A Look at the Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder, Pure Powder Glow + Celestial Powder

April 27, 2016

I’ve been slowly getting more into items from the Kevyn Aucoin beauty line. I’ve been a huge fan of the Celestial Powder in Starlight and the Lip Gloss in Starlight (reviewed here and here). The Pure Powder Glow Blushes are something that have been on my radar for ages and I was really excited to finally play with a few of the shades. As mentioned in a few previous posts I had high hopes for the Sculpting Powder in Medium as it’s one of the most raved about contouring/sculpting powders in the beauty market. It did not work for my skintone but there have been two color additions to the formula in Light and Deep. Light works perfectly for my medium-olive toned skin.

I have a quick look at six shades from Kevyn Aucoin in the Sculpting Powder, Pure Powder Glow + Celestial Powder. If you’re shopping online for any of these, don’t forget to take advantage of the special promo code Space NK US created for Beauty Look Book readers. Use code BEAUTYLB16 at checkout to save $20 off online orders of $100 or more (through May 1st). All the details in this post here.

The Celestial Powders ($44 each) are finely milled ultra smooth highlighters. Candlelight is one of those products that has reached cult-status and is extremely popular. I think I’m one of the few people who find it turns white on my face – it looks amazing in the pan, swatched on the arm or applied on the eyes. On my cheeks it almost looks chalky but note that I am in the minority with this one. My preference is for Starlight which is a soft champagne pink. I find Starlight to be more shimmery than Candlelight, but it’s not too shimmery. The pink/peach undertones make it much softer on my olive skin. If you prefer liquids, they have these colors in the Celestial Liquid formula, both swatched in this post here.

The Sculpting Powders ($44 each) are matte shaping/sculpting/contour powders. Medium was the first shade launched and for many years it was the only option. It’s a soft cool-toned matte that didn’t work on my skin because it was too cool-toned and slightly too dark creating a muddy look on me. Light and Deep are the newest additions. I tried out Light which in the swatch above is similar in undertone but the slight variation and lightness of color works so much better on my skintone. It creates a more natural looking shadow on areas I want to add depth whether it’s the eyes, nose or cheeks. If you need contouring powders with warmth I would recommend skipping any in the Kevyn Aucoin line as they are all very cool-toned.

The Pure Powder Glow ($37 each) is a powder blush. The formula is very soft in texture which makes it easy to apply, blend and build. There are shimmers and mattes, both formulas look incredibly natural and meld with the skin beautifully so it doesn’t look powdery. I’ve been so impressed with the three that I’ve tried. Ariana is the perfect neutral coral that adds natural warmth. Shadore is a powder pink that brightens the face. Natural is a really great neutral pinky-brown that won’t look muddy or darken on the skin. They look very simple in the pan and if you swatch them with your fingers I have to admit they look pretty standard – you can probably find dupes in other lines like MAC, Bobbi Brown or even Urban Decay, so color-wise I wouldn’t say that I find them unique. That being said the formula works really well and doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin. (I found that some blushes like Bobbi Brown cause tiny little bumps to form on my cheeks.) If you’re looking for a good everyday kind of color that’s easy to use and requires little thinking on how to coordinate, you can’t go wrong with any of the ones swatched above.

There are quite a few options on the market for all three types of powders. I think the ones from Kevyn Aucoin are great everyday shades that are very wearable for the conservative makeup-wearer who wants no-fuss kind of makeup. They apply on the skin smoothly, don’t oxidize on the face and they last all day without budging. A few thoughts on other ones I’ve tested and how they compare to other brands/formulas.

Celestial Powders

Sculpting Powders

Pure Powder Glow
  • If you like matte blushes that won’t darken, I think the ones from Kevyn Aucoin are really among the best I’ve tried.
  • If you want more unique and interesting colors that are still natural, opt for the Urban Decay UD x Gwen Blush Palette.
  • If you want contour + blush in a single palette for convenience, go for the By Terry Sun Designer Palettes.
  • If you want similar colors to the ones featured but want them at a cheaper price, MAC Pink Swoon will give you a similar look to Shadore, MAC Prism will give you a similar look to Natura (but without the shimmer), Ariana is quite unique compared to what I have, MAC Peaches is the closest one I have but the MAC is slightly brighter.
I hope you found this review helpful if you were wondering about the Kevyn Aucoin face powders. They do come with a fairly steep price tag but the quality is on point and I think they are products anyone will get regular use out of. Have you tried any blushes, highlighters or contour powders from Kevyn Aucoin yet? If so which ones? If you have recommendations for anything else in the line please share in the comments!

Ariana, Natura, Shadore and Light provided courtesy of Space NK for the Explore Promotion. Starlight, Candlelight and Medium purchased by me.

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  • Jessie Lou April 27, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Wow this is so detailed an interesting. Thanks for all of the different options at the end too very informative.


    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:00 pm

      Hi Jessie – glad this helped with the comparisons!

  • Clever Girl Reviews April 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm

    The sculpting powder in Light is looking perfect for pale people who are neutral to cool in tone!

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:00 pm

      I agree! It's still medium-toned in color for me, but lighter than the Medium option if that makes sense.

  • Rachel Polansky April 27, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    I'm excited they've released more colors in the sculpting powders–medium is sometimes too dark for me!


    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:00 pm

      Glad to know I'm not the only one!

  • Amanda Hollingsworth April 27, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    I love this brand……Been buying powder products from Aucoin for two years now as the pigmentation and pay off is first rate. Always a bit alarmed at how tiny the pans are but the performance makes up for that. Also love the Sensual Skin Enhamcer Concealer. It's a really classy, understated brand that really does deliver. Xx

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:01 pm

      I keep hearing raves about the Sensual Skin items, I need to try them soon. My friend bought the concealer at The Makeup Show. I'll have to ask her how she likes it πŸ™‚

  • A_N April 27, 2016 at 7:46 pm

    The base is too light for me as well, so you're not alone in finding the contrast between your olive skin tone and the Celestial Powder in Candlelight too harsh β€” too white. But the effect is so undeniably gorgeous that I'm hoping I'll have better luck with the new Celestial Powder in Sunlight, which seems to have a deeper and golden tone compared to either Candlelight or Starlight.

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:02 pm

      Thanks for this! I thought I was the only one!!! I saw Sunlight available for pre-order somewhere online, I'm interested to see what it looks like in person when it launches! There's a Lipgloss available on Barneys.com – but it's so hard to tell what things look like based on online stock photos.

  • Anonymous April 27, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    Thank you!I was unaware that KA finally released a light version of the sculpting powder.I can make the medium shade work,but it takes "extra"effort & time.This shade looks perfect for my pale,very cool-toned self.Love your blog and wish you every success with it.

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:03 pm

      Awww thank you! I think the Sculpting Powder extensions just launched so it's not a surprise most don't know about them yet! I hope it will be more workable for your skintone, but as mentioned above the Marc Jacobs contouring duos are really top notch for fair skintones.

  • Tatiana April 27, 2016 at 8:58 pm

    Thank you for posting this! I had heard about the new sculpting powder in light but hadn't seen any decent swatches of it. I'm super pale and neutral and it looks like it might actually work on my skin tone. Those blushes are so pretty, too!

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:03 pm

      You're welcome Tatiana! Glad this helped πŸ™‚

  • Chris April 27, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    Thanks for the great post! I think the colors you have there would make an awesome palette. I've been going back and forth over the By Terry Light and Tan palette (I hardly ever touch bronzer because I'm super fair), but I just wish there was at least one more blush in that palette!

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks Chris – I think if they could be put into a palette that would be so amazing!

  • Anonymous April 28, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    Thank you for this fantastic review. And I find the recommendations at the end super helpful. I enjoy reading your beauty blog!

  • affecionada April 28, 2016 at 8:42 pm

    These are beyond gorgeous! Especially candlelight and starlight!


    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks πŸ™‚ Starlight is so dreamy!

  • Serein April 29, 2016 at 1:45 am

    What a great, detailed assessment of these powders! I'm all about those celestial powders!


    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks Serein – glad you found the review helpful πŸ™‚

  • Audrey OrdoΓ±ez May 2, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    Wow. Amazing! I love this post, I love the eyeshadow palette and that blue bag. New blogger here and I love your blog!

    x, Audrey

    • Sabrina May 2, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks Audrey!

  • Anonymous May 21, 2016 at 12:27 am

    Hi Sabrina how does the sculpt powder compare to Charlotte Tilburys in terms of contouring? Love your blog!!