CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté Illuminating Powder

Chanel Mouche de Beauté opener


My jaw must certainly have dropped open when I first spotted images of CHANEL’s Mouche de Beauté, an illuminating powder (thank you Amy of Cafe Makeup) and part of the brand’s ‘Collection Maquillage et Croisière de CHANEL’. Taking inspiration from France’s Chateau de Versailles, this stunning piece of makeup art, bears a beautifully raised & embossed scrollwork pattern such as that found adorning many walls and pieces in the Chateau – highlighted by a bee in the center, the symbol of French royalty (although the word “mouche” is French for “fly”, it was first used to designate pollinating-type bees). It was a foregone conclusion that I would hunt this treasure down … although I wasn’t sure if I would actually use it, or frame it.

Quick note: My honeymoon trip to Paris in 1990, would not have been complete without a visit to the fabled Chateau de Versailles – the photo below gives you just a small indicator of the opulence and luxury found throughout this landmark estate.

Chateau de Versaille - personal archives

Chateau de Versaille, personal archives

Chanel Mouche de Beauté box

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté

Chanel Mouche de Beauté sleeve

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (velveteen sleeve)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté sleeve back

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (velveteen sleeve showing elasticized back)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté open sleeve

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté

Chanel Mouche de Beauté compact & applicator

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (compact & sponge applicator)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté compact back

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté

Chanel Mouche de Beauté

CHANEL Mouche de Beauté Illuminating Powder (CAD $70.00 12 g/0.42 oz)) – a finishing/highlighting face powder, in a shimmery peachy hue with pink undertones. There is a light overspray of slightly larger shimmer particles which disappear upon first use, although the finish does retain some random & sparse larger pieces. Once you cringe get past the initial application (which was very painful to do, as I really did not want to mar the pattern), you’ll discover a powder that is quite finely milled and while shimmery, its peachy tint adds a beautiful warmth to the face wherever applied, drawing the light in as though sun-kissed. Definitely not for use as an overall face powder, I prefer using this powder as a highlighter on the upper cheekbones, over the cupid’s bow of the lips, or as a light wash across the lids. With the overspray removed in the area I’ve been trying out, I experience no shimmer fallout or powder kickback, and the pigmentation is not too heavy that you need a light hand – making this product buildable, if so desired.

Chanel Mouche de Beauté 2

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté

Chanel Mouche de Beauté 3

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (detail of embossed & raised surface)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté macro

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (macro detail)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté swatch

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté (swatched heavily, in natural daylight)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté 4

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté

Chanel Mouche e Beauté with comps

Ordering Mouche de Beauté sight unseen, I was a little concerned that it might end up being too close to CHANEL’s last illuminating powder, ‘Poudre Signe’ (reviewed here), but thankfully the two are nothing alike. Pulling out my two other similarly hued illuminating powders, Laura Mercier’s ‘Rose Rendezvous’ (reviewed here) and Guerlain’s ‘Cruel Gardenia’ (reviewed here), I was happy to note that Mouche de Beauté still bears enough differences to warrant its unique status in my collection.

  • CHANEL Mouche de Beauté – slightly larger shimmer, more peach-tinted
  • CHANEL Poudre Signé – palest, neutral gold tone with warmer undercurrents, least pigmented
  • Laura Mercier Rose Rendezvous – highest pigmentation, true rose-gold tone
  • Guerlain Cruel Gardenia – most finely milled powder of the grouping, leans more pink than the rest

Chanel Mouche de Beauté swatch with comps

CHANEL – Mouche de Beauté & comparison swatches, natural daylight


Final thoughts: Ever since I discovered how a well-placed highlighting powder can truly finish a look while providing stunning illumination to the face, I have become quite the collector of these little treasures. The fact that they are usually limited edition pieces and bear exquisite craftsmanship, doesn’t hurt their cachet either, and when all those factors are combined into one of my all-time favourite brands, then it’s a done deal. Mouche de Beauté from CHANEL, is nothing short of a portable work of art, and while I would love nothing better than to encase it under glass, I believe in enjoying these fabulous products. For light to medium skin tones, this is an exceptional shade, and even the very fair can pull it off with ease, due to the pink undertones it bears. The peachy tint ensures that it won’t turn ashy on darker skin tones either, so all in all, this is a very well rounded highlighter indeed, and certainly worth looking into.


I purchased mine through the Holt Renfrew Bloor Street store (where it surprisingly enough, retails for CAD $10.00 less than what’s shown on CHANEL’s US website. So not complaining)

Chanel Mouche de Beauté closer

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