Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator Review

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Read ALL about my review process including how I take swatches, photos, and more here.

Estee Lauder sent over their new Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator for review consideration back in early June (see my post here). While I loved how it gave me a bit of a glow and I did notice that my skin looked more radiant than usual, I like to give a skincare product at least 4-8 weeks test time before I decide anything. So here we are at eight weeks.

Let’s recap.

Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator is described by Estee Lauder as…

The first fast-acting Serum from Estée Lauder Research proven to dramatically reduce the look of uneven skintone:
* redness
* acne marks
* dark spots
* sun spots
* discolorations

This intensive, yet gentle oil-free serum features powerful technologies to address the look of every key sign of uneven skintone:
* Triple-Optic Technology provides skin with a brighter, more luminous look from the very first application.
* CorrectTone Technology visibly reduces uneven skintone in 2 weeks, while anti-oxidants help prevent its re-appearance.

Price: $58 for 1.0 oz; $85 for 1.7 oz.

I already have pretty decent skin or at least I still get regular comments from strangers about how nice it is…lol. My main concern, like many other women of color, though is hyperpigmentation. I had some breakouts in the spring and once they were gone, then came the dark spots. Nothing I’m not used to—it’s like getting up in the morning and going to bed at night for me. I don’t typically wear foundation—just concealer to cover the few spots I have on my forehead, chin, and right cheek and then I set with Make Up For Ever Duo Mat. I’m also a stickler for a skin care regimen. You can pretty much say I’m on the intermediate to almost an expert level when it comes to my skin. Just to give you all a little background about me and my skin :)

I used Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator both day and night before moisturizer as the directions stated. After using it, I only notice that my skin is smoother and more radiant but my dark spots? Still there. Womp womp. I only noticed them starting to fade slightly when I started using Dr. Schultz’ Brightening Complex about 6 weeks in. I’m just not part of the 62% who saw a dramatic reduction in uneven skintone in 2 weeks. Or 6 weeks for that matter.

I wish I knew what was in Even Skintone Illuminator so I could make a better assessment of the ingredients, but there’s no word on the bottle I was given nor on the EL website nor on sites that also sell the product like Nordstrom, Saks, and Bloomingdales. In the description it mentions antioxidants which we know help with cell turnover (and explains the brighter and smoother appearance of my skin), but those alone won’t help lighten hyperpigmentation on my face. I also wouldn’t personally pay $58 for 1 oz of antioxidants unless there was something else in it, but since I don’t know what’s in it, I can’t really say.

No love lost though. I could just be the odd woman out because plenty of ladies rave about how powerful it’s been for their skin. Plus Estee Lauder still makes good skincare (this I know from my counter days). If you were thinking of trying this, I suggest getting a sample first or making sure the store has a lenient return policy.

Have you tried Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator? What were your results?

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About Danielle

A former finance girl, Danielle is a New York City based freelance writer and fashion and beauty expert. She's a Hofstra University and Fashion Institute of Technology grad with an obsession with fashion and beauty which she loves to tell you all about every weekday on her award-winning blog. Think of her as your style and beauty entourage all wrapped up into one bubbly brown package. Danielle's work and expertise can be found in print and across the web in Cosmopolitan for Latinas,, and more! She's also appeared as an on-air style and beauty expert on The Real, CBS New York's "The Couch" and WPIX11's Savvy Shopper segment.
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4 Responses to Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator Review

  1. Danielle says:

    New blog post: Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator Review:

  2. Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator Review by @StyleNBeautyDoc

  3. Danielle says:

    New Blog Post: Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator Review

  4. Destiny says:

    Thanks for the review! I saw an ad in Glamour Magazine for this product and was thinking about purchasing it. It is very pricey and the bottle is very small. Not sure if I wanna purchase yet….

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