Hit or Miss? Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit- Surreal Light

A holiday limited edition, this new palette from Hourglass is receiving mixed reviews, I see why! Scroll down for my personal thoughts, photos and final verdict.


 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Surreal Light review swatch

Retailing for $80, the Ambient Lighting Edit- Surreal Light features new shades a.k.a “never-been-released” according to the website. It boasts to flatter every skin tone, giving you that coveted soft glow which helps minimize the appearance of wrinkles, imperfections and discolorations. The palette features 1 finishing powder (Surreal Light, sheer nude), 1 bronzer (Surreal Bronze Light, light tan), 2 blush (Surreal Glow, pale peony pink, Surreal Effect, soft pink peach) and 1 highlighter (Surreal Strobe Light, peach). The marble-type plastic case is strikingly different from the brand’s signature mirrored dark brown; it has a matte feel to it, beautiful but nothing revolutionary to say the least.

 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Surreal Light review swatch

I have recently tossed away some of my old Hourglass Ambient powders (past the expiration) so I thought buying this palette is economical since I rarely finish makeups. For reference, my skin tone is medium on the face and light medium from the neck down. All five shades have that silky-soft feel to them. These “new” shades actually look like the old shades to me. No, let me rephrase that, they look like the pale version of the current line. Which leads me to the whole debacle whether this is a must-buy or must-skip…

 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Surreal Light review swatch

If you have pale or fair skin, this palette is made for you. Only for you. It is not designed for universal wear in contrast to its claim. As you can see from my swatch above (light medium arm), the bronzer and blush barely showed up. But what about on my face? applied four times at minimum, the color does show up, it needs work. Patience, not quite a virtue to me especially for an $80-palette.

 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Surreal Light review swatch

For my makeup above, I used the finishing powder, blush (surreal glow) and bronzer. Do you spot the subtlety? I hope so. Bottomline, this palette is a letdown for women of color. 



  1. September 27, 2016 / 4:47 pm

    Wow, those are extremely light. I think you should return it.

  2. September 27, 2016 / 5:23 pm

    What a pretty palette!

  3. September 27, 2016 / 5:28 pm

    I have definitely seen the mixed reviews as well, and clearly this is only a good match for pale complexions!

  4. September 27, 2016 / 10:05 pm

    It's a beautiful, tiny palette but very subtle!

  5. September 28, 2016 / 1:37 am

    It's a beautiful palette but the information about it is way off. That looks light even for my pale skin. I don't toss powders unless they've changed texture.

  6. September 28, 2016 / 6:13 am

    It's probably too light for me but wow, those are pretty!

  7. September 28, 2016 / 7:18 am

    I love how subtle the shades are, but you're right – they'll never show up on medium and deep skintones.

  8. September 28, 2016 / 7:45 pm

    I think maybe it wasn't made for us pale gals either- everything was more yellow/orange!

  9. September 28, 2016 / 9:29 pm

    I passed on looking at this because I thought my skin is just too dark for it… you have confirmed my suspicions. It's gorgeous packaging for sure… but if I'm going to pay that price, it better have a punch.

  10. September 29, 2016 / 5:53 pm

    Ugh, what a let down. I have light skin, but I wouldn't even bother to spend money on such invisible shades.

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