How to Get the Glow and Stop the Shine!

model beauty ruth crilly

Possibly the worst of the summer skin problems is having to deal with excess shine. Shine either brought on by overactive oil glands or by sweating or both. Not the most glamorous of subjects, I grant you, but you’re talking to the woman who wrote a whole post about toilets with faraway doors, so this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.

Now: shine. How do we deal with summer shine without powdering ourselves into a dry, cakey oblivion? I’d say that the first thing that oily/combi-skinned people need to consider is a good mattifier. I know that I’ve harped on about the Murad Mattifier with SPF15 before, but it really is a good one. It feels a bit like old-school wallpaper paste on application, but it does become more liquid as you spread it onto your skin. It also does an incredibly good job of keeping the T-Zone free of oil and makeup stuck in place. There are also lots of really good primers out there that help to deal with oiliness – have a look at Smashbox’s Light Photo Finish Primer or Urban Decay’s Pore Perfecting Primer.

After perfecting the skin, it’s then a case of choosing the right base. In the video below I use NARS Tinted Moisturiser because I wanted a light and glowy finish, but if you’re very concerned about oil and you want a perfect finish then look to the excellent matte foundations on offer. Two of my favourites: Givenchy Eclat Matissime and No7 Beautifully Matte. (You can get measured-up for your exact shade of the latter, if you go to your nearest large Boots store.)

And then, the million dollar question: how do we get a glowy finish without risking sweaty, oily shine? How can we look radiant rather than sheeny? A dry, matte-to-the-touch finish that exudes health and luminescence? Meet my new secret weapon, Hourglass’ Ambient Lighting Powder. It’s a really clever pressed powder that adds glow without being shimmery, glittery or shiny. I have it in the shade called Diffused, but there are a few to choose from. You really need to watch the video below to see it in action – it’s really subtle on film, but I urge you to try it out on counter if you can. You can find it at SpaceNK – or check the shades online here. It’s also at Liberty in London.

So, if you want to powder but add glow rather than take it away, the Ambient Lighting Powder could be for you. I use mine all over my face, really, sweeping it over cheekbones and the centre of the bridge of my nose, but avoiding building it up on the T-Zone, only because we never really want to add glow to the T-Zone, do we? Or do we? I don’t. I have found (and here’s where to be wary) that too many layers of the Ambient powder can start to look ever so slightly metallic on film, so beware piling it on over and over again. Use a regular powder for the T-Zone – though if you’ve primed with a mattifier you shouldn’t have to do that too often.

The other star product in the video below is the Pretty Bronze illuminating powder from Aerin. More bronzer than illuminator – it actually does add colour so you couldn’t use it as a highlighter – this just seems to give the skin an enormous boost in terms of healthy radiance. I mentioned it way back in the Spring (see here) but now you can see it properly in action. Click here to watch the video if you’re reading via email, or scroll down the page if you’re on the web. All of the products used are detailed below – let me know what you think of the glowy effect! If you have any anti-shine tips to add then please do so – that’s what the comments section’s for!

Here’s another picture showing the Aerin and Hourglass powders working their magic. Different day, same combo, though I’ve actually got the Pretty Bronze on as an eyeshadow too:

beauty review aerin bronze

Products Used:
NARS Tinted Moisturiser in Light2, Alaska:

Dior BB Cream for Eyes in shade 1:

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused:

Aerin Pretty Bronze Illuminating Powder in Level 2:

KIKO Long Wear Shadow in shade 4:

Cargo Better-than-Waterproof Mascara:

KIKO Kiss Balm in Cherry:

Dior polish in Grege:

© 2018 A Model Recommends®: all opinions are my own and any sponsored or paid posts will always be clearly marked as an AD in the title. I accept press samples and receive product and services to review as part of my job. *Outbound links are affiliate links, which means that I receive a very small percentage of any sale made. This does not affect my content in any way and does not cost you anything, but you are most welcome to Google the products on a new page if you prefer. Please see here for full "about" section and disclaimer. A Model Recommends and Ruth Crilly are registered trademarks.



  1. July 17, 2013 / 12:20 pm

    With the weather so hot, I’m mostly going with little more than a bit of mascara and some lip colour. By the time I get serum/moisturizer/SPF on I can’t stand anything more on my skin. Ruth, have you ever tried Korres Brightening powder? I was wondering if it was like the Hourglass product.

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

      No I haven’t – I shall add it to the list. x

  2. A A
    July 17, 2013 / 6:03 pm

    Thanks! Any advice for super oily skin?

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

      Good mattifier! x

    • Alexander Pierce
      July 23, 2013 / 11:01 pm

      Use a skin supplement called accutane” basically it will stop to go mad your oil glands around your face
      A similar supplement it will be ”Perricone Skin Clear, give it at least 28 days thats a normal cycle to act at a celular level, and it will work.
      Always treat from the INSIDE OUT” U are what u eat.
      A mattifier will cover for 1-2 hour then u will end with dull face probably.
      Also look at QMS Medicosmetics, or 111 Skin, if u look for serious anti- aging.

      ”I am not an expert but i come from ” Plastic Surgeons Family (My parents)

      • A A
        July 24, 2013 / 11:18 am

        Thanks, that’s very helpful!

  3. Watercolor Kisses
    July 17, 2013 / 8:28 pm

    I’ve been eyeing the hourglass ambient lighting powders for months now. I think this may have sent me over the edge. Taking the plunge.

  4. keke
    July 17, 2013 / 8:44 pm

    Ruth, are you suggesting using sunscreen around the eye????

    thank you

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:40 am

      Some people like a dedicated spf for the eye area. It’s just personal preference. I take my suncare quite far up, others find it stings their skin. x

  5. Cath
    July 17, 2013 / 10:30 pm

    Just sharing… The Diorsnow bb eyecream (spf 20 PA++) is working beautifully for me. Also Anna Sui’s loose powder really controls oil very well. There’s a version which contains tiny little shimmers, which will give a soft glow on your skin.

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

      Thank you so much Cath. x

  6. Cris Rajic
    July 18, 2013 / 8:46 am

    Ruth, the Kiko mattifier is absolutely worth every cent! heavy in texture but it really does the job and it lasts all day. And for nude nails, have you tried the Safari Beige by Dior, it´s always in my make up bag, the perfect nude shade!

    • Cris Rajic
      July 18, 2013 / 8:48 am

      Ups! I almost forgot, i´m in the search for a good bronzer brush (not too big) have you tried the Sisley libre poudre one?

      • RuthCrilly
        July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

        I haven’t tried any Sisley brushed actually! Must do that.. x

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

      LOVE Safari beige. x

  7. Sam
    July 18, 2013 / 4:21 pm

    I really love Nars Sheer Matte Foundation for staying put on super oily skin. It sets into place and doesn’t budge and can be layered for fuller coverage in certain areas. Fabulous.

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:41 am

      Yes, it’s a good one. x

  8. Xun Fu
    July 18, 2013 / 11:23 pm

    Between Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder and the new Chanel Les Beiges, which one would you recommend?

    • RuthCrilly
      July 19, 2013 / 12:42 am

      Hourglass is much more luminous, Chanel can be layered far more without looking OTT. x

  9. Daniella
    July 20, 2013 / 9:08 am

    Hi Ruth,

    I adore your site, I’ve just had a complete beauty splurge buying some of the products I’ve seen you review and felt slightly naughty. But I’m over it now! Anyway, the reason I write is because of the brand Kiko. I keep seeing references to their make-up (which is fab) and one item of skincare in particular – Kiko Skin Trainer. I’ve heard people mention it a few times and it’s made it into this months Elle. I’ve ordered one to try as it’s ridiculously cheap for a serum, but wondered if you had plans to review it and other items in their line? (like the enerC booster!)


  10. Enju
    July 26, 2013 / 1:42 am

    What kind of brush are you using with Hourglass powder? Thanks in advance.

  11. Lynda Tsay
    July 27, 2013 / 5:35 am

    this may be a stupid question but… how/when do you apply mattifier? it sounds like before foundation? and can it replace moisturizer?

  12. July 29, 2013 / 9:17 pm

    Super helpful, tips, Ruth! I have oily skin and can definitely struggle with achieving a grease-free glow. I definitely have to pick up one of the Hourglass Ambient powders sometime soon; have tested them in Sephora and they’re really fantastic. Love the look that you’ve created here- you’re glowing :)

  13. Kiki
    August 7, 2013 / 4:59 pm

    Hi, i would like to know which brush you used with the hourglas powder and bronzing powder?

  14. productjunky
    August 9, 2013 / 5:34 am

    You have mentioned the KIKO brand a lot and I want to try it sooo bad but they wont ship to the US. It’s most distressing…I have perused the entire website and there are at least 10 things I must have and 30 more that I want…life is hard

  15. Alli
    August 22, 2013 / 8:05 pm

    Can you please tell me what kind of brush you are using with the Hourglass powder & with the bronzer? Thanks! :)

  16. synthia94
    November 22, 2013 / 2:45 am

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