Plenty of people love a laser-beam, could-spot-it-a-mile-away, glitter-drenched highlight. We're living in the age of Instagram makeup, which often translates to a more-is-more look, and I'm not here to criticize that in any way. I'm just simply going to say that when it comes to my own face, I usually prefer my highlight to be subtle and glitter-free. In fact, my favorite highlighters rely solely on texture to build luminosity, rather than pigment of any kind.
For years, I've pressed Lucas' Pawpaw Ointment into my cheekbones, brow bones, collarbones and anywhere else I want to have a healthy-looking, light-reflecting gleam. The multi-purpose salve is definitely going to remain a staple in my beauty routine, but recently, I discovered Tower28 SuperDew Highlighter Balm, a compact (and chic) little product that delivers much the same results — and is actually intended to be used as a highlighter.
I was first drawn to it from the excellent packaging and copy on the product page, which seemed to check every single box on my everyday highlighter list: "No shimmer, no glitter, no daytime disco — just glossy, luminous skin," it promises. The slim, transparent compact houses a disc of balm that appears white in the packaging, but is entirely pigment-free and colorless on skin, meaning it's as universal as it gets.
Named for a lifeguard tower in Santa Monica, Los Angeles-based Tower28 is the brainchild of Amy Liu, a beauty industry veteran who previously worked in marketing at beauty brands like Smashbox, Kate Somerville and Josie Maran. The entire range was developed to be "clean," aesthetically pleasing and well branded — and cater to sensitive skin without looking medicinal. Every item is non-toxic, free of irritants and infused with calming ingredients. Liu herself has struggled with eczema, and had a hard time finding a highlighter that didn't irritate her skin — so she made this one.
I love that story, but my skin isn't particularly sensitive, and yet I'm drawn to this highlighter just because of its simplicity. It delivers exactly the non-greasy, perfectly dewy finish I want with just a few taps and has garnered me multiple compliments on my skin.
Tower28 SuperDew Highlighter Balm, $18, available here.
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