Best Highlighters $10 and Under (Powder)

Best of

Highlighters ($15 and under)

Highlighters come in more than just gold and pink, so I thought I’d share the highest-rated highlighters by price bracket as this year has been shaping up to be even more highlighter-filled than last year! I love that NYX released several shifting highlighters this year–really great for layering. What are your favorite budget-friendly highlighters?

01.

01. Crushed Bloom NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $7.99/0.21 oz.

A

NYX Crushed Bloom Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is muted, medium-dark peach with warmer, yellow undertones and a pink-to-gold...

NYX Crushed Bloom Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is muted, medium-dark peach with warmer, yellow undertones and a pink-to-gold...

02.

02. Be My Highlight Essence

Essence

PPermanent. $4.49/0.23 oz.

A-

Essence Be My Highlight Baked Highlighter Powder ($4.49 for 0.23 oz.) is a soft, light-medium golden peach with warm undertones and a luminous sheen....

Essence Be My Highlight Baked Highlighter Powder ($4.49 for 0.23 oz.) is a soft, light-medium golden peach with warm undertones and a luminous sheen....

03.

03. Snow Rose NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $7.99/0.21 oz.

A-

NYX Snow Rose Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is a very light, cool-toned beige with pink-to-lavender pearl that gave it more...

NYX Snow Rose Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is a very light, cool-toned beige with pink-to-lavender pearl that gave it more...

04.

04. Twilight Tint NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $7.99/0.21 oz.

A-

NYX Twilight Tint Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is cool, bluish white with an iridescent blue-to-violet sheen. The finish...

NYX Twilight Tint Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is cool, bluish white with an iridescent blue-to-violet sheen. The finish...

05.

05. Synthetica NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $7.99/0.21 oz.

A-

NYX Synthetica Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is a pop of orange with warm, red undertones and a gold, frosted finish. It...

NYX Synthetica Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is a pop of orange with warm, red undertones and a gold, frosted finish. It...

06.

06. Peach Kiss Makeup Revolution

Makeup Revolution

PPermanent. $9.00/0.49 oz.

B+

Makeup Revolution Peach Kiss Skin Kiss ($9.00 for 0.49 oz.) is a light-medium pink coral with warm undertones and a metallic sheen. The consistency...

Makeup Revolution Peach Kiss Skin Kiss ($9.00 for 0.49 oz.) is a light-medium pink coral with warm undertones and a metallic sheen. The consistency...

07.
B+

Makeup Revolution Moon Glow Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a soft, pale pink with warm undertones and a luminous sheen. Of the...

Makeup Revolution Moon Glow Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a soft, pale pink with warm undertones and a luminous sheen. Of the...

09.

09. Narcissistic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B+

NYX Narcissistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, golden peach with warm undertones and a luminous sheen. It had a soft, lightly powdery...

NYX Narcissistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, golden peach with warm undertones and a luminous sheen. It had a soft, lightly powdery...

10.

10. Ritualistic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B+

NYX Ritualistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, white gold with a lighter, ivory base and stronger, darker gold shimmer. It had nice...

NYX Ritualistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, white gold with a lighter, ivory base and stronger, darker gold shimmer. It had nice...

11.

11. Champagne Campaign Catrice

Catrice

PPermanent. $5.99/0.17 oz.

B+

Catrice Champagne Campaign Highlighting Powder ($5.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a very light, golden beige with warm undertones and a soft sheen....

Catrice Champagne Campaign Highlighting Powder ($5.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a very light, golden beige with warm undertones and a soft sheen....

12.

12. Magnetic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B+

NYX Magnetic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium, peachy-coral with warm undertones and a frosted, golden sheen. It had good...

NYX Magnetic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium, peachy-coral with warm undertones and a frosted, golden sheen. It had good...

13.

13. Ice Queen NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $5.00/0.1 oz.

B+

Ice Queen is described as a "pearly pale white." It's a very light, cool-toned white with a frosted finish. It had semi-opaque coverage that was...

Ice Queen is described as a "pearly pale white." It's a very light, cool-toned white with a frosted finish. It had semi-opaque coverage that was...

14.

14. Lavender Steel NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $7.99/0.21 oz.

B+

NYX Lavender Steel Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is an iridescent, lavender with a pale, grayish beige base. It looked more...

NYX Lavender Steel Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder ($7.99 for 0.21 oz.) is an iridescent, lavender with a pale, grayish beige base. It looked more...

15.
B+

Makeup Revolution Ever Glow Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a soft white with subtle, warm undertones and a soft sheen. This was...

Makeup Revolution Ever Glow Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a soft white with subtle, warm undertones and a soft sheen. This was...

16.

16. Stardust Catrice

Catrice

PPermanent. $5.99/0.17 oz.

B+

Catrice Stardust Highlighting Powder ($5.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a very light, pinkish-white with cool undertones and a soft, shimmery finish....

Catrice Stardust Highlighting Powder ($5.99 for 0.17 oz.) is a very light, pinkish-white with cool undertones and a soft, shimmery finish....

17.
B+

Makeup Revolution Holographic Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a bright white with a gold-to-green shifting frost. The finish was...

Makeup Revolution Holographic Lights Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a bright white with a gold-to-green shifting frost. The finish was...

18.

18. Golden Lights Makeup Revolution

Makeup Revolution

PPermanent. $6.00/0.26 oz.

B
19.

19. Gold Addict Makeup Revolution

Makeup Revolution

PPermanent. $6.00/0.26 oz.

B

Makeup Revolution Gold Addict Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a muted, medium-dark gold with warm, yellow undertones and a metallic sheen. ...

Makeup Revolution Gold Addict Strobe Highlighter ($6.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a muted, medium-dark gold with warm, yellow undertones and a metallic sheen. ...

20.

20. Soft Light NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $5.00/0.1 oz.

B

Soft Light is described as a "matte nude." It's a very light, white-beige that is fairly neutral in undertone paired with a matte finish. The...

Soft Light is described as a "matte nude." It's a very light, white-beige that is fairly neutral in undertone paired with a matte finish. The...

21.

21. Peach Lights Makeup Revolution

Makeup Revolution

PPermanent. $6.00/0.26 oz.

B
22.

22. Enigmatic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B-

NYX Enigmatic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium peachy-pink with warm, golden shimmer that gives it a frosted sheen. [written_dupes...

NYX Enigmatic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium peachy-pink with warm, golden shimmer that gives it a frosted sheen. [written_dupes...

23.

23. Golden Kiss Makeup Revolution

Makeup Revolution

PPermanent. $9.00/0.49 oz.

B-

Makeup Revolution Golden Kiss Skin Kiss ($9.00 for 0.49 oz.) is a light-medium yellow gold with warm undertones and a metallic sheen. It had medium,...

Makeup Revolution Golden Kiss Skin Kiss ($9.00 for 0.49 oz.) is a light-medium yellow gold with warm undertones and a metallic sheen. It had medium,...

24.

24. Chaotic NYX

NYX

PPermanent. $9.00/0.33 oz.

B-

NYX Chaotic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium pink with warm undertones and a golden shimmer and sparkle. The texture was...

NYX Chaotic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium pink with warm undertones and a golden shimmer and sparkle. The texture was...

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About the Reviewer

Reviewer

Christine has normal-to-dry skin with areas of dryness (cheeks, nose, and under the eyes). She has a light-medium skintone with subtle, warmer yellow undertones. Her best foundation matches include: Tarte Rainforest of the Sea in Light-Medium Neutral (best match), Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in Desert Beige 2N1, Giorgio Armani Maestro Glow in 4.0, Hourglass Warm Ivory Vanish Seamless Finish, Laura Mercier Candleglow Soft Luminous in Dusk, MAC NC20/NC25, Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Liquid in Y305 (140). For more matches, please read our full Foundation FAQ. For more information on our review process, please read our Review FAQ.

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14 Comments

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Wet n Wild Reserve Your Cabana – for the subtlest, natural glow. Very affordable for a ton of product. I wish mine didn’t kick up so much dang powder even with the tiniest dip of my brush!

Essence Be My Highlight – if I had to pick 1 highlighter forever, it would be this. More sheen than WnW RYC; perfect for everyday with any look.

Wet n Wild Precious Petals – the most metallic of the three listed here. A very pretty slightly icy pink. I love that it’s not too powdery either.

I think these are my only drugstore highlighters but I’m hoping to branch out more!

The only “budget” highlighter I have is WnW Reserve Your Cabana. Many of the other brands in your list, Christine, just aren’t available in Canada or not readily. We do have NYX, Essence and WnW but usually, it’s a limited assortment of products, which is quite annoying.

I’ve decided not to support MR. I won’t buy anything from them. The Kat von D thing is something I’ve been saying for awhile. MR steals from other companies. They don’t have inspired makeup, they have rip off makeup.

Having 3 from the list above, Nyx Synthetica, Lavender Steel and Narcissistic, I can say for a fact that these are just as wonderful as my pricier highlighters! There’s still a few more on my wishlist yet to be bought!

I wish Catrice and MUR were available in Canada. I’m glad that Shoppers Drug Mart have started to carry and expand brands like Pixi and Essence. I bought last weekend the Essence Mosaic Compact Powder in 01 Sunkissed and I love it; it’s a very subtle bronzer/highlighter on my fair skin. I hesitated between this one and Essence Be My Highlight but I picked up the former as I already have a subtle highlighter – Clinique Nude Glow Up-Lighting Illuminating Powder.
Thank you Christine for the list – as always it’s very useful πŸ™‚

I love Essence Pure Nude Highlighter. I have a few of the NYX and MUR on my Ulta wishlist. Some budget highlighters I like that are not listed are Wet N Wild Reserve Your Cabana, Wet N Wild MegaGlo Highlighting Powder, and Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips All-in-1 Custom Nude Palette for Face and Eyes (not technically under $10 retail, but it is always on sale). Of course ColourPop’s highlighers are also incredible, but I imagine they will be on your cream highlighters list. πŸ˜‰

This is such a great list. So much temptation!

My favorite budget highlighters are the Looxi Beauty refill pans (I put them in a Zpalette), $7.50. I have MR Golden Lights and Nyx Lavender Steel, and I think both are quite lovely. I also love Notoriously Morbid Osteomancy, $4 for mini and $8.50 full-sized; Medusa’s Makeup Moonlight Highlighter (straight up metallic gold), $12; e.l.f. Baked Highlighters, especially Moonlight Pearls, $4.

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! πŸ™‚ If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!