not a professional. just crazy.

This New Gel Highlighter Is Basically Glass Skin in a Bottle

The glass-skin highlighter comes in three shades, and I use two of them. Photo: Rio Viera-Newton

When people ask what my skin goals are, I say I’d ideally look like a glazed doughnut that drinks a gallon of water a day. Which, as it turns out, isn’t so weird! Or at least it isn’t uncommon: the end-goal of most all K-Beauty devotees is something called “glass skin,” where one’s skin looks so translucent, smooth, and radiant it almost looks like a pane of glass (it’s something Strategist writer Lori Keong has written about). Or, you know, like a shiny doughnut.

So how does one achieve glass-doughnut skin? Most skin crazies would tell you it’s by hydrating with nourishing serums and essences, exfoliating to create a smoother texture, moisturizing like crazy, and of course, drinking as much water as humanly possible. But I believe that in order to achieve that elusive, somewhat blinding glass skin effect, you’re going to need some help from a highlighter. A really, really, really good highlighter.

I’ve tried many such highlighters. Marc Jacobs’s Dew Drops, Charlotte Tilbury’s Wonderglow, and Glossier’s Haloscope are all wonderful, and make my skin look glowy, radiant, and blindingly reflective. But none of the highlighters I’ve ever tried have taken me to that next level, your-skin-but-better, glassy-doughnut-y super-glow — until two weeks ago, when I patted Kevyn Aucoin’s new Glass Glow Face product onto my cheekbones. When I looked in the mirror, I audibly gasped — my skin looked dewy and utterly translucent.

What makes this product so special and effective is its texture: its composed of 50 percent gloss (think MAKE Beauty’s face gloss but way less sticky) and 50 percent pearlescent sheen (think Charlotte Tilbury’s Flawless Filter). This perfect shimmer to glaze ratio makes skin look beautifully, believably reflective. In short: It’s glass skin in a bottle.

Earlier this week, my skin wasn’t looking particularly great — I had a pimple on my cheek and my face was red and blotchy all over from an eczema attack. I dotted some Fenty Profilt’r concealer everywhere that needed coverage, and then with my fingers, I tapped some of this Kevyn Aucoin Glass Glow Face everywhere I wanted to add radiance: my cheekbones, cheeks, browbone, cupid’s bow, the tip and bridge of my nose, and my chin. My overall complexion was transformed: when I left the house, a stranger stopped me on the street and complimented my skin. That entire day, (and this is embarrassing to admit), I could not, for the life of me, stop staring at myself in my compact.

This wonder product comes in three different shades: Crystal Clear, which is slightly iridescent but transparent; Prism Rose, a pink-y shade with a very soft silver sheen; and Spectrum Bronze, a bronze-y shade with soft gold reflects. I have Crystal Clear and Prism Rose and adore both — I use Prism Rose on days when I want a healthy, springy glow, and Crystal Clear when I want more of a no-makeup, just-left-the-spa-type thing. I also adore mixing them together.

The product is a bit pricey, but a little bit goes a long way, and the bottle is large: 30 ml. And I don’t know about you, but I’d pay a whole lot more than $32 to unlock glass-skin status.

Kevyn Aucoin Glass Glow Face Liquid Highlighter

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This New Gel Highlighter Is Basically Glass Skin in a Bottle