photo: Instagram/nicoladallasen

For the longest time, I was extremely anti–drugstore highlighter. I truly believed that when it came to shiny stuff, the "you get what you paid for" motto was accurate. As a beauty editor, I've also been able to try a lot of pricier, beloved highlighters, such as those from Becca Cosmetics and Fenty Beauty, without having to splurge.

But then E.L.F. Cosmetics Beautifully Bare Highlighter Sticks, which cost only $4 a pop, came into my life and forced me to throw my highlighter elitism out the window. If you're in need of a quality highlighter that'll cost you less than your lunch today, look no further. E.L.F.'s got one.

That's right, I, a boujee beauty editor who swears by Fenty Killawatt, cannot get enough of this simple, dirt-cheap highlighter stick. 

photo: Instagram/.elfcosmetics

I never would have thought to try it, because I'm ultimately not a fan of most stick, jelly, and liquid highlighters, but a friend who bought extras at a sale gave one to me in early 2018, and I've refused to go without it in my makeup stash since.

E.L.F. Cosmetics Beautifully Bare Highlighter Stick ($4, E.L.F. Cosmetics) might actually be my ideal highlighter, and I usually hate any non-powder formula.

photo: Instagram/nicoladallasen

It comes in three shades: Champagne Glow ($4, E.L.F. Cosmetics)

photo: E.L.F. Cosmetics

Pink Pearl Glow ($4, E.L.F. Cosmetics)

photo: E.L.F. Cosmetics

Fresh Morning Dew ($4, E.L.F. Cosmetics)

photo: E.L.F. Cosmetics

Nine times out of 10, you'll catch me wearing Pink Pearl Glow, which is actually more white- or champagne-colored than it is pink.

photo: Instagram/nicoladallasen

The appeal of this highlighter is that it's fast, subtle, and simple. I like to apply it in one of two ways, the first of which is to rub a bunch of it on the back of my hand, like so, to warm it up before picking it up with a dense foundation brush and pressing it where I want it.

photo: Nicola Dall'Asen

That would be my cheekbones, my temples, the tip of my nose, and my chin, FYI.

My other, less tactful method is to just swipe it on, blend it out, and hope for the best — either way, it only takes seconds.

photo: Nicola Dall'Asen

And that's it. In these photos, I'm wearing the highlighter on top of concealer, foundation, setting powder, and blush, but it melts even better into bare or lightly covered skin. That's why this highlighter's so ideal for daily use rather than full beats.

photo: Nicola Dall'Asen

And it's so inexpensive, you can buy all three shades or stock up on as many multiples as you want at once!

photo: Giphy

That being said, if it's not ~blinding~ enough for you, it also serves as an excellent base for high-impact powder highlighters.

photo: Instagram/nicoladallasen

Because it's not quite solid and not quite gel or liquid, powders have no trouble sticking onto the stick formula and staying there.

If you're like me and you hate stick, jelly, or liquid highlighters because they move around so much, hear me out on this one: E.L.F.'s does not do that.

photo: Instagram/nicoladallasen

The jelly highlighter craze bugged the crap out of me because even the priciest of formulas moved the foundations I tried wearing underneath them. I was hesitant to try this stick highlighter for that reason, but was immediately relieved to find out it sits well on top of bare skin, liquid highlighter, setting power — everything.

But if I still haven't convinced you on the stick formula, maybe you can give the E.L.F. Baked Highlighter, also $4, a go instead.

photo: E.L.F. Cosmetics

Long story short, I just really love this highlighter, OK? That's all. Carry on about your day.

photo: Giphy