March 27, 2017

Hourglass Ambient® Lighting Palette

Hourglass Ambient® Lighting Palette

A palette featuring three shades of Ambient Lighting Powder, the high-tech, soft-focus finishing powder that recreates the most exquisitely flattering types of light.

This product is free of talc, gluten, fragrance, Parabens and nano particles.

Hourglass Ambient® Lighting Palette was among one of the many products in my Best in Beauty 2015 post and recently when I saw it pop up on Sephora Websites as their best sellers, I realized I had never reviewed it on this blog and I use this all the time. It deserves a mention for sure.

So here we have my two cents on this wonderful palette.

Texture and Consistency

These powders are finely milled, super soft, slightly powdery in texture. None of them have huge, chunky shimmers or glitters. There is a visible sheen in few of the powders. They are not completely matte. Incandescent Light has the most pearly sheen. These go on smoothly, blends easily without settling in the fine lines. They don't emphasize the pores or texture.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

Color, Application and Effect on Skin

The Palette includes Incandescent Light (exclusive to this palette), Dim Light and Radiant Light.

Dim Light is a pale, neutral beige powder with warm, peach undertones. It has subtle satin sheen, with no visible shimmers. The powder is finely milled. I use Dim Light all over my face as finishing powder, after my makeup is done, using a big fluffy brush. They blend easily and does not apply patchy. These are not setting powders, but as I have dry skin these work beautifully by giving me that needed, lit from within glow and not make skin look matte flat an dry. It just ties everything together.

Incandescent Light is a pearlescent, beige powder with soft ivory shimmers ad neutral undertones. This has the most sheen. It does not has any chunky shimmers either, but on my skin tone I cannot use at all over finishing powder. It works well as a highlighter, on top of the cheek bones. It does not emphasizes any pores or textures on skin. I like to use it on my collar bones and shoulders as well. It blends well and does not looks frosty.

Radiant Light is a medium, warm peachy beige powder with soft, subtle golden shimmers. This one is my favorite shade. I use it as a cheek highlighter or a finishing powder for the cheeks. It layers beautifully, does not emphasizes pores, textures nor makes me look oily. It gives a lovely warm glow on my medium plus complexion. On lighter skin tones this might work as warm peachy blush.

Scent: None

Packaging: A very sleek, metallic looking compact with a mirror. There is no applicator. The size of the pans are not huge, but not tiny either. A decent size blush brush fits easily. Easy to travel with. It attracts finger prints easily. 

Verdict: Ambient Lighting powders are my all time favorite. A good reason is the fact that, when these were released, there were not many subtle, finishing powders to choose from. Hourglass gave a huge selection. I don't use all the powder in similar way. Every single powder has its own role to perform on my skin tone. With these powders it is difficult to generalize and assign a single powder for any particular use. I have Diffused Light in another travel palette and I use it to set my under eye concealer, because it mimics banana powder for me. These don't settle in fine lines and go on smoothly. I have dry skin and it does not makes my skin drier, on layering over other products. Laura Mercier Candleglow Sheer Perfecting Powder is pretty similar, though I find them tad more shimmery when swatched. 

It is not a setting powder, but a finishing powder. There is a difference. The finishing powders capture, diffuse, and soften the way light reflects on skin. Ambient Lighting Powder utilizes photo luminescent technology to filter out harsh light and refine the appearance of the complexion. The powders deliver a multidimensional luminescence to every skin tone, making it appear softer and lit from within. The finishing powders enhance skin in any type of light, including flash photography.

People with oily skin would need something else to set their makeup first and then finish it off with these Hourglass Ambient Powders. Depending on skin tone and skin type, these powders can be customized to suit the needs. If you are looking for metallic glow, this is not for you.
As far as cost is concerned, the palette might be pricey, but I find palette better than individual pots. It is a great way to try multiple products or shades and they are easy to travel with. Also, on Hourglass website, these palette can be customized, with colors of personal choice. Isn't that Awesome!!!

A huge thumbs up!!

Few other Hourglass favorites

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March 24, 2017

Blithe Tundra Chaga Pressed Serum

Blithe Tundra Chaga Pressed Serum

An anti-polluaging serum and moisturizer hybrid, this pressed serum provides lasting hydration, minimizes visible signs of aging and pollution, nourishes, and supports skin without heaviness.

This Pressed Serum is fortified with chaga mushroom extract, which is cold-processed to preserve the mushroom's optimal nutrients. The extract is combined with a blend of fermented oils, including olive and argan oil.

It is formulated without Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates. It is also free of mineral oils and synthetic dyes.

I had always used liquid serums. The concept of pressed serum was very intriguing for me. Every detail about The Blithe Tundra Chaga pressed serum sounded amazing, especially the fact that the Chaga Mushroom extract is cold pressed. Cold pressed methods are best way to retain all the good properties and nutrients of any substance. Cold pressed nut oils are always preferred by Aromatherapists as carrier oils. 

Color: Mushroom Brown

Texture and Consistency: Thick, light weight, non-sticky, non-slippy, not too dense, cream

Scent: It has a clean herbal scent. Amazing and pleasing.

Application: I use this once a day as a part of my morning routine. I apply little less than dime size of this after washing my face with any cleanser. It is a serum and moisturizer rolled in one. Light massage with finger tips is all that I do. 

Feel and Effect on the Skin: The product spreads easily and gets absorbed completely by the skin. It is not very tacky and barely takes 15 seconds or less to disappear. The face feels velvety smooth and soft. It feels firm and tight, in a good way. The effect is almost instant. It is not a face lift but the firmness is evident. I have dry skin, but I don't have too many large pores. The product is very moisturizing and hydrating. It reduces the appearance of fine lines and any pores that I have, making the face look smoother and even. The hydration lasts for a good amount of time. It does not disappears in an hour unlike other K-beauty products. Also, it is good underneath makeup. I didn't notice my makeup slipping or disintegrating. There was no reaction to mushroom extract or any other ingredients in the product.

Packaging: It comes in a heavy, plastic jar that mimics frosted glass container. There is a spatula to scoop out the product. I love having spatulas, but I always have trouble storing them.

Verdict: I have been using this since 4 weeks now and it has improved the texture of my skin noticeably. As far a skin tone is concerned, I have yet to see much difference with the pigmented area. Pigmentation is something that has been one of my major concerns. I think this would show results in lightening the pigmentation is I use it for some more weeks. There are some amazing products like Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum, Pixi glow tonic, Sunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream, Laneige Brightening cream among the few I remember, that actually are good when it comes to tackling the pigmented patch problems. As a blogger I like to keep trying new products and just cannot stick to using my old favorites all the time. If you are looking for a product that would lift, firm, reduce fine lines, tighten and nourish the skin at same time, this Blithe Tundra Chaga Pressed Serum is a good one. It has all the needed anti-oxidants and the other good oils to nourish the skin. 

Algenist Power Night Pressed Serum is a new one and I am curious to try that. Loving this whole pressed serum concept. 

Few other serums I have used

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March 22, 2017

Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lip Gloss - Ignite

Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lip Gloss - Ignite

A smoothing and defining lip gloss that offers opulent shine.

The crème-de-la-crème of lip glosses, Extreme Sheen is pure luxury for the lips. The formulation delivers high shine and rich pigment without feathering, while active moisturizing and vitamin E provide intense hydration to keep lips from cracking or chapping.

It is formulated without Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates

I am not a huge fan of Lip glosses. Love to use them from time to time, but it is not a piece of makeup that I use every single day. I am very picky with what I choose in this category.

Color: I have this in the color Ignite. It is a sheer, shimmery rose gold with metallic sheen. The glosses come in three finishes. High Shine, Metallic and Shimmer finish.

Texture and Consistency: It is non sticky, thin, lightly tacky, light weight shimmery gloss. The shimmers are very fine and that gives us almost metallic look with high sheen.

Scent: It smells like a dessert. Maybe cake? I cannot pin point.

Application: The color I have is very sheer and not pigmented, so it can be topped easily over any shade of lipstick. I apply it on the center of my lips, totally avoiding the lip gloss to reach the corners of my mouth. I also applied it over bare lips, just for testing purpose.

Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lip Gloss - Ignite

Feel and Effect on the Lips: This is a very light weight, thin and non sticky lip gloss. It layers over the lipstick beautifully, without going on patchy but  as it is not highly pigmented, it does not alter the shade of the lipstick underneath. The shine is beautiful, but  does not lasts long. On bare lips it did nothing much. No tingling nor plumping with this one. It is mildly hydrating and does not dries or peels my lips.

Packaging: The packaging is quite unique. The tube is flattened and the cap snaps shut with a click.
The applicator is long and the flattened doe-foot and is very flexible. It picks up good amount of product. The flexible tip feels like a brush. The tip though is a thin n flimsy and might break if not handled carefully. It has not happened to me yet.

Verdict: This is not the most opaque or long lasting lip gloss. The high shine that is supposed to stay on the lips almost disappears after an hour. I have to re-apply it frequently. The formula on the other hand is very lovely and feels very comfortable on the lips, due to its light consistency. It did not dry or peel my lips. I only have one shade and I believe it is supposed to be sheer, but maybe the other colors are more pigmented and long lasting. Not my absolute favorite, though I love the thin formula.

MAC Cremesheen Lipglass has a lovely formula, while the Chantecaille Brilliant Lipgloss has amazing shine factor. Buxom Full On Lip Cream make the lips look most plump and juicy. NYX Butter Gloss from the drugstore has a great formula and is super affordable.

Few other lip glosses I have used

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