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Glow Up With The New Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder

Any photographer, filmmaker, model or actress will tell you that the lighting equipment used in a shoot can completely alter  the feel and look of the final images — whether they’re still or moving shots. And, if you’ve ever posed for a photo under fluorescent lighting, then you know first-hand how the cool-toned white light can alter your appearance in a truly disturbing way, making your skin tone appear to be a Gollum-ish gray shade, casting shadows under your eyes that make you look like you’ve shunned sleep altogether, and accentuating fine lines and wrinkles. Hey, there’s a reason why it’s a horror movie trope to feature at least one scene with a dark, isolated, spooky corridor featuring a flickering fluorescent lamp overhead. Bottom line: under the right light, any girl can stunning. But, of course, real life doesn’t happen inside a studio environment, where we can control the lighting, tilt our head at the perfect angle, and maybe even get a fan machine so that our hair blows dreamily. And that, ladies, is where the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder ($45 at Sephora.com) comes in, acting as a glow-boosting genie that lives inside a powder compact rather than the traditional, teapot-like, golden lamp with its pour spout, top lid, and rounded handle.

I first heard of the Ambient Lighting Powder when I was covering the red carpet looks at the 2013 Golden Globe Awards and was marveling over how luminous Jessica Alba’s skin looked on the red carpet. As it turns out, Alba’s makeup artist swept the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Radiant Light over the Hourglass  Illusion Tinted Moisturizer in Sand. Needless to say, my curiosity was piqued immediately and I jumped at the chance to try a powder that would give my complexion this demure, lit-from-within look. And I am happy to report that the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder did not at all disappoint. In  fact, I’ve now come to think of it as my personal lighting equipment, so that I can choose a different powder shade depending on the effect that I covet.

The talc- and fragrance-free Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder relies on photo-luminescent technology, which consists of micron-size color-correcting particles along with light-reflecting micro pearls, to manipulate oncoming light, softening, reflecting, capturing, and diffusing both natural and artificial light  in order to conceal imperfections, yield the appearance of a more radiant and even skin tone, and generally make your complexion appear as  youthful and alluring as possible. The Ambient Lighting Powder is available in six tones, each of which yields a completely different effect. When developing these formulas, Hourglass founder and CEO Carisa Janes hoped to create a range of finishing powders that would allow women to alter the way their skin looked regardless of the lighting source to which they were subjected. Whether you’re going for a lavender-tinged, moonlit glow, a warm candlelit radiance, or a sun-kissed look, you can do so with one of the new Ambient Lighting Powder shades.

The six Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder shades available are:

Ethereal Light: An opalescent, sheer, cool-toned, white-ish powder that controls shine mimics a moonlit glow
Diffused Light: A soft, warm, pale yellow powder that reduces redness and makes skin appear clear and bathed in a slither of soft morning light
Dim Light: A neutral peach beige powder that provides a balance between cool and warm undertones so as to ultimately diminish the appearance of any skin imperfections — from blemishes to red patches, fine lines, and dark spots
Mood Light: A soft, sheer lavender pink powder that mimics a really soft and forgiving light, brightening the complexion ever so subtly
Luminous Light: A champagne pearl powder that yields a soft, sexy, romantic candlelit glow
Radiant Light: A sun-kissed golden beige powder that warms up your skin tone, making it look as if you’d been basking in the sun in the French Riviera

I’ve been trying out the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Radiant Light and I now can’t conceive of life without it! I typically apply it with the Hourglass Ambient Powder Brush ($35 at Sephora.com, shown above at top in the group photo. This handy brush features densely-packed, high-grade Taklon bristles that are ultra soft and allow you to dust the powder onto your face nicely and evenly. For an all-over luminous finish, you can apply the powder to your entire face or, if you just want a touch of radiance in key spots, you can swipe it onto cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose, and along the jawline. Truth be told, though, you’ll get the best results when you apply it all over your complexion — even if you do layer a bit more in the aforementioned areas!

Next, check out swatches of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Radiant Light — my new makeup crush! As you can see, the base color is a peachy, sandy, warm beige and the formula includes some tiny gold and clear micro-pearls that reflect light ever so softly.


Want to see how the powder transforms the skin? Check out the photos below, in which I’m wearing the Radiant Light shade.

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