Hourglass. A brand I’ve tried very hard to not succumb to despite the constant praises, raves, and general good feedback on its range of products. It is, in my opinion, eye-wateringly expensive, definitely beyond my budget for a range that I’ve yet to find products that I quite like. You can argue for investing in your beauty products but when it doesn’t work, it just doesn’t work. You get me? When all the buzz started with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder, and then the limited edition powder palette (which has now become permanent), I was very, very disciplined.
Blushes are another ballgame. When the HourglassAmbient Lighting Blush Palette ($67, available here) became available on Sephora, I was so indignant by the way that Sephora was trying to part me with my hard-earned money before the holiday season. There was so much indecision and my thought process went as follows: “*&(@ it, if I don’t end up liking it, I could always take it back” Though I wasn’t too keen about the original powder palette, the beauty blogger in me thought… “it’s all in the name of research… right?”
Encased in the same luxurious, gold casing that the original palette came in, this just oozes glamour and if there wasn’t a brand written on it, I would have guessed CHANEL or some other high-end beauty range. Featuring three shades, including two of their most popular shades, this is a good way to try out the range of blushes without committing too much money. Even though the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette costs a hefty $67 for 0.35oz/9.9G worth of product, this palette is seriously a great value for those who have been curious about all the rage. Allow me to break down the math for you:
HourglassAmbient Lighting Blush Palette ($67, 0.35oz/9.9G): Each full-sized blush contains 0.15oz worth of product; in each section of this palette, you get 0.116oz! That’s 77% of the original or $31.71 value. For the entire palette, you are paying $67 for $95.13 total
As expected from paying an obscenely large amount of money for a set of blushes, you can expect the palette to live up to your expectations in terms of colour payoff, texture, and wear. I think where the $67 is going to make a difference are:
- Whether the shades end up looking fabulous on you and you love the way each one looks on you
- The unique-ness of the colours
- and whether you’re into the novelty of the Hourglass blush/powder combination.
What I quite like about the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette is that the two permanent shades included are wearable, and looks to be universally flattering. In case you don’t remember, the two shades from the permanent range included are Luminous Flush and Mood Exposure. They fall on two ends of the spectrum, the pinky peach and dusty pink. Without being a professional makeup artist myself, I’d say that those colours do tend to work on every skin tone. Since the melange and ratio of powder and blush within each palette is going to differ due to the handmade nature of the blushes, I think it’s worth trying even if you get more of the powder than blush veining. It’s what makes this product a little more versatile in that you can use the shades with more of the powder as a highlighter.
The official shade description from Sephora is as follows:
- Luminous Flush – champagne rose
- Incandescent Electra – cool peach
- Mood Exposure – soft plum
The exclusive shade in this palette Incandescent Electra, described as cool peach. This shade really balances the warmth of tones in the other two shades. I think it was quite clever of them to have this combination of cool/warm shades – sometimes you realize that you really stick to one warm shade, and the next you’re all over the cooler-toned one.
If you have a hard time deciding which blushes to take with you when traveling or have a hard time finishing full-sized blushes (ahem, commitment issues?) ilke myself, you might find this blush palette worthwhile. However, just like with any kinds of palette, if there is a colour you are not a fan of, definitely won’t be worth your money.
The challenge that I have with this palette is that irrespective of which shade I use, and where it is applied (swatched or applied on the cheeks), the colours look just as similar as a $9.99 blush from Make Up Geek/MAC or even the more powdery version of the Make Up For Ever HD Blushes. When you think about it, you’re paying close to $22 per blush that is slightly smaller than a regular MAC/Make Up Geek blush, and I can’t really tell the difference in application and finished result. I wasn’t too impressed with the supposed benefit of the original powders, so I have a hard time seeing the novelty of this palette. If you think about the MAC Mineralized Skinfinishes or Mineralized blushes, they are essentially the same as this range of blushes. I think MAC already makes a good range of shimmery blushes/powders that work and gives the same result as this range and the price tag is not as expensive.
That’s not to say that this isn’t a good product. I know MAC products have been steadily increasing in price, thus may not be a good alternative/substitute to some. If you do enjoy the novelty of the product, like the colours (or at least 2/3) in the palette, and don’t mind the price tag, I think this is still a value-packed product, and a great introduction to the brand and one of its most interesting product.
Now it’s your turn! Have you tried the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette or the powders? Will you be picking these up in store when they become available? As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Share with me comment section or through Twitter or Instagram!
Looks like a great palette. Very lovely colors!
this one i’m going to pass on just b/c I have way too many blushes to justify it. and the price is still a bit high for me.
A Beautiful Zen
I agree! I’m still debating whether this is a keeper or not! : Too much money for the palette!
Gorgeous palette! I want to buy ????
Agree that it’s a definitely gorgeous palette to look at! The veining in each palette is so unique!
What gorgeous colors! I think they would look lovely on anyone that wears them.
I don’t know. Hourglass and Charlotte Tilbury just don’t do much for me. I’d either buy good drugstore stuff or spend about the same on the couture brands, to be honest.
Love how detailed and analytic your review is, though. ????
Thanks Lena! I’m feeling that way as well – I just couldn’t see what the difference was between this blush and the MAC Mineralized skinfinish other shimmery blushes ya know?
I still haven’t gotten into the ambient lighting hype! Since I’ve gone cruelty free I’ve become more interested in them, but the over hype makes me kinda not interested :/
This is pretty gorgeous though! Might want to swatch it our before I make the splurge!
Good for you!!! I wish I was able to resist it like you did since I did a good job with the powders last time! Wished I was able to try in store before splurging on it!
As you know, I got mine the same time as you and of course having all kinds of #beautybloggerproblems, I haven’t tested this out yet. I am really excited to though, I do think this palette will be worth it for me. I had been swatching the Hourglass blushes in the store all the time, always wanting to try them but the price tag has always made me hesitate. I think this is a great way to try 3 of these out at once for the price.
This is such a beautiful palette! It’s definitely on my wish list. Great review ????
Thanks for such a thorough, balanced review! Nice to see that not everyone totally succumbs to the hype. That said, I’m still pretty excited to get my mitts on this, as I really do love the formula ????
Doubt I’d end up getting this palette due to the price, but still, it’s nice to ogle from afar. Heck, I don’t even like the MAC Mineralize blushes, so I doubt this palette and I were meant to be. (THE CRAZY BLUSH LADY HAS STANDARDS TOO) On another note, I love the idea of blush palettes because the blushes are smaller sized LOL (it’s also like a blush buffet) and lawd knows I’ll never be able to finish all my blushes, ugh.
I actually ended up returning mine just because I couldn’t justify spending this much money on 3 blushes that didn’t really work out :
I thought seriously about the Ambient Lighting Blush palette but I couldn’t get myself to actually purchase it. I just feel that they are so similar to many of MAC’s MSF’s and a pretty design isn’t going to cut it. If it were less expensive, i might consider it. :p
I got caught up in the hype, and I missed out on the powders when they became available last time. Have been thinking about returning it due to how similar it looks with the blushes I already own!
I feel much better now that you’ve said they’re similar to MAC Mineralize Blushes, which I love! ???? xx
Gyudy’s Notes Of Beauty