Hourglass Illusion Hyaluronic Skin Tint SPF 15 in Warm Ivory - review and swatches


I've been through eight sachets and two sample pots of this product now, so it's not surprising that I've only needed to use my full-sized tube for a month or so before being ready to review it.

And to be honest, I was ready to review it a while ago - it's just that I would prefer to use a base product for a long period of time before I comment on it, which in this case I've done previously because I'd already tried it in a variety of weather conditions and with different primers before I opened my tube.

Anyhoo. I'm really glad I bought this. It works beautifully for my skin and it holds up incredibly well in the heat, so I expect this will be my summer foundation from now on.

Indeed, I think it holds up in the hot Australian summer better than any base product I've ever used, so if you need something to get you through those forty-plus degree days, I would grab a sample of this and see if it works for you too.

Hourglass claims/product details:

  • An advanced alternative to liquid foundation with added SPF and anti-ageing complexes to help create a youthful, glowing complexion
  • With a whipped cream texture, this hydrating and firming skin tint works to even out skintone, soften imperfections and boost moisture levels
  • Formulated with Hyaluronan Complex (composed of an advanced form of hyaluronic acid) to plump fine lines and wrinkles, tighten sagging skin and promote a luminous glow
  • Provides medium to full coverage
  • RRP $82 AUD for 30ml

I have the shade 'Warm Ivory', which is described as 'light/medium with yellow undertones.' Thankfully it's a great colour match for me all year round, and since I struggle so much to find base products that match me, that's almost reason enough for me to buy it.

Light and heavy swatches, direct sunlight:

Indirect sunlight:

Below I've swatched it alongside some other bases for reference.

Indirect sunlight:

* L-R: Laura Mercier Candleglow in Dusk, MUFE HD in Y305, Hourglass Warm Ivory, Nars Tinted Moisturiser in Groenland, Koh Gen Do Aqua 213, Kevyn Aucoin The Etherealist in EF05

Direct sunlight:

* L-R: Laura Mercier Candleglow in Dusk, MUFE HD in Y305, Hourglass Warm Ivory, Nars Tinted Moisturiser in Groenland, Koh Gen Do Aqua 213, Kevyn Aucoin The Etherealist in EF05


I really like this product and I recommend it. Note, though, that I'm calling it a 'foundation': it's not a tint, it has more coverage than a tint, and indeed it has even more than a tinted moisturiser. It's a foundation that offers at least a medium coverage unless you really sheer it out (which I normally do), and you can build it to medium-to-full coverage if you want to.

The product is thicker than other bases I own and it has a mousse-like texture that I don't love - but I can live with it because the product sheers out beautifully with very little effort.

You can see above that the blended patches look more satin/matte, although on my face the product looks more dewy. This will of course depend on the primer I'm using, and indeed I've tried this with a silone-based, pore-plugging primer and didn't like the result because those primers make this foundation appear more matte/powdery on me and also more 'lifted' (so it looks like it's sitting on top of my skin, rather than melding with the skin and looking more natural). 

So for me, I've learned to use either an illuminating or a hydrating primer with this - which isn't a huge issue for me because I would normally use one of those on my dry skin anyway - but that's something to be aware of.

What I love about this product is that it takes very little effort to blend (I use my fingers) and it looks natural enough on the skin. Best of all, it doesn't sit in pores around the hairline and it's rare for me to find a foundation that doesn't do that. Tick.

Another thing to note is that I wore this to a wedding in 43 degree heat (plus I wore it on the journey up and back in a hot car) and the product didn't budge. It didn't separate and I also didn't have sweat coming through and breaking it up, so it performs beautifully in tough conditions. More recently I wore it to childcare and back with the double pram in stinking heat, and yes some sweat broke through but it didn't lift the product. I can't say that for the BB cream I wore on Monday in similar conditions, so there you go.

That said, the longevity on the product isn't fantastic and here's where it's more like a tinted moisturiser: I get a good five to six hours from this (even when set with a powder), so if longevity is something you're after, I would definitely test this before buying it because it mightn't last as long as you would like.

Note that my two HG base products are Kevyn Aucoin's The Etherealist Foundation (reviewed here) and Koh Gen Do's Aqua Foundation (reviewed here), and while I do really like this Hourglass offering, it's not quite up there with those two. Reason being, those two are more liquid and more hydrating, and they also look a bit more natural on the skin - I think because they merge and become one with the skin, whereas this one does sit on top of my face a little. Nevertheless, this Hourglass product beats the other two in extreme heat, so there's a place for it in my collection and I can see myself repurchasing it.

All in all, this is a fantastic product and I recommend it. Yes it's expensive, but I use far less of this per application than I do any other base product I own, so it will turn out cheaper than anything else I have on a price-per-use basis.


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