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Hourglass Cosmetics Lips

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Lipsticks

September 18, 2017

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review and Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

I’m back in Florida with my family and we are all safe and sound. We are all slowly getting back into the swing of things and today I have a review on the Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Lipsticks ($34 each 0.03 oz/ .9 g, $22 for the refills). I had planned to publish this weeks ago but as some say better late than never. I initially reviewed one shade called I Woke Up in my neutral lip haul back in July (time flies!). At that time there were only select handful of shades that launched in store but by now the Sephora stores I’ve visited have the entire color lineup. The Hourglass team sent all the refills for review and I’ve swatched them by color grouping below. Due to time restraints, life and travel I didn’t have time to photograph and edit all the lip swatches, but I did test each color. I find my initial thoughts to be the same across the board. The Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Lipsticks are among the best formula I’ve tried. They’re creamy, opaque, smooth, incredibly long-lasting, they don’t feather, they don’t dry out the lips and there’s no detectable scent. The slim packaging has a good weight in the hand when you hold them – it’s actually a lot nicer in person than I had anticipated. The only downside is the price which I still think is too high considering the amount of product you get. After falling in love with I Woke Up, I had planned on purchasing 2-3 more colors as the formula is very very good. A press package arrived before I made it to the store.

There are 30 shades total available at most stores and counters which I have swatched and reviewed today. There are a few colors exclusive to the Hourglass website in I Dream and I Love, along with three shades exclusive to a Holiday Trio Set with My One Desire, True Love Means and You Are My. I don’t have these featured in this post but I will review the colors in the holiday set soon though.

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review and Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

In swatching 30 of the colors on the arm and testing them on the lips I was really impressed that each color had smooth opaque coverage. In lipstick launches I usually find at least a few colors that are either too pale and streaky or too dark and streaky. All the colors I tested covered my pigmented lips entirely with ultra smooth pigment and coverage. There were a few pale colors I found a bit too pale for my skintone but they still performed really well. As usual a lot of the reds looked really similar on my complexion but that is the case with most reds. You can see a slight difference in undertone in the arm swatches so if you lean more towards a warm or cool base I hope the swatches help you find your perfect red.

A quick look at the packaging. These are refillable lipsticks and they are easy to assemble. You can buy them as a complete lipstick for $34 or the refills at $22 each. The refills themselves are usable alone so if you want to skip the exterior you can. For the refills you basically remove the cap and base and insert them into the gold exterior. They twist up and down.

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick | The Beauty Look Book

I’ve swatched these by color grouping, up first are the lighter shades:

  • The First Time – pink beige
  • I Wish – neutral pale nude beige
  • One Day – neutral beige pink
  • No One Knows – light pinky peach
  • I Lust For – peachy beige cream
  • I’ll Never Stop – beige nude cream
  • I Want – deeper pink beige

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review and Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review and Swatches The First Time, I Wish, One Day, No One Knows, I Lust For, I'll NEver Stop, I Want | The Beauty Look Book

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Next set:

  • I Always – bright fuchsia cool pink
  • You Can Find Me – peachy coral pink
  • My Favorite – neutral-cool pink
  • I’ve Kissed – medium neutral rose pink
  • I’m Addicted – tawny rose pink
  • If Only – pink with some berry tones
  • I’ve Never – medium peachy tan beige
  • I Woke Up – soft rose pink

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Swatches Review I Always, You Can Find Me, My Favorite, I've Kissed, I'm Addicted, If Only, I've Never, I Woke Up | The Beauty Look Book

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Brighter and deeper shades:

  • I Believe – bright cool pink
  • I Can’t Wait – vibrant peony pink
  • I Live For – bright orange red
  • I Desire – bright orange red, slightly deeper than I Live For
  • I Crave – brick red
  • My Icon Is – true red
  • Secretly – slightly deeper red
  • I Can’t Live Without – deeper berry red

Hourglass Ultra Slim Lipstick Brights | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass Ultra Slim Lipstick Brights | The Beauty Look Book

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Last set:

  • At Night – brick red with brown tones
  • I’ve Been – brown with red undertone
  • One Time – bright rose pink
  • When I’m With You – bright pink with cool plum tones
  • When I’m Alone – deep berry red
  • If I Could – plum red cream
  • I Hide My – plum

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review Reds | The Beauty Look Book Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review At Night, I've Been, One Time, When I'm With You, When I'm Alone, If I Could, I Hide My | The Beauty Look Book

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I swatched 10 shades on the lips to try and show the range of color. These are all swatched on bare lips. Foundation shade worn is Tom Ford Waterproof Foundation and Concealer in Natural.

Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Lip Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

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Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim Lipstick Review and Swatches | The Beauty Look BookAs mentioned in my previous review these are excellent in formula, presentation, packaging and lasting power. They aren’t moisturizing but they don’t dry out my lips. These Confession lipsticks also feel comfortable and weightless on the lips even though they are full coverage. The slim design and angled mold these are formed in helps create a clean and precise line. By comparison the GIRL Lip Stylos have a creamier feel with more shine but also can get prone to looking messy once you wear the tip down (not a deal breaker for me, but just an observation). I love that the Confession lipsticks have a tiny bit of shine to them as I don’t find that matte finish lipsticks wear well on me (with the exception of the Louboutin and Charlotte Tilbury mattes). In terms of lipstick launches this formula is excellent with full smooth coverage. A quick note that Tom Ford did just launch new shades of Lips and Boys and their new Lips and Girls (which are significantly sheerer) – I splurged on quite a few shades (review soon) and since fall beauty launches are still trickling in you might want to wait and shop or swatch before you decide what to buy. Out of the new launches I have tested so far, I have no regrets purchasing I Woke Up and would have had no regrets buying a few more although I still think the price tag is too steep for the amount of product you get. If you are looking for a high quality full coverage long-wear lipstick that doesn’t look cakey or matte this is a great option.

You can find the Hourglass Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Lipsticks along with the refills at all Hourglass counters now. Online at Nordstrom, Sephora, Space NK, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York, Hourglass Cosmetics and all other Hourglass retailers.

Have you tried any of these yet? What did you think?

Confession Ultra Slim High Intensity Lipsticks gifted courtesy of Hourglass for review.

Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette

July 14, 2017

Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette | The Beauty Look Book

For the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale the Beauty Exclusive for Hourglass this year is the Ambient Diffused Light Palette ($62 for .34 oz/9.7 g, made in Italy). I’ve been a fan of the Ambient Lighting line since it launched in 2013 and to date I haven’t missed any of the limited-edition palettes except for one of them. They’re great for travel and if you’re new to the line it’s a nice more affordable way to try multiple colors rather than buying individual ones separately. The Ambient Diffused Light Palette has existing shades:

  • Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused Light – light pale yellow with fine shimmer
  • Ambient Lighting Blush in Diffused Heat – poppy with the Diffused Light Powder swirled in to the color (full review here)
  • Ambient Lighting Bronze in Diffused Bronze Light – soft warm bronze swirled with the Diffused Light Powder (full review here)

Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette | The Beauty Look Book

These performed true to Hourglass style – they’re soft and luminous without any harsh frost. In terms of a highlighter or hybrid kind of product these give the prettiest soft glow to the complexion to mimic the way light hits the face naturally. Pigment is medium but can be sheered out or layered for more impact. On me they are easy to apply and never look frosty. If you’re like me you most likely already have all the colors individually – I usually still get the palettes anyways because they are super convenient for travel or to carry around for touch ups. I rarely calculate the prize per oz of palettes vs individual items but for those curious, individually the Powder is $46 for .35 oz ($182.35/oz), the Blush is $38 for .15 oz ($253.33/oz) and Bronzer is $50 for .39 oz ($128.21), Palette is $62 for .34 oz ($182.35/oz).

In this palette for some reason when I saw it in store, Diffused Heat looked pink rather than poppy in color. I compared them when I got home and the difference is slight but still noticeable. The individual Diffused Heat is clearly more red while the palette version is a bit more pink. On the face however the difference is slight. Comparisons below. I threw in Luminous Flush as well for comparison. Since these are hand swirled no two powders will look the same.

Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette swatches vs individuals | The Beauty Look Book

Palette swatched next to the individual colors. You can see the Diffused Heat in the palette is a bit more pink than the Diffused Heat in the individual version. Let me know if you see the same in yours (I checked about 4-5 compacts in store and they all looked consistently the same).

Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette swatches vs individuals | The Beauty Look Book

Left photo is just with a base, right photo is with the palette. For those curious on what I used to prep:

On the right, I’m wearing all three shades from the Ambient Diffused Light Palette on the cheeks.

Hourglass Ambient Diffused Heat Palette Look

Since so many of you ask what brushes I recommend, really any blush brush will do. My favorites coming soon in an updated post. For now here are some of my smaller-sized favorites. Left to right is the Wayne Goss #02 (mine is from The Collection Set, Charlotte Tilbury Powder and Sculpt, Wayne Goss Air Brush, Chanel Blush Brush, Wayne Goss #14 (from The Face Set) and Hourglass Brush #2. Picking one will depend on what kind of pigment/coverage you like. The Hourglass brush is a good all around blush and powder brush. Loose fluffy ones like the Wayne Goss #14 will give a more sheer wash.

Favorite Cheek Brushes | The Beauty Look Book

One last look, it also comes with a tiny sample pack of their Mineral Veil Primer (not shown):

Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive Hourglass Ambient Diffused Light Palette | The Beauty Look Book

Bottom line pretty and very wearable. Perfect for travel or if you’re just getting into Hourglass. If you’re like me and have been collecting for years this is a pretty redundant option. If you already own these, unless you travel a lot or want something for on the go that’s easy to touch up, you might want to explore other options. For me it was worth purchasing even though I already have the colors.

You can find the Ambient Diffused Heat Palette exclusively at Nordstrom for the Anniversary Sale. Don’t forget to check out the Gift With Purchase page – there’s a gift with $75+ beauty purchase going on from multiple brands, you do need to enter a code (site has different options). Is this one on your wishlist?

Press samples featured include the Dior skincare and Wayne Goss brushes. All others purchased by me.

Bronzer + Blush Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush and Bronzer – New Shade Extensions

April 19, 2017

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush and Ambient Lighting Bronzer | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass fans rejoice because they’ve added new products to their Ambient Lighting Collection with their Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush ($38 each for .15 oz/4.2 g) and two new shades of Ambient Lighting Bronzer ($50 each for .39 oz/11 g). Sephora.com has an early exclusive on these right now, they’re expected to launch in stores on May 5th. As a long-time fan of the Hourglass highlighters I’m thrilled to be able to review the new shades and swatch them for you.

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush and Ambient Lighting Bronzer | The Beauty Look Book

Up first, a look at the blushes. For those new to the Ambient Strobe Lighting Blushes these are the most glowy blushes in the Hourglass line. I find that on my medium toned skin the colors appear borderline more like highlighters than blush. The shimmer is finely milled but on the glowy side. While I don’t see any frost in them, I will note that if you don’t like shimmer, you may want to opt for the Ambient Lighting Blushes instead. They have more color and less glow.

What I love about these is that they are glowy without being too frosty. They apply smoothly on the face and don’t emphasize pores. I do find they warm up a little bit about 30 seconds after application, however they don’t oxidize in color.

  • Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush comes in 4 colors:
    • Incandescent Electra is described as a cool peach blended with Incandescent Strobe Light
    • Brilliant Nude is described as a deep amber blush with Brilliant Strobe Light
    • Euphoric Fusion is described as a lilac blush blended with Euphoric Strobe Light
    • Iridescent Flash is described as a vivid magenta with Iridescent Strobe Light
    • Note that three of the four Ambient Strobe Lighting Powders were in the limited-edition holiday palette and Incandescent Electra has been released as an individual color for quite some time
    • For reference you can see the review/swatches of the Strobe Lighting Powders here

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush | The Beauty Look BookHourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush | The Beauty Look Book

Face swatches of all four on medium-olive skin. On the face I’m wearing the Hourglass Vanish Seamless Foundation Stick in Nude. Lip colors worn with each blush listed below:

  • Hourglass Incandescent Electra with YSL Volupte Tint in Balm #7 (swatched here)
  • Hourglass Brilliant Nude with GIRL Lip Stylo in Believer (review here) + YSL Volupte Tint in Balm #7
  • Hourglass Euphoric Fusion with GIRL Lip Stylo in Activist (review here)
  • Hourglass Iridescent Flash with GIRL Lip Stylo in Creator + Achiever mixed (review here)

Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush in Incandescent Electra, Brilliant Nude, Euphoric Fusion, Iridescent Flash | The Beauty Look Book

Up next are the bronzers. The original two bronzers Luminous Bronze Light and Radiant Bronze Light looked almost identical on me. The variation for me was slight but I do suspect colors will vary depending on how much highlighter versus bronzer you have mixed into yours. The powders are hand made which means each one is unique and different. I really loved Luminous Light and I still do. On me for some reason Diffused Light pulls warm even though it looks cool-toned in the pan. I love Nude Bronze Light because it appears slightly more matte than the other two. That being said they all look similar on me. The difference is in the undertone. These bronzers also warm up a little after application but they don’t darken or oxidize. A little goes a long way and they are super easy to apply/blend.

  • Ambient Lighting Bronzers are now available in 4 shades:
    • Luminous Bronze Light is a medium toned bronzer with Luminous Light highlighter mixed in (reviewed here)
    • Radiant Bronze Light is slightly deeper and warmer with Radiant Light highlighter mixed with a beige base (reviewed here)
    • Nude Bronze Light is a new shade with a neutral nude bronze and a soft matte nude powder
    • Diffused Bronze Light has a mix of cool brown bronze and a pale yellow powder

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer | The Beauty Look BookHourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer | The Beauty Look Book

These were swatched with a heavy hand on the face to try and show the difference in undertone. On the lips is GIRL Lip Stylo in Idealist for all the face swatches below. To me they all look very similar. Nude Bronze Light seems to be the darkest on my complexion. Brush shown below is the Hourglass Brush #2. I have a couple of their brushes and need to explore more of them. They are synthetic and PETA friendly. They’re among the softest smoothest brushes I’ve tried. I think they’re under-rated.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer | The Beauty Look Book

If you missed out on the holiday palette you can find the shades individually now. I swatched my palette next to the individual ones and the colors, pigment and texture are the same. I still stand by original review and feel like the Ambient Strobe Lighting Blushes have more of a highlighter feel on me, but I still love them. For the bronzers variations will most likely be more apparent on you if you have lighter or deeper skintone. I’m right in the middle where all four have a very similar effect. My favorite is Luminous Bronze Light.

Bottom line beautiful powders, gorgeous packaging, seamless application. I love a good glow and these have a perfect mix of shimmer and color to look natural but still noticeably glowy.

You can find the Hourglass the blush and bronzer additions now at Sephora.com and Hourglass. Also available online at Nordstrom. They are expected to arrive in stores in May. Have you tried these yet? Or did you buy the palette over the holiday? What did you think?

Don’t forget if you’re shopping at Sephora to take advantage of the Beauty Insider Event! Dates and discounts as follows below. Also my recommendations in this post here.

  • 4/18 to 4/24 VIB Rouge will receive 15% off, use code ROUGESPRING
  • 4/19 to 4/24 VIBs will receive 15% off, use code VIBSPRING
  • 4/20 to 4/23 BIs will receive 10% off, use code BISPRING

Many thanks to Hourglass for sending the Ambient Lighting Bronzer and Strobe Lighting Blushes for review.

Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Cosmetics GIRL Lip Stylo

January 20, 2017

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass Cosmetics just launched 20 twist-up lipsticks called the GIRL Lip Stylo ($32 each for 0.09 oz/2.5 g) to celebrate and recognize the good in others and ourselves. Each lipstick shade has a special name that evokes empowerment and positivity. These come with medium to medium-full coverage, a very soft shea butter vanilla scent, moisturizing comfortable feel and that is still lightweight. The finish has a soft natural looking sheen.

The color range is just perfect. Every single one of the 20 shades are very wearable. As a neutral lip lover I was beyond thrilled to find natural colors that go beyond the basic beige, pink nude or peach. There are roses, plums, mauves and a variety of nudes with different undertones. After testing these colors I really feel that Hourglass took the time to test these on real women to make sure that they have the right undertones to be flattering and wearable.

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Many of you have asked for a comparison to the Hourglass Femme Nude Lip Stylo and also the Chanel Le Rouge Crayon de Couleurs. The original nude twist up pencil crayons from Hourglass by comparison are thicker and tug a little at the lips, they are also more opaque with a very limited color range (I could really only wear the 2 darkest options). The Chanel Le Rouge Crayon de Couleurs have a creamier feel with a more emollient texture. They glide on the lips and have more of a shine. I also find that the Chanel crayons have more pigment and coverage.

Coverage-wise the GIRL Lip Stylos swatch sheer-medium on the arms and hands. On the lips the color adheres a lot better for more noticeable coverage. A few of the plums have a slightly transparent almost jelly finish on my lips. They have a satiny nourishing feel. On my lips I tested a few of the naturals for extended wear testing – they lasted a long time without sliding or budging. The colors will transfer if you eat or drink though.

I swatched and photographed these in batches according to how they were displayed in the press box I received from Hourglass. Colors and descriptions detailed below. For the most part they all act and swatch like creams. I couldn’t detect any shimmer in these. Even though they are cream finishes they don’t look flat on the lips.

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Set 1 includes:

  • Believer is a light beige nude cream
  • Creator is a soft pink
  • Explorer is a bright peachy shade
  • Seeker is a cool medium rose pink
  • Peacemaker is a medium beige

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Believer, Creator, Explorer, Seeker and Peacemaker | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Believer, Creator, Explorer, Seeker and Peacemaker | The Beauty Look Book

As always these are swatched on bare lips, no liner or primer underneath. For skintone reference I’m wearing NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint in Groenland with MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in Medium Plus (which I just discovered and am OBSESSED with!).

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Believer, Creator, Explorer, Seeker and Peacemaker | The Beauty Look Book

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Set 2 below includes:

  • Achiever is a neutral-cool mauve brown
  • Influencer is a meidum beige brown rose
  • Dreamer is a soft warm baby pink
  • Idealist warm peachy beige
  • Futurist beige pink nude

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Achiever, Influencer, Dreamer, Idealist, Futurist | The Beauty Look Book Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Achiever, Influencer, Dreamer, Idealist, Futurist | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Achiever, Influencer, Dreamer, Idealist, Futurist | The Beauty Look Book

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Set 3 below includes:

  • Activist is a medium rose
  • Inventor pinky rose
  • Lover bright orange red
  • Innovator is a bold bright red
  • Visionary slightly deeper but bright red

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Activist, Inventor, Lover, Innovator, Visionary | The Beauty Look Book Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo swatches Activist, Inventor, Lover, Innovator, Visionary | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Lip Swatches Activist, Inventor, Lover, Innovator, Visionary | The Beauty Look Book

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Set 4 below includes:

  • Icon is a classic red
  • Leader is a bright fuchsia pink
  • Liberator is a gorgeous mauve plum
  • Protector is a pretty violet purple, but goes on my lips a bit patchy
  • Warrior is a deep vamp, also went on a bit patchy

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Icon, Leader, Liberator, Protector, Warrior | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Icon, Leader, Liberator, Protector, Warrior | The Beauty Look Book

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Icon, Leader, Liberator, Protector, Warrior | The Beauty Look Book

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A quick look at the color options will show a lot of neutrals that look similar and also a lot of reds. As a neutral lip lover I’m beyond obsessed with the color selection and I know there are at least a handful of you who will echo my thoughts that they are similar but still different. Same applies for the reds, but since I don’t wear reds a lot I can understand that some will find a lot of repetition among color groups. The best thing about this to me is that each color has a slight variation or undertone which I think is great. Many of us gravitate towards warm or cool, brown undertones or peachy undertones, light versus medium versus deep. I really believe there is something for everyone in this color range and even though I normally wear neutrals, even the brights like Lover and Leader are wearable and did not leave me feeling like a clown.

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo Review | The Beauty Look Book

My top 5 picks: Seeker, Influencer, Activist, Liberator, Dreamer.
You can upload your own version at Hourglass’s website for fun!

I know many of you want to know whether I prefer these or the Chanel crayons that were just launched and I simply cannot pick a favorite. I do think the Hourglass pencils will last longer on the lips and a comparison of the packaging makes them look larger in size so overall they will probably last longer. If you prefer a glossy lip the Chanel is the way to go. Also for the deeper colors Chanel offers more coverage and pigment. If you like neutrals I suspect you will find more options to choose from the Hourglass range.

Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Bottom line I love these. I’m a gloss or shiny lipstick girl at heart and these GIRL Lip Stylos offer a nice sheen but with more pigment and coverage than a sheer glossy lipstick. Even with all the swatching and wiping I did over the past few days, my lips did not dry out or peel at all. I think everyone should own at least 2 πŸ™‚ They are that good. If I had one thing I wished were different, it would be that I wish there was some kind of color indicator on the outside so I could tell the difference between colors without having to look at the label or open up the cap. Still it’s not a deal breaker as most of the other beauty brands do the same thing with their lipsticks and compacts.

You can find the Hourglass GIRL Lip Stylos at Sephora, Nordstrom and Hourglass Cosmetics.

Many thanks to Hourglass for sending these gorgeous GIRL Lip Stylos for review.

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Highlighters Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette

December 9, 2016

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Blush Palette reviewed from the Sabrina of The Beauty Look Book

For holiday Hourglass Cosmetics launched a new limited-edition palette called the Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette ($62 for 3 x 0.09 oz/ 2.55 g). It launched as a Sephora VIB Rouge Exclusive on Cyber Monday and I ordered it as soon as it popped up online. This palette combines the illuminating particles from the Strobe Lighting Powders mixed with Blush Pigments for a radiant glow. Those familiar with Hourglass powders from the Ambient Lighting Line already know the powders are hand made with a special mixing technique which makes every powder different and unique. The colors in each palette will all similar to each other based on the formula but there will be slight variations in depth of color depending on how much highlighter your palette has versus blush pigment.

I’ve acquired almost all of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palettes (all except for holiday 2015) and a number of individual colors. The latest Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette is the most glowy out of all the palettes and powders I’ve tested, even more so than the Ambient Strobe Lighting Powders (reviewed here).

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Texture and pigment in this palette is ultra smooth and glowy without being frosty. There are three colors, Incandescent Electra is supposed to be the same as the one available individually, but the ones I have from the original 2014 blush palette and one I have in individual form are different from this season’s palette. The Incandescent Electra in my Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette is significantly more glowy but the color is the same if that makes sense. Descriptions per Hourglass’s website:

  • INCANDESCENT ELECTRA: A cool peach blush blended with Incandescent Strobe Light for a celestial glow.
  • BRILLIANT NUDE (NEW): A deep amber blush blended with Brilliant Strobe Light for a lustrous glow.
  • EUPHORIC FUSION (NEW): A soft lilac blush blended with Euphoric Strobe Light for a resplendent glow.

On my medium complexion, the colors in the palette I purchased are all more like highlighters on my skin versus blushes. Yours may vary depending on the swirl you have and also differ if you have different skintone. Close up and swatches:

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book BlogHourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Comparisons to the other two palettes I have:

Top – the Ambient Lighting Blush Palette (review from 2014)
Middle – the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2016 exclusive (review here)
Bottom – Holiday 2016 Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette

Hourglass Palette Comparisons from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Comparison swatches:

Hourglass Palette Comparisons from The Beauty Look Book Blog

Overall a lovely addition to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting line. Even though I already own Incandescent Electra the one in this palette has more glow and shimmer compared to previous versions that I own. It is on the glowy side so the colors are more highlighter than blush on my skin. I wasn’t able to swatch comparisons to the other holiday launch Ambient Lighting Edit Palette in Surreal Light (review here) before I left for my trip however I will say that between the two I prefer the larger one for the colors. Both palettes are different enough to justify both if you don’t mind having a lot of blush or highlighter.

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette reviewed from The Beauty Look Book BlogBottom line I love it and the glimmer in each of the powders is perfect for adding a bit of a nice holiday glow on the eyes or cheeks. They layer well with other blushes (both powders and creams), meld nicely with the skin and don’t emphasize my pores like some highlighters can do if they have lots of shimmer. Whether or not you’ll like this will most likely depend on your skintone. On fair to light skins the colors will most likely show up more. On my medium olive toned skin the color shows up o arm swatches but once on my face, Brilliant Nude and Euphoric Fusion are more highlighter-like and almost nude in the sense that they give a glow rather than a tint like blush. My MAC shade right now is about an NC30 in the MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation (swatched here with other foundation shades). Note that since I tan easily I fluctuate in color by a few shades on a regular basis depending on how much sun I’ve been exposed to. How this palette shows up your skin will also depend on how much pigment your palette has swirled in compared to strobe powders.

You can find the Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Blush Palette now online exclusively at Sephora. I ordered mine online. At this time I’m not sure if will launch at other retailers.

Highlighters Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette in Surreal Light

September 20, 2016

 

I’ve been playing with something very exciting which is the new Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette in Surreal Light ($80 for 9.6 g). It’s a limited-edition for this season a part of their holiday launch. Right now you can find it at Sephora, Nordstrom and Hourglass but it will be available at all other counters soon. The colors have good pigment and enough color to show up on medium to tan skin. I’d consider myself to be medium bordering on light-medium now and the colors show up very well on me.

 

I’ve been a long-time fan of Hourglass Cosmetics especially when it comes to their entire Ambient Lighting Powder line. The Ambient Lighting Powder in Luminous Light (originally reviewed here) is one of my top picks for powder highlighters for my skintone. It gives that glow from within kind of effect, melds beautifully with the skin, looks glowy but natural, doesn’t emphasize pores and lasts forever! (Well almost … mine has lasted years!) Since the initial launch back in 2013 I’ve looked forward to each new year’s launch. They’ve added something special to the line with new products and variations. Last year’s palette was the first launch I skipped because of the repeated shades. This year’s palette is cased in marble pattern packaging (gorgeous!) and has shades that are different from existing colors.

 

You have five shades of powder. All are finely milled with a soft touch. There will be some powdery kick up if you dip your brush in the palette but there isn’t any fallout once it’s on your face. The colors and product sizes:

 

 

Colors:

  • Finishing Powder in Surreal Light (4 g / 0.14 oz) is a sheer nude warm shimmer, I thought this would be too shimmery to use as an all over setting powder but it actually works well without making me look like a statue, it has a yellow undertone
  • Bronzer in Surreal Bronze Light (1.4 g / 0.04 oz) is a neutral bronzer shade, it’s lighter than the two existing Hourglass bronzers by a little bit making it more natural looking
  • Blush in Surreal Glow (1.4 g / 0.04 oz) is a what Hourglass calls a “pale peony blush pink” it’s a nude pink on my skin and it shows up
  • Blush in Surreal Effect (1.4 g / 0.04 oz) is a cooler-toned rose pink compared to the other shades in the palette, there is a soft warm peachy shimmer mixed throughout which makes the color itself more on the neutral warm side
  • Strobe Powder in Surreal Strobe Light (1.4 g / 0.04 oz) is a golden peach yellow shimmer highlight
Below are close ups of the palette in different lighting. I did order two (by accident) and as you can see the swirl patterns are unique in every palette similar to that of the Ambient Lighting Blushes and Ambient Lighting Bronzers. If you’re new to the Ambient Lighting collection the powders brighten and highlight the skin. Their powders have what Hourglass calls “… Photoluminescent Technology to capture, diffuse and soften surrounding light to refine the appearance of skin.” These powders do indeed smooth the skin.I’ve been able to use all five colors on the face at once. I’ll use the Finishing Powder to set my foundation all over the face (it’s not too glowy for me). I’ll mix both shades of blush and apply them on the cheeks, although you can definitely just use one. Bronzer is added to warm up the face. The strobe powder is used to highlight temples, cheekbones or eyes. You can use it however you feel comfortable using it though – no need to use all the colors at once.

 

Β Close ups:

 

 

 

Swatched with numbers labeled according to the chart on the back of the box and what’s on the Hourglass website:

 

 

Swatch comparisons below:

 

Thoughts on comparisons:

  • Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder in Brilliant Strobe Light (review here) is paler and brighter than Surreal Light
  • Ambient Lighting Powder in Luminous Light (review here) is almost pink by comparison to Surreal Light
  • Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure (review here) is cooler-toned and more mauve than either of the Surreal Blushes
  • Ambient Lighting Blush in Luminous Flush (review here) is brighter, deeper and warmer than Surreal Effect
  • Ambient Lighting Bronzers in Luminous Bronze Light and Radiant Bronze Light (review here) are both more golden and bronzey compared to the palette
  • I didn’t swatch compare the Surreal Strobe Light because it’s one of the darker more yellow/gold highlighters in the Hourglass line and I could not find anything similar

 

 

The powders perform really well and I like that it has enough color to show up even though the overall feel is neutral. Sometimes those neutral palettes can be a bit too neutral but this one has visible color. The pans are small – I remember from last year’s reviews many had done comparisons on the pan sizes in the palette to individual full sized products. I think the biggest complaint about this one is the price for the size and product amounts but this year’s palette does contain more product in grams and ounces compared to last year’s. I do think the $80 price tag is extremely steep but I don’t feel as though it’s outrageous. Here’s a comparison break down in price per grams:
  • Palette $80 for 9.6 g is $8.33/g
  • Powders are $46 for 10 g which is $4.60/g
  • Blushes are $38 for 4.2 g which is $9.05/g
  • Bronzers are $50 for 11 g which is $4.55/g
  • Strobe Powders are $38 for 4.6 g which is $8.26/g
I personally feel this was worth the splurge. I love all things glowy and this is one of the most natural highlighter palettes I’ve tested. There are a number of highlighter palettes I’ve seen pop up online (in particular at Sephora) so you may want to do some browsing or swatching in stores if you can before deciding which one to buy. I’ve taken a quick peek online and this is the only one I’ve bought so far and I’m very happy with that decision. The packaging is so pretty, colors work really well for my medium olive toned skin. Many of you keep asking what MAC shade I am for reference and I’ve been severely allergic to MAC Studio Fix for many years so I stopped using it. I’ve always been in between NC30 and NC35 but it’s been a long time since I last tested any of their foundations so out of curiosity I went and got shade matched. For MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation I can go with either NC35 or NC37 (for some reason NC37 is a bit lighter than NC35) and for Matchmaster I’m a 3.0 (but it runs slightly less yellow than I like). In the Hourglass Vanish Seamless Foundation I’m in between Warm Ivory and
Nude. In NARS I’m in between Groenland and St. Moritz for the Velvet Matte Skin Tint.

 

One quick note on brush testing. There is an Ambient Lighting Edit Brush ($46) which is a double-sided brush designed and sized for this palette. In my experience Hourglass brushes are very well made and perform well. They’re synthetic and PETA-approved. I did not buy it but have been using my Wayne Goss Brush #2 for the smaller pans and MAC #187 Duo Fibre brush for the finishing powder.

 

 

Bottom line spendy but worth it for me. It exceeded my expectations. I knew I would like it but didn’t know if I could “love” it at the $80 price. After testing it I can say that I do love it. It will be a great one for travel and it’s a palette I can see myself using every single shade. It’s an exquisite well-executed palette. I’m not sure if the shades will show up on deeper skintones but if you’re about 3-4 shades darker than me I do think it will still show up. Now that you know what MAC shade I am if you have tested it any have any thoughts let me know in the comments.

 

You can find the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette in Surreal Light at Sephora, Nordstrom and Hourglass but it should launch at all other counters very soon. The palette is limited-edition.

 

Base Makeup Hourglass Cosmetics

Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick and Foundation Brush Review

July 20, 2016

 

Hourglass just launched a new foundation called the Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick ($46 for .25 oz/7.2 g) which is a new product described as having the full coverage of a concealer, fluid texture like that of a liquid, and weightless feel like a powder. It’s a concentrated formula that combines foundation and concealer in one that you can build for full coverage but looks natural on the skin. Also launched with 26 shades of foundation include the Vanish Foundation Brush ($46) designed to buff and blend the new foundation formula to flawless smooth perfection. Both have launched at Sephora, Nordstrom, Hourglass Cosmetics and is currently on pre-order at Barney’s New York.

 

 

I received two shades in Ivory and Warm Ivory to test out based on the note that I currently use NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tints in Groenland and St. Moritz mixed together. When I first saw both shades and swatched them I suspected they would both be on the light side for my skintone, but Warm Ivory warms up to give an exact match for me right now. The chart above breaks down the color options and ranges. I would say the sequence of names is accurate from light to dark, but the color swatches are not. For me Warm Ivory is definitely darker than Ivory but the card makes it look like the opposite.

 

First a look at the foundation. These come in compact triangle-shaped twist up sticks designed for precise application. I tested both shades out and found both work well for a good match which surprised me because they looked really light compared to other foundations I use. I tried it three different ways. Here’s the before and after with Warm Ivory swiped and then buffed. In these photos I put around 3-4 swipes per side of the face and then buffed it out with the brush.

 

 

Method 1: Apply all over the face with 4 swipes per side over Creme de La Mer Moisturizing Soft Cream and set with NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation in Punjab. The result was an oily mess within a couple of hours although I was outdoors for lunch in 85 degree weather on a hot day with mild humidity. This usually happens with all foundation sticks on my skin though if I use them all over the face.

 

Method 2: Apply on top of AmorePacific Moisture Bound Refreshing Hydra Gel + Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer, then set with NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation in Punjab. I have not really used the Hourglass Primer a lot because I feel it’s best suited for more oily/combo skintypes compared to mine. I have accumulated quite a few minis and a friend recommended I try it for summer. She was right, it extends the wear of foundation especially in warmer weather. This combination lasted all day, even through being outdoors in the afternoon for a few hours. By evening, makeup was a tiny bit dewy on the nose, but it stayed put without any creasing, melting or budging.

 

Method 3: Apply a light base such as any of my regular foundations all over, I tried it with my NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tints. Moisturizers used on separate days included the Creme de La Mer Moisturizing Soft Cream and Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream (primers skipped on these days). Use the Hourglass Vanish Foundation stick like I use most of my foundation sticks along the T zone and areas I need more coverage and buff in. Then set with powder. This method also worked well in terms of lasting power.

 

A look at the product itself with swatches, Ivory next to Warm Ivory. In the tubes they look yellow/olive toned pre-swatching. Once you swatch they appear a bit more neutral.

 

 

Comparisons to two other foundation sticks:

  • Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Stick Foundation is currently my favorite stick foundation of choice. I had planned a summer base roundup and then samples of two foundation formulas arrived so I wanted to put those to the test before doing my roundup. This so far is the best full coverage foundation I’ve tried that covers dark spots but still looks natural. My shade match is 123. Initially I was matched to 128 (as seen in this story here) but I can change skin color quickly if I’m outdoors for an extended time (or lose it as well) so I alternate between the two.
    • The MUFE stick offers more coverage but has a more emollient texture (not greasy though). Product is also larger at 12.5 g.
  • Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick for many years was my go-to for foundation sticks (original review here). I’ve gone between two shades, 4 Bisque and 5 Natural. To this day I still think this is an exceptional product – but I cannot wear this all over the face. The best way for me to use this is on top of regular foundation on areas I need coverage. For my skintype which is normal combination, the all over the face method results in a very dewy mess within a couple of hours – with or without any primer. Coverage is smooth and easy to build for a flawless finish. A little goes a long way – it has a foundation makeup scent that is hard to describe almost like cardboard or paper that I’ve found in some foundations and for some reason I find really soothing. A single stick has lasted me well over a year and the product did not go bad.
    • For the TF vs Hourglass, the Tom Ford is probably better suited for normal to dry skin types, it is more dewy in finish, feels slightly thicker but not too thick, it also has more product at 15 g.

 

 

Sticks swatched side by side, note my arm is not the same shade as my face. Right now the MUFE 123 matches perfectly. Hourglass Vanish in Warm Ivory blends out to a more matte finish compared to the others.

 

 

A closer look at the twist design of the stick:

 

One more shade of swatches with NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint in St. Moritz (darker option) and Groenland (lighter option):

 

 

A quick note on the brush. I was pleasantly surprised with how easy it was to use. It reminds me of my Marc Jacobs The Face II Brush (full review on foundation brushes I love here) in the sense that it’s angled to match the contour of the face. The Hourglass Vanish Foundation Brush is more compact, has a smaller head, but just as soft and a bit easier to move along the face because it’s slightly less dense. It’s super soft and fits in my hand perfectly. I haven’t tested it with liquid foundations but I have with the other foundation sticks – it’s amazing. I highly recommend it.

 

Overall thoughts:

  • The Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick does indeed offer a seamless smooth finish. It’s easy to blend and does not look cakey, nor does it emphasize pores.
  • Coverage is medium to full depending how much you layer. It does a good job at smoothing out dark spots or under eye circles, but I still prefer spot touch ups on blemishes and under eye with other concealers. (My favorites rounded up here.)
  • Lasting power will depend on your skin type and what products you use underneath. If you can normally wear foundation sticks all over the face without any issues this will probably work the same for you. I have never been able to wear a foundation stick all over the face with the exception of the MUFE Ultra HD Foundation Stick.
  • Best ways for me to wear the Hourglass Vanish Foundation stick was over the Mineral Veil Primer or over areas after applying regular foundation.
  • On color matching, I suspect based on the online stock swatches and chart that Sand might be a better match for me on my more tan days now that it’s summer, but Warm Ivory works for a very good match – no tweaking required. Even though this is a full coverage product and I do recommend finding a match as close as possible, there is a natural quality to the finish that makes it forgiving even if it’s not a 100% match. Warm Ivory swiped on my skin looks about 1-2 shades too light but as with most foundations you need to blend it out to see if it works. It matches my face to my neck well. I will check out the shades in store later this week though – if Sand is a better match I will let you know.

 

That wraps up my review of the latest from Hourglass. You can find both the Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick and Foundation Brush at Sephora, Nordstrom, and Hourglass Cosmetics right now. For the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale there is an Hourglass GWP going on (featured in this post).

 

Have you tried the Hourglass Vanish Foundation Stick yet? It launched online last week – so if any of you have ordered or tested let me know! If not, have you tried other Hourglass Foundations? Which ones?

 

Both the Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick and Foundation Brush provided for review consideration.