A little while ago it seemed everyone on Youtube was ranting and raving about Hourglass. First there were the Ambient Lighting powders, followed by the Ambient Lighting blushes. Hourglass is not readily available in The Netherlands and I haven’t seen any of their products being reviewed on Dutch blogs. When I found the brand and all its gorgeousness at Space NK in London, I decided to pick up the blush I had had on my wish list for some time and try it out.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Diffused Heat
Hourglass is what you may call a high end make up brand. I originally looked into the Ambient Lighting powders but I didn’t know what color to go for and they were even more expensive than the blush. So I went with a blush instead. Of the 6 shades available, Diffused Heat seemed the most attractive to me. It is also not part of their blush palette, so I figured that if I like this, I could always try and get my hands on that if I want to try more shades. The blush retails for 28 pounds and is sold at Space NK in the UK (and I believe Sephora in the US).
The blush comes packaged in a bronze shiny box. On there you can see that the blush is free of parabens, fragrance, talc, gluten and nanoparticles. Always a plus when make up products come without a bunch of unnecessary ingredients. On the back, you can also find a full ingredient list.
What Hourglass says:
• Hourglass has fused Ambient Lighting Powder, the cutting-edge collection of finishing powders, with an array of vivid cheek colors, creating a hybrid product that is unique, contemporary and revolutionary.
• Unlike traditional blush, which tends to be flat, Ambient Lighting Blush uses Photoluminescent Technology to exhibit depth and dimension.
• The airy, lightweight powders contain optically transparent particles that amplify the colors to a multidimensional level—effectively reinventing the way you view blush.
• The state of the art formula means that its full potential is only displayed on application.
• The hand-made powders are formulated using an advanced miscelare technique—which means “to mix” in Italian—creating the perfect balance of pigment and powder, and no two look alike.
• Delivers a natural radiant finish and offers buildable color.
• Ambient Lighting Blush is designed to be paired with Ambient Lighting Powder. Using the two products together imbues the entire complexion with an otherworldly glow.
• The six shades, which range from soft coral to cool pink, are a wardrobe of captivating accent lights for cheeks.
For 28 pounds I was really hoping that all these claims are true. Especially the natural radiant finish and the depth and dimension were aspects that drew me in. But of course, I wouldn’t have purchased this product, if it didn’t have a wonderful swatch that already blew me away in the store.
Let’s have a look at the packaging first, before moving on to the shade and the performance on the cheeks. The compact itself looks shiny and luxurious. It doesn’t feel like it though. The packaging is made of plastic. It does make for a nicely lightweight and easy to carry product, but it also makes it feel cheap. It’s also something that you cannot tell just by looking at a picture. In pictures, the reflective finish of the product makes it look 10x more luxurious than it feels.
Because of the plastic container, the compact simply snaps shut. In the lid you will find a mirror that covers the size of the lid. The compact itself is small and easy to carry around. I don’t think this product will likely open in your bag. If I have to complain about something about this product, it’s that the packaging feels cheap for something that has a fairly hefty price tag. But of course, it’s not the outside that matters, but what’s inside.
Ta-dah! Diffused Heat in all its glory. The blush itself has a blend of reddish/pink with beige/ gold veins dispersed through the product. According to Hourglass, each blush will look differently at the surface because of their production techniques. Looking at it as such, this may not seem like much, but let’s have a closer look.
When taking a closer look, you can already see this is no ordinary blush. The product has a very pretty glow and the veining looks very delicate. Not like some drugstore products, where it looks like the two colors don’t blend very well together. But here, the two colors form a uniform whole despite it being two colors. It looks as if you’re making a marble cake and the dough has set before you put it in the oven.
Hourglass describes this color as a vibrant poppy. And judging by the red veining in the product, I would agree with them. The red may look off putting, but because you swirl the two colors together when you apply it, it makes for a very subtle reddish pink color. The swatch below serves as proof.
Texture wise this is one of the most buttery smooth powder blushes I have ever touched. This blush is so finely milled that you barely feel it’s a powder. It doesn’t feel grainy at all and where some products are ruined the minute you stick your finger into it for a swatch this blush magically ‘restores’ itself. When I swirl my brush through it after swatching, this blush looks just as when I first opened up the box.
Swatches do not lie and as you can see the pigmentation is more than okay. In fact, when it comes to pigmentation this compares to some of my favorite blushes by NARS (Orgasm) and Benefit (Coralista). And can you see that pretty shine? Yup, what you see in the pan is what you get on your skin. Also a plus. If you look carefully you’ll see that multidimensional effect Hourglass claims this product has: depending on how the light hits this blush it looks darker, or shinier or… well… in one word: absolutely stunning!
On my cheeks this color makes for the perfect flushed with a subtle glow from within look. I am usually not a fan of shimmery blush because it accentuates the little bumps of the many milia that always seem to be developing there. But this one seems to not only add a nice pop of healthy color to my cheeks, it also seems to blur the appearance of pores and other minor imperfections. Combined with that natural glow, this color is the ultimate ‘my-cheeks-but-better’ color.
See?! This blush looks natural yet vibrant at the same time. It really completes a make up look and is really easy to apply. You can build up the color, but what I usually do is use my big and fluffy Real Techniques blush brush. I swirl it around once and apply it to my cheeks. The result is what you see in the picture up here. A little goes a long way and staying power is also great, especially considering this is a powder blush.
Needless to say, this blush has become my every day blush color. Because the reddish tone is close to my natural flushed color, this color goes with EVERY make up look for me. From smokey to more neutral: this blush goes with anything. It is easy to apply, the color is natural and luminous and gives you that instant glow-from-within look. If you find yourself with the means to purchase one of these blushes, then please do. You won’t regret it.
What is your best ‘my-cheeks-but-better’ blush color?