Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder
Hourglass' collection of Ambient powders have gained cult status for the ethereal glow they produce, and the latest addition, Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder takes that up a notch. Whereas the original Ambient Lighting Powder is sold as a finishing product to add subtle radiance and enliven skin all over, the Strobe version is intended to be used as a strategically placed highlighter, with more sparkle and shimmer than previous Ambient powders. The result? Consider us impressed!
Packaged in Hourglass' trademark mirrored-finish (re: fingerprint collecting!) compact, Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder has a soft-to-the-touch, pressed powder texture that blends seamlessly over skin. It comes in four attractively luminous shades to cater to different skin tones: "Iridescent" is described as an "illuminating pink"; "Incandescent" is an "opalescent pearl"; Euphoric = "pearlescent beige"; and "Brilliant" has a "shimmering gold" tone. Each goes on sheer so it's less about the color and more about the lit from within glow they add.
As Hourglass puts it, Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder utilizes, "ultra-fine micro pearl particles in varying sizes and refraction levels to give off a naturally luminescent highlight to the skin without a heavy metallic finish." That's a mouthful, but we agree with their claims. The finely-milled, pearlescent sparkle highlights skin without looking overtly glittery or frosty and the effect builds softly—it's hard to overdo it with this product (no stark lines of contrast, no chunky/flaky glitter). That's great, because many highlighting products lay down too much shine all at once.
For more dramatic luminosity and color payoff, Hourglass suggests using Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder wet. That's doable, although it takes more effort to blend smoothly.
In a nutshell, Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder works well for the technique it's named after*, and the fragrance-free formula earns our seal of approval due to its luxe, smooth texture, gorgeous, luminous shades, and brightening, reflective sheen. You certainly don't have to pay this much to get a good highlighter, but if you're in the mood to splurge, Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder hits the spot.
*Wondering what "strobing" is? Strobing is a highlighting technique that creates dimension by using illuminating products (i.e. highlighting the tops of cheekbones to make them pop, etc.). Simply put, it's the shimmering alternative to the contouring trend.
- Soft-to-the-touch, pressed powder texture blends seamlessly over skin.
- Sheer color and subtle, reflective sheen give skin a lit from within glow.
- Finely-milled sparkle enlivens skin without looking overtly glittery.
- Works well for strategic highlighting ("strobing").
Hourglass Cosmetics bills itself as luxury performance makeup, and for the most part that description is apt. The luxury aspect is apparent in the brand's packaging, which evokes sophistication and glamour. As for what's inside, while not every Hourglass product is a blockbuster, it has a number of strong products in its lineup, particularly its Ambient Lighting collection of powder makeup products. There are also some standout options for lip colors, and its Veil Fluid Makeup Oil SPF 15 foundation is a blogger and Beautypedia favorite for good reason (you can find out exactly why in our individual review). Hourglass does offer a small selection of skincare, but when it comes to this brand makeup is truly where its strengths lie.
For more information about Hourglass Cosmetics, visit www.hourglasscosmetics.com or call 310-392-7799.
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The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.