Highlighting is a simple way to perk up your whole face and get a gorgeous glow. Celebrity makeup artist Mally Roncal shows you the tricks to rocking the trend.
"Highlighting (or strobing) makes your skin look better, younger, plumper, smoother," says celebrity makeup artist and Mally Beauty founder Mally Roncal, who has worked with stars like Beyonce Knowles, Jennifer Lopez, and Heidi Klum.
Does the word "strobing" give you visions of an unnatural-looking shine? Thankfully, the over-the-topness will be toned down this season, Roncal says. "The look is less sparkly now, more dewy and luminous."
Here are Roncal's best tips for achieving a red carpet-worthy glow.
Prep your face
Having well-moisturized skin is key for this look. Roncal recommends CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion PM: "I apply this nighttime lotion in the morning for a little extra hydration," she says. "This time of year, we all need that."
Use a serum
A splurge-worthy serum like Dr. Brandt Skincare Do Not Age Transforming Pearl Serum can also help bring out skin's brightness.
"It's a little loosey-goosey," says Roncal. "It almost feels like egg yolk. But it slides on beautifully and gives skin and instant glow before makeup."
After moisturizer or serum, Roncal suggests using primer to lock in hydration and get your skin ready for makeup. Next, even out your skin tone using foundation, tinted moisturizer, or BB cream. "Your complexion just has to have a veil of consistency," she says.
The next step is to use your highlighter. "The secrets are to hit the right places and use a light hand," says Roncal. "You still want to see your skin underneath."
She suggests choosing a powder highlighter like Mally Beauty Shimmer, Shape & Glow and, with a medium-size brush, creating a C-shape around the eye. "Glide the brush across the eyelid, around the outer corner of the eye, and over the highest point of the cheekbone to visually lift your face," she says. Then hit the tip of the nose and the Cupid's bow of the lip (to enhance fullness). Finally, dust a little beside your tear ducts: "Believe it or not, that touch of shimmer on the eyes' inner corner plays off the cheek highlights to make you look vibrant," Roncal adds.
Not sure what shade of highlighter will flatter your skin tone? "When in doubt, use a champagne shade, which works on everyone because it has a bit of pink, gold, and silver in it."
Finish up with blush
The final step? Add blush right below the cheek highlights. "Blush is one of my desert island products," says Roncal. "Not only because it adds a little warmth to the face but also because it makes the skin look alive. To me, healthy is the new young."
She suggests swiping some right below the cheek highlights for a look that's youthful and healthy—not at all overdone.
What NOT to do
"Nothing can kill your glow more than a big old nasty translucent powder," says Roncal. "The minute you put it all over your face, you're dry and dusty and cakey. That is a huge yuck."
Another common mistake she sees is using too much highlighter around Crow's-feet. "A light dusting of highlighter blurs them, but apply too much and you end up spotlighting them," she explains.