First Impressions: e.l.f. Illuminating Palette On Dark Skin

e.l.f. illiminating palette review

I just got this e.l.f. Illuminating Palette today and was eager to try it out and give my initial first impressions. As I’ve said before, the e.l.f. Baked Bronzer in Los Cabos is my go-to highlighter for my dark skin because it gives the kind of subtle highlight that I need especially for day to day wear. I don’t like highlights that are too shimmery and obvious.

e.l.f. illimunating palette

e.l.f. illuminating palette dark skin

I really like the packaging. Very simple and chic and feels very light. It also comes with a nice large mirror. The pans can also be popped out and replaced with whatever you like (blush, another highlighter, bronzer, etc.)

Claims, Directions and Ingredients

elf illuminating powder

elf illuminating palette on dark skin

elf illuminating palette ingredients

The first thing that I noticed when I applied this e.l.f. Illuminating Palette, is that these give that very subtle highlight/radiance that I like. It really is a beautiful highlight. e.l.f. has created a great product here. There is nothing shimmery and in your face about these powders. This palette really does do what is claimed “captures, diffuses and softens the way light reflects on the skin.”


elf illiminating palette review

elf illuminating palette review


These powders are very finely milled and are very easy to apply. Applies very smooth. With that said these powders are very light and powdery and easily picked up with a brush which means that you have to be very careful when you use a brush and use a light hand otherwise powder will be flying everywhere.

The shades can certainly be mixed together to create a custom shade.

Good For Dark Skin?

From this e.l.f Illuminating palette, only one out of the four shades worked for my skin and from the above swatches, you can see which one did.

The other three looked ashy on my skin so if you are a chocolate girl like me, the other 3 shades will not work at all.

The yellow gold shade looked absolutely beautiful on my skin but I would be in heaven if it were slightly darker but I can still use this as it is however, it is important not to be too heavy handed with the application. It also works great mixed with my e.l.f. Bronzer in Los Cabos.

This is such a great palette and I love the highlight that it gives but I wish it was like the e.l.f. Blush Palette which comes in a light and a dark version. Here’s hoping that sometime in the future, e.l.f. will create this Illuminating Palette in a dark version.

If you are lighter skin-toned, this will be an amazing palette I think but if you are darker-skinned you may only be able to use one of the shades like me.

One of the cons about this palette is that if you do have textured skin, this highlighter will emphasize that so be careful when using this if you have textured skin like me.


Despite not every shade working on my dark skin, this e.l.f. Illuminating Palette is amazing and gives such a nice soft highlight. Definitely great for strobing if you are still into that trend. The color that worked on my skin is definitely my favorite highlighter right now but I will continue playing with this palette in the coming days since this is just a first impressions review.

The price also can’t be beat which is why I am also not too upset by the fact that only one out of four shades worked on my skin tone. I definitely recommend this e.l.f. Illuminating Palette as I am liking it so far.

Available for $6.00 at elfcosmetics.

UPDATE* I’m really enjoying this illuminating palette and have been using it daily since I got it. I can’t get enough. I’m also using the colors (especially those I can’t use on my cheeks, nose, chin and forehead) as highlighters for my brow bone which works beautifully, to highlight my inner tear duct and as eyeshadows. The highlights also last all day without breaking down.


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