Makeup Trend Alert | STROBING

What is Strobing?

With an emphasis on luminous, glowing skin, Strobing is a wearable makeup trend that's taking the web by storm. It is easily achieved by using illuminating products on the high points of the face, paired with a natural coverage.

Highlighting is nothing new, and it has been showcased extensively alongside contouring techniques. Strobing is a modern take on highlighting, designed to be worn without any contour. We're seeing a more natural trend coming through in makeup, with less coverage and complicated techniques required. 

Strobing and highlighting works on a very simple principle: LIGHT brings things forward. DARK recedes. Using clever pops of light will gently enhance your features.  


Contouring has is complexities and can easily look overdone or muddy on the skin. Taking the focus back to a simple highlight gives us a more natural look, with skin looking like it's lit from within.

A healthy, glowing complexion is highly covetable. Creating this with cream or powder highlighting products is quick and easy.

Healthy skin = flawless makeup

Beautiful makeup starts with great skincare. Foundation and base products sit better on hydrated skin that has been exfoliated correctly. Before any makeup application, be sure to cleanse gently, and exfoliate with a gentle scrub or AHA / BHA product (try Paula's Choice exfoliants for super gentle effective skin renewal).

Apply your moisturiser about 30 minutes before makeup application. If your skin is very dry, use a face oil or hydrating primer to give it a moisture boost.

A spray toner is ideal to spritz on your skin just before your begin applying your makeup. Try Dermalogica Multi-Active Toner for a soothing moisture boost. You can also use your spray toner to finish your makeup.

Because Strobing focuses on healthy, glowing skin, keep your base foundation light. Opt for a sheer formula, and conceal in spots that need a little extra coverage.

Hit The lights

Once your skin is prepped, and your base foundation is on, you're ready to Strobe. Makeup layering works best when you put like over like - creams on liquid foundation, and powders over powder foundation. Highlight powders are usually fine to use on top of liquid foundations; just apply lightly to avoid product grabbing.

The areas to apply your highlight are:

  • Cheekbones
  • Browbone
  • The centre of the forehead
  • Above the brow
  • Down the centre of the nose
  • The Cupid's bow (and the tiny ridges leading up to the nose)
  • Centre of the chin

Strobe for your skin type

Oily / Combination Skin

- If your skin is oily and you have a natural shine through your T-zone, apply a mattifying or long-wearing foundation first. Try and use your foundation sparingly for a natural finish. 

- Powder highlighters are great for oilier skins. Use a powder that is finely milled and shimmery but not glittery. Apply your powder with a small fluffy brush.

- Cream highlighters can still work beautifully on oily skin; just apply around the cheek area and avoid the T-zone.

- Oily and combination skins may want to avoid or minimise Strobing on the chin, nose and forehead. 


Normal / Dry Skin

- Consider priming your skin with an illuminating product like M.A.C Strobe Cream. This can also be mixed into your foundation for a sheer glow.

- Apply your choice of highlighter through all the points listed above. Creamy products can be patted on with fingertips, or blended with a fluffy foundation / stippling brush.

- Powders can be layered over creams for a more intense glow.

- Finish with a spray toner.


Beauty guru strobing product picks

         Dermalogica Multi Active Spray Toner                             NARS Sheer Glow Foundation

      The Balm Mary Lou-Manizer                                          INIKA Light Reflect Illuminiser (Organic)

                 Benefit Girl Meets Pearl                                                 M.A.C Strobe Cream