Although there’s a time and a place for a full, beaming, metallic highlighter, I think the future of glow is an altogether more subtle affair. Something which mimics a naturally healthy and hydrated complexion, combining dewy oils with a subtle wash of colour, or iridescent pigment, is a totally cute and modern way to shine.
However, these new dew effect highlighters can be tricky to get right. They can be sticky, tacky, or slippery and never quite setting. The opacity of the pigment can look too ‘90s frost, or be so sheer as to be unnoticeable. One product I’ve found which gets it so right is the Noto Botanics Hydra Highlight.
Noto is a brand which will make you feel very cool-gal and ahead of the curve – think Make Beauty or even the halcyon days of Glossier. The premise is products which are simple, organic and non-irritating, with skin-boosting ingredients that have many uses. Think little pots of watercolour- pigment suspended in delightfully melty oils; perfect for dabbing on eyes, cheeks, lips and wherever else for an “I’m a very naturally beautiful person” effect.
The standout, to me, is their Hydra Highlight – one of the best no-makeup highlights I’ve tried. Here’s what makes it so special: it’s slippy, not sticky. Rather than having a tacky, glue-like finish, it feels almost like a solid oil balm.
On contact with skin, it melts in seamlessly, leaving cheeks plumped and hydrated, with a subtle gloss and a hint of universally flattering iridescent peach pigment.
The ingredients of the Hydra Highlight are (and I don’t say this often) where the genius lies. There are six organic oils, chosen not just for their glow-factor but also for their healing skincare properties. The inclusion of lavender gets special bonus points for me, because it makes the product smell reminiscent of a spa or countryside field. These oils are combined with pearly mica to add just the right amount of pigment.
The product is sheer enough to look makeup-free and suit any skin tone, but adds enough to be impactful and make the product look significantly different than just using Vaseline (which, I’m not going to lie, is also a look I’m into).
Like all sheer, dewy highlights, this is by far best applied with fingers, to deliver a truly seamless finish.
And come summer, if you’re wanting the coveted R&B video girl glow, look no further. Hydra Highlight dabbed over collar bones, shoulders and down the centre of the legs will elevate the most low-key of looks.
Noto Botanics, Hydra Highlight, £18, Slappshop.com