We're In Love With Lush's New Highlighters — But There's Just One Catch

Photo: Courtesy of LUSH.
Back in June, we were lucky enough to pay a visit to the Lush Labs HQ Swatch Shop in London's Soho neighborhood, where we learned that the cruelty-free beauty brand would be expanding their makeup range to include an impressive 40 shades of solid foundation, in a formula cheekily named Slap Stick.
With 14% pigment for all-over coverage, a super-blend of oils to quench thirsty skin, three undertones to choose from (including cool, warm, and neutral to complement all complexions), and 100% vegan ingredients, it's no surprise that the foundations flew off shelves when they launched a few days later. But on our trip, there was another product we were sworn to secrecy over: The brand-new Glow Stick highlighters, which launch online today for a limited-edition month-long run... for UK shoppers only.
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We know, we know — what's the point of knowing all about Lush's latest if you can't even get your hands on it? But just think: It's fan feedback that has brought countless discontinued products back from the dead, so why not new releases, too? Considering the Glow Sticks are on par with most high-end highlighters we've tried (yet are reasonably priced at £11.95, or just over $15 USD), and feature both a buttery, blendable texture and an eco-friendly formula, these babies are worth begging for.
So, on to the details: There are five shades in total, each formulated with a range of skin tones in mind and named for a type of bird. There's Rock Dove, an iridescent lilac; Ibis, an intense gold; Lark, a glowy taupe; Robin, a punchy rose; and wildcard Peacock, which is jade green with a silver gleam and doubles as an eyeshadow. The best way to apply is to draw the highlighter onto your skin like a crayon and use your fingertips to blend it in. The shimmer really pops, so if you want a subtle glow, use a light hand.
Photo: Courtesy of Jacqueline Kilikita.
The author wearing Lush's Glow Stick highlighter in shade Lark.
Just like with the foundation, Lush has sourced the Glow Stick ingredients from projects that support women in work and children in education. Each highlighter is 100% vegan, cruelty-free, and made with argan oil harvested by a women’s co-operative in Morocco, as well as organic, extra-virgin coconut oil sourced from Nias, Indonesia. 10% of profits from the purchase of the coconut oil go directly to support a non-profit organization that funds literacy classes and dental needs on the remote island of Nias.
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In keeping with Lush's green policy, which aims to give back to the planet instead of just taking away, the highlighters are formulated without plastic glitter — a substance typically made from tiny particles of reflective plastic, which are an ecological hazard. Instead, they contain synthetic mica made in the Lush lab: It makes up the sparkle in all Lush products, from bath bombs to artisan soap. According to the brand, synthetic mica is purer and brighter than natural mica, looks seamless on skin (that we can vouch for), and doesn't have any rough, irritating edges, which makes it safe for even sensitive skin types.
When we asked co-founder Rowena Bird why she chose to make the highlighter sticks "naked" — like with the Slap Stick foundation, there's a wax seal at the base of the product to stop your fingers from getting glittery while you apply — she mentioned that most plastic beauty packaging is often too small to be recycled, which can be problematic for the environment. "We need to look beyond fancy packaging," Bird told us. "For Lush, it's all about the product. How much do you care about what you're putting onto your lips and on your skin? Come in, have a look, and save the planet."
This story was originally published on Refinery29 UK.
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