The Sample: NEW Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Radiant Light & Ambient Powder Brush (Review, Swatches & Photos)
After you’ve been playing with makeup and buying makeup and blogging about makeup for a certain amount of time, you reach a point where almost nothing phases you. Sure, there are the collections/items that excite you and spur you to purchase, but it’s rare that a new release will jump out at you and have everyone you know stalking their nearest Sephora/counter waiting desperately on baited breath to be able to snatch it up–one in each shade. But that’s precisely what Hourglass has managed to do with their newest Spring release, the Ambient Lighting Powders.
So what is the Ambient Lighting Powder, you may ask. Is it a highlighter? A finishing powder? A bronzer/blush? According to Hourglass, their Ambient Lighting Powder is “a universal finishing powder that features state-of-the-art technology to recreate the most exquisitely flattering types of light.” They are meant to “capture, diffuse, and soften the way light reflects on your skin” using “illuminating particles [that] are one of the first ever to exhibit both photoluminescence and color-correcting capabilities…the powders brighten the appearance and conceal skin imperfections, pores and wrinkles, so that skin appears younger, even-toned and radiant.” So in other words, it’s a magical powder that does it all. I hope that answers the question. Now do you see why everyone is going gaga over these? What can’t these do?!
I received Radiant Light to review. It’s described as a “sunkissed golden beige” that can “extend a summer glow, or enhance the overall complexion with a believable, subtle warmth.” I thought that Radiant Light would be a bit more bronze, but in the pan it is a very warm, light-medium beige with a slight peachy tone, a subtle incandescent sheen and golden micro-shimmer laced throughout.
The powder comes housed in a compact made of the gunmetal-bronze plastic packaging Hourglass is known for. If we’re being honest, I do wish the compact had just a bit more heft to it, but I guess it’s what’s inside that counts–and what’s inside this compact is gorgeous indeed!
At first glance, it appears that the powder could possibly be baked (it has that baked kind of swirled look, if you know what I mean). However, these Ambient Lighting Powders are pressed. The texture is exquisitely fine-milled and super smooth–buttery without being too soft. It applies like a dream and seems to lay like a veil over the skin, allowing it to shine through while providing a bit of a blurring, soft-focus, luminescent effect.
As I said, Radiant Light is actually quite a bit lighter in color and less bronzy than I thought it would be, so I was skeptical that it could truly “extend a summer glow”–especially on my light-medium skin tone. But amazingly, Radiant Light really delivers on its claims. It’s hard to say exactly how it does it, but once I apply it all over my cheek bones with a touch on my forehead, nose and chin, my skin seems to radiant a kind of healthy, subtle glow. It melts into the skin and becomes almost undetectable–your skin will definitely look better but no one will know why!
A closer look…
Once applied, the peachy tones come through just a bit more (see swatches below). It may look very peachy in the heavy swatch I did with a sponge-tipped applicator, but once blended you can see that there is a light warmth and radiant brightness to the skin–it really does make skin look both sunkissed and luminous. I am honestly amazed–this powder is like magic!
When I used Radiant Light as an all-over finishing powder, I got similar results–a very healthy-looking, radiant and glowy complexion that could easily be mistaken for the kind of glow you get after an extended vacation in Antigua. It wasn’t too dark or too shimmery and it definitely wasn’t noticeable on the skin. I’m not sure I would say it necessarily concealed any of my pores but then, my pores are larger than most, so I wasn’t expecting any miracles on that front.
The powder does not come with a brush/applicator, but you can purchase the new Ambient Powder Brush to go along with it. The bristles are made of high-grade taklon and are soft and super densely packed. It’s fairly small (fits into the palm of my hand) so it’s great for touch-ups on the go. It picks up the product really well and distributes it evenly across the face.
I don’t think it’s necessary to apply the powder with this, but it certainly is nice to have. I think if you’re planning to use this powder as a finishing powder or bronzer-type product, this brush would be great. If you plan on using it as a highlighter (which those with anything darker than a medium skin tone might need to do), a less dense, more floppy brush might be more suitable.
*Apologies for the swatches–I struggled a bit trying to capture the gorgeous, luminescent sheen while working with artificial lighting. I will try to update this post with swatches taken in full sunlight when the sun finally makes an appearance!
Radiant Light lasted 5 1/2 hours on my oily skin–an amazing feat. I’ll go ahead and state the obvious by saying that I love this powder. I think you need this and you need it now. While you’re at it, check out the other shades! There are 6 shades in all: Diffused Light (soft, warm, pale yellow), Ethereal Light (opalescent sheer, cool white), Radiant Light, Mood Light (soft, sheer lavender pink), Dim Light (neutral peach beige), and Luminous Light (champagne pearl). Mark my words: Diffused Light, Dim Light, and Luminous Light will be mine!! What say you? Have any of these caught your eye?
»»Pricing: $45/0.35 oz. -and- $35 for the brush
»»Recommended for: light to medium skin tones if you plan on using it as a finishing powder/subtle bronzer. Darker tones will be able to use this as a highlighter
»»Overall Rating: A+ for powder/A for brush
Disclaimer: the product(s) featured in this post were provided to The Beauty Sample free of charge by the manufacturer/PR for review purposes only. Regardless of how the product was obtained, my priority is to you, my readers, and I will always give you my honest opinion.