It’s that time of year again when beauty brands bring out limited edition palettes/kits/collections to kick off the holiday season. The first thing on my radar was definitely the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit – Surreal Light ($95), which has already received a lot of varying opinions. As a previous Hourglass limited edition palette owner, I had to get my hands on this year’s version.
The palette contains five different products. The largest is the Finishing Powder in Surreal Light, a sheer powder to be used to set the face – this is also the powder that is swirled into the blushes and bronzer. There are two blushes in this set, Surreal Glow (a pale cool pink) and Surreal Effect (a warmer magenta pink). The bronzer, Surreal Bronze Light, is very warm and golden in tone, and the Surreal Strobe Light is an iridescent peach shade.
I am a particularly huge fan of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes so these are definitely my favourites in the set. Yes, Surreal Glow is quite pale but on my lighter skin it leaves a lovely natural flush to the cheeks that I find incredibly flattering and perfectly compliments a deeper eye look. Surreal Effect is more dramatic but still has a buildable colour payoff. Both of these blushes apply very evenly on the skin as they are incredibly soft and smooth – I haven’t had any patchiness at all and I can still see colour on my cheeks several hours in.
This is actually my very first experience with an Hourglass Strobe Lighting Powder outside of swatching at the Sephora counter but I really love Surreal Strobe Light. I’ve gotten a bit tired of dramatic highlights but this more on the sheer side for highlight. That being said, it still leaves a very present golden iridescence on the cheeks that is still present throughout the day. The powder is a bit looser in the pan than the other products but I don’t find that it interferes with the quality when applied.
The bronzer is particularly unique because it’s probably the lightest “bronzer” colour I’ve used – this may vary between palettes due to the marbling. Surreal Bronze Light is a warm brown with a distinct dusty rose tone and golden shimmer. Although it’s not a particularly classic bronzer shade, I have been gravitating to it daily as a duo bronzer/blush product rather than using it as a bron-tour (bronzer/contour). Surreal Bronze Light adds wonderful warmth to my complexion that looks very natural and I imagine that I’m going to love this even more in the winter, as my skin tone gets lighter.
The Finishing Powder is probably the product that I have used the least in the palette. I don’t find that the soft shimmer makes my skin look overly shiny (a concern for oil-skinned complexions like mine) but I do find that it accentuates any uneven textures on my skin – small blemishes and light scarring. Longevity wise, this does help to set my makeup just as long as a more matte powder. I don’t think I’ll be pulling away from my Laura Mercier or NARS loose powders anytime soon but I have been combining this with Surreal Strobe Light for an even more natural highlight and very lightly dusting this following a matte powder for to add a natural glow.
Packaging-wise this palette is absolutely stunning. The marble is very on-trend and looks lovely. Although it’s white, it doesn’t stain from any makeup that my come in contact with it.
It would be nice if the four powders on the right side of the palette were a bit bigger to accommodate larger brushes. Additionally, I would say that this palette caters a bit more to light skin tones than darker skin tones – particularly the lighter blush.
As an Hourglass fan it’s great to have all these products in one place and I think that the quality is on par with the full size Hourglass products that I have in my collection. Yes, it’s quite an expensive product but personally, I have really enjoyed these limited edition shades and I love the efficiency of owning palette – so far it has been worth every penny for me.
Have you tried the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit – Surreal Light? Leaves your thoughts in the comments below!