The buzz about the new Anastasia Beverly Hills Illuminator hit a fever pitch before the product was released a few months ago. Since I’m allllll about a good, strong highlight, I picked this up as soon as it hit shelves. I’ve been wearing it for a few months now, and I really, really like it.
Because I wanted a “statement highlight,” I chose So Hollywood, a true pale gold shade. The reason I chose this shade was actually because of another product I’d purchased months ago. I was over-the-top obsessed with the Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop highlighter this summer because it looks so amazing with a tan; the peachy champagne tones really pop on tanned skin. For winter, when I’m paler, I wanted something more gold and slightly cooler, so I chose this.
The ABH Illuminator is embossed with an Art Deco-style fan pattern; the embossing is supposedly designed to allow the brush to pick up more product as it skims the surface. The powder is packed with shimmer, but it doesn’t read glittery on the face. It truly makes my skin look lit-from-within and glowy. To me, it’s a little more subtle than Champagne Pop, with more of a natural finish (although this is still very noticeable). It blends easily and smoothly, and does not break up on my normal/dry skin, even after hours of wear. I think it’s absolutely beautiful. You can see in the swatch below (which I didn’t bother to blend out), it’s noticeable but not blindingly shiny.
The compact that houses the powder is really simple and straightforward: a round black compact with a mirrored interior lid. It doesn’t look like anything special, but it feels sturdy in the hand, and I’m mentioning this because I’ve dropped it an embarrassing amount of times, and the powder has not shattered. The plastic on the compact didn’t even crack. It’s made well, and the large mirror is great for closeups when applying makeup.
I also bought ABH’s A23 Highlighting Brush ($25) because I was in need of a brush specifically designed for highlighting. I’ve always used a thick, flat, wide eyeshadow brush to apply powder highlighter, but it was no longer cutting it. This is absolutely not necessary if you already have a highlighting brush that works for you. I do like this one a lot, though. It picks up just the right amount of product and is perfectly shaped to get right on the cheekbones. The tapered tip is also great for where you want a light touch (like on the Cupid’s bow). If you need a highlighting brush, this is an excellent option. My only complaint is that the hairs tend to stick out every which way, and even washing and lying flat to dry doesn’t resolve it.
Since today is Cyber Monday, it’s a great day to pick it up! On the ABH site, you can get the illuminator of your choice PLUS an A23 brush — for $26 total! You can’t beat that price!
If you’ve tried this highlighter, I’d love to hear your thoughts!