Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal for Spring 2013 Swatches & Review

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light

Hourglass has a new product out this spring called Ambient Lighting Powder. What the heck is an Ambient Lighting Powder? Well here’s the scoop: they are finishing powders that help capture, diffuse and soften the way light is reflected on your skin. They use photoluminescent technology, which means they use transparent micro-sized color-correcting particles that emulate the appearance of younger, healthier skin. They help you glow from within!

These are also paraben-free, gluten-free, talc-free and fragrance-free and come in six types:

DIFFUSED LIGHT: A soft, warm, pale yellow powder. Light your skin with DIFFUSED LIGHT to reduce redness and give skin clarity – like a soft ray of morning light.

ETHEREAL LIGHT: An opalescent sheer, cool white powder. Light your skin with ETHEREAL LIGHT to mimic a moonlit glow – even in broad daylight.

RADIANT LIGHT: A sun-kissed golden beige powder. Light your skin with RADIANT LIGHT to extend a summer glow, or enhance the overall complexion with believable, subtle, warmth.

MOOD LIGHT: A soft, sheer lavender pink powder. Light your skin with MOOD LIGHT to mimic the softest most forgiving light and reveal your brightest complexion.

DIM LIGHT: A neutral peach beige powder. Light your skin with DIM LIGHT to blur imperfections and highlight a radiant complexion with the perfect balance of warm and cool tones.

LUMINOUS LIGHT: A champagne pearl powder. Light your skin with LUMINOUS LIGHT to create a soft, incandescent candlelit glow – day or night.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light-4

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light-2
Ethereal Light

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light-3
Ethereal Light

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light Swatch
Ethereal Light

Ethereal Light is an opalescent white shade. It’s supposed to mimic a moonlight glow, even in daylight.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light on me
Wearing Ethereal Light

Ok so here is my take on this particular one. I didn’t notice that much of a difference with it compared to any other highlighter I use. Here I am wearing it on my cheekbones and across my temples, (which you can’t really see in this pic). It does show up as a nice glow on my cheekbones, but did it make me look more youthful? Nah. I mean it’s nice, don’t get me wrong. It feels soft and silky and it’s hard to overdo it, which is good. But I don’t necessarily think it’s anything to write home about. Maybe the other shades, which I believe are deeper or more noticeable would have made more of a difference.

Overall: As far as this shade goes, I would say it’s nice, but nothing that incredible for me.

Availability: Sephora, Barney’s, Space NK, etc.

Pricing: $45.00 for 0.35 oz.

What do you think about these, would you try them? Which one sounds appealing?


Note: Hourglass is cruelty free.

Disclosure: The product(s) in this post were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR company for consideration. For more information please visit my legal page.

Do you like this product?

2 say yes!
21 say no!


  • February 12, 2013

    Wow it looks so pretty on you! Sad to hear you don’t think its anything special though. I totally got suckered by the marketing & blind ordered Ethereal last week, it should be coming sometime this week. Glad that Sephora has a good return policy if I end up not liking it!

    • February 12, 2013

      I hope it works for you!

  • February 12, 2013

    I tried Diffused Light first, which is the yellow-y one. I was not impressed either. However, a friend convinced me I needed Mood Light and I LOVE IT. I thought it was meant to be worn as a setting powder, but I’ve been told it’s really supposed to be an all over face powder. I’ve noticed when I wear it, my makeup stays all day and so does the glow. But only with Mood. I think you have to try them to find the one that works best for you.

    • February 12, 2013

      I had a feeling it depended on the shade. Now I want to try Mood Light.

  • February 12, 2013

    I’m so curious about the effect (if any) these have. I’m most curious about diffused, mood, and dim.

    The compact looks lovely and appropriately high end.

    • February 12, 2013

      Yes it’s definitely a nice little compact!

  • February 12, 2013

    I don’t care for the marketing speak (really, “moonlit glow” and “soft ray of morning light”?), but I’m intrigued by these, especially Diffused Light. My skin is naturally yellow-toned, but my face is slightly pinker than the rest of my body. I’ve never tried a yellow powder to even it out, but it might help!

  • February 12, 2013

    I’m curious about the powders, but if you don’t think that they’re any better than other highlighters, I’ll probably pass. My favorite is still the Too Faced Candlelight Glow Duo.
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  • February 12, 2013

    I’m so glad to finally see a review of Ethereal – I myself have and reviewed Mood and Diffused, and I’d seen swatches and reviews of everything but this one. This looks nice, but not unique enough to be a must have for me. Thank you so much for the review!!

  • February 12, 2013

    $45.00 is kind of alot for these. I do see the suble glow it leaves on your cheeks. It is really kind of nice. I wish they would make one that give the glow of sunset! LOL! I just love the way my skin looks in the sunset. Maybe mood would work? Thoughts anyone?

  • February 12, 2013

    Radiant and Dim Light sound most appealing to me. I have seen a few reviews on those that make me VERY curious!
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  • February 12, 2013

    I like this on you. I have found highlighters to be challenging to get to show up on me and also last more than 30 mins! I finally found one from IT Cosmetics and before that sort of one from TARTE that I liked. I think whatever you end up with that works on you and LASTS is what you need to stick with. I think I have tried more highlighter fails than successes over the yrs.

  • February 12, 2013

    Wow, that’s really pricey. I’ll stick with my Laura Geller baked highlighter.
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  • February 12, 2013

    I have my eyes on radiant. What’s the wear time like?
    Chris´s last post…There’s no other way to be BOLD for spring then with Burberry Lip Glow in Pink Sweet Pea No. 20My Profile

    • February 12, 2013

      It lasted on me most of the day.

  • February 12, 2013

    I’ve been dithering about this. I absolutely don’t need it and found a highlighter I adore so your post has helped me tremendously. I’m putting it out of my mind — I hope.
    MarciaF (beauty info zone)´s last post…Lush has a Heart of GoldMy Profile

  • February 12, 2013

    I just placed an order for Dim Light after reading some great reviews on it. Hopefully it works out well.
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  • February 13, 2013

    This is the exact one I’ve been thinking about. But now that I see it on someone, I’m glad I went with the NARS powder instead. It has more of the effect I was hoping for. Diffused instead of highlighted.
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  • February 13, 2013

    Looks nice on you but I agree nothing to shout from the rooftops there are definitely better & cheaper highlighters out there!
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  • February 15, 2013

    When I read the descriptions I was immediately like, oooooooo Ethereal!!!! Lol. I’m so pale that it seemed like that one would flatter me most but…hmmm. I’m also curious about Mood Light. Looks like I need to pop into Sephora to check these out! *excuse to go…yes!* :D Ethereal does look like a really soft, smooth, subtle highlight powder and those are the kind I love! <3 This one is definitely a try before I buy though…