The best highlighter brush: a makeup bag must-have

the best highlighter brush

To ensure you get your contouring just right, a highlighter brush is an essential. They allow you to practice precise shading and they enable you to sweep on your makeup so you don’t run the risk of caking it on. 

There are several types of highlighter brush available and they all offer up something different to the table. Choosing the right one comes down to your personal preference but we’ve provided you with a brief guide below. 

While a stippling brush is for those who want to apply the lightest touch of highlighter, perhaps as a daylook, a tapered or angled brush allows you to more accurately apply your makeup, great if you’re looking to perfect your look for a night out with the girls. 

There’s also the option to choose a fanned brush to apply your highlighter, another great brush for contouring, or you can always go for a rounded brush, which is a great all-rounder. 

Urban Decay Pro Diffusing Highlighter Brush

1.Urban Decay Pro Diffusing Highlighter Brush

Apply a light touch or a heavier strike for your preferred look

Reasons to buy

 Cruelty-free and environmentally friendly 

If you care about the look of your highlighter brush and where it comes from as much as the shape of it, this one from Urban Decay ticks all the boxes. With a smaller shape, it enables you to precisely apply your makeup, while the soft bristles, which are actually made from recycled plastic bottles, mimic the feel of real hair, including the way in which it interacts with your makeup. Urban Decay also say that bacteria doesn’t cling onto synthetic fibre as much as animal hair, so this one is much easier to clean.  

Charlotte Tilbury Powder & Sculpt Brush

2.Charlotte Tilbury Powder & Sculpt Brush

The tapered shape of this brush allows you to accurately apply your highlighter

Reasons to buy

Ideal for sculpting and highlighting  

With the tapered end providing a narrow point on which to place the makeup, you can more accurately apply the highlighter to the desired area, whether it’s the bridge of your nose or your cheekbones. Made using Charlotte Tilbury’s signature blend of rose gold and night crimson colours, this is a stylish makeup brush where the details have been carefully considered, with handles that prevent your brush from rolling off of your dressing table and marking the floor.  

Fenty Beauty Face & Body Kabuki Brush

3.Fenty Beauty Face & Body Kabuki Brush

It’s not all about the face, highlight your body with this brush from Rihanna

Reasons to buy

 For a light dusting of body powder 

Applying body highlighter before a night out can really bring your shoulders and chest to life. This face and body brush from Rihanna’s Fenty collection will enable you to lightly dust on body power for an illuminated look. Featuring 160 soft bristles, the brush has been cut to follow the curves of your body, whether that be your cheekbones or your shoulder blades and best of all, the brush is completely cruelty-free.  

Urban Decay Pro Contour Definition Brush

4.Urban Decay Pro Contour Definition Brush

Add definition to your cheekbones, jawline, nose and chin with this contouring brush

Reasons to buy

Ideal for shadow and lowlight contouring

Whether you’re a professional makeup artist or an experimenting amateur, if you’re looking to perfectly blend your powders, this highlighter brush from Urban Decay is a great choice. Its angled shape buffs up powders, while its soft synthetic hair picks up just the right amount of makeup so it doesn’t cake it on. If the Urban Decay stippling brush isn’t quite right for you, this one is a great alternative.  

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Brush

5.Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Brush

Reduce the amount of brushes you take with you on the go with this double-ended beauty

Reasons to buy

 Can be used for powder, blush, bronzer and highlighter

With a rounded side for finishing powder and bronzer and a tapered side for applying highlighter, this is a versatile brush and a great one to take on the road with you. The weight of the handles have even been carefully considered to ensure a smooth and even application. It’s vegan-friendly and PETA approved so you know that this brush has been produced cruelty-free. 

NYX Professional Makeup Pro Brush 06

6.NYX Professional Makeup Pro Brush 06

You don’t have to spend excessive amounts of money for a good hairbrush

Reasons to buy

Works well with powders for effortless highlight 

The fanned design of the brush head allows you to lightly highlight your features. The density of the brush should provide a smooth, flawless coverage and its made from synthetic fibres, so no its cruelty-free. With an RRP of just £14, it’s much cheaper than any of the other brushes on our list, making it a bargain buy for any makeup bag.