Strobing On A Budget
Just when we thought we had mastered contouring, in comes strobing, another technique coveted among beauty enthusiasts and makeup junkies alike. Strobing is basically the complete opposite of contouring. An hour-long obsessed search on strobing and an entrancing stalk of beauty bloggers and makeup artist, Desi Perkins’ Instagram account tells us that strobing a.) focuses on light; break out those highlighters. “Lighting up” those parts of your face where light naturally hits (cheekbones, bridge of nose, forehead, and chin) or any part you want to “bring forward,” hence the upper lip, b). can require as little as one product, and c.) makes you look angelic, even on days when you’re running on four hours of sleep.
That second tip sold me on this beauty trend, seen and apparently perfected by the Kardashian and Jenner sisters.
I trekked over to the nearest drugstore; on a budget I picked out two highlighters: NYX Born to Glow Liquid Illuminator in Sunbeam ($7) and Maybelline New York Master Strobing Stick in Light/Iridescent ($8). I’m fair skinned and most, if not all, masters on strobing suggest using a highlighter that most closely matches your skin tone. However, for a more dramatic effect, go ahead and layer those champagnes over pinks.
I followed makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic’s technique, as he demonstrates strobing on none other than Kim Kardashian West. Mario applies a strobing stick directly onto KKW’s cheekbones, nose bridge, center forehead, eyebrow bone, and “cupid’s bow,” the groove above your upper lip, and blends using a Beauty Blender ($20), layering a powder highlighter over those parts where he already applied the highlighting stick.
I was pleasantly surprised at how fool-proof strobing turned out to be. The liquid illuminator allows you to “build up” the highlight without feeling cakey, and it appears to “catch” more light than the stick, which is basically the point of strobing. Since strobing is going to light you upend offer that coveted dewey finish, if you tend to get oily, dust a bit of translucent powder to set that glow.
Because strobing uses highlighters rather than darker creams or powders as in contouring, you can basically apply too much without having to redo your look. It’s all about the highlight.
You can definitely contour and strobe at the same time. In fact, a lot of makeup artists will contour and highlight when creating the red carpet looks we love. Strobing is what you want when your endgame is to glow with minimal effort. As Desi Perkins puts it, it’s “highlighting like crazy.”
More budget-friendly highlighters:
Sonia Kashuk Chic Luminosity Highlighter Stick in Persian Sunset ($11) for medium-to-dark skin tones.
Maybelline Face Studio Master Contour Stick ($8) in Medium and Deep for olive to deep complexions.
e.l.f. Baked Highlighter ($3) in Moonlight Pearls for light complexions with yellow undertones, and Blush Gems for light complexions with pink undertones.
Nyx Born to Glow Liquid Illuminator in Sun Goddess ($8) for deep skin tones.
Essence Pure Nude Highlighter in Be My Highlight ($4) for fair to light skin tones.
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– Claudia Mercado is a beauty-obsessed writer living in Long Beach, CA.