The best cream highlighters for dewy, summer skin

It's time to get that enviable glow.

Best cream highlighter

by Jade Moscrop |
Updated on

A good highlighter can really change the game when it comes to your make-up look, but for those striving for that dewy, lit-from-within glow, a cream highlighter will be your best friend.

There are a few different types of highlighter; powder, liquid, brick and jelly, but nothing quite compares to the gorgeous, subtle look you can achieve with cream highlighter. It helps to bring out your natural glow, without being too over-the-top.

It's ideal for those who want to put in minimal effort or for those who like to hit the snooze button in a morning, as it can be applied with just your fingers or even with the swipe of a stick. It's also perfect for all skin types as it helps to hydrate the skin, plus it's versatile and can be layered to get your desired look for day or night.

We've rounded up the best cream highlighters available right now, so you can start practising your summer looks.

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Best cream highlighters

Sleek MakeUP Highlighting Palette Solstice1 of 9

Sleek MakeUP Highlighting Palette Solstice

While this isn't technically just a cream highlighter, this palette from Sleek MakeUP has the most wonderful cream addition. The easy-to-blend, creamy formula can be applied with a damp brush or with your fingers for a gorgeous glow. It's subtle, but can be layered up or used on top of a liquid highlighter for your night time look. With this set, you also get a gorgeous mix of powder highlighters, so it's a win-win.

Fenty Beauty Match Stix Shimmer Stick2 of 9

Fenty Beauty Match Stix Shimmer Stick

Rihanna's Fenty brand has SO MANY SHADES of highlighter, and that's why we love it. Match Stix are so pigmented and versatile - you can even use them as eye colour. They're a little harder than some creams, so we'd recommend warming it up on the back of your hand, dabbing it on with the stick (rather than swiping) or using the tip of a Beauty Blender for the perfect glow.

KIKO Milano Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter3 of 9

KIKO Milano Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter

KIKO Milano's cream highlighter is enriched with jojoba oil and a high pearl content, so it gives you the ideal shimmer (without the glitter). It's a cool tone so it's ideal for lighter or darker skin, and the sharp edge is perfect for contouring your nose. Creamy and easy to blend, it can be layered for maximum glow.

Benefit Watt's Up!4 of 9

Benefit Watt's Up!

For a soft-focus look, this champagne-hued highlighter from Benefit gives you glow from every angle. It's a cream-to-powder formula which blends well; those with oily skin will really get on well with it.

Lu2019Oreal Paris Infallible Strobe Highlight Stick5 of 9

L’Oreal Paris Infallible Strobe Highlight Stick

Available in seven shades, this highlight stick from L'Oreal is suited to out-out make-up as it's SO pigmented and shimmery. The blush tones can be used in place of blusher, if you're a fan of the lazy girl make-up vibe.

Milk Makeup Holographic Stick6 of 9

Milk Makeup Holographic Stick

For a holographic finish, Milk Makeup doesn't disappoint. Available in three shades, it can be applied to cheeks, lips and eyes to add a pop of colour and shine. With a combination of nourishing natural oils and butters, the vegan formula is also super-hydrating, so those with dry skin will love this.

Glossier Haloscope7 of 9

Glossier Haloscope

Oh Glossier, what did we do to deserve Haloscope? Giving you the glow seen on A-listers across the globe, Haloscope is available in three shades which suit everyone. Formulated with genuine crystal extracts and a vitamin-rich core, it helps you get that hydrated, dewy finish with minimal effort.

Maybelline Make-Up Master Strobing Stick Number8 of 9

Maybelline Make-Up Master Strobing Stick Number

Impressive for the price, Maybelline's offering is creamy and easy to blend, so it's the perfect pairing for everyday make-up. It's lightweight and subtle but, of course, can be layered for a show-stopping look.

Dominique Cosmetics Skin Gloss9 of 9

Dominique Cosmetics Skin Gloss

Dominique Cosmetics' Skin Gloss has a creamy, balm-like texture which gives skin a glassy finish - so if you're into Korean beauty looks, give this one a try. This go-to skin enhancer infuses your complexion with a fresh, dewy glow that leaves your skin looking flawless. The hyaluronic-enriched formula hydrates and smoothes the skin and it's available in four shades for you to use as bronzer, blusher, and highlight.

Where do you apply highlighter?

Highlighting is designed to accentuate all the points on your face that the light would naturally hit.

For a subtle, natural look, apply highlighter on your cheek bones, cupid's bow and brow bones.

Going full glow? You can also pop highlighter on the bridge of your nose, chin, in the middle of your forehead and on your inner eyes.

Which shade should you choose?

Choosing a shade that's one or two shades lighter than your skin tone will help to highlight your features and give you an all-over glow.

Generally, if your skin has warm undertones, gold, champagne and bronze shades will work well, while silver and pearly hues tend to flatter those with cool undertones.

Opting for a blush shade means you can skip the blusher, so if you're short on time, this is a great option.


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