We take beauty tips from models very seriously, so when model-turned-blogger Hanneli Mustaparta told Vogue that the secret to her perfect legs was body illuminator, we launched an investigation. What we found was that subtle formulas that cleverly reflect light for a gentle glow have replaced the nightclub-ready formulas of the past. Below, we’ve rounded up the best vacation-ready body highlighters. We promise there’s nary a glittery product in the bunch.
This lotion-meets-highlighter is like a gateway formula: It absorbs like moisturizer, hydrates with vitamins E and B3, and packs a light-catching sheen. Apply all over your body for a shimmer that’s more dinner-out than discotheque.
Like face makeup, a powder formula proves easier to work with than a cream, making this highlighter perfect for quick application on your shoulders, collarbone, or anywhere else the sun hits.
Don’t let the quirky name fool you, this formula is the most natural version on our list. Its balmy texture leaves your limbs looking dewy and its cream-to-powder formula is virtually effortless to blend.
Maran’s cult-favorite formula blends beautifully into skin, leaving a delicate shimmer behind. Warm up a few pumps into the palm of your hand and dab directly onto skin. Or, mix into your face or body lotion for a lit-from-within glow all over.
No one knows highlighters like Becca Cosmetics, and this one delivers on all fronts. Available in five shades ranging from the peachy pink-based Creativity to Strength, a gold-reflecting bronze, this dance-floor ready formula can be applied on the face and body for a monochromatic look.
Applied wet or dry, this fan-favorite can be as subtle or as flashy as you want it. The liquid pigments are baked for 24 hours on terracotta tiles and then hand-finished into silky domes of powder by Italian artisans. Simply put: It offers an even glow that'll be at the receiving end of compliments.
Inspired by luxury that is the French Polynesia, this creamy formula works equally well for a girls' night out as it does at brunch. Smooth onto legs and shoulders for an after-dark glow, or mix a dollop into your body lotion for a day-appropriate sheen.