Estée Lauder's new Idealist Cooling Eye Illuminator ($58) is pretty cool! I started looking for it when I saw it in a magazine (probably WWD's Beauty Inc.). I tried the Estée Lauder counter at Nordstrom first. The representative had never heard about it. That's OK; sometimes the leading magazines publicize products before the reps have been trained.
The second time I checked at Nordstrom, the units had arrived, but the tester was missing in action. When I asked about the tester, the woman behind the counter (someone I had never seen before) seemed clueless - rather unusual for Nordstrom. Anyhow, it finally arrived at Neiman Marcus, and I purchased it. I love happy endings. Even delayed gratification is better than no gratification.
Cooling Eye Illuminator is said to be the first illuminator with a coutoured, cooling ceramic-tip applicator - the kind that's all the rage for under-eye serums. This new eye illuminator will definitely brighten your eye area instantly. I love the way it does that.
Estée Lauder reports that in two weeks of testing, 90% of their test participants saw a reduction in the look of dark circles and puffiness. I have no way to evaluate whether this claim could possibly be true because the ingredients are not listed on the box or on the tube itself - most unusual.
I do like the way it illuminates the under-eye area. It leaves a subtle radiance - definitely illuminating and brightening, without being shimmery or glaring. I don't appreciate the applicator. While it's an OK way to dispense the product onto your skin, I have to manipulate my under-eye area too much to blend it with the applicator. So, I apply a dab to my palm with the applicator and then blend it under my eyes with a brush, or I pat the product into my skin with my finger. So to me, the applicator is a gimmick.
Cooling Eye Illuminator is available in two shades: Light/Medium and Medium/Deep. Naturally, I bought Light/Medium. I took a swatch photo for you in full sun. Yes, there's a lot of shimmer on my arm, but that's reflected sunlight. The illuminator is nowhere near a shimmer bomb when blended. I applied the illuminator with the applicator, but then lightly evened it out for the swatch at the top of my arm. I used the excess from that exercise to show you the blended shade below.
It's white-ish on my skin without being ghoulish. The color on my skin does not have a pink cast. If anything, it's ivory, with an ever-so-subtle yellow-cream cast. Once blended, it's enormously brightening - and very flattering. You can apply it under or over your foundation.
Want to try it? It's available at Estée Lauder counters now and at Estée Lauder's Web site.
Photo at top courtesy of Estée Lauder; swatch photo by Best Things in Beauty