The world’s gone mad for light-mimicking products: last year, the NPD Group reported a 21 percent increase in sales in the highlighting makeup category. Now, thanks to our communal obsession with highlighter and the rise of the “skincare as makeup” movement, a new star beauty product ingredient is on the rise. Alicia Yoon, founder and CEO of K-beauty e-comm site Peach & Lily, predicts that shine-enhancing diamond powder beauty products will be huge this fall: “I’ve seen lots of brands launching formulas with diamonds or diamond powder in [the formula],” Yoon told Fashionista during a recent interview.
Of course, diamond-containing beauty products are nothing new. Diamond dust serums, masks, BB creams, nail polish and shampoos and conditioners first hit the market years ago. Recall Mila Kunis’ much-discussed $7,000 ruby-and-diamond facial — that was 2011 — and Kelly Osbourse’s OTT $250,000 black diamond mani, which made its red carpet debut at the 2012 Emmys. However, as you can clearly see from those figures, diamond powder doesn’t exactly come cheap, so it’s taken a while for the trend to hit the mainstream.
Happily, the latest crop of diamond powder-infused makeup products is a bit more affordable. True, this means that their diamond content is likely low, but c’est la vie — you’re mostly buying the objectively pretty products for the bragging rights, anyhow. As the Cut pointed out back in 2013, diamond powder is a great exfoliator — and gentler than most — but when it comes to its skin-brightening and imperfection-disguising abilities, it’s no better than some of the cheaper products on the market. Yes, diamond dust reflects light and gives your skin a luminous, pearlescent finish, but it’s an inactive ingredient. It doesn’t give your skin any long-term benefits, though it does (ostensibly) open your pores and allow other ingredients to sink in. The diamond particles themselves don’t penetrate the skin — they wash down the drain when you wash your face.
Still, if you can afford it, there’s something to be said for a product that leaves you glowing and feeling fancy (if only temporarily). Click through the gallery above for 13 diamond powder-infused makeup and skin care buys that caught our eye based on more than just their carat rating. And take heart — a few ring in under $25.
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