I love trying out a cult beauty product and 9 times out of 10, they just don’t work for me and they hardly ever become favorites. The Charlotte Tilbury brand is one that especially seems to get a lot of hype and while I love many CT products, the brand also tends to skew quite warm toned so undertones aren’t alwasy right for me. So I had alwasy been apprehensive about the infamous Filmstar Bronze & Glow sculpt and highlight powder. But then I saw they do it in a smaller, travel size and that is what swayed me to try this. I used it while I was on my most recent London trip and so I now have a good grasp what this product does for me. Let’s review!
Review: Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow travel size
One of the reasons why I hadn’t tried this yet? It is a pricey product and not one I could see myself reaching for a lot. The full price product retails for €65 and comes in two shades. The travel size is still a decent size, retails for €30 and only comes in one shade (which I don’t understand, because why would you think people with deeper skin tones don’t travel eh?!). I personally opted for the travel size as the original seemed just a bit big and I am not much of a contour/ highlight fan. In fact, I declutterd most of my contour products in my collection and to own it in a huge size just didn’t make sense.
What does this have to offer?
Filmstar Bronze & Glow is essentially a face palette with two shades: a sculpt (or contour) shade and a highlighter. Both products aren’t too intense, the compact is pretty and you get a decent sized mirror. The travel size has 2 pans of 3.5 grams of product each. Now that is a lot less than the full size, which comes in at 22.5 grams for the two powders. So while you only pay half, you only get about a third of the product amount in this travel size. That said, I knew the original size was far too big for me as I was afraid I wouldn’t use it enough. So for me it made more sense to go with the smaller size overall.
What are the colors like?
This is quite possibly one of the first CT products I saw being hyped up by beauty influencers. Their overall consensus always seemed to be: love the contour, the highlight is a bit meh. That said, this was back when highlighters had to be seen from space for anyone to like them and both of these powders are soft and barely there. Great if you want a natural look, but not if you want a full glam. For a brand like Charlotte Tilbury that is a surprise because the brand is known for their glam aesthetic while this actually achieves the opposite.
How do these swatch?
Remember what I said about this being barely there? In a full on finger swatch it is difficult to see these products. And I can hear you thinking: but there is hardly any pigmentation! But let me ask you: when is the last time a very pigmented contour or highlight looked natural on you? It doesn’t and I was therefore hopeful this would work. For a contour shade, the contour is a bit on the warm side, which is why I decide it more as a bronzer. The highlight is a pretty champagne gold that is again quite warm toned, but because of the subtle glow worked really well for a quick look on the go.
How does this product apply?
A review would be incomplete without an overview of what this looks like on the cheeks. Above you can see my bare cheeks: just my base is done here. The picture in the middle is what my cheeks look like after applying the sculpt shade. The picture at the bottom is my cheeks after also adding the highlight. Overall this makes for a subtle, yet still sculpted look with a hint of natural glow. You can build this up further but I just went in with blush and called it a day. The powders blend beautifully and easily and this was a great travel companion.
My final thoughts
With how hyped up the brand gets, Charlotte Tilbury is one where I feel there are still some hits and misses. The Filmstar Bronze and Glow is a hit for me and I will be keeping this around mainly for when I travel. Due to the warm undertone in both powders this works for me more like a bronzer and subtle highlight duo rather than a contour and highlight shade that will truly sculpt my face and create that illusion of a different bone structure. The sculpt shade is a good bronzer for me and the highlight is subtle but I like that for an everyday look that isn’t too intense or glammed up.
Would I recommend the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow?
I think this is a nice product, but does it deserve the hype this gets? I’d say no. It’s pretty but the shade range the product comes in is just nothing to write home about. The light/ medium shade is very light and I don’t see this working on a lot of people. If it works for me and my fair skin, then anyone who is truly light to medium will not be able to make this work. I wish the brand would extend the shade range and for instance offer some different highlight shades as well. That would make the product much more universally flattering. Buy it if you like the look of this, but I do not recommend running out to get this.