, Sarah, I’ve heard this everywhere. What’s the key to mature skin application?”
1. Forget the powder highlighters. They do nothing for mature skin except settle into fine lines and wrinkles and give an overall dry effect. Cream products such as highlighters and skin balms are the way to go!
2. While we want to draw attention to the high points of our face, we must pay super close attention to the undereye area and cheekbone. Placement is key here, which means you might have to put it a smidge lower on your upper cheekbone as to not emphasize the lines around your eyes. Take a good look at your face and make sure the highlighter is not being applied to those fine lines and wrinkles, especially if your highlighter has shimmer in it.
3. Same with lip lines – add the highlighter just in the cupid’s bow, not along the upper lip line where you might have fine lip lines.
4. A little dab of highlighter in the inner corner of the eyes is my number #1 tip for waking up the eyes and looking totally refreshed. It works like a charm!
My Favorite Highlighters
Now that we’ve talked about placement, let’s talk favorite highlighters! These are all exceptional for all skin types, but especially mature skin.
Westman Atelier Lit Up Highlight Stick
Where has this highlighter been all my life?! The Westman Atelier Lit Up Highlight Stick is in a class of its own as it’s a translucent gel facial highlighter that’s great for all skin types including dry, mature, sensitive, blemish-prone, combination, and normal.
This highlighter is so silky and translucent and leaves this gorgeous iridescent undertone on the skin that is so flattering. I’m wearing it in the above photo on the tops of my cheekbones along with the Westman Atelier Super Loaded Highlight in Peau de Rosé. It’s just such a unique product in that it’s not a traditional gold or silver or pink highlighter – it’s truly iridescent on the skin.
lit up stick in full sunlight (not blended)
Bonus! It’s formulated with Vitis Vita Grape Extract which encourages collagen and hyaluronic acid production to help brighten skin. Always a fan of makeup + skincare.
Westman Atelier Super Loaded Tinted Highlight
Ohhh, this is such a gorgeous blush/highlighter combo. The Westman Atelier Super Loaded Tinted Highlight comes in 3 shades – I personally have the Peau de Rosé and Peau de Peche. (Peau de Rosé shown above and I’m wearing in the first photo.)
Formulated with antioxidants, hyaluronic acid, and organic jojoba oil, this highlighter nourishes skin while creating the most lovely glow. Peau de Peche is soft pearlized bronze suede for a peachy glow, Peau de Soleil is a warm bronze gold for a beachy radiance, and Peau de Rosé is a soft warm rose for a brightening, rose luminescence.
super loaded tinted highlight in peau de rosé in full sunlight (not blended)
You can apply these with fingers, but when used with the Blender Blush, these highlighters just meld into the skin. They have really cool cream-to-satin finish, so they don’t look wet on the face at all. And although there is shimmer in the product, it’s so finely-milled that you never see particles on the face.
super loaded tinted highlight in peau de peche
A few extra bonuses on this product – they make the BEST eyeshadows. In fact, Peau de Rosé has become my go-to eye shadow product and I would imagine Peau de Peche would like amazing on blue eyes. (So easy! Just apply with your fingers!) Lastly, they smell like summer to me – slightly old-school tanning lotion, if you catch my drift.
I’ve been wearing this balm as a highlighter for years! Ouli’s Ointment has so many uses – a hydrating and non-greasy face balm, undereye line smoother, flyaway hair tamer, cuticle saver, redness reducer…this stuff is magic. With olive oil, beeswax, and roman chamomile, it’s so incredibly soothing and anti-inflammatory. Let’s not forget the best face highlight around! (Plus, smells like lavish olives groves in Greece. #bonus)
And the best part for us mature gals is that you don’t need to apply with precision around the eye area because the balm naturally softens the fine lines around our eyes so hello, WIN-WIN.
Rituel de Fille Rare Light Creme Luminizer
Still using after many years, the Rituel de Fille Rare Light Creme Luminizer in Phosphene will always be a winner. Inspired by extraordinary light phenomena, each shade imparts a glow that subtly shifts and transforms throughout the day. Phosphene is a soft, pale beige glow with a hint of peachy-blush shift. It’s truly lovely and like the others does not emphasize fine lines and wrinkles at all. Beautiful shade!
What are your holy grail highlighters? I always love hearing from you. And as always, send your questions my way!
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AmandaMay 7, 2020 at 8:14 am
I know it’s somewhat controversial in the green beauty realm, but I have dipped my toe into the Westman Atelier waters. Their Lit Up Stick looks incredibly unassuming, but it really brings life to my face. Dab on the cheekbones and the center of my lips and I look positively youthful. It’s a balm, but it has a bit of blue/pink iridescence to it–yet somehow it doesn’t look icy or fake. It doesn’t dry down, so it feels nice and smooth on the lips and keeps those cheek tops glistening for hours.
whoorlMay 7, 2020 at 11:41 am
That’s great to hear! I recently received the foundation and the super loaded highlighter and am still playing around…this is good to know.