Monday, April 18, 2016

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder - Brilliant - review, photos

After Hourglass brought out their Ambient Light Luminous Bronzers last year, I knew it was just a matter of time before they brought out highlighters.  And now I'm already wondering what their next product will be because they've done powders, eyeshadows, blushes, bronzers and now these guys.

I hadn't read any reviews on these highlighters other than Temptalia's ones before buying it but knew that no matter what, I'd be picking up one anyway.  For the blog.  And my face.  I ended up choosing Brilliant, one of the more golden toned highlighters as two of them were quite pink toned and swatched nearly identically.

Here she is in all her glory.  She looks beautiful in the pan and is so soft to touch when you're swatching.  I remember oohing and aahing over it in Space NK as I whittled the foursome down to one and was delighted with life to be swanning out of the shop, highlight in hand.

Things didn't go quite according to plan with Brilliant and so while trying it out initially back in February, I kept a diary.  How very old school of moi.

Monday 8th February 2016, 7.10
Dear diary.  It's Monday and I'm late for work.  Shhh.  But I also want to try out this highlight.  I've applied a new base to try out and used the same powder I've been using since Christmas.  I have not photographed the highlight yet, so I must be careful not to mess it up too much.  I've used a small fluffy brush to lightly dab into the powder and have also carefully applied it to my cheeks.  It's fierce glittery when first applied but sure we'll see how it goes.

Monday 8th February 2016,  9.10am
Dear diary.  I feel like I've lived an entire day already, but it's time to check the visage.  How is it only 9.10am?  Time for a mirror check and I appear to have lost the highlight.  It is nowhere to be seen no matter how much I tilt my face towards the harsh fluorescent light in the office .  I check both cheekbones just in case I'd been leaning on one, trying to get through the morning in one piece.  Nathin'.  I utter a "Huh?"   Tres disappointed... Not a great first impression, but I'd had a similar feeling when trying out the Hourglass blush which ended up being one of my all time favourites.  So I won't discount it yet and look forward to trying it again tomorrow.  Chat later diary.

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder - Brilliant - Dry

Tuesday 9th February 2016 - Day 2 in the Hourglass highlight wearing house.
Dear diary.  I apply my regular base today, my trusty Clarins BB cream, and apply the highlight over the top, hitting my cheekbones and hoping today is the day I'll be wowed.   I apply it with my Blank Canvas Cosmetics F28 brush and notice that the first layer goes on ok but looks really sparkly again.  Like properly glittery and if I'm honest, a bit cheap looking.  This time I try a different tack and blend it well before noticing that I have blended all of the glitter away and am left with a really soft sheen on my cheekbone.  Almost invisible.  I wanted it to look like an angel had come down from heaven, licked my cheekbone and swanned off to do other angelic things.  Instead, it looked like an angel had come down from heaven, spat in a tissue and then dabbed it on my cheekbones.

Diary, this isn't the way I'd envisaged things.  So I do something that I rarely do when it comes to highlights and I go in for a second layer. and I think you know things are bad if you go into your highlight for a second hit and you're not Nikki Tutorials.  Again, we had the initial hit of glitter which was swiped away to leave a golden sheen to the skin.  On this day, the product mostly stayed in place for a bit longer, starting to fade by lunch time.

Diary, I am about to lose my reason. What does a bridie have to do to get her highlight to actually highlight and also stay in place for more than six seconds?!  Dare I take it to the last resort scenario and go in with it wet?  They sell a sponge to go alongside the highlight for this very reason, so I go and dampen my beauty blender because girlfriend here isn't spending any more money on highlights, and two things happen.  One is that as soon as I touch the powder with the sponge, a film appears over the wet patch.  This does not bode well for the likes of me who gets agitated at the sight of something that has messed up my €42 highlight.  And the second thing that happens when I apply it wet is this:

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder - Brilliant - Wet

Diary, there is sweet F-A on the Hourglass packaging about looking like a robot.  I look like I've rubbed the powder off my cheekbones directly.  It looks harsh, fake and while it might stay longer than the dry application, I can't wait to take it off.  Oh diary, I have the sads.

So that's been my experience with this highlight lads.  I know Orla from Makeup Over Mind loves hers and she's the queen of subtle makeup and it looks gorgeous on her, so it's for that reason that I'll keep using it.

I'd say I'll actually finish it and all because I use so much thanks to it disappearing off my face after an hour.  I mean where does it go?  The rest of my face isn't sparkly or has a sheen from it moving.  Obviously it's gone to a better place, back to the angels.

For €42, it kills me that it's so disappointing.  But in saying that, if you like a subtle highlight then it could be perfect for you.  Just make sure you warm up your neck muscles from all the head tilting you'll be doing to try and see it on your skin.  FYI, even though this is warm toned and my Catrice highlight is cool toned, I've been reaching for the Catrice version over this all the time.  And it's under a fiver too!  Have a look at it in action here.

As I said earlier, the shade I picked up is called Brilliant.  Totally should've been called Meh.  I feel like I'm being so mean to it but come on Hourglass, you can do better than this!

So tell me this and tell me now more, have you tried any of the Ambient Strobe Lighting Powders and if so, how have you got on with them?  If you're intrigued, then it's available from Space NK.

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