Cream Highlight VS Powder Highlight


Highlighter is one of my favourite parts of my makeup routine. It brightens and illuminates the face, and gives a gorgeous glow to even the most tired and dull complexion. The main question when it comes to highlighter is ‘powder or cream?’ so today I thought I’d share with you my thoughts on both types.

Powder – MAC Mineralize Skin Finish in Soft and Gentle

This is my favourite powder highlighter of all time. I’ve had it for about two years and there’s hardly a dent in the pan – now that’s what I call value for money! The thing about powder highlighter is that the shimmer isn’t so finely milled. It’s a bit more noticeable and doesn’t blend as well as cream highlight, in my opinion. For that reason I use powder highlighter mostly on nights out, when my makeup is a bit more heavy. I apply using a fluffy eyeshadow brush as it allows you to control where you apply it. This powder is really pigmented, so a little goes a long way. Dusted along the top of the cheek bones, under the brow bone, in the inner corner of the eye and on the cupids bow is where I usually use it. I usually dust over this with a big powder brush when I’ve applied it to ensure no sharp lines. The finish is gorgeous – it’s glowy and dewy, without being too glittery.

Cream – MAC Cream Colour Base in Hush and NARS Multiple in Luxor

A cream highlight is relatively new in my routine, but I absolutely love it. As with most cream products, cream highlight is easy to blend and literally melts in the skin. I rub it in with my fingers, as I find this works best. I swirl my finger in it first to warm up the product and then rub it into the skin. Cream products give a slightly more dewy finish to the skin than powder, and nothing is different with cream highlight. The shimmer is really really finely milled, so both products give a more natural effect. I apply it to the same places as mentioned above. I prefer cream highlight for the day as it isn’t as harsh. Cream highlight isn’t as noticeable as powder, it ultimately gives a ‘my skin but better’ glow.

Both highlighters photograph well, and wear well during the day. When it comes to cream or powder highlight, it’s really down to what kind of effect you’d like to achieve. If you’re looking for a more natural, day time highlight, I’d recommend a cream highlight. For a slightly more dramatic, but still gorgeous, finish, I’d recommend a powder highlight.


MAC Soft and Gentle, MAC Hush, NARS Luxor 

*Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know*


  1. 04/03/2014 / 11:27 pm

    Great post! I’ve actually been interested in getting a highlighter and didn’t realize there were cream as well as powder until I started browsing. Not sure which I would like but your post has given me a little more insight into it. Thanks!

    • 06/03/2014 / 1:54 pm

      I’m glad that this post helped! There are so many options, a good highlighter is definitely worth the investment! x