Clarins Instant Smooth Compact Highlighter Swatches and Review

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

For ladies who love to contour and highlight with sheer yet shimmery products, Clarins Summer Collection offers the Instant Smooth Compact Highlighter.  This product promises to provide a flawless, sun-kissed and radiant complexion. The silky, non-oily cream texture smooths and evens the skin, helping diminish the appearance of fine lines and imperfections.  The two shades offered are:
      01 – Natural: A luminous, golden peach to boost radiance and enhance the complexion  
      02 – Bronze: A vibrant, golden caramel to warm the complexion or enhance a natural tan 

Similar to the Eye Palette, this is a Limited Edition item from the Summer Collection retailing at $32USD for 0.28 Oz.  This also comes with a handy red velvet pouch to keep the case from getting scratches and a sponge to apply the product.  The pouch opens and closes by a small magnetic button on both sides of the flap, a rather neat design by Clarins.

The highlighter is presented in an oval shape compact with a silver top imprinted with the Clarins symbol, and has a mirror inside.  I love the fact that Clarins includes a mirror with all the palettes which makes it so much easier for people like me who are always on the go. You'll hear me give points to a product for its portability because I often travel for business and appreciate items that multi-task/are easy to carry around.


Here I have the shade 02 in Bronze to review for you.  As noted in the print, the product is made in France.

When you first look at the color from the pan, it looks extremely intimidating because it is so dark.  It shows as a dark bronze color with shimmer.  The gold shimmer is not chunky or glittery but very fine and smooth.  The texture of this highlighter is a cross between a mousse and gel.  It is not as creamy or fluffy as MUFE HD blushes but much lighter and semi-gel.  It is certainly not oily on the skin and glides on rather well.

I honestly expected to be greeted with this dark brown with gold flecks that I can't possibly pull off because my complexion is already tanned.  To my surprise, all I saw was a light layer of shimmer on my hand.  This is definitely a build-able product depending on whether you want to use it as a highlighter or contour.  The color finally showed up when I used a Q-tip and placed a rather large amount of the product onto my hand.

Shown in the swatch is a bronzy brown with very fine shimmer that is really flattering in person. I don't think the camera flash does a good job of capturing the color. Medium tone and darker tone ladies can definitely use this as a highlighter/light contour.  Lighter skin tone ladies will see this more as a contour product if used with a heavy hand.  For the color to show up, I would recommend using the sponge provided with the product because a stippling brush/foundation brush doesn't do the job very well.  If you want to use this as a highlighter just for the shimmer, I would say use your hands or a small dense brush.

Clarins suggests to apply all over the face or in specific areas for highlight/contour. I would say no to the all- over-the-face application unless you want to look like a disco ball. You will also  need to layer a setting powder over this in order for the product to last all day. The staying power of the product itself is rather disappointing for people with oily skin like myself.

Overall, this is a nice product if you love to add shimmer along your cheekbones and temple for a subtle highlight.  This can also be used as a light contour to give a radiant bronzy glow for lighter skin tones.  I would recommend using a light hand and precise application with this product because you don't want your entire face to be shimmery. The 01 Natural shade is in similar texture to 02 and is a pink highlighter with shimmer. You can find out more information on Clarins  Instant Smooth Compact Highlighter at your local counters or online at Clarins.

 How do you like to highlight/contour?  Do you prefer shimmer/glitter over matte highlighters?

Disclosure: This post contains samples provided by PR for consideration.  This does not alter the opinion or views of the blog owner.  My commitment is to provide you with honest reviews based on my experience with the product.  If you're not sure what this means, please visit the Disclosure policy listed here.


Edwina said...

I'm still searching for the perfect contour shade.. I own the NYC bronzer in sunny.. but somehow i just don't think it suits me all that well :S

naturalnchicmakeup said...

Edwina - Did you pick up MAC's Personal Style blush by any chance? The color is super flattering on me (NC25-NC30) as a subtle contour color. I really like it.

Alice said...

Thanks for your comment :) I didn't take this photo on my blog, just I finded in internet. But I will upload many photos, which I took :]
Nice blog ;)

Abby Q. said...

Very interesting! I prefer powder contouring products, but I honestly haven't tried many cream contour products, so maybe I'll have to check it out!

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