Studio Baked Highlighter

Price:
$3 
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Category:
Makeup > Concealers & Highlighters > Highlighter
Last Updated:
12/30/2013
Jar Packaging:
No
Tested On Animals:
No

e.l.f.'s Studio Baked Highlighter is a good option for people looking to add a little glow to their skin without breaking the bank.

Housed in a plastic compact is a generously sized pressed-powder highlighter with a satiny-smooth texture. It's very easy to pick up on a brush, and isn't too powdery, so product doesn't go flying everywhere when you swipe your brush across it.

This highlighting powder goes on very sheer, achieving an effect that's pretty yet without obvious shimmer or sparkle. It comes in three different shades, and all are sheer enough they can be used on most skin tones without looking too garish.

The only drawback (and this is true for all shiny powders) is that if you have enlarged pores or oily skin, this will make them more noticeable. Other than that, this is a great highlighting option—and the price is right, too!

Pros:
  • Satiny-smooth texture.
  • Highlighter is sheer enough to enhance skin without obvious shimmer or sparkle.
  • A beauty bargain!
Cons:
  • Like all shiny powders, the finish can emphasize large pores and oily skin.

From a line of cosmetics whose claim to fame is its rock-bottom prices we weren't expecting much. With almost every individual item selling for just $1, could there be any outstanding finds to rival the best options from drugstores and department stores? Surprisingly, the answer is yes. Yet although that's good news, the entire picture isn't so rosy, and many of the products from e.l.f. (which stands for Eyes, Lips, Face) are as basic as can be, while a few are resounding disappointments we wouldn't even give away.

e.l.f. was founded by Scott Vincent Borba—the same businessman responsible for the Borba "beauty waters" being sold at Sephora boutiques—and Joseph Shamah. The story goes that one day Borba was shopping in an unnamed "dollar store" (where everything sells for a dollar) and noticed women dressed in designer clothing and sporting designer handbags loading up their baskets with inexpensive nail polish, eye pencils, and lip balm. He took note of the products being sold in such stores and quickly decided he could offer products of even higher quality at the same competitive price. His idea paid off, as e.l.f. enjoyed sales last year of $5 million.

As you might expect, not everything in the e.l.f. line is great. When you're offering almost every product for $1, they're not going to be nearly as luxurious or innovative as the company proclaims (the ingredient lists couldn't be more basic and the packaging is sometimes slipshod). Many e.l.f. items have packaging that, while functional, can only be described as cheap. In terms of value, yes, almost everything is inexpensive, but in most cases the container sizes are much smaller than the norm. Still, if you're considering spending a few dollars on fun, occasional-use colors, size becomes much less of an issue.

In addition to being found at some dollar stores, e.l.f. has expanded its distribution to selected Target stores and regional drugstores. However, the best place to experience the collection is online (none of the stores provide testers). The cheaper elements are a given based on the price point e.l.f. has established, but overall you're likely to be impressed with what they developed for so little money, and you may just find some beauty bargains that raise the bar—at least to a height that's taller than your average elf!

For more information about e.l.f., call (800) 231-4732 or visit www.eyeslipsface.com.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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