Money Can’t Buy You Happiness, But It Can Buy You Glowing Skin

As long as you use your money for makeup, that is.

When Baze asked me if I wanted to write about glow-y products, I was like, “You don’t have to ask me twice!” And, uh, then I missed my deadline by about three years. But it’s because I had grand plans to take lots of photos, as some of you readers requested. And I tried, really! But my photo light bulb thinger went on the fritz, and so the photos here are not as detailed as I know you would like. I am going to the camera shop and will have better pics for next time (even though I really loathe taking pictures of myself, for the record).

Anyway! Glow-y makeup! Let’s talk about it. First of all, by “glow,” I’m not talking about sparkle or obvious shimmer. Instead, I refer to a more or less natural-looking sort of radiance, one that will make people assume you get nine hours of sleep every night and get carded all the time due to your luminous skin and bright eyes. That’s the goal, at least, and I think we can get there with these ideas. Because money can’t buy you happiness, but it certainly can buy you glowing skin. (Through the sorcery of makeup.) Ready?

The easiest way to create subtle radiance is with a liquid luminizer. There are tons out there, but I don’t think you need to spend a fortune on one -- especially because Revlon has brought back its Skinlights Face illuminator ($12.99). It’s lightweight, it comes in a few colors for different effects, and (most importantly) it doesn’t look disco-ball shiny. Instead, it makes you look like a Hollywood lighting director follows you around to ensure that you always look soft and gorgeous. I usually wear it alone on my cheekbones and around my eyes, as I did in the picture. But you can also squeeze a few drops of it into lotion or foundation, and it creates an overall healthy glow, like you just had a great workout but are somehow not sweaty or red-faced.

If you want to take the whole luminous thing to the next level, it’s really easy. You’ve probably read that old trick about using white eyeliner on the lower waterline to make your eyes appear larger/make your whole self look more awake. Don’t know about you, but this has always made me look like, well, I have a bunch of white eyeliner on my waterline. It doesn’t look natural or realistic, which isn’t a bad thing in general -- but for the purpose of makeup trickery, it doesn’t flow.

Instead of white eyeliner, here’s what you can do. Get a shimmery eye pencil in a shimmery pink, shell, or bronze color -- whatever complements your skin tone best. (For me, it’s pink.) I like Make Up For Ever Aqua Shadow ($25) because it just doesn’t budge at all, which is key for summer. Then, put just a little bit of the pencil in the inner corner of your eye -- the “v” right by the orbital bone. This takes all of 10 seconds, but it will brighten your eyes by reflecting light. You can also do this on the brow bone, but be careful -- if the finish is too frosty, it will look really 80s, and not in the fun retro way but in the Dynasty way.

Finally, if you want more of a pearly sheen on your cheeks, these are the four words you need to know: Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick ($42). It’s a classic product because it highlights cheekbones so well that Maleficent would be envious. Here’s the trick, though. Don’t just brush it on like blush, because it’s easy to create shimmer overload if you use a heavy hand. (I’ve learned this the hard way, having piled on enough powder to make me look like a Starlight Express understudy. Whoops!) The idea is to sweep a little of this on top of your blush, and you can also dust it over your eyelids if you really want to get wild.

Of course, there are lots of other ways to fake luminosity, and these are just three of mine. What about you? Oh, and Minou the cat begs you to check out my beauty site, The Glowhow, too.