Whenever we ignore our instincts, it usually doesn't turn out well, right? For those of us who make beauty either a hard-core hobby or our life's work, the same thing applies. Sometimes we can override our gut instincts with logic when our gut was right all along.
Enter Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure.
When I first saw the online swatches, this shade cried out to me. No, I thought, better to stick with a tried and true formula like Ethereal Glow. And then go for a punch of color with Diffused Heat. And try to find a beautiful pink with Luminous Flush. Heck, I would've gotten Dim Infusion had it not swatched dead orange on me multiple times.
What was it that scared me away from the shade I instinctively was drawn towards? Other bloggers. The only testers who seemed thrilled with this shade were ladies of Asian heritage- especially those with yellow undertones and medium complexions. Those are three descriptors that you'll never use to describe me. Add in my aversion to deep blushes and pigmentation issues in the cheek area and I suppressed my instincts to buy this blush.
It wasn't until I started side-eying Radiant Magenta that I thought "enough is enough."
I can only say that next time I'm going with my gut, logic be damned. Mood Exposure is by far and away my favorite in this range. It's nothing like I was expecting. I've hyperlinked my other reviews by shade name so I won't be going into the details about this product since they're all the same size and price.
Mood Exposure is a combination of plum blush and Mood Light Ambient Lighting powder and is listed as the darkest shade in this line. On my skin, it looks nothing like what you'd expect.
I use a rather light hand and an angled blush brush when applying Mood Exposure, but have found it to be the most natural neutral blush. On my translucent skin, it looks beige. It wears on me like a cousin to Giorgio Armani Sheer Blush #10. I think I've found my replacement for #10 when I use my current pan up!
The whole beige out of a plum blush thing has me really puzzled, but I'm not fighting it. Mood Exposure is a lovely compliment to any natural, neutral look that I do. I'd rank it as the second least pigmented, with only Ethereal Glow as having less color payoff. I'm not sure why my experience has been so different than most. Bottom line- pale ladies, don't rule this one out.
Here are some swatches. All were swatched heavily with a MAC 130SE to get the greatest color payoff and are unblended. Do not attempt to apply blush to your face in this way, obviously!
Outside, no flash:
Outside, with flash:
Inside, no flash:
Inside, with flash:
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes last all day for me without touchups. This is quite an amazing formula, and the 4 that I have are 2/3 of my current blush rotation (the others are Armani #10 and a Burberry blush I promise to post about soon). Mood Exposure will be my last selection from this line for awhile, but I wish I hadn't put it off so long.
Overall, I find this to be the most wearable of my selections by a long shot. So don't be scared about the color at all.