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Real estate is expensive, especially when we're talking beauty product space. Our Top of the Tower product picks are always front and center, right where they belong.


By Catherine Spinley


These days powder is a funny thing. It’s either so bright and shiny it could guide ships away from a rocky shoreline or it’s so flat-matte, people are baking their under eye area into overcooked oblivion. I’m cannot couch for this movement whatsoever. I’m oily-skinned and, sure, I don’t want to look greasy but I don’t want to look crinkly, parched or matte either. I want to look dewy, refreshed and hydrated to perfection.  

Image:  Pinterest

Image: Pinterest

Enter the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Palette. At launch, the beauty world did it’s best to describe how innovative this formula was. We all went bananarama for it; the powder is baked but still finely milled, infused with a slight sheen and impossible to mess up while applying. However; how does one describe the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Palette in a time BEFORE Snapchat and Instagram filters because, let me be clear, this powder IS an Instagram filter in powder form.


A few light swipes of this powder truly gives you that not-too-blurred, not-too glowy look perfect for those of us who prefer our faces look like faces and not a plumped and smoothed, marshmallow version of a face (with huge, pastel eyes and eyelashes only Huda could love).

Rather than apply it after my foundation and/or concealer, I apply after face painting is complete; swirling a big, fluffy brush in all three colors (Dim LIght, Incandescent Light and Radiant Light) and brushing over cheeks, eyelids, bridge of nose and forehead. One light application sets makeup and blurs and blends everything together. The best part - the part that makes it worth the $62 price point - is it also adds this whisper of a glow to skin, which is a tall order for a setting powder, which is likely to cake, gather in fine lines and beg for a spritz of mist or MAC Fix+.

Your perfect powder journey ends right here, right now.


Catherine Spinley is a sometimes-writer and photographer based in New York. When not stalking other people’s dogs or yelling at people who refuse to walk up the left side of the escalator, she works in the beauty industry and practices yoga. You can read more from her at