Highlighter Review | Freddie

Hi guys,

Recently I came into possession of two popular highlighters: theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer and the Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette.

With Mary-Lou costing £17.50, and the Sleek palette boasting three additional shades at only £10, I thought you may be interested in how they measure up against one another.


The packaging of these products is very different. They are both plastic, but neither feels cheap. Mary-Lou comes in a round, metallic silver casing with a retro-style sticker on the front featuring the eponymous Mary-Lou’s mug shot. On the other hand, the Sleek palette is rectangular, with a mirrored gold finish. They both have a pleasingly huge mirror, sat inside a hinged lid which stays upright during use. The Sleek palette comes with a little brush, which I find ineffective.


Mary-Lou is a very finely milled powder which feels silky when running your finger over the pan, and doesn’t look at all powdery on the skin.

The Sleek palette contains one cream (Ecliptic, TL), one finely milled powder (Subsolar, BL), and two baked powders (Hemisphere, TR, and Equinox, BR).


Both products tend towards the dramatic end of the highlighter spectrum, so if that’s not for you, give these both a miss! Mary-Lou is definitely subtler than the Sleek palette colours. The baked highlighters, Hemisphere and Equinox pack the biggest reflective punch.


Mary-Lou is a beautiful champagne, which is close to and blends well on my skin tone (NW20), producing a healthy glow.

The closest shade in the Sleek palette to Mary-Lou is Equinox, which is darker and peachier, and as a result, shows up as colour on the skin. This is my favourite shade, and I love to use it on the lid in a warm-toned smokey eye.

Hemisphere gives an ethereal lilac shine to the skin. I would wear this to parties and festivals, but not day-to-day.

Subsolar looks yellowish in the pan but swatches as an almost cool-toned white gold. I like to use this on the brow bone.

The cream shade Ecliptic is rosey pink colour, but is quite sheer and natural on application.

Final Thoughts

If you are after a single highlighter which you can use to death and look fabulous every day, Mary-Lou is worth your money. If you prefer variety and creativity at a minimal hit to quality, the Sleek palette is the way to go.

I hope you found this head-to-head review helpful, and are having a fab week!

F x


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