Each year the trend for beautifully dewy complexions gets a mini glow-up. In the past we’ve seen glazed donut skin and glass skin, but 2024 is giving us pearl skin.

Already, TikTok is all over it and the hashtag #pearlskin has racked up over 40 million views with the beauty girls quick to experiment. But, for the uninitiated, we’ve rounded up the best placement and products to know to tap into the look.

What is pearl skin?

As the name suggests, the trend takes its inspo from the delicate, luminous sheen of pearls, as well as leaning into a champagne-y, oyster color palette. Unlike glass skin, it looks less wet—instead it’s soft and silky, more ethereal and even more wearable.

“Glass skin is all about sheen and shine, you could say it’s transparent,” explains Melanie Baresse, global trainer at By Terry. “But pearl skin has a milkier, low-level iridescence to it. It’s also more strategic in its application, whereas glass skin tends to be all-over,” she adds.

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Where to apply pearl skin?

In terms of placement, “the application is similar to highlighting but with some small tweaks,” says Baresse. “While you would traditionally place highlighter along the tops of your cheekbones, with pearl skin we see it blended onto the apple of the cheek and along the cheekbone, as well as onto the forehead. The pearl skin look is less shimmer and more strobe-like iridescence,” she adds.

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How to wear pearl skin?

According to beauty influencer Zoe Kim Kenealy, the idea is to create the illusion of an “everyday, accidental glow. If someone were to snap a photo of you, you’d be like: is she wearing makeup or did she just get so lucky,” she explained in a tutorial uploaded to her TikTok.

“It’s a very marinated makeup look, so base-wise your best bet is going to be like a CC cream. Foundation tends to look ‘new’ when you first put it on, whereas this looks kind of like you wore it all day,” she explains. She recommends a tiny bit of powder in the T-zone, while avoiding touching the glow on the sides —and reckons bronzer and blush contributes to “that natural, worn-in radiance that we’re going for. We’re not trying to look frosty, or like an ice princess with this pearl.”

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