The Sample: NEW Chanel Poudre Signée de Chanel Illuminating Powder (Review, Swatches & Photos)

8 Jan

There are some beauty products where you look at the price tag and scoff, thinking “why on earth would anyone pay that much for a ________ (insert outrageously overpriced item here–Clé de Peau LE version of the La Crème, I’m lookin’ at you!! [kind of a ridiculous example but you know what I mean])?!”. But then there are some things that you just get. Beauty addict or not, I think anyone that sees the stunner that is Chanel’s new for spring 2013 Poudre Signée de Chanel Illuminating Powder can easily justify the $68 price tag in their minds–it’s truly a work of art, this powder.

This breathtaking compact is part of Chanel’s 19-piece Printemps Précieux de Chanel collection. Surrounded by an array of gorgeous pastel lavenders, golds, apricots, and plums, the Poudre Signée de Chanel Illuminating Powder is still easily the star of the whole collection.

Click image to enlarge

You can see the pinky tones in these photos…

This highlighting powder is a beautiful glowing beige with a touch of pink and a very fine golden sheen. I’ve also heard it described as a peachy-beige, which isn’t entirely inaccurate as the gold and pink tend to meld together to form a pretty peach shade in the pan–especially in the light. But pink or peach, it doesn’t matter–the overall effect is drop-dead gorgeous.

The powder is embossed with a super intricate pattern that features camellias (Coco Chanel’s favorite flower), the iconic interlocking Chanel C’s, tiny little tubes of lipstick and gloss, and mini-bottles of nail lacquer. The level of detail is fantastic–it’s incredibly tragic when you go to use it the first time. The only other time I’ve been so pained to ruin a powder was with my Burberry Summer Glow palette (I miss that thing soooooo much!!! *sobs uncontrollably*). But this one is so much more intricate and exquisite, it was about 100,000 times harder! Still, I persisted…and the results were very worth it!

…while the color in these photos taken in indirect light lean more golden-beige

The texture is quite satiny and smooth–very finely milled. The resulting glow is not too shimmery or frosty–it’s such a fine, even sheen that it doesn’t emphasize pores and creates a softly-lit, luminous glow. Because the shimmer is so incredibly fine, it can be a bit much if you apply too heavily, which is why I prefer using my duo fiber fan brush instead of the accompanying sponge applicator. The applicator is tucked into the smaller front pocket of the black velveteen pouch that the compact comes housed in (see picture at top. The compact is hidden in the large pocket behind the sponge applicator).

When I tested this, it lasted a good 5 1/2 hours on my cheeks before I noticed some fading. It might not seem like it, but that’s good for my oily skin. I’ve read some other reviews online and I suspect that those with dry, combination, and normal skin will have no problems getting this to last anywhere from 7-8 hours.

Click image to enlarge

Click image to enlarge


This highlighter is, of course, a limited-edition product so be sure to get it while you still can. I almost want to purchase a back-up. And fyi, I don’t buy back-ups of anything–I like it that much! In all seriousness and despite what I said at the beginning of this post, I do realize $68 is a bit much to pay for a highlighter, but I honestly do believe that this one is worth it. It’s my first Chanel highlighter and while I’ve been curious about previous LE releases, they never seemed to measure up when I swatched them at the counters. They were either chalky and/or powdery, not luminous enough, too pale, too pink, etc. But this–this one was even better than I could have imagined. I was scared it would be too pink but the very slight hint of pink just barely translates on the skin; it’s mostly a glowing golden sheen, fine and delicate as gossamer. It’s truly spectacular and I couldn’t be happier with my purchase. If you’re looking to treat yourself, you need to check this one out!

»»Pricing: $68/0.28 oz. (8 g.)

»»Availability: Nordstrom,, and all Chanel counters

»»Recommended for: everyone!

»»Overall Rating: A+

49 Responses to “The Sample: NEW Chanel Poudre Signée de Chanel Illuminating Powder (Review, Swatches & Photos)”

  1. Emi at Project Swatch January 8, 2013 at 4:52 pm #

    It is so beautiful! My first luxury beauty purchase was a Guerlain highlighter (Paurure de Nuit) – it makes me happy every time I use it! Luxury highlighters are just so special.

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:32 pm #

      Oh I totally agree! You picked a good first one–I definitely plan on getting a Guerlain one sometime soon! :D

  2. Lily January 8, 2013 at 4:55 pm #

    I don’t need another highlighter
    I don’t need another highlighter
    I don’t need another highlighter
    … Bad Becca!

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:32 pm #

      LOL!! Don’t fight it, Lily–resistance is futile!! :P

  3. Teri January 8, 2013 at 5:13 pm #

    Oh gosh, I was looking at this one and it’s such a collector’s item! I need it and your review doesn’t help either, lol! It’s just so pretty and I love the glow it gives without being too frosty :).

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:33 pm #

      I know it really is–I almost want to buy another one so I can keep the pattern all pristine and pretty and use the one I have :P I’ll be so sad once it has all worn away! :(

  4. Sunny January 8, 2013 at 5:13 pm #

    MAJOR lemming!!! Pretty pattern, and the quality seems excellent! I’ll HAVE to check this out (the collection is finally hitting the stores in 10 days)!

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:33 pm #

      Oooh yay! I hope you get it–it’s sooooooo so pretty!! :D

  5. Meryl @ Memoiselle January 8, 2013 at 5:18 pm #

    Goshh super pretty!!
    I bought this one too and it’s merely because of the pretty prints! I don’t know whether this is my fave highlighter of all time but the prints surely is one of the prettiest! *screams* :D

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

      Haha I agree–the embossing is STUNNING but thankfully I also really like how it looks worn, too. It’s SUCH a delicate gold glow!

  6. Taylor January 8, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

    This is definitely the star of the collection, agreed. It took a lot of strength to swatch it, I’m sure. The design is really beautiful. Lovely effect as well. Enjoy this one!

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:36 pm #

      Haha it really did–I was cringing so hard when I had to take my sponge-tipped applicator to it! *sigh* that’s always the problem with pretty embossing–you always feel like it’s sacrilege when you dip into the powder :P

  7. Arianne January 8, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

    This product looks so regal. So gorgeous! I expect nothing less from Chanel. ;)

    Thanks for the swatches, Becca!

    • becca January 8, 2013 at 10:37 pm #

      Regal is a really good word for it–it’s just so delicate and sophisticated and PRETTY! :D

      Thanks for commenting, Arianne!! :D

  8. Sarah January 9, 2013 at 1:58 am #

    This is SEXY!


    • becca January 9, 2013 at 2:53 am #

      It really is a beauty–Chanel REALLY impressed me with this one. I was starting to lose hope that their LE highlighters would work for me!

  9. Toya January 9, 2013 at 5:03 am #

    Oh Becca…C’MON girl, you’re killing me! LOL! I had entirely written this off as something I didn’t need, and now I feel like I gotta have it! Like you, I felt the past LE illuminators released from Chanel we’re justifiable because I just didn’t fall head over heels, but if you’re saying this one is…DAMN. My wallet is crying buckets right now! :P

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 5:15 am #

      Lol–SORRY, Toya!! I wish I could say that you didn’t need it, but that would be lying and lying is bad. :P

  10. Laura January 9, 2013 at 6:42 am #

    GIRL. I was left by my family alone at the Chanel counter over the holidays, and this is the little gem I splurged on! I have never spent that much on one product, but I haven’t regretted it for a second. :) Great post!

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 1:20 pm #

      LOL! Then I don’t blame you at ALL–NO ONE would’ve been able to resist!! :P

  11. Agata January 9, 2013 at 7:13 am #

    Sooo beautiful! I really want it but my husband would kill me if I spent that much on a single powder, I think.

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

      Aww that’s too bad! Haha I know I was really scared to say how much I paid for it but my only defense was that I used gift cards from Christmas to pick it up! :P

  12. Claire January 9, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

    I NEED this, ok … I probably don’t need another highlighter and normaly I don’t even like the Chanel highlighters but this one looks SO pretty. I hope it will perform like a stunner, haha. love your pics! <3

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 1:22 pm #

      See that’s why I think this one is soooo worth it–I usually don’t like the Chanel highlighters either! The embossing has always lured me in but when I actually swatch them, I am ALWAYS disappointed. But no so with this one–trust me, Claire, it’s WORTH IT!! :D

      • Claire January 9, 2013 at 4:58 pm #

        ahhh, bad becca! I have to swatch it, your pics are the only ones that really got me thinking that I ‘may’ need this highlighter ;) the pattern are also adorable *sigh*

        • becca January 9, 2013 at 4:59 pm #

          Haha I hope you do check it out, Claire–this one is SO worth it! :D

  13. Lulle January 9, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

    The compact looks really stunning!

    I love the effect too… when am I winning the lottery again??

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 11:51 pm #

      LOL I know I know…the price tag KILLS me but oh…the effect it gives. Simply stunning :)

  14. Makeup Morsels January 9, 2013 at 9:59 pm #

    Oh f****** just clicked on that Clé de Peau La Crème. Well, it’s nice to know that some things can make even Chanel look like a bargain by comparison :P I almost bought this instead of the Guerlain palette when I was perusing Nordstrom Beauty, it’s just SO PRETTY. But in the end I realized I don’t wash my face brushes nearly enough to make this worth it LOL sad. Love your pictures though, and “delicate as gossamer” you say? Come on, that’s just not fair you enabler you!

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 11:53 pm #

      LOL I know right?!! That thing is RIDICULOUS! haha

      And hey, at least you are honest…though you DO know that it comes with its own applicator (that is actually quite soft), right?! Just sayin’. ;)

  15. Beauty Box January 9, 2013 at 11:49 pm #

    Your photos are amazing….I can see all the detail that you described….it is a beautiful highlighter… Even though it is so gorgeous, good on you for using it….no point keeping it in your drawer untouched, esp since it does such a great job.

    • becca January 9, 2013 at 11:54 pm #

      Aw thank you so much, hon! And yeah, even though I’ve joked about getting backups of things to keep in pristine condition as a collectors item, I would never actually DO IT because in the end, makeup is meant to be enjoyed and I could never resist, anyway :P

  16. Catherine (@bcrueltyfree) January 10, 2013 at 9:48 am #

    Oh wow this is so beautiful and your photos capture it so well! I’m glad you got that whole photo issue you were having figured out :D The color reminds me of the LM LE Rose highlighter from a few years ago, but beiger. This will be a crazy success for Chanel, I’m sure :)

    • becca January 10, 2013 at 1:16 pm #

      Aw thank you Catherine! Yeah, that whole photo thing was VERY frustrating–I was so excited about having the new camera but the pictures were turning out worse than before. It was killing me! :P

      And I think you’re talking about Rose Rendezvous–which I was SO upset about missing out on! I think that one was a lot darker and more bronzey though. I feel like while this Chanel one doesn’t LOOK very unique, if I think about it really hard, I can’t find another highlighter quite like it. The closest one is the recently released Chantecaille one and even that is a good deal pinker (though still very similar). I love this one and I think it’s very worth the crazy price tag! :)

  17. fairytalesandcoffee January 10, 2013 at 3:18 pm #

    wow. This may be the first powder highlighter I like. I don’t buy powder highlighters though. Most powders look cakey on me because of my excessively oily skin. I prefer liquids hands down. Now if Chanel created a liquid version of this then we would be talking,

    • becca January 10, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

      Aw that’s too bad! I SWEAR though, this powder is in NO way cakey on the skin. Trust me–I have very oily skin too and have not experienced any caking with this powder (or any of Chanel’s powder cheek colors, for that matter). It’s very, very light and delicate–both in look AND feel. It’s gorgeous! You should swatch it in-stores if you can! :D

  18. Tina @ My Highest Self January 11, 2013 at 1:46 am #

    Ridiculously gorgeous, I couldn’t possibly use this!!

    • becca January 11, 2013 at 1:58 am #

      Haha I admit, it was REALLY hard to take that first swipe but I had already swatched it at the counter so I knew what I would be missing out on if I DIDN’T use it! :P lol

  19. Liz January 11, 2013 at 11:25 am #

    I have no words. TOO MUCH GORGEOUSNESS. My wifey deserves it of course and I’d be tempted to buy a backup – one to preserve the lovely etchings and one to use! (I did not just say that. Nope, wasn’t me.)

    • becca January 11, 2013 at 2:44 pm #

      Hahaha dude, I KNOW. On the one hand, I think that buying makeup to just have it sitting unused is silly but on the other hand, this one is just SO gorgeous that I guess I could understand the reasoning. :P

  20. JoanneP @ The Convenient Beauty January 11, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

    I have come back to this post many times to 1) admire the intricate design and your swatches 2) try to resist it. I have too many highlighters already. Need to stick to my Laura Mercier Rose Rendezvous (for now?). aaahhhh.

    • becca January 11, 2013 at 2:44 pm #

      LOL it’s so hard, huh?! At least you have Rose Rendezvous! That’s one that I wanted but totally missed out on. Harumph! :P

  21. Icaria January 12, 2013 at 10:01 am #

    I rarely wear highliters but this one is so beautiful and seems “just right”!

    • becca January 12, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

      Haha that’s for sure! It’s one of the prettiest highlighters I have EVER set eyes on. I’m just sad that it’s LE :/

  22. Joyce (bronzerbunny) January 12, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    YAY i’m glad you like it! It is super pretty in the pan. :) I’m also surprised at the price, cause some of those limited face palettes have been even MORE expensive in the past!

    • becca January 13, 2013 at 2:16 am #

      I know I’m thinking that I would have paid even MORE for it, though I’m glad I didn’t have to ;)

  23. nawi January 14, 2013 at 10:41 am #

    Great review I am counting the days until it launches here in holland cannot wait. Should arrive here at the end of the week or beginning next week I am going to get this beautiful baby!

    • becca January 14, 2013 at 2:32 pm #

      Oooh I am so excited for you! You will NOT be disappointed!! :D

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