Sneak Peek: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette Photos & Swatches (Holiday 2015)

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Here’s a preview of the recently released, limited edition Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette ($80.00 for 0.29 oz.). One of the main concerns I saw from readers when the palette was announced was with respect to the size of the palette, both actual size as well as quantity. The pans are smaller than prior palettes, and the majority of blush brushes are too small (even my SUQQU/Chikuhodo Z brushes barely fit, and those are smaller cheek brushes). Here is how it breaks down for value:

  • Ambient Lighting Edit:  0.294 oz. for $80.00 = $272.11/oz.
    • Contains:  $18.90 worth of Ambient Lighting Powder; $22.87 worth of Ambient Lighting Blush; and $6.28 worth of Ambient Lighting Bronzer
    • Value:  $48.05
  • Ambient Lighting Blush Palette: 0.33 oz. for $58.00 = $175.76/oz.
    • Value:  $77.00 worth of Ambient Lighting Blush
  • Ambient Lighting Powder Palette: 0.35 oz. for $58.00 =$165.71/oz.
    • Value:  $45.00 worth of Ambient Lighting Powder
  • Ambient Lighting Powder: 0.35 oz. for $45.00 = $128.57/oz.
  • Ambient Lighting Blush: 0.15 oz. for $35.00 = $233.33/oz.
  • Ambient Lighting Bronzer: 0.39 oz. for $50.00 = $128.21/oz.

It’s a real shame that Hourglass priced this year’s palette so high; the value is really out of sync compared to the past palette releases.  On one hand, you can justify spending more even if the quantity isn’t a great value to get six shades for the price of 2-3 products, but the difference in value of products to what you pay is so much more than most kits and palettes where a pesky thing like principles can come into play.  I also think that having the actual size of each pan being so small makes it very hard to use; you really can’t use a powder brush for all-over dusting with the Ambient Lighting Powders (which is how they’re often used) or a blush brush (and forget about a bronzer brush!).

See more photos & swatches!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette with MAC 129 Brush

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette with MAC 129 Brush

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Hourglass Dim Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Dim Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Dim Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Dim Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Iridescent Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Iridescent Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Iridescent Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Iridescent Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Luminous Flush Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Luminous Flush Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Luminous Flush Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Luminous Flush Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Luminous Bronze Light Ambient Lighting Bronzer
Hourglass Luminous Bronze Light Ambient Lighting Bronzer

Hourglass Luminous Bronze Light Ambient Lighting Bronzer
Hourglass Luminous Bronze Light Ambient Lighting Bronzer

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91 Comments

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Thank you Christine! It really helps that you took pictures of the size of the pans in relation to a blush brush. I had heard and seen that the pans were quite small and thought perhaps people were exaggerating, but you pretty much confirmed everything. I was intrigued by Iridescent Light, but it’s nothing special after all. I have plenty of highlighters and eyeshadows in that tone and color.

Save your money for sure! I glad I have both the permanent palette. The new shade is nice, but kind of dupeable if you mix the blush and lighting powders together to get the rosy highlight tone.

I keep wanting to get the Diffused Light again, but then I remember why I didn’t like that shade. The base colour/powder was perfect, but the random pops of shimmer annoyed me. lol

Oh wow, I didn’t realize it was so TINY from the promo pics! This is a really poor value, I guess Hourglass is just cashing in on the popularity of their Ambient line :/

I’m a huge fan of these powders. I bought both palettes released so far and they have been versatile, daily-use products. I will not be picking this one up because of a) the price, b) the number of repeat shades from previous palettes, and c) the size. Additionally I’m working through the face powders at a much faster rate than the blush. I expect to actually pan the face powders within the next few years and it’d be awkward to do that in a combo palette like this.

I could definitely see someone hitting pan on the face powders pretty easily in this palette — 0.05 oz. is not much for a face product.

Those little pans are the same size (0.049 oz) as the Dim Light “travel size” which is selling for $22, which makes the Edit Palette slightly less outrageous in price for the amount of product. If you didn’t have duplicates, which many Hourglass fans do, then it may be worth it to have a nice variety of the Lighting products at hand. I can also see it being useful for travel, though you have to treat it with kid gloves as they are know for easily breaking.

I like the new Iridescent Light, but I sure wouldn’t purchase the palette for that alone.

I forgot to add, that the amount of product in the palette is about the same as two of the blushes which would cost $70, so if you approach it from that perspective, it’s not as bad.
Do you think a tiny, baby buki brush would fit in a pan?

I have a very small flat top brush on a short kabuki style handle that I think of as a baby buki, though I should have been more specific. I can see how a rounded kabuki brush would kick up a lot of powder.

I was going to say this but also add that I think those travel size Dim Lights are overpriced to begin with! But if you find the convenience worth the price, then using those to justify the cost of this palette makes more sense.

I still find the price and amount of product in this disappointing though! An Urban Decay eyeshadow pan has more product than one of these pans.

I really enjoyed the breakdown you provided in terms of price per weight. I saw a lot of the reviews on Sephora as well and was really conflicted with what to do with palette. I love the blush “Mood Exposure” so maybe I’ll just invest in the full size rather than this palette which, according to your numbers, show it’s highly over-priced.

Thanks Christine!

After you break down the quantity for price it really makes me realize how expensive this is !!! And how I wish I maybe just got the three pan set :..(

Oh my gosh! The pans ARE so small! I didn’t realize how little they were when I read the first post. This is kind of an insult to consumers. It would be a great deal if they were even half the size of the normal compacts. But, this is a little annoying. I was thinking about getting one for a gift . But, not now. I’ll go with a better gift set or palette.

To Hourglass: Fugeddaboutit!!!!
This is a really messed up ripoff disguised as a bargain, ie; “Oh look, you get to try SIX of our products for a mere $80!”. They must be seriously smoking something to have that rationale! I still DO want and WILL get the Ambient Lighting Palette, but this? No bueno!

Aren’t trial-sized products designed to entice new customers with a better price for less product and ultimately lead them to repurchase the full sizes?

I thought it was going to be a lot bigger than it is, which is why I was so excited for it. I think I’m definitely going to skip it then, and if anything just go for the single blush shades I’m interested in.

I was so stoked to get this when you first wrote about a few months ago, Christine. But not now! I think most of us look for a bit of “value” in palettes like this or, at best, not to be paying way over the odds for already pricey products. I was very ticked to learn that for the price, you’re basically getting less than $50 worth of product. I wouldn’t mind quite so much about the size of the pans (yes, it would be a pain but in a “to try out” palette, I could live with it) if the price was something like $30. But this is $95 in Canada and it’s pricey enough in the US. Some companies proudly proclaim “$90 value for $50”, etc., so clearly it can be done and it IS done often. I hope the company experiences the backlash of customer dissatisfaction that it deserves. I know I won’t be buying Hourglass again for a long while (I was all set to purchase the Colour Field eye palette but opted for Buxom instead, to a large extent because of this issue). They should be ashamed and we should ALL be majorly ticked!

I agree that the price is complete insane! For such a small amount of product the price should be much lower, or give us more product! I already own the five previously released shades so I have no interest in purchasing this but seeing the direct size comparison actually really annoys me for some reason. I just feel like they are taking advantage of the holiday season where shoppers tend to go a little crazy and maybe not think so much about the value because like you said the entire palette is less than the price of two of the regular powders but if I got this I’d be really disappointed. I think Hourglass just really missed the mark on this one, you can’t justify that price with that little product just because you are releasing a new shade. Which chances are they will end up releasing on its own later just like they did with the Ambient Blush shade. Fail.

These are really pretty and I love the luxe packaging. The pans are even smaller than I envisioned, though. This is definitely going onto my “pass” list, unfortunately.

Bummer that this is so small. If it were the size of the trio of powders x2, it would be worth the price, IMO. I will definitely pass on this. I’m so thankful for posts like this, as I order most of my products online and would have been upset with the size of this palette. Love a lot of Hourglass products though.

Thank you for showing the size comparison and especially for figuring out the PRICE comparison! It looks beautiful but at $80 it’s well out of my budget, especially since it’s not offering a particularly high value for the cost.

This confirms I’m not getting it. It’s just way to small. Not just the price to quantity ratio but the fact that it seems so impractical to try to get a powder brush in there.

What a huge let down! Hourglass really didn’t think things through when making this. Whats the point of having it if you can’t even use it correctly with the appropriate tools. I would much rather buy a full size one and be able to use it without frustration. I own everything except the bronzer so no need for this.

I was the most concerned with the majority of the products being from the permanent line. I don’t own one of the blushes, the bronzer and obviously the LE powder…so half new products might justify buying this? Although it would have been SO much more attractive if at least 2/3 of the products were new!

I had my heart set on this palette, until I saw that they are literally not much bigger than a quarter. So, I will pass on this, I have waaaaay too many highlighter and blushes as it is but I have wanted Mood Exposure for a long time so I will just buy it on it’s own.

Hmm, they really are small, aren’t they? I’d thought about splashing out for it anyway, but if the size makes it difficult to use… What do you think about it being used as a kind of travel palette? Would it be worth the hassle?

I had though of trying to get this palette, as I don’t have anything at all from Hourglass, but now I’m saving my money for something else. For sure, I have some small brushes, but mostly I like using slightly bigger ones. Also, I hardly ever use bronzers, I do regret not gettting last years blush palette.

Sephora is now selling a travel sized version of Dim Light, and I think it’s the same size that’s in this palette. If anyone wants to try that, they could just get that, plus any other favourite shade in a full size.

I have some Sephora gift cards to use, and I had really considered purchasing this palette because I do not have any Hourglass products, and this seemed like a great way to try several things. It is very frustrating that the size of this palette and the price aren’t equitable. If the pans were larger, $80 would seem like a fine price. If the price was lower, I could deal with the small pans… *sigh*

It looks gorgeous, but the pan sizes seem very small. How do you get a good sized blush brush into them I don’t know. I think there are better value blushes around with those kinds of colours (think Colour Pop). A rip off at that price.

It was a good idea, since last year’s powder palette was such a hit. Their Luminous light powder is still my favorite (I’m on my 2nd one) I like the dim light powder too, but gifted my Luminous Flush and ambient bronzer. The blushers are too subtle and powdery for my taste.

I just got this in the post today, and I was shocked by how small it is. This was a serious blunder by Hourglass to make the price so high and the pans so small that you can’t even get a brush into the well. I will be returning this palette to Sephora and spending my $80 on something else.

I was going to get this as an introduction to Hourglass. I had seen the complaints about the size, and actually seeing it in your preview has made me pause. Christine, do you think this a worthwhile purchase to get as an introduction for a Hourglass novice or should I just not bother?

Do you think you’d use all of the powders? Would the regular Ambient Lighting Palette work for you? Readers mentioned there’s a travel-sized option of one of the Ambient Lighting Powders for $22 (also not a great value), but that might be one way to try it.

This is so disappointing! Thanks for the value breakdown Christine! Had this in my cart, but it just doesn’t seem worth it all around, especially since I already own a lot of the products. It’s too bad when Hourglass has a flop like this.

I knew you were going to have the best breakdown and pictures of this palette 🙂 I was waiting for this review even though I already have it. I ordered it as soon as it came out but of course I didn’t realize how tiny it was until I read some reviews on the sephora website. I’m not so upset at the value as much as I am at the fact that I can’t even use my brushes with this palette. I really don’t know what they were thinking at hourglass when they made such a poor decision. I haven’t even swatched the palette because I’m pretty sure I will be returning it. Such a shame, it is so pretty.

I purchase the ALP palette regularly, it’s just a great thing to have! For last year’s blush palette, I thought the only issue to me was just the three colors were too similar, even though someone already pointed out that the value didn’t work out to be better than just purchase a single blush (which I picked one up and returned, not a fan of the blush formula, kinda muddy). But this one is out of control!!

If they were gonna do this right, they should have 1, make the whole thing much bigger (at least double the size), 2, make the face powders and the bronzer bigger, and blushes big enough to fit a small sized blush brush. And I wouldn’t mind getting less variety if they had to squeeze out one blush and/or one ALP.

I don’t have any Hourglass products and I was so looking forward to this upon the preview photos from a couple months back but I’m so disappointed in the size, value and price of it I’m going to be passing on it! It’s $95 CAD which is ridiculous. I could get the Ambient Lighting Palette and 1 full size blush for around $10 which is what I may end up doing on the next Sephora sale. Thanks for breaking down the pricing/value of this so in depth!

Wow, really pretty, but I have Diffused Light already. I use when my skin is dry in winter, and I like it, but I still haven’t made a dent in it, so I’m going to skip

I ordered this and sent it back. It was so tiny. I expect more for my money. I get very angry when these companies think we’re stupid. If it had been a decent value, I would have kept it.

I was really looking forward to getting this palette because I don’t have any of the powders or blushes from hourglass. But after seeing this, I’ll basically be getting ripped off. I think I’ll pass. Not 100% sure though. Since I don’t use makeup every day, I feel like it’ll last too. I don’t know.

I don’t mind the small pans, if a product isn’t an everyday go-to it takes me forever to hit pan. But for the price????? No thanks, I’d pay half the price at the most..

The moment i saw the promotion pict at instagram, my biggest concern is the size.
Is really hard to pick up product if the pan is too small. Also the blush powder dust will transfer to the finishing powder. When product hit pan, even more challenging to pick up product at the corner pan.

I was really looking forward to this Hourglass palette, as i do not own anything from this brand! But now that I’ve seen the sizes and quantities of these pans, I have become indecisive, considering this will cost me $132 AUD 🙁

This is so disappointing!! Palettes are supposed to be a deal, a way to try promote the brand with hype and positive reviews chit-chat, and promote full sized permanent products, that type of thing! It’s kind of ridiculous that it would be so much more expensive than the worth of the products if bought full sized. AND such an inconvenient size especially for the face powders… really not appealing!

I bought one for myself and one as a gift and both are going back. I can’t justify spending this much money on so little product and sephora didn’t have the quantity on their website when they first launched (if I recall)
Going back! Such a rip off

When the first photos leaked I was so psyched (I, like everyone else, presumed the pans were the same size as the Ambient Lighting Palette). Then when it finally released on Hourglass’s site I sat down and did the value breakdown. (Yours is more thorough, but came to the same conclusion–way, way overpaying for just a little bit of product, to the point that “try all six for less than the cost of two!” *still* isn’t worth it.)

I thought maybe–MAYBE–it would be worth getting if the pans were shallow but wide, but your brush comparison shows this would be a total pain in the behind to use. Ease of use is a dealbreaker for me. Thank you so much for saving me $80! 😉

I bought it and then saw a bunch of videos on the size and now with this price breakdown, I think I’m going to return it. The bronzer is too orange for me and I have all the other powder/blushes. The exclusive shade is pretty, but its a little too glittery for me. Maybe they’ll release it in a full size. I was just not impressed.

I was so excited to get this palette , especially since it would have been my first HG purchase . And I’ve been wanting to get the Mood Exposure Blush like forever , but I feel like your paying $80 for sample size powders. I would feel taken advantage of or ripoff.

This was a very helpful post. I was considering buying this, But your cost breakdown and pictures of the size of the pans have discouraged this purchase.

I honestly expected this to be much larger. WOW. Even though I’d already said I wasn’t going to purchase this, I thought, perhaps, your review along with the value (ha, ha, ha!!) might change my mind. Nope, nope, nope!!!

I thought that this would be the size of the ambient lighting blush palette but doubled. I was really thinking about getting this despite the duplicates, but I definitely will be passing now. I hope that Hourglass sees your review and everyone’s comments and rethinks the price. I think if this were half the price I would think about it. As it is, the size to price ratio is just awful. Thank you for your honest review Christine!

I used my $50 credit from the beauty insider reward fiasco and ended up paying $32 for it. I absolutely hate the bronzer so really I’d be using about $42 of total product. (If that.. I’m pretty fair so I’m not too sure how I’d use dim light, I already use diffused light as a setting powder) So in my case would you say it’s worth it?

I was planning on buying this and now? Not a chance. That scale and pricing is just way too annoying to let it slide. Thanks Christine you saved me some dollas. 😉

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