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2 Apr 2013

Hourglass Cosmetics Illume Bronze Duo in Bronze Light

Hourglass Illume bronze duo in Bronze Light
... stock image

Off out to Harvey Nichols food hall went I around about the time of Valentine's day to get some treats from the OH (he's partial to the old pistachio Persian Fairy Floss).  And sure it'd be a crime not to visit Space NK concession while I was there!  A brand I'd been reading about, and meaning to try, Hourglass Cosmetics, took my eye on this particular visit, and so, armed with lighter-than-silk (and about the same price as silk) candy floss (for him) and another bronzer/highlighter duo (for me), I left Harvey Nick's that day happy out.

And it's taken me until now to get around to playing with it and blogging about it (the shame!)

The Ullume Bronze Duo has been described by some as a cheaper dupe (€47 I believe) for Tom Ford's more expensive Shade & Illuminate duo (€65).  However cheap in and of itself it still ain't.

Hourglass Illume bronze duo in Bronze Light
... in the flesh

This comes in two variants - Bronze Light and Sunset.  Both contain two products, the same bronzer in each case and a different highlighter; Bronze Light has a champagne beige highlighter for lighter skin tones, Sunset has a rose-pink toned highlighter for darker skin tones (or for using as a rose-toned blusher for lighter skins).  I got the Bronze Light and hightailed it home to play with it.

Hourglass Illume bronze duo in Bronze light
L -> R: Highlighter, Bronzer (heavy swatch, no flash)

First impressions?  I. Really. Don't. Like. It.  The illuminator is just too subtle for a cream-based illuminator/highlighter.  The bronzer is just far too orange for my NC20 winter skin.

Hourglass Illume bronze duo
L -> R: Highlighter, Bronzer (heavy swatch, no flash)
See what I mean?  Hardly visible...

Sure, however, they blend down nicely but they definitely take some work (the illuminator, to build-up;  the bronzer, to sheer-out).  I can see this bronzer working nicely on my summer skin, but for now it's a bust.  It certainly is absolutely no match for my usual (favourite) cream bronzers (NARS The Multiple in Laguna, or Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel).  In terms of my favourite cream highlighter/illuminator, I won't gratify that one with an answer (as I have at least a dozen "favourites" at any one point in time - am somewhat of a highlighter junkie ;-))

Tilt-y Swivel-y mirror.   Cute, but completely unnecessary.

The mirror is a nice little addition which slides and tilts and swivels and does all manner of interesting (and lets face it, entirely unnecessary) tricks.  If you're into gadgets (I am) then you'll like this feature :-) Being honest, it's completely pointless.

Ingredients-wise, it contains lots of plastics, alcohol, talc, silicones, all helping it to apply well, blend well and set.   And set it does - down to a dry, but not powdered-looking, finish.  You get a certain amount of time to play with this, and then it's hard to move.  And they don't last particularly long either - they fade somewhat after very little time.  Hmmmm.  I'm struggling to see who this might suit; you need a paler skin-tone for either of these to show up, but the bronzer is also too orange for someone pale.  Overall, I'm not terribly impressed.  I will use it again, but I'll wait for the summer and see how useful it is then...  Assuming we ever get one.  A summer, that is :-(

Look here for more info on this product.

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