Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light Review

If you haven't heard about the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders, where have you been? The whole blogosphere and all of YouTube is buzzing about these magical powders, so naturally, I caved. I bit the bullet and dished out close to CA$60 and left my local Sephora convinced that my life was about to change.
The way everyone describes them, these powder are supposed to give you a flawless finish to the skin, a glow from within type of look. It's supposed to set your makeup without looking powdery. The powders are supposed to help minimize pores and make you look pretty much perfect. I was ready! Ready to look flawless, to have a perfect complexion, ready to say goodbye to cakey makeup and look like I just swallowed fireflies.


My Sephora (downtown Montreal) has the worst lighting possible so I asked for help with matching, a hurried SA picked out Dim Light and told me that's the one for me. He didn't really look at my face let alone try the product on. I asked him to do just that and just as hurried he applied a light dusting of the powder on me and reassured me that's my match. Naturally, I believed him.


  When I got home and decided to try it on I realized that I am not meant to look like I'm in dim light. The powder didn't show up on my face at all at first, so I decided to give it another go and was much more heavy handed...  only to realize it looked ashy bout 2 shades darker than my current skin tone. I have strong yellow undertones so I simply can't imagine how the SA figured that Dim Light would suit me. Over the next weeks I figured if I apply less I can get away with it, as it's extremely finely milled and  not meant to be seen per se.

My frustration with this powder grew as I continued using it. I mean, I didn't get it. Not only I couldn't see a difference, but I had much cheaper products perform and look way better. So I decided there must be something wrong with me.  I decided to conduct a little experiment and apply the powder to only half of my face and see what others think. I wore it to school and work and asked both men and women to tell me which side of my face they found looked better and which side they would prefer. (Luckily the people I asked are all familiar with my makeup hobby so they complied fairly quickly and I got no "did you take your pills today looks") I had them look at me in even lighting and analyze the texture of the skin on both sides and point to the one they found looked better and give me a reason why. I did this on numerous days, snowy days, rainy days, cold days, days I had good skin, days my skin looked blotchy, days I wore a shit load of foundation, days when I barely used concealer and blush. To my surprise, most people liked my "regular" side.  I got comments that it looked more natural, glowier, less made up, less cakey,  less blotchy and many couldn't see a difference at all.  That was the confirmation I needed: it wasn't just me.
Overall, aside from the above mentioned experiment, this powder didn't do anything to help control oil, which meant I had to use a separate product on the areas prone to shine in my routine. It did nothing to improve the overall appearance of my skin, texture wise or other. It kinda did nothing. 

Proof: On the right I am wearing  Dim Light, left is regular foundation/blush. Can you see the difference?





 I tried, I really tried to make this thing work for me. I failed. The product failed me. I had very high expectations from the Ambient Lighting Powders and I was let down. Maybe it's the shade. Maybe it's beacuse everyone praised them so much. Maybe it's the steep price. I am not looking forward to going in my Sephora again and having to chase around a SA and beg to be matched  preoperly. I can't even asses this product as mediocre because with a C$60 price tag I expect it to perform. I expect nothing but perfection... and my Dim Light was far from it. 
If they re-release the trio palette I am willing to give it a go and try different shades, till then... I'll go back to my regular powder/highlighter routine.


*I just realized that on the Canadian version of the Sephora website the powders are priced at C$41 while I payed C$52 + tax in stores. So, if you want to get the Ambient Lighting Powders, get them online. I am not sure if it's a mistake on their part, or they just charge more in store. Someone enlighten me, please.

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