NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush Review, Photos, Swatches

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “sheer, light golden sheen.” The base color is a a pale, almost cool-toned ivory and then it has a healthy dose of light-medim gold shimmer-sheen. MAC Lightscapade doesn’t have as strong of a golden sheen, and it has a slightly pinker base color. MAC Chez Chez Lame is more golden and beige. MAC Too Chic is more beige and uniform. theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer is much more golden.

I swear, I thought I reviewed this product previously, but I couldn’t find one! I’m in the process of reviewing all of NARS’ permanent blushes (including re-reviewing some shades), and Albatross is the first one up. It’s part of the Highlighting Blush series, which are blushes designed to illuminate the skin rather than add lots of color. This shade has won numerous distincts, even winning awards in Temptalia’s Readers’ Choice Awards over the years, for its highlighting prowess.

On my skin tone (about medium in color with warmer, yellower undertones), Albatross isn’t the most flattering on its own–that cooler ivory base color gives me a washed out look. On the flip side, cooler skin tones from light to medium could wear this alone and have it be much more flattering. When it’s paired with another blusher, it is more flattering across a greater number of skin tones, because that lighter base color mixes with your blush color, so it doesn’t look as pale or as cool-toned.

There’s a nice balance of glow and sheen without emphasizing pores and the natural texture of the skin.  The way it reflects gives it a very creamy, luminous look–definitely more along the lines of a sheen than a frosted or shimmery look.  It can be used as a barely-there highlighter or more intensely, depending on whether you’re going for a low-key cheek or wearing it alone.  When I wore Albatross to test out the wear, it managed seven and a half hours of excellent wear and looked a bit faded after eight and a half hours.

The texture is soft and silky without being too dense or dry–you don’t have excess powder being kicked up when you go to use it, but you don’t have to stab at it to get enough product onto your brush.  I like using a small stippling brush to apply it lightly, or a small, tapered face brush for a more concentrated application.

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush (Diffused Flash)

NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush
NARS Albatross Highlighting Blush (Studio Lighting)


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xamyx Avatar

While I don’t have any of NARS’ actual “blushes” (yet!), I have 2 “highlighters”-Albatross & Nico. While I absolutely love Nico for daytime/consevative looks, Albatross is my HG for evening/dramatic looks. Not only do I use them for cheek highlights, I also use them on the browbone & inner corner of the eye. If I’m wearing a paler lip color, I use a small brush around my lips and highlight there, as well. For reference, I am light/neutral (NARS Deauville, L’Oreal True Match N1 or 2, Revlon Colorstay Buff) While $28 seems like alot, these poducts will last a long time, even with regular use, and they are multi-taskers.

Miss J Avatar

This is one of my favorite highlighters. I’m NC20-25ish, and on me, this works as a very candlelight glow. I don’t use it as much during the day, but I love it for night. This is a really soft product, and I don’t need much of it at all. IF I layer it too much or use a dense brush, it will look too yellow. IF I use it the right way then it’s amazing. I don’t think this one works for everyone, but I do see a lot of people overdo it, and then complain it looks yellow, but sometimes on some it does just look yellow no matter what. If you want to try this out, try it out in daylight and go light at first – that’s my best tip.

GlowMyWay Avatar

You know, I tried a sample of this one, and it highlighted the fine bumps on my cheeks like no other product I’ve ever tried. It was like OH LOOK HERE BUMPS. I don’t know why – I’ve tried a LOT of powder highlighters, from drugstore to high end, and none of the others do this.

NazNyc Avatar

This is one of my favorite powder highlighters. On my caramel complexion it comes out golden and looks great under the brows and along the cheeks.

Luce Avatar

This is my HG highlighter, in fact the only one that really works for me. It leans warmer on my fair warm-toned skin and gives such a lovely glow. But I could see how it might start to wash out skin tones darker than, say, NC25.

KK Avatar

I really like Albatross–I have medium tan skin, and I pretty much only wear it near my templed and around the outside bone of the eye, and it looks really pretty in that area.  I agree it would be too light for use anywhere else though, but for that purpose, it’s my favorite!

Kafka Avatar

 @annedreshfield  In liquid form? Are you perhaps thinking of the Copacabana Illuminator? It looks white-silvery. If so, I agree – Copacabana is amazing, though I use it in the Multiple form (cream stick) which I think is easier to use.

annedreshfield Avatar

 @Kafka You’re right, that’s totally what I meant! Oops. 🙂 I’ll have to try the Multiple form — the liquid is just a little *too* liquid-y, and it can be hard to control how much I’m putting and where.

Jenny Ramone Avatar

My favorite highlighter ever. I own other ones, but it’s kinda pointless because I always reach for Albatross anyway. lol

Elise Avatar

Oh my gosh…that looks like the perfect cheek highlighter AND eyeshadow! I’ve been looking for one just like that. A soft white (nothing too stark) with gold undertones. I might have to invest in this!

Macazor Avatar

I absolutely love your reviews, in my humble opinion the very best in the whole interwebz!I do miss comparison swatches, though.  Like, in addition to a list of possible dupes, a picture of all of them swatched side by side.
I already own Mary-Lou Manizer, but this one looks so dang purty, I might be tempted to buy it…

Kafka Avatar

I *knew* your swatches, photos and review would make *ALL* the difference!  Thanks to this, Albatross has just dropped down in ranking on my blush list.  I may get it eventually but I’m not gaga over the golden-yellow sheen it gives to your skin which is very similar in colouring to mine.  I much, MUCH prefer the angelic-white-silver effect of the Copacabana Multiple (which some people compare to Benefit’s High Beam).  I think it’s a much prettier, more subtle highlighter for my particular skin tone.  You’ve just saved me a lot of money and now, I can focus more on the other 12 NARS blushes on my list. Again, I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to reviews NARS’ permanent, non-seasonal line. 

Jenn Avatar

This is actually a beautiful highlighter for darker skin-tones (NW45+) and looks great worn alone on.  It picks up an almost holographic quality on brown skin.  Swatch it on someone of that skin color and see for yourself!

Julia Avatar

I bought this at Sephora several months ago – I kept looking at it and finally I broke down and bought it, it’s simply gorgeous.

Jenny86 Avatar

It really looks lovely on you Christine! But I think I will skip it because the price is high (although I have 2 NARS blushes and I don´t mind spending my money on them because they´re really good quality and worth it, but for a highlighter I don´t know…) and I have my beloved NYX mosaic powder blush in Highlight and 2 mini Benefit High Beam that I also like a lot. But maybe when I finish those highlighters I have I might try Albatross.

Veronica Avatar

I wouldn’t quite agree with them that it’s completely sheer, but it is pretty.  I’m waffling between this and the Capacabana cream highlighter.  Decisions, decisions…

Kafka Avatar

@Veronica, I have the Copacabana Multiple and….. wow!  Seriously, WOW! I put it on top of primer but below the foundation on my cheekbones, and it creates the most unbelievable highlight. I thought all the mentions of “angelic light” and “glow from within” were pure hyperbole. It just seemed all too much, esp. with all the claims that Copacabana was the supermodel secret weapon, J. Lo’s favorite, etc. etc.   Er…. no.  It’s NOT hyperbole. It really *does* give you a light from within glow. To be honest, my jaw dropped the first time I walked past a mirror and saw the effect.  It added perfect luminosity and depth; and my cheekbones looked razor sharp! I much prefer how it looks and the silvery-whiteness than the look of Albatross here. I got my Copacabana for a great deal on eBay but it’s something that I think is totally worth the full price.   

Veronica Avatar

When I visited Sephora today, I wound up breaking down and grabbing Albatross.  While I was there, though, I did wind up swatching Copacabana again…*sigh* so lovely.  A very bold highlighter, I think, but I love the pink undertone to it.  Just perfect for my cool-toned skin.  I’m probably just going to wind up owning both of them by the end of the month.  😛

Kafka Avatar

@Veronica- YAY! Christine enables yet another NARS addiction. ;P  I think I’m doing your process in reverse; first, Copacabana and then, eventually, I’ll probably succumb to Albatross, too.  As for Copacabana, you can totally avoid a bold look or excess shimmer by placing it under foundation. That’s what I prefer doing. But it’s glorious, too, on the brow bone to highlight an eye look. If (when, LOL) you end up getting it, let me know what you think.  🙂 

Leticia Avatar

Albatross looks nice, but I’d rather wait for your other reviews and save those $28 for something more special.
On a side note: I absolutely looooove your makeup! I love how you paired the purple-pink eye makeup with peachy bronze lips. You look gorgeous!

SharonS Avatar

This is my HG highlighter for my NC42 skin. It gives such a gorgeous golden-y sheen to darker complexions. I love this beyond reason!
*clings to her NARS Albatross*

Eliza Avatar

Really not sure if this would look good on my NC15, yellow undertoned skin. Haven’t seen many photos that seem to show the product on a similar skin type to mine! Would anyone here know? Unfortunately I don’t have a nars counter where I live so all purchases must be made online. Kind regards,

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