Review: Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder in Candlelight

I’ve read a lot about Kevyn Aucoin’s sculpting powder and highlighter as a powerful duo, 2 products that give you instant believable cheekbones in a few minutes. I thought I’d pick one to try, and since I only have 2 powder highlighters in my collection, I don’t mind adding another one. I have enough eye shadows, blushes and lipstick to last me for at least a decade, but highlighters… I don’t use them much at all, and never had that penchant for them. The Candlelight I have is in the new packaging. I read that for the same price, we’re actually getting less product and also without a brush. For me, the shocker came in the size.


Candlelight KA Candlelight


It’s not exactly a luxurious packaging. It’s just functional simple plastic. As you can tell from the photo above, it’s really very small. The product inside that small package doesn’t look like much either. It can pass off as an eye shadow, and compared to my Burberry eye shadows, this isn’t that much bigger. Imagine my total WTF-ery reaction. It wasn’t an angry WTF, but more like an amused and hilarious WTFery. This is what I get for buying anything sight unseen and apparently, size does matter 😛


Candlelight pan Candlelight size


Size aside, let’s just compare it with my very limited collection of highlighters – Guerlain Cruel Gardenia and Dior Amber Diamond, both limited edition. See how minimalistic Candlelight is? However, I’m glad to note that now, I have 3 highlighters of different undertones. Dior Amber Diamond has a golden sheen (for the swatch below, I only used the 2 lightest shades) while Cruel Gardenia is pink. Candlelight is definitely neutral in comparison, making it universally flattering on all skintones. Of the 3, it gives you the least ‘bling’. It is very understated compared to the other 2 which give you bolder shine.


Highlighter comparison comparison swatches


During application, Candlelight kicks up a bit of powder, so I like to use a smaller fluffy brush, lightly tap the brush on the product before applying it on my face. I also use it to highlight my brow bone and the bridge of my nose and manage to look brighter, not shiny. I’m not sure if this is a must have for me, but then again, I’m not a highlighter fanatic. I usually skip highlighters in my makeup routine unless it’s for a special occasion where I have to take photos. Then, I’d even pull out my Notorious for a more photogenic session. During these few months when I hardly wear makeup, highlighters are really the least important thing >_<


Candlelight ingredients


What about you? Do you think highlighters are a must have? I bought my Candlelight on StrawberryNet but it’s also available on Cult Beauty UK, both ship internationally. I think it comes to roughly RM150 and for such a weenie bit of highlighter, I’d think twice. Of course, if you’re up for a believable healthy glow, then this is it! For me though, in this hot and humid country, I’d be glowing in sweat by noon so it’s definitely not a must have for me.


xoxo Lily



  • Liz

    Oh gawd, I laughed at the first pic of the tiny square in your hand, too. 🙂 I’ve really liked swatches of Candlelight from blogs but also have no need for more highlighters. The mini Tarte Angelic is actually serving me quite well to the point that I want to get rid of the others. You have a nice variety with the three here though!

    • Lily

      Right? The size? When I first opened the package, I was floored. Hahahaha!

  • I wasn’t into highlighters before, but now I have to add a touch of highlighter every day for a glow – but I have dry skin. 🙁 I think I have a handful, though. But I want a liquid one!

    • Lily

      I forgot about my liquid one. I have one deluxe sample from Becca – but because I don’t use them much, I don’t want to get a full sized one just because they’ll go bad much faster.

  • I’ve been getting into using mine more often, but really liking liquid highlighters recently. They look less obvious on my skin I think. Yeah, I’ve checked out his stuff while in California and I was like WTF this is small! Most of his things are…smallish. At least it’s a shade you don’t have! So that’s good hahaha!

    • Lily

      I guess KA likes everything smaller. Perhaps dainty is feminine?

  • Hey Lily, haha the size also surprised me! It’s sad because they significantly reduced the amount of product they put in the compact when they repackaged it not so long ago. Otherwise it’d definitely be a better buy! I like it but don’t love it. My favorite highlighter remains Chanel Poudre Signee de Chanel! I do plan to buy a fan brush and see if it will make me like this better though!

    • Lily

      A fan brush? That sounds promising. If you end up with one, I’d like to know if it fares better 🙂

  • Bella

    I cannot often be bothered to use highlighter but when I do, my favourite is Becca Shimmering Skin perfector in Moonstone (the liquid). I also have Albatross (my Christmas highlighter, haha) and the Kevyn Aucoin one (which I appreciate without the brush and take away with me on weekends away).
    Two days ago, though, I bought Guerlain Jolie Teint foundation and a Guerlain terracotta bronzer with a bit of shimmer (no 5 medium) and today someone asked me what stunning highlighter I was wearing. Teehee!!!

    • Lily

      And every item is worth it when other people noticed!

      • Bella

        Totally, flattery gets you everywhere ;).

  • I think the neutral undertone of the Candlelight is quite beautiful.
    I usually skip highlighter with brighter lips. Some highlighters are quite mattifying like the Guerlain Meteorites, so I can wear this during summer with smoky eyes/pale lips.

    • Lily

      I never thought off the Meteorites as highlighters though. They kinda work as face powder for me. LOL!

  • Candlelight looks lovely but I can’t justify buying it if it has less product. This is on my wish list but now I’m not so sure. I don’t really use a highlighter much. Hourglass Lighting Powder is enough for me anyway.

    • Lily

      I know right? I think for the price and for the size, I could get better ones, you know?

  • Claire

    candlelight looks beautiful. I gave mine away, because I reach for shiseido’s high beam white more often. looking at that guerlain gardenia make me want that. the ackaging is just tdf! I use highlighter everyday, it is a staple in my makeup routine for so long now.

    • Lily

      I think if highlighting is part of my daily routine, I’d have quite a few! Because I don’t use it much, I don’t think about them much either. Probably a good thing. LOL!

  • Icaria

    LOL at the size! I’m really not into highlighters and have a small one from Benefit that’s slowly dying in my makeup case. When I want a little more shimmer my Hourglass Ambient Lighting palette (the middle pan) is pretty much as far as I’ll go but I rarely use it. 🙂

    • Lily

      I have the Hourglass Ambient Lighting powder in Diffused and it works more as an all over face powder than a highlighter. I guess I now know I don’t even have to look at highlighters anymore >_<

  • Ha ha!!! We are very similar when it comes to thoughts on highlighters! It’s hot and humid enough here that highlighter is only necessary if you have the driest skin imaginable! Still, sometimes it’s fun to add a glow. I’ve been curious about this product for a while but I own too many highlighters for someone who doesn’t use them too often to justify the purchase (yet). I have a KA powder blush and it’s the BR!GHTEST FLOURO PINK I’ve ever seen and it’s gorgeous, but yes, a bit wee size-wise for the $$. Still, it’s excellent quality and it’s fun to try different brands. 🙂

    • Lily

      *high 5* Great minds think alike. Yes yes yes to your comment. LOL!