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Someone has to say it: the beauty world’s obsession with ‘glowing’—or looking ‘lit-from within’—has become gargantuan. Us included. Every second item we drop seems to have the words ‘glow’ or ‘luminous’ in there somewhere, and if we’re not layering on a dewy or ‘glassy’ skincare routine, we’re priming with illuminators and frosting our cheeks, nose and cupid’s bow with cream, liquid, gel or powder highlighters—oftentimes even doubling up.
So when did the obsession start? Before highlighters were on our feed, they were on the stage, used in conjunction with contouring to give life to actors’ faces so you could see their expressions from any angle in the theatre. This, of course, became essential in film, too, and quintessential to drag queens, who took (and still take) contouring and highlighting to all-new levels in order to define—or change—their features. Now, glow is for the everyday—to show how fresh, healthy and hydrated we are (even if we swapped water for wine and went a bit hard on a grazing board the night before).
WATCH MORE: How many highlighters can you wear at once?
As it stands, we have over 80 different highlighters on offer (RMS, Mecca Cosmetica, Hourglass and Jouer taking the crown), and that doesn’t even include all the glow-getting skincare and luminous base products. With all this hype, it was about time someone disrupted the glow zone, and turned it on its head. Enter NARS’ Afterglow collection: a lip, cheek and eye collection serving up a new take on the glow we know and love (or as they call it; an ‘afterglow delight’).
Rather than focusing on shimmers and glitters (although the range does include a few winners), the brand declared their crush on colour, delivering a slew of warm, skin-inspired colours that mimic the all-over glow our body naturally creates when we’re flirted with, have just had a Sunday afternoon nap, or are fresh out of a HIIT session enjoying an acai bowl. Think about it; when we’re truly glowing, from the inside, out, our cheeks are a little flushed, the smile on our face lifts our cheeks up, our eyes are wide and bright, and our lips are filled with blood-rushing colour. It’s the real, honest way to glow, and NARS is giving us the tools to live that look, round the clock.
READ MORE: Bored of no-makeup makeup? Try this
So, how does one glow without glitter? It’s easy:
1. Start with skin that’s clear, calm and hydrated. Your favourite serums, oils and moisturisers will do the trick, just as long as they’re not mattifying.
2. Give life to your cheeks with flesh-inspired blushes (like those found in the Overlust Cheek Palette), which will help to create a natural-looking rush of colour. Sweep them over your cheeks and through to your temples—gliding remaining product over the bridge of your nose.
3. Warm up your eyes with a wash of beige, brown and champagne, finished with pops of pink. This will keep your glow fresh and natural, while bringing attention to the natural sparkle in your eye.
4. Swipe a sheer, tinted, high-shine balm across your lips for a surge of hydration with a your-lips-but-better wash of colour (NARS’ Afterglow Lip Balm in Dolce Vita is the current MECCA HQ obsession).
Ready to try the new glow? Discover NARS’ limited edition (and soon to be cult-favourite) Afterglow collection.
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