Australis AC On Tour Contouring & Highlighting Kit - review


It's taken me ages to write this review for a few reasons.

First, I was expecting to love this kit based on how the powders looked and felt in terms of quality (buttery, pigmented) when I swatched them in Priceline, but I didn't because they're not easy to work with on the face.

Second, after seeing all the hype about this, I thought maybe the problem was me and I just needed to learn to work with it better than I had been (I don't think that's the case).

Third, the lighter powders are difficult to photograph on the face, and it was hard to show how patchy the dark ones apply and how they sit in pores, so the photos took me a while.

Six shades are included in the set and they're designed for a range of skintones, although I think the highlighting shades are more universal: the sculpting shades are quite dark and mightn't be suitable for pale-skinned lasses (see photos below).

The packaging is simple black plastic, and instructions for using the palette are included on the back.

The palette is quite large and feels/looks cheap but it's sturdy enough. It's thin and would be ok to travel with, despite its larger size.

The pans are wide enough to get bigger brushes into and there's no mirror and no space wasted by the inclusion of a brush, which I think is a good thing because most people wouldn't use a cheap brush anyway.

There's a close up of the six shades below. The highlighter shades are pink, yellow and a flesh-toned shimmer, and the contour shades include a warm brown (right), a cool one (centre) and a more neutral one that's on the warm side (left). I tend to use the left one as my sculpting colour. Shades four and six are red-based, while shade five is more ashy.

Now for swatches!

The below photo is taken in sunlight:

And this one in natural light:

And this is indoors, with flash:

There's my face before I've used the palette (I've just got foundation and mascara on from memory):

Below I've used my chosen contour shade under my cheekbone, the banana shade under my eye, the shimmer shade as an inner corner highlight, and the pink shade on my browbone.

The photo is taken in natural light and doesn't give you a great idea of what the powders are doing, so I've taken more shots below.

I'm not sure if this shows how patchy the contour powders are when applied, but they are - and it's hard to get a soft line. Plus if I over-buff or over-blend them, they sit in pores almost immediately and leave little brown dots on my face.

Needless to say, I won't be using them as sculpting powders!

So you can see the powders better, I've taken the below shot indoors, with flash. I'm wearing no makeup other than this palette. The right side of my face is bare.

On the left, I'm wearing the yellow powder under my eye, the pink on the browbone, the shimmer on the inner corner, shade four (the neutral brown) under my cheekbone, the cool brown (shade five) as an all over lid colour and the darkest brown (shade six) in the crease. The contour powders definitely fare better as eyeshadows, but they're certainly not perfect.


There's quite a bit to say about this palette but I'll try to be as brief as possible.

First, don't buy into the hype. This is not a magically amazing kit that will give you a chiselled face with little effort. What this is, is a bunch of powders that give a remarkably good appearance of being good-quality when you see, touch and swatch them, but then fall down when it comes to applying them to your face.

Let it be said that the three highlighting shades are light-years better than the three sculpting shades. Indeed, I would almost call the highlighting shades pretty good: the yellow one in particular.

The three contouring powders are, however, a bloody nightmare to work with - even for people who have time to apply them carefully and who know what they're doing.

As mentioned above, they go on so patchily that quite often I've been unable to fix the situation and I've had to wipe them off. Yes if you use a brush that doesn't pick up too much product and use it ever so lightly, you may fare slightly better but I guarantee that you'll still have issues at least some of the time.

These powders just don't want to blend and they don't want to apply evenly. They also want to sit in pores if you give them half a chance. Plus they're quite dark for a 'one size fits all' kit and they won't be suitable contouring shades for a good chunk of the population - and on top of all that, they have a tendency to look muddy.

I can't say that I've once applied any of the dark shades as sculpting powders and been happy with the result: there's always been something not right about how they look, at least on my face - whether my skin is paler or more tanned, dry or hydrated, and whether I'm wearing a good primer and foundation or not.

Indeed, now that I've finished a ridiculously lengthy testing period (I was trying my hardest to make them work!), I won't use the dark shades for anything but eyeshadows, and I won't do that a lot.

While the highlighting shades are much better, this may be because they're light so you can't see if they're going on patchily and of course they're not going to look muddy. Having said this, the yellow one is the only one I'm happy to use: the other two I can take or leave because I don't think they're as brightening and they're also the wrong shade for my skin.

With all these powders, do be careful when you put your brush in the pans because you're bound to pick up too much product (and also kick up too much product and experience fall-out) if you're not concentrating.

And even when you are concentrating, I guarantee that you'll still kick up too much product and will wind up with loose bits in your pans every time. Plus the powders are so pigmented that it's hard not to make mistakes, especially when it comes to the dark colours - these aren't for you if you're time-poor and don't want something that needs to be held with kid gloves.

In sum, be careful of the hype with this one because I really don't think it's that good. I almost sent it to a better home, but I'm keeping it for the moment because I need some cheapo matte eyeshadows to travel with (I don't like taking the good stuff away since my backpack always gets knocked around) and that's all I'll use this kit for - except for the yellow powder, which I'll use under my eyes when I remember to do so because it's quite good.

You may also like

No comments:

littlewhitetruths. Powered by Blogger.