A couple weeks ago Maria Cosmetics kindly sent me their Hero Highlighter to test out before the launch. I first heard about the company when I attented a photography workshop hosted by my friend Debbie. At the workshop we got to chatting (about makeup of course!) and she opened her Maria Cosmetics highlighter and lipstick. She swatched the highlighter on me and I swatched it too, after which I instantly fell in love with the formula! Debbie told us a bit about the company and I later did some research of my own, because I loved the story behind the brand
About Maria Cosmetics:
We believe that makeup is about more than just looking beautiful. We see it as a tonic, a symbol of hope, your armour against life. Even on those days when you feel you are falling apart inside, a bright pop of lipstick or a spritz of perfume can instantly make you feel like everything’s going to be okay.
Maria Cosmetics is all about empowering women and celebrating strong female icons. We bring you top quality, affordable and cruelty-free & vegan beauty products to help you look and feel amazing, and play around with your look.
“Makeup is your war paint!”
~ Andrea Hurter, Maria Cosmetics Founder
Andrea started this company in honor of her mother, Marietjie, who passed away. You can watch the full story in this trailer here. It is so touching and left me in a pool of tears. I am very close to my mother, so naturally I absolutely love what this company stands for. Their products are all packaged with so much love and attention to detail, you can really tell it’s something Andrea is very passionate about. She doesn’t just wing it, you know? You can feel how much effort and care she puts it with all of her items. Your mom would be SO proud Andrea. Truly! I think what your company stands for is amazing and I wish you nothing but the best for all your future ventures.
Anyway, onto the highlighter
The Hero Highlight was designed to Highlight the Hero in YOU! Our dual use highlighter can be used to enhance the high points of the face such as the cheekbones, cupids bow, or brow bone or can be used as a beautiful eye shadow.
Andrea very kindly allowed me to pick a shade, and I went for Amelia Goes Airborne, because I thought it would suit me the best out of the lot. It’s described as a light color with a pink undertone. The shade is named after the American Aviation Pioneer and author, Amelia Earhart. Earhart was the first female to fly solo over the Atlantic ocean and set many other records. How amazing is that? I love that all the names are inspired by strong females.
The packaging is so cute! It’s not too small and is very light. The compact looks beautiful displayed on your vanity, because the lid sort of looks like it’s a diamond cut. It makes the product packaging pretty and unique. It is the tiniest bit bulky though, because when you lift the product there is a mirror underneath. I think they put the mirror underneath so you can see the actual highlighter through the lid. I’m not fussy about it and don’t mind it at all, because it’s still nice and small and fits easily into a small clutch, which is what loads of ladies need for touch up purposes. The mirror is a lovely touch too and one I appreciate.
Even though this specific color is described as light with a pink undertone, I thought it was going to be a bit more of a champagne gold as it looks that way in the pan. But as described, it’s definitely more of a pinky undertone. It’s not an issue though because I still found it to work for my skin tone. It does have some silver flecks in as well which can look a bit icy on my skin tone if I apply too much, but other than that the shade is beautiful. The texture is so, so soft. Even though it contains some glitter it’s nothing chunky or harshWhen I apply it with a fan brush or a denser brush – rubbing the brush in the pan – I do notice some fall out in the pan itself, but when I just tap my brush into the product there’s no fall out. To be honest fall out in the pan doesn’t bother me, as long as it doesn’t transfer all over my face. In which case, it didn’t! I used my Real Techniques Setting brush to apply it and it was beautiful. The formula is buildable too. The swatch below is dry but you can use it wet as well
After I used it dry a couple times I decided to ty using it wet and fell in love with the result! I use some setting spray to wet the high points of my face then apply the highlighter with the Real Techniques brush or my fingers. I prefer using my fingers over the brush as it just works better for me. After that I lightly bounce my blender over it just to diffuse it into my skin. The result is such a beautiful, wet looking highlight that can be toned down or built up for major intensity. I also find that using it dry does make the glitter a bit more apparent but when using it wet it’s much less visible and just looks like a wet, sheeny glow. It doesn’t emphasize any texture, flake or sit on top of my skin. The glitter is just the right amount to give you some luminosity when the light catches your face, it’s nothing disco ball like so don’t fret about that. I’m not into glittery highlighters but like I said, the glitter in this product is nothing drastic, at least not to me. The highlighter wears beautifully throughout the day and can even be worn as eyeshadow. You can wear it very lightly for a natural glow or apply more (like me) for something more intense. I do also have to mention that if you plan of using this product wet, do not wet the actual product in the pan as this can cause crumbling when you want to use it again or cause some hard pan on certain areas of the product. This happens to majority of pressed powder makeup products so I recommend picking some product up with your brush, wetting your brush thereafter and applying it. Or if you’re like me and you prefer to just wet your face instead, you can do that too.
There are currently four shades in the range;
- Maya By Moonlight (suited for deeper skin tones)
- Amelia Goes Airborne (suited to med-dark skin)
- Curie Versus Chemistry (suited to light-med skin
- Jane To Jupiter
The highlighters retail for R210 each but Maria Cosmetics has kindly offered my readers a 20% discount code. I don’t get any commission of any kind from you guys using my code, it’s just there to save you some money. The code is aisha20% and can be applied at checkout. I just want to mention that with the 20% off code, the highlighters are only R168 each which is nothing for a start up company. Consider all of the costs. Packaging, labels, boxes, tissue paper, business cards etc etc. I just felt like mentioning this because when you support a small company you really are helping them grow. I hope you guys will support this amazing company, especially since their brand is built around woman empowerment. They are also cruelty free which is another big plus.
If you’re not into highlighters there is also some absolutely beautiful lipsticks on their website. I have my eye on My Madonna, Fly Away Frieda and Jukebox Jaun. My friend wore Fly Away Frieda and I immediately knew I needed it! It’s so pigmented and looked amazing on her. You can check out all the shades on the Maria Cosmetics website here
Have you guys tried anything from this brand? What are you currently eyeing from the website?