Strobing: Summer Beauty Trend


So you’ve finally conquered contouring, then along comes a brand new beauty trend to throw a proverbial spanner in the works (and your makeup bag). So what exactly is strobing, and why is everyone talking about it? Here we unveil the secrets behind this latest beauty craze, and why you need to try it this summer.

Makeup and image Ania Milczarczyk

What is strobing?

The term strobing only began being bandied about by beauty editors and bloggers after contouring became mainstream, but this particular makeup technique is actually something that a majority of makeup artists have already been practicing for years. “Strobing is another word for highlighting, but with a slightly different technique,” says makeup artist Hayley Dutton. “The way I see strobing is more from a skincare perspective; instead of layering up the face, the idea behind strobing is to give the skin an iridescence, or luminous feel, that’s almost coming from within rather than from products that have been added to the skin.”

Is strobing different to highlighting?

Strobing is actually very similar to highlighting, with the main difference being that you generally wouldn’t pair it with contouring – rather you rely on illuminating products to highlight the high points of your face and sculpt your visage. The aim of strobing is to leave your skin looking naturally dewy, radiant, healthy and fresh, without looking like you have applied layer upon layer of makeup. Essentially it’s like undercover highlighting.

How do I get the look?

Start by using creamy highlighters underneath your makeup as a base, and then after you have applied your foundation you simply add more liquid or cream illuminating products to the high points of your face such as the cheekbones, the bridge of your nose and your Cupid’s bow to create natural looking highlights. “Personally I always prefer to use liquid highlighters, as I feel creamy products blend much more easily, create a natural finish, and become part of the skin rather than just another layer that sits on top,” says Hayley.

Ready to start strobing? Try one of these gorgeous products:

Should I use a sponge, a brush – or just my fingers?

While all three of these application options can work beautifully, a good-quality makeup brush is your best bet for the perfect finish. “Brushes allows you to be much more accurate with where product is placed on the face,” says Hayley. Look for a multipurpose brush that will work well with cream and liquid formulas. Try: Ere Perez Eco Vegan Multipurpose Brush:

Does this mean the contouring trend is over?

Not by a long shot! Contouring is definitely here to stay well into 2016 – but ultimately it’s all about finding the right look for you as an individual. “In my opinion strobing is a technique used best for people that really love a natural radiant finish to the skin, whereas contouring and highlighting à la Kimmy K is great for those of us that really love a strong highlight and contour – and also maybe for those of us with an oilier skin who prefer using powder products and a matte finish.”

Originally published for, written by beauty editor Lauren Dunne.

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