Buy or Bye: I Tried Jaclyn Hill’s New Highlighters

I’ve loved makeup my entire life. I was in middle school when Michelle Phan started making tutorials on YouTube and instantly became obsessed with the endless possibilities that makeup provided. Because my parents had dial-up internet until I was nearly in college, watching videos on YouTube was difficult, but I did it whenever I had a few hours to tie the phone up and let a video load.

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COMING OF AGE

I was in high school the first time I ever stepped foot into a Sephora, or even realized they existed, and it wasn’t until I was in college that I started to actually watch YouTube tutorials and follow along. Jaclyn Hill was the first YouTuber that I ever subscribed to and I watched her videos religiously. I followed along with every one and bought every makeup product she recommended (that I could afford)—from MAC eyeliners and Makeup Geek eyeshadows to Gerard Cosmetics lighted lip glosses and Sigma Brushes. Jaclyn’s YouTube channel was actually what inspired me to start my first blog, which I’m not hyperlinking here because it’s incredibly embarrassing.

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…AND I OOP

In the years that followed, I have branched out and watched other YouTubers but I’ve always wanted Jaclyn to succeed. I’ve purchased almost every collaboration that she’s done with other brands, from her personally curated collection with Sigma to the iconic Becca Champagne Pop collaboration.  I didn’t end up purchasing any of the lipsticks from the first launch of Jaclyn (Hill?) Cosmetics because I was leery about purchasing a nude lipstick that I couldn’t swatch or see in-person before purchasing, but I was horrified as I watched everything unfold. As both a one-time loyal follower and a PR professional, I felt like I had an interesting perspective about the way her disastrous launch was handled (or more like, wasn’t handled)—and how her reputation and brand (both personal and professional) suffered as a direct result.

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COMEBACK KID

Following #lipstickgate, Jaclyn took a hiatus from social media, but she’s back and just dropped a limited edition holiday highlighter collection that includes $49 four-pan highlighter palettes, $32 glowy all-over face powders, $24 loose highlighters, and $24 highlighter brushes.

THE DETAILS

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In terms of pricing, the entire collection hits a variety of price points. The cheapest items from the line are the brushes, with the Mood Light Brush, the Accent Light Brush, and the Beaming Light Brush priced at $24, $20, and $20, respectively. Next, the Beaming Light Highlighter, an intense, powder-to-cream loose highlighter, rings up to $24, and the Mood Light Highlighter, an all-over illuminating powder, costs $32. Finally, the two highlighter palettes, Accent Light and Flash & Flare, both retail for $49. In the video revealing the impending launch below, Hill details and swatches each product in the line and lists further pricing for bundles in the video’s description.

THE GOODS

I picked up two different shades of the Beaming Light Highlighter, one in Extra and one in Extra, a dazzling white gold, and Bomb, a dazzling golden sand (per the company’s website). I really wanted the Flash palette, and despite setting my alarm and having everything in my cart and ready to checkout at 12:03, they had already sold out. They restock on 12/5, so I might have to buy one, you know, for science.

I paid for these on my own—which really goes without saying since I am obviously not cool enough to be on anyone’s PR list.

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I also picked up the J03 Beaming Light Highlighter brush. I honestly didn’t think that the other two brushes were anything to write home about or unlike anything I already own, but the J03 brush piqued my interest and I was able to get it as a set with one of the Beaming Light Highlighters, so I saved a couple bucks.

MY THOUGHTS

My first impression is that I really like these products. These highlighters are intense—and I’m here for it. It bodes well for me that oily looking skin is in style and I hope this trend continues for a long time. I love to look like a cute little glazed donut.

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I’ve never really been a fan of loose highlighters because they are so damn messy, and to be entirely honest these are not an exception. They’re messy just like every other powder highlighter that came before it, but I like the color payoff and the formula, so I’m going to wear it.

I saw a lot of people online saying that highlighter isn’t popular or cool anymore but if you’re into it, then keep wearing it and be glowy and hoe-y proudly.

TL;DR

Jaclyn’s first launch was a total flop—but this one isn’t.

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