Several years ago, I bought YSL’s Touche Éclat highlighter/concealer pen because pretty much every single magazine called it a “cult favorite” or a “beauty must-have“. People went rushing into stores to purchase it, and I sheepishly admit that I did too. I bought it, used it 3-4 times, didn’t really like it and then gave it to my sister. It was the wrong color for my skin (The beauty advisor I bought it from told me it was the closest match to my porcelain skin), it didn’t cover up anything like I wanted it to and I was pissed off that I had spent $50 on a product that advertising had made me buy.
So when I found out that Kate used the wonder product, I figured I had maybe been using it wrong. I mean, if she can look as great as she always does and use this product to do so… How come I couldn’t? I did a bunch more research and found out that in the few years since I had originally purchased the YSL Touche Éclat that they had come out with “half shades” which were supposed to make the product more blendable and closer to more skin colors like mine. I also discovered that I would be pretty much the only person alive who didn’t like the product if I remained true to my dislike… So rather than be alone on the Anti-Touche Éclat Island, I bought it again to try hoping to have gained more wisdom and makeup application tips over the years.
I wear concealer under my eyes to camouflage dark circles (which I suppose is the only reason people do?), and this is what I was looking for this product to amaze me with – covering those pesky dark circles. Because your eyes can play tricks on you after staring at yourself in a mirror for several minutes, I decided to document the experiment with my camera.
In the photo above, the eye on the left has no makeup at all. You can see the dark circles that are the bane of my existence begging for makeup. On the right is my eye circles with just the Touche Éclat. When I put it on, I thought that there was zero difference and I grumbled to myself about having wasted another $50, but I could actually see a pretty big difference when I looked at a picture.
I decided more close examination was required so I yelled at my husband to come take closeup pictures of my eye. Luckily, these kinds of random requests are normal when you’re married to me, so he took some much better photos after I started to put on the makeup. As you can see from this closeup, it’s covering up some of the purple circle but still leaving a pretty natural coverage not making it look like I’m wearing tons of makeup. At this point, I had decided that maybe this miracle product was possibly deserving of its praise.
But what kind of Royal Beauty Bag reviewer would I be if I didn’t also look at and consider the alternatives? Anything considered and reviewed by itself could be great. I decided to look at another rumoured budget Kate brand, Almay, and test out their Wake Up Undereye concealer which is a fraction of the price (Comes in around $6-7)
Can you see a difference? I can. The main one that I could really tell was that the Almay was a thicker product and it offered more coverage. As you can see, it hides more of the freckles and makes my skin look more uniform, in my opinion. The Touche Eclat was slightly more natural, but with less coverage. Hmmmm…. Was I missing something?
Looking both products up online, I realized that the Touche Eclat is not branded or sold as an undereye concealer, so it’s pretty unfair of me to rate it as one. It’s branded to go on TOP of your regular undereye concealer to add brightness to the look. I finally decided that I should try the Touche Eclat with the Almay concealer underneath and then some mascara and eyeliner to see how it would look on a regular day (I will not, ever, be seen in public without mascara. It’s like my safety blanket – even in labour, I put on mascara before leaving to go to the hospital. True story.) Here’s how that looked:
Here’s my final verdict.
I’ll admit that the Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat as a highligher is pretty good. It’s expensive, yes, but it does a pretty good job of adding some brightness to my skin even all by itself. Other reviewers use it as a base for eye shadows, just as an eye color on its own and then also for contouring. I will keep and continue to use Touche Eclat for days when I’m more tired than normal or on days when I need to look more awake. I would actually probably buy the Almay undereye concealer again so I might pair them up, or I might stick with my Laura Mercier.
Here are some things I learned during this review:
- You will need to click your YSL Touche Eclat pen about 41 times in order to get product out. Apparently this is normal if you read the directions but it bears noting because if you get mad easily, like me, you could overclick and get Touche Eclat all over yourself (like me)
- My husband does not phase easily when I ask him to come take pictures of random things I’m doing
- My eyebrows are very unruly and very curly, I should really seek some professional help with them