Benefit Watts Up! Review + Swatches


Benefit describes this highlighter as a “luminous champagne,” and I wouldn’t disagree. It’s a soft pink champagne twist-up highlight stick. Is it the most unique color in the world for a highlight? No. Is it a beautiful, luminous, natural highlight that gets the job done well? Absolutely! (4.5/5)

This highlighter wore beautifully for a full 7 hours. By the 8 hour mark, it was a little hard to detect. (4/5)

Watt’s Up! is a stick highlighter that I like to apply directly from the tube. It has just the right consistency to me–it’s firm enough to not break off when you apply it straight from the tube, but not so stiff that you have to press hard to get it to show. It’s creamy and smooth enough that it applies easily, and one pass on the cheekbones or down the nose is all that’s needed. It has shimmer, but in a way that looks very natural when blended. It catches the light beautifully. It also blends like a dream. (5/5)

My version of Watt’s Up! is a mini that came in one of 2014’s Sephora Favorites bundles. The full size comes with a blending sponge on one end, and the mini lacks this. (However I don’t miss it, since it blends perfectly well with the fingers anyway, and the full-size sponge isn’t detachable and hence, not washable, which is a squeamish spot for some). The plastic packaging is durable but not overly luxe, which I think is appropriate for the price range it falls in. The twist-up mechanism is effective and doesn’t feel cheap to me. Benefit is known for it’s kitschy packaging, and I like the shiny exterior this highlighter sports. (5/5)


My mini version contains 0.08 oz of product, where the full size contains 0.33 oz for $30 USD. This comes out to a price per ounce cost of $90.91 (for the full size). This is a little on the pricey side (NARS Illuminator, for example, is also $30 but has a price per ounce of a mere $27.27, and at 1.1 oz, contains more than 3x the amount of product), but will save you more than Urban Decay’s $29 ($145 per ounce) highlighter in the long run.

But what matters more to me than the up-front and long term prices is whether or not either of those costs are worth the money. I admit I don’t have much experience with highlighters, but Watts Up! was a wonderful introduction. I feel like it performs up to par, and it’s a product I reach for over and over again. That makes it worth the price to me. (4.5/5)

Wow Factor:
To me, a great highlighter is luminous yet natural, wears well, applies easily, and helps to bring out the features when used with blush and bronzer for a contour. Watts Up! ticks off all these boxes seamlessly. I love the soft, natural color and think the rosiness will look lovely across all skin tones. Highlighter isn’t something I use in my everyday routine, though, which makes the price a little tough to swallow. (4.5/5)

“Perfect” isn’t a word I use a lot, but I’ll make an exception for Watts Up! It has a beautiful, natural look and ease of use that I love, and a little goes a long way (without having to be too mindful of using a light hand). I believe beauty lovers who rely on highlighters will find the cost doable, given the outstanding performance of the product. I recommend it. (4.6) A-


One pass from the tube on the left, blended out on the right.

Would I repurchase?


Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-Benefit is not cruelty free (they sell in China)
-Watts Up! only comes in the one standard champagne shade.