Monday, August 27th, 2012

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

A Little Light Goes a Long Way

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream ($24.00 for 0.23 oz.) is described as a “champagne.” It’s a soft, warm ivory champagne with a strong shimmer-sheen. The shimmer is fairly fine, but it has a strong sheen that’s almost metallic depending on how much product you use. Benefit Watt’s Up! is similar, though a bit less warm-toned. NARS Albatross is similar in color but a bit lighter because the white base is stronger. MAC Truth & Light is lighter.

The Gleam formula is supposed to be lightweight with an iridescent finish to highlight both the face and body. It’s very creamy and slides right over the skin, and it doesn’t take a lot of product to highlight the higher planes of the face. I used some on the top of my cheekbones, along the bridge of my nose, and above my cupid’s brow. I used a clean spatula to take a little product out of the pan, and then I used my fingertips to pat it on. (Bonus: you can see it live in this video.) It does emphasize pores somewhat, because it does have a strong sheen that almost looks metallic, depending on the lighting.

This is a true cream, as it doesn’t dry down or set over time, so the wear time wasn’t stellar.  I managed about five hours of decent wear (and I have normal-to-dry skin), and after a little over six hours, a lot of it had faded/separated. It’s a product I’d consider setting lightly with translucent powder, which would help to set it as well as tamp down some of the high sheen finish (if you prefer a subtler highlight).

The Glossover

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product

Aurora

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If you like more intense highlighters, you might like Aurora, which should work on a variety of skin tones, because it's not an ashy champagne, but it's not too yellow that it becomes gold. The shorter wear time is its biggest downfall.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes
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See more photos & swatches!

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream (Diffused Flash)

Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream
Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream (Studio Light)

Product & Review FAQ

Where can I purchase it? How much is it?

Sephora, $24.00 (September 6th).

Is it limited edition?

No.

Any dupes?

Benefit Watt's Up! is similar, though a bit less warm-toned. NARS Albatross is similar in color but a bit lighter because the white base is stronger. MAC Truth & Light is lighter.

What makeup are you wearing?

On eyes: Illamasqua Complement Palette, Burberry Trench Eyeshadow, Illamasqua Wisdom Precision Ink Eyeliner, and Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Waterproof Mascara. On face: Illamasqua Allure Blush, Illamasqua Aurora Gleam, Make Up For Ever HD Foundation (125), Guerlain Les Voilettes Mineral Powder (003). On lips: Illamasqua Boost Intense Lipgloss, Illamasqua Opulent Sheer Lipgloss.

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34 thoughts on “Illamasqua Aurora Gleam Highlighting Cream Review, Photos, Swatches

  1. Thank you for swatching it.
    For me it seems a little too shiny.

    • No problem! It doesn’t “set” to a powder, and it has a more metallic sheen, so it is fairly reflective.

      • Nice to know, that it doesn’t set to a powdery-finish. I’m thinking about using this as a highlighter only on my eyes right under my eyebrows could work better for me.

        Just to mention: You look fabulous with this <3

        aaand: Sorry for my bad english, long time no speak ;D

  2. man, that looks gorgeous, I’m seriously oggling it! I have some questions…I’m combination to oil, not particularly on the cheekbones which is where I would use it mostly…do you think I tould make that work with a mattifying primer and powder? I’d really like to rock that…I already use a cream highlighter that is kinda greasy even and it seems to work, so…

  3. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Shontay shontay

    You look beautiful Christine.

    So, I’m kinda tempted by this but I have the mary loumanizer by thebalm which is incredible. Do you think I should bother with this?

    • I don’t think you need to have both, not that they’re dupes exactly, but on, they’re not so, so different (since they’re both a bit warm). This is less golden/yellow, so if you find theBalm looks like that, *maybe* it would be worth checking out.

  4. It’s pretty but maybe a bit too shiny for my taste. I definitely wouldn’t use this myself, as I have enough natural shine already (and that is nót a good thing in my case, lol).

  5. KK

    Your makeup looks great in these photos! I like this cream but I tend to get shiny so I’m not sure I’d like it on myself.

  6. Pretty colour, very intense, I’m afraid it’s too intense for my oily skin. Although I do like a bit of highlighter, this is too much for me.

  7. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Laurence Laurence

    It’s gorgeous ! How similar to MAC Pearl Cream Color Base would you say it is ?

  8. Yellowlantern

    While I like the color, no drying down means no purchase for me. I’m already oily I don’t need products that never dry adding to it. :p

  9. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Kafka Kafka

    My beloved Copacabana from NARS looks an exact dupe for the colour swatches on your arm (though not for the colour in the pan) and it too is described as “champagne.” The difference is that Copacabana (my HG highlighter) does not make one look greasy and gleaming with oil. Plus, it dries down to a powder *and* Copacabana has lasted up to 16 hours on me on one occasion. In contrast, this thing…. I’ve made salads with less of an oily, shiny look. Isn’t there an American expression about Pizza Face or something? Yeesh.

  10. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Neha Neha

    I was more than excited when I saw the effect on the video, but reading your review has definitely calmed me down :). Great work as always! Thanks

  11. Mel

    I think Urban Decay highlighter never dry also! So if you touch it by accident, it is all gone!
    Christine, what do you think of “Face & Body” foundation (MAC)? I have the same feeling about it, it never dries completely, and feel sticky.

    • Hmm, it has been a long time since I’ve worn F&B, but I used to wear it regularly. It has a more natural sheen, but I don’t remember it feeling sticky!

  12. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Sophie sophie

    You know, I’m actually considering this. I have really dry, super pale skin and highlighters never really show up properly on me, they just make me look slightly ashy. Maybe this would give me a nice shine? Hmmm!

  13. I think it’s gorgeous and I love that shiny look, but I have Watt’s Up already so I might not need to get this.

  14. Julia

    Christine, I have been reading your blog for years and have to say: this is the single most beautiful makeup look I’ve ever seen on you – totally enhances your natural beauty.

    ….aaaaaand you’ve alerted me to something I had no idea I needed but now am scheming to make it to Sephora after work tomorrow.

  15. Miss J

    You look really gorgeous in these photos, Christine. I love the whole makeup look, but I’m really loving that blush shade on you, and I also love the way your purple top complements your skin tone. :)

    As for this highlight, it’s lovely, but I’m a bit apprehensive about the finish. I’m also extremely curious about the NARS highlighter coming out. I go a little nuts with the highlighting products in fall/winter, lol.

  16. blueraccoon

    *attempting to catch up after a few days offline* This is way too shiny for me. I have normal to oily skin but I’m just not liking the finish here. Plus it doesn’t dry down, so…definite pass for me.

  17. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Ana Ana G.

    Wow..that’s super shiny, in deed!! So in love with it!!!