REVIEW: The Ambient Lighting Palette by Hourglass – First Impressions

After months (or was it years?) of longing, I am finally the proud owner of the much coveted Hourglass palette. I can’t tell you the amount of times I went into Mecca to test out this palette. I’d swatch all of the shades, marvel at the buttery soft texture and then walk out without buying it. I think deep down I knew I didn’t really need another highlighter. Plus I tend to agonise over the smallest of decisions. 

A close friend recognised my turmoil (to buy or not to buy; that is the question) and gifted it to me for my birthday. 

I’ve been experimenting with this palette for a few weeks now, and while I’m yet to use all three shades, I thought I’d blog about my thoughts so far! 


The product: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette


Product information: Create your perfect light with this palette featuring three shades of Ambient Lighting Powder. Each of the high-tech, soft-focus finishing powders recreates an exquisitely flattering light source. The powders can be applied individually or layered to imbue skin with a multidimensional glow. 

Directions for use: dust powders over the face using the Ambient Powder Brush.  

The palette is comprised of three shades: 

Dim Light: a neutral peach beige powder that blurs imperfections and highlights the complexion. 

Incandescent Light: an opalescent pearl powder that brightens the complexion with a celestial glow. 

Radiant Light: a sun-kissed golden beige powder that enhances the complexion with believable, subtle warmth. 

My review: To be honest, I don’t care if I never opened this palette. I’m just so excited to add it to my collection, after lusting over it for so long. 


The first thing to mention is the texture. All three shades are amazingly pigmented and buttery soft. I used my finger to swatch the shades below, and the powders glide onto the skin. 

From left: Dim Light, Incandescent Light and Radiant Light.

Of the three shades, I’m more partial to Dim Light, followed closely by Radiant Light. While Incandescent Light is beautiful, I feel like it doesn’t suit my skin tone as well as the other two shades. However, I’m sure I’ll find a way to use it, as it’s a beautiful shade. I think it would make an amazing highlighter for the cheekbones and along the bridge of the nose (this is where I apply highlighter). 


Both Incandescent Light and Radiant Light contain very fine shimmer, whereas Dim Light has tiny particles of shimmer which is not very visible when applied to the skin. It’s for that reason that Dim Light would make a wonderful all-over face colour, whereas Incandescent Light and Radiant Light can be used to highlight the face. 


Do I think the palette is worth the hype? Yes I think so. There are so many highlighters on the market and while you may prefer one over another (theBalm’s Mary Lou Manizer remains my firm favourite), I think it’s great that the Ambient Lighting range offers so many different shades. This palette is handy as it contains highlighters in varying shades, so you can customise depending on your skin tone. This comes particularly in handy as our skintone changes from season to season. 


Have you used any of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting shades? What’s your favourite shade?  


xo Roxane

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