MVP of 2016 (My Most Valuable Product: e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Review and Swatches)

2016 has been a rough year for all of us; but if there’s one thing that saved 2016 for me, (or at least made me feel a little bit better about life) that would be makeup. Nope, I’m not talking about the expensive or luxury brand makeup: but the cheap-mid range makeup brands and products. (A hefty price tag might just make feel worse about myself and how poor I am.) This year, one product stood out to me the most, speaking of both makeup and skin care products. It is a makeup product; and I think purchasing it was the best makeup-purchasing decision I’ve made in my entire life. (no exaggerations 😉 ) I am talking about the E.L.F. ILLUMINATING PALETTE. This illuminating palette is actually a finishing powder that can instantly add a glow to the cheeks without the heavy and fake-looking glitter. I personally love subtle highlighting products because I just want to enhance my facial features without going over-the-top with my makeup. That is the main reason why I love this product. It is subtle but amazing! 😉

Let us review this product and break down the good, the bad and the neutral points of this palette. 🙂



e.l. Illuminating Palette


PACKAGING – Is it cute? Is the packaging too bulky or too flimsy or sturdy enough? Does it get dirty easily? Do I see myself travelling with it? Is it pretty enough to give as a gift to someone?

PERFORMANCE – Is it easy to use/apply? Does it blend easily? Is it beginner-friendly? Do I feel pretty whenever I wear it? Is the color match perfect?

LONGEVITY – Can I wear it for events? How about for extreme outdoor activities? How often do I need to reapply? Is the SPF high enough?

VARIETY – Is the shade selection wide? Do I see it working for different skin tones/colors?

VALUE FOR MONEY – If it is affordable, I have lower expectations but I prefer it over luxury/expensive products for which I have higher expectations. Would I repurchase it?

Product Name


Packaging Performance Longevity Variety Value for Money
e.l.f. Illuminating Palette 5 4.5 4 4.5 5

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

Overall Rating: 4.6

PACKAGING – The packaging is sturdy enough without being too heavy or bulky. It is a palette so it is expected to be bigger than other compacts but I don’t find the size too big for what it is. It is good for travelling because you already have four highlighting/illuminating shades in one compact. The size of the compact is also proportional to the size of the pans. The case is also very easy to clean. The pans are not too big and not too small. The size is just right for face/highlighting brushes to fit in. I use either a fan brush or kabuki brush to apply the powders.

PERFORMANCE – Applying these powders onto the face is such a breeze. I just apply it to all the high points of my face and then blend out since I want to achieve a diffused illuminated finish. The powders are finely milled, a little bit powdery but not chalky at all. 🙂 I enjoy using it so much that I use it every single day as my finishing powder, applying it after setting my face with loose or pressed powder. Like I previously mentioned, it makes the skin glow without adding too much shimmer or glitter. Note: You may be tempted to buy this thinking it is a “highlighter”, but it isn’t. It is more of a “finishing powder” – which means it “can be used after setting powder to blur lines and pores, giving you an extra-perfect look” ( In this case, this powder doesn’t necessarily blur my pores but it gives my face a “finished” look and prevents it from looking too flat or cakey after foundation and powder application. Also, it does not make the face dewier, oilier, greasier or more matte than it already is.

LONGEVITY – I gave this a 4 because it does not last long on the face. It lasts probably around 2-3 hours; but the fact that it doesn’t look patchy or blotchy even after it wears off is a good point for me. I hate products that wear off easily while making the rest of my makeup look worse. This one is good because it just fades evenly on the skin but the brightening effect stays. 🙂 It is also very easy to reapply because it never looks cakey. This powder does not contain SPF; which makes it good for flash photography and photo shoots. 😉

VARIETY – This illuminating palette only has one shade; but since it has four shades of illuminating powder in it, I can still say that this product has good variety. I will include swatches and close-ups of each shade so you can get a better idea about the individual powders in this palette. I definitely have a favorite but all the shades are usable for me and I think they are universal as well. 🙂

VALUE FOR MONEY – This palette costs only 325 pesos (plus shipping fee since I bought it online @ and I think that is a GREAT price. e.l.f. is a drugstore brand but it has a lot of high quality products and dupes for more expensive products. This is one of them. 😉 I hear people say that this is a good dupe for the Hourglass ambient lighting powders it I don’t have one so I can’t really tell; but both are finishing powders so in that aspect, I guess the two can be dupes. 🙂 I suggest checking this product out and see for yourself. 😉






Upper Left Shade (yellowish brightening powder)


Upper Right Shade (pinkish shimmery powder – most shimmery of the bunch but not glittery)


Lower Left Shade (neutral finishing powder – most natural-looking of the bunch, perfect for setting entire face)


Lower Right Shade (golden highlighting shade – darkest of the bunch, I only use this on my cheeks as blush/bronzer topper because of the gold tones)



(Top-Bottom: yellowish powder, pinkish powder, neutral powder, golden powder)

They look sheer and not pigmented; but once applied on the cheeks, they look so much better! 😉

            There you go, that is my review for my MVP (Most Valuable Product) this year. I hope you liked it and I’ll see you in my next post. Annyeong chingus! :*


2 thoughts on “MVP of 2016 (My Most Valuable Product: e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Review and Swatches)

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