Is it Magic with the LA Splash Eyeshadow Palette?

I can’t lie, when I saw this in the November Glossy Box, I was very excited. (incidentally, you can still get your first Glossybox for $16 with the code WELCOME16). First of all, it is a full sized palette which always makes me happy. Second, the colors are kind of my go to staples. I seriously looked at this and thought ‘Wow they actually made a palette just for me’. Also I really don’t have a good go to black shadow. I have several that are okay, but not one where i constantly reach for it. and I would really like a good black shadow in my eyeshadow arsenal. So is this to be the one?

We shall see.

top row swatches l to r: Selenite, Sunstone, Aragonite, Tigers eye

Normally I would cover the mattes first and the shimmers second, but because there are only three shimmers I will talk about them first. Plus, they are the better eyeshadows so it is nice to start off on a positive note.

bottom row swatches L to R: Rose Quartz, Citrine, Amber, Onyx

There are three shimmers and all are in the second row. They are Rose Quartz, Citrine and Amber. I personally think it is a really good combination of shimmers. It lets you move from a a light pink tone to a deeper golden hue very easily. I was also very pleased with the way the shimmers applied. They applied well with a dry brush (as well as with fingers) and they stayed in place for about six hours. After that they tended to fade to nothing. But they lasted a while. Other than the fact that they are not extremely long lasting I had no issues with the shimmer shadows.

Note the powdery fall out

It is the mattes that caused a bit of an issue. First off, I love the selection of colors. Someone thought through this palette really well. it isn’t a massive number of shades but they complement each other really nicely. They blend well together, but they are really powdery. Really powdery. While Sunstroke is the most powdery of the lot, the fall out isn’t as noticeable because the color is so light. There was a lot of kick back and fall out but once on the lids it was fine. Aragonite had surprisingly less fall out. I expected more as it was a darker shade and that seems to be how it usually works, but there was not as much fall out from Aragonie as there was frm Sunstone. I was cautiously optimistic. Until I tried Tigers eye and got almost as much fall out as Sunstone. Aragonite was the clear winner of the shadows of the top row. Selenite was somewhere between Sunstone and Tigers eye with fall out but as I really only used it in the corner of my eye there was less issue with it.

And then we get to Onyx. I had such high hopes. It is darkly pigmented. It applies streaky and there is a lot of fall out. It was a very hard shade to work with. without an eyelid primer it was streaky. If the eyelid primer was sticky and designed to grip (like my Pretty Vulgar Lid Primer which I used and love) then the black is a bit patchy at first but you can apply more and get it to stay. This is the only way to avoid fall out, by the way. Otherwise it will apply and then just sort of drift down into racoon eyes after an hour or so.

Using a concealer instead of a regular primer only helps if you let the concealer dry and then apply the Onyx over it. It is still a bit streaky but it applies more smoothly. the concealer simply won’t hold it in place. I tried every way I knew how to use this black shade and nothing worked for me. Perhaps there is some trick that I don’t know or maybe i have weird eyelids but i could not get this to work for me. It was either streaky or smoothly applied but only temporarily on my lids. either way, this is not the black shade for me.

Which is sad. With the good shimmers and powdery but workable mattes, I would have really liked it if Onyx worked out for me. But it didn’t. And now we come to hard truth time. This palette retails for $32. If this were a lower priced palette, I might have given it a pass. But I have several drug store palettes that perform better than this. Seriously It may be prettier, but I would choose my Wet ‘n Wild Color Icon Palette over this anyday. And I think the Wet ‘n Wild palette I have has most of these colors in it. And the Wet ‘n Wild one was only $5.99 (And yes, that is $5.99 before the holiday sales). For $32 I expect more than just a pretty package and powdery shades. While I like the thought that went into this palette, my excitement turned to disappointment. If asked to repurchase this palette, I would have to pass. It does remind me that I need to use my Wet’n Wild palette more though. I really enjoyed using that one.

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Dominique Cosmetics Sweater Weather Eyeshadow Palette

Have you ever looked at an eyeshadow palette and thought one thing and then tried it and thought, maybe I was wrong?  That is sort of how I felt about this palette.  When I opened it, I immediately thought ‘spring’  I decided to go ahead and try it out now and I am really glad I did. 

There are only six shades. Well, clearly as you can see from the above photo. They are all mattes and no shimmers, which was interesting. I don’t mind that actually as they all had the same formula, making it very predictable to use. Every shade worked more or less like the other shades there was no difference in application between them. I didn’t have to adjust from shade to shade (except to change the color combo I was trying that day – but not form formula alterations. which was a relief after alse week where each shad seemed to have a mind of it’s own.)

I’ll cover the worst first just to get it over with. Shade one is called Sweater Weather. It is the first pan and the far left swatch. I did not like this shade.  It applied well (as did all of the shades for the most part), but it looked gray and just awful with my skin tone. If I was trying to create a zombie mold look on my eyes, this is the color i would reach for, otherwise, I have no use for it.

Fuzzy is an excellent inner corner color or used to lighten up the look while Toasty is very close to my skin color and made an excellent base for me.  Cuddly was the shade I reached for the most this week.  I tended to put it all over my lid and then add Fuzzy to the inner eye.  It is a very subtle look for a low makeup kind of day. Chill was a very good blue-y/purple-y shade.  While not my favorite, it did work well as an accent color (I’m just not a fan of blue shades.  I keep trying them because they look good in the pan, I just don’t like how they look on me.)

Messy Bun I had the most trouble with.  It had the most fall out and had the tendency to need to be swept off of the nose and under eye area.  When I used it, I had to add a little extra powder to sweep it away.  Also there was a slight bit of patchiness with this that wasn’t in any of the other shades.  I don’t know if it is just the darker tone, but it was more powdery and slightly patchy.  However after last week’s shadow palette, the patchiness was barely noticeable and the powdery completely manageable. (this is the benefit of following a difficult to work with eyeshadow palette I suppose).  

It just required a little more work than the others, but seriously, it only required that little bit of extra work because it was so dark a shade and you need to be more careful when applying them so you don’t look like you have a black eye. That’s just the nature of the shade.  But a the others went on like a dream, blended well and stayed on all day, the slight issues of Messy Bun were easily overcome.  

While you could use Messy Bun to create a very soft smokey eye (it is not a true black but more of a darker brown when applied) This is very much a palette you can use when you want to go subtle with your look. It is not a bold glitzy palette but it is very easy to work with.

Do I think it is a quality eyeshadow palette?  Yes. Do I think that a six pan palette should cost $29? No. I think it is over priced. The colors I like, I have in other palettes and in good formulas. So even though it is good quality, it isn’t unique enough to justify the price in my mind.

I am happy with it and I will get a lot of use out of it, but if I had to go out and buy it again. I would wait until it was on sale.  Especially since two of the colors (Sweater Weather and Chill) aren’t ones I would consistently use. But I am very glad to have this in my collection and since I have it, I will use it.

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Illuminati X ISA Glam Palette

Oh my darlings, this palette took me on quite the ride this week. I’ll admit, I had never heard of Isabel Beddya or Illuminati before this Illuminati X ISA Glam Palette arrived in a Boxy Charm subscription box.  So I have no stake in the creator. From the images I saw on spoilers, I can’t say that I was very enthused about it.  Then it arrived, I opened it and saw the colors in person and thought, Not bad.  I can work with this.

And then I tried to work with it. Normally, I break it down by mattes and shimmers but this week I am going by rows. Mostly because that is what makes the most sense when dealing with this palette.

The top row swatches (L to R)

So row one. This row hit the three P’s for me: Powdery, Patchy and a Pain in the patootie to work with. I had high hopes for Purple Dream. I don’t really have a good purple shimmer in my collection. And after trying this, i still don’t have a good purple shimmer in my collection. It is a glitter that may in certain lights have a purple cast to it. The Purple dream was worthless when applied with a brush, but did okay when applied with a finger (mostly because I wasn’t packing on the glitter and just using it as a slight accent).  The trick to dealing with it was that you couldn’t blend it.  You touched your finger to the lid and that’s where the shadow stayed.  If you wanted more, you dip your finger back into the pan and apply a second dot.  Blending will just make it get streaky and disappear.  Still it was the best of the top row.

the second row – swatched L to R

The middle row was better and gave me great hope.  Bby Girl was the rock star of this row (second swatch). It was a little patchy, but could be applied on the outer edge of the eye and blended in for a one and done look.  I actually really liked the color. It got patchier the further away you went from where the brush initially met the eyelid, but it was the best of the lot. Addy was a lot patchier (and I think because of my skin tone more noticeable in it’s patchiness). Rose was really patchy and Azul was a major disappointment. In the pan it is beautiful, on the lid patchy and pastel. even the swatch on my arm looked better than it did on the eye. June 1st had the same issues as Purple Dream.  It could be applied using the finger method but blending is not going to be your friend.

Third ro – swatched L to R

And now we come to the third row.  Rich applied the same as Purple Dream and June 1st.  Izzy was similar except for more glitter. Although as a warning, using Izzy means you are going to have glitter for days, just not always on your eye. It has a large fall out rate, but once it falls out, it decides to stay where it fell. I found glitter three days after using it and had to wash my Make-up Eraser separately so that the glitter did not appear on my clothing. Trying to use the rest of the row was an exercise in frustration. They were patchy and a pain.

The image below took a surprisingly long time to pull off and still looked patchy in the end, you can see there were just parts of the eyelid the powder just wasn’t adhering to. And this is with the lid primed. I tried my concealer to prime it and then finally broke out the Uncaged Pretty Vulgar Lid primer which is like velcro for eyeshadow. The below image was still the best I could get out of these shadows.


As an overall note, this was not the easiest palette to work with.  It took extra time and by noon, most of the shadows faded into one muddy ghost.  After about the third day, I just swiped Bbygirl across my lids and called it done.  That worked really well for me, even if it did take longer than any other single shadow swipe and to be honest, I would keep this for that shade. 

Don’t get me wrong I will look for that shade elsewhere and if I find it happily remove this palette from my collection.  For now it remains because of the few colors I could work with.  It will not be a palette I reach for to use for the week.  It is one I would reach for to do the one and done shadow of Bby girl (maybe) or to use Izzy, or Purple Dream to complete a look done with different shadows.  Rich and June 1st are shades I have in better formulas in different palettes. I might use them it it is out, but I wouldn’t reach for them.

This palette retails for $48.  It looks like it should cost about $20.  Given the trouble it is to use, if you are looking to spend your money on a palette, I’d suggest passing this one up completely.  It is overpriced in general and a pain to work with.  Quite frankly, it is just not worth it.

Putting the Karity Picante Eyeshadow Palette to the test

The Karity Picante Palette was an eyeshadow palette that came into my dressing table via Boxycharm last spring.  I know you are thinking why did I not try it out then?  While I received it in the Spring and I believe the description featured comments about hot colors for summer, the palette and it’s color story more or less say fall to me. 

Every time I looked in and thought, ‘Oh spice for summer’ I remember opening it and thinking ‘nope those are autumnal shades.’ So I set it aside. 

And low and behold it is now October.  So, first a little bit about the palette according to the website…

Spice up your life!  We’ve hand-selected 21 perfectly pigmented shades in multiple finishes that are as warm as a summer night. Packed with hot, fiery shades sure to create endless looks, perfect for day to night. vegan, cruelty- and paraben-free

The palette retails for $29.  And yes even with the summer mentions in the descriptors I still think it skews more towards fall. I may be the only one, but as it is my eyelids it is going on, that’s when I wanted to use it. I think I pulled it out of the drawer at least five times this summer thinking I ought to use it, but always put it back because it just didn’t feel like summer.

Top row L to R (the first shade delia so closely matches my skin it is really hard to see)

I have to say it was an interesting palette to use.  All of the tones are red tones. Even the purples have a reddish undertone.  If you don’t look good in red than this palette isn’t for you.  I like rosy tones so I was okay with it.  The palette is a nice balance of mattes and shimmers.

Second row swatches go L to R (that is not bumps on my arms just the powdery nature of the shades.

The darker mattes are a little powdery.  Definitely tap off your brush before applying but still look out for a little fall out that you will have to brush away.  If I got crazy with some of the shades the sides of my nose looked bruised. If you tap though, the fall out is minimum except for the darker shades. 

Third row swatches L to R

The mattes tend to get a bit muddy if you try and layer them.  I think because so many of them have a similar tonal back note to the color, they all want to blend into one color.  This was less of a problem when layering mattes with shimmers as the shimmers didn’t blend into the mattes as much. They are sort of the life guards at the color pool. If you are color blocking with a line of shimmer between two mattes then you will have no problems, but blending them was hard for me as they all came out with slight variations.

The shimmers are a little patchy when applied with a dry brush but this is easily overcome by spritzing a little fixing spray on the brush or applying the shimmer with a finger.  The shimmers are also less powdery than the mattes so you don’t end up with a lot of glimmer trailing down the side of your nose.  They do tend to fade towards the end of the day and crease a little, but they don’t migrate.I will say that I could pair them with a single matte. The shimmers did tend to stand on their own rather than blend into each other or the mattes. They had much less of a tendency to muddy than the mattes did.

Where this palette shines is in the one and done look.  While the mattes tend to muddy a bit when mixing, if you take one color, dip into the pan and apply it on the outer edge of the eye and the use a clean fluffy brush to blend it over the rest of the lid, you can create some really good everyday looks. The colors have good pigment to them, they just like to stand alone.

To be honest I can see myself reaching for this palette quite often for a one and done look.  It is quick and easy to use in that capacity and the colors are stunning. Plus it is easy to flash it up with the shimmers. With a dry brush they aren’t very showy but if you dampen that brush they are quite stunning. It is one of those palettes where you could do a one and done look for the office and then pop a shimmer on at the end of the work day to glam it up for happy hour in a heartbeat.

If you are a makeup artist you may be able to do more complicated layered looks, but that my darlings is not really my strong suit. I may play around with wilder looks, but my strengths lie in the everyday looks department.  This palette does have the color and the ability to be worn in an everyday capacity.

Even though I received this in a subscription box, I have to say that having used it, I would purchase this Picante Palette from Karity on my own.  I like that it is vegan and cruelty free and I like that I can use the colors simply.  I won’t reach for it if I want to layer colors, but each pan can be used as a standalone so I don’t mind the muddied mixing.  It is just something to remember when I pull it out of the drawer.


The New England Palette from Ciate London

The Ciate London The Editor’s Palette: New England

I’ll be honest, I have no idea why there are palm fronds on the front of the Ciate London New England palette. It has bothered me all week. The case itself is nice hard plastic that would travel well and the colors inside are a nice mix.but the cover art made me think I was going to be opening a tropical palette every time. It isn’t, many of the colors are ones I associate with New England.

The palette is an interesting mix of mattes and shimmers. The mattes layer well together and blend well. They are over all not terribly pigmented.It is great for building looks but you will be taking a while with them.

top row swatches (L to R)

This is one of those palettes that swatches really well with a finger tip swipe but takes work when using a brush. Even the dark blue at the end of this row takes a little bit of work to apply and build up. If you are worried about going overboard on your application, this is a good palette to start practicing your building of layers or to do a light look.

Middle row of swatches (L to R)

The second row in the palette features darker colors, but again, they swatch better with a finger than with the brush. It is actually the opposite of the Cargo Palette from last week. There the shadows swatched horribly but were quite smoothly pigmented on the eye. Here they swatch well but take work to build up.

third row swatches (L to R)

The shimmers are absolutely lovely, but again with a dry brush they do not have a lot of pay off. However if you spray your brush with a little bit of fixing spray they become far more pigmented and you can get a very good metallic look to them. The colors pop quite a bit when used this way. It is a very drastic change from a light wash of color to full blown metallic. I did an eye look concentrating on the metallic pink shade in the center of the middle row.

the mostly metallic pink at the start of the day on the left and at the end of the day on the right

The above look I used the metallic pink as an all over shade and then put the white shimmer (second shadow from the left on the top row) at the inner eye corner. Mostly I wanted to see how it fared throughout the day. This is the same eye six hours later. I tried the look both with regular fixing spray and with my current spray as well as with no setting spray of any sort. The results were the same. After about six hours whatever eye look you create will be pretty much gone.

In the end the mattes aren’t really my favorites, but the shimmer and metallics are well worth keeping around. They are fantastic if applied with a damp brush, but not very good with a dry brush. The colors are amazing on the eye and spectacular looks can be created, however spectacular won’t last. I will be keeping this around for something like a dinner out or even a quick trip to the grocery store. I’ve found that as my mask covers almost everything else I’ve gone a little brighter and bolder with my eye looks when i do leave the house. It is a good palette to have around in my collection as I tend to lean more towards neutrals and can use the color, I just have to remember, it is a palette with a time limit.

Reviewing Mauve Obsessions By HUDA Beauty

The Mauve Obsessions Palette

This week I chose to use the HUDA Beauty Palette Mauve Obsessions to use in my weekly make up bag.  This is one of the small square palettes from the Obsessions line.  There are nine shadow pans with the general theme of, you guessed it, mauve. 

If this sounds vaguely familiar, it is because a while back I reviewed the Topaz Obsessions palette from the same line.  While I liked that one, I have to say, because of the color story, I actually like this one better. 

First row of swatches (L to R)

The mattes are creamy and pigmented and the shimmers are easy to work with and have little fall out.  While the shadows aren’t terribly powdery, it is still a good idea to tap your brush off after dipping into the pan and before putting the shadow on your eyes.  If you don’t, there is some fall out, especially from the darker matte shades. 

Center row swatches (L to R)

I found the shadows to be highly pigmented but very blendable.  My favorite thing to do with this palette is to pick one of the darker shades, apply it on the outer corner of my eye with one brush and then shade it in towards the inner eye with a second clean brush.  I found I can make it as dark or as light as I want this way. Even though the darker colors are highly pigmented, this method let me sheer them out if I wanted a really light look or build them up to something more intense.

Third Row Swatches (L to R)

Then I went in with one of the shimmer shades to lighten the inner corners.  While in the past I have layered some of the colors, this week, I really liked the simple, easy look this gave me. It took almost no time and stayed in place all day long with little fall out.  To be honest this is the look I tend to go for in the summertime regardless of palette, It is simple and easy and tends to have fewer calamities in the sun. I admire the super outlandish looks that others create, but know they are not for me. Especially in the summer. when the weather cools, I tend to spend more time layering colors, but in the summer, I just want things simple and easy.

Quite frankly I found these shadows to work amazingly well for this sort of application. As I used this palette in the winter to create more layered looks I wasn’t entirely certain it would work for me in the summer. I was pleasantly surprized.

The color array is nice.  If I wanted to go more neutral, then I dipped into the brown and then accented it with the white.  If I wanted more rosy I went in with one of the darker mauves and accented it with either pink or gold.  For a barely there look I went in with either the lighter pink matte or the neutral central shade. 

Given that it is a small palette, it was still quite versatile.  It was as bright or as neutral as I wanted it to be and quite frankly I really enjoyed using it this week.  Given its small size and versatility, this also looks like an excellent choice for a travel palette as it doesn’t take up a lot of space.  I know there are more palettes in the Obsessions line as well as at least one other line of small palettes by Huda Beauty (the Neon Line) as well as full sized palettes.  I think that given how much I like the formula of the two Obsessions palettes I have, I might look into picking up more of the Huda Beauty palettes, both small and large, in the future.

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Elf Bite Sized Eyeshadow Palette in Cream and Sugar Review with a KVD single shadow assist

Elf Bite Sized Eyeshadow Palette in Cream and Sugar, KVD single Shadow in Lolita and Metal Crush Highlighter used as shadow

I have to say I was a bit nervous about using just this palette all week.  It is why to my make up bag I added two additional shades in single shadow form.  Well one single shadow and one highlighter that I really only use as a shadow rather than a highlighter.  I’ll talk about them at the end of this post, but first the ELF palette.

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In general I like Elf Shadows.  Sometimes they aren’t the most pigmented, but they are always buildable. The bite sized palette comes with only four shades (two mattes and two shimmers) and costs $3 at Target.

While I was nervous committing to a four shadow palette for the week, I have to say, these four shadows were very well chosen.  Sometimes I get palettes and stare at them wondering what on earth I am going to actually do with the colors presented.  That was not a problem with this palette.  All of the shades worked well together.  Looking for just a light wash of color, go with the matte pink on the far left.  Want a little pop?  Top it with the lighter shimmer.  Brown smoky eye? Easily done.  Office wear? Yup.  Classic night out look?  Done and dusted.

simple every day look

Don’t get me wrong, there are only four shadows so it is a limited color spectrum you are working with, but as soon as you decide what sort of look you want, the colors click into place.  The fact that they are so well thought out means that it is super quick to use this palette.  If you are looking to speed up your morning routine, this might work for you.  I know Elf makes several different Bite sized palettes.  If they are all as well thought out as this one then I might have to look into picking more up. 

Now this week in my makeup bag I added two KVD products.  One was the shadow in the shade Lolita and the other was a metal Crush highlighter.  The shadow is the mauve sort of reddish that blended well with this palette while allowing me the choice of adding more color. 

KVD Swatches, Lolita on left metal crush on right

It is a very pigmented color, but doesn’t have a lot of fall out.  If you tap the brush lightly in the pan, then tap off the excess there isn’t a lot of trouble with it.  The Metal Crush highlighter was a highlighter I bought a while ago, tried and went ‘no, I can’t wear this as a highlighter.  It works surprisingly well as a shimmer shade for this palette as well, bringing something a lot less neutral and a bit lighter to the mix.

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I enjoyed having both of them around with this palette and will use the KVD shades again. I think Metal crush is destined to remain and eyeshadow in a really big pan for me. I also think that next time I pick a very neutral palette to use for the week I will automatically add at least one single shadow to the bag as well. Not only does that plan give me a little more play with the colors, but it uses my often forgotten single shadows.

I think that because the ELF cream and sugar palette is so neutral, if I were to travel with it (and the palette seems designed for travel) I would toss one or two single eyeshadows in brighter, complementary colors to take along just in case I decided I wanted a pop of color that day. (Because let’s face it, my weekly makeup bag is sort of travel bag practice when you get right down to it.)  Or I could add a second bite sized palette with more color in it.  Either way, I enjoyed using it this week and look forward to reaching for it in the future.

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Palette Review: BH Cosmetics Glam Reflection Smoke Palette

The BH Cosmetics Glam Reflection smoke palette

I have to say one of the most difficult things about reviewing this palette was trying to take a picture of it. The polished silver outside reflects everything and once you open it, the entire inside of the top cover is mirrored.  I finally had to use the foundation bottle to at least block some of the reflection. Not that I am complaining about the mirror.  It is a nice large mirror that is worth using even when you don’t want to use the palette. It is just hard to photograph.

To be honest I found this a very interesting palette.  Upon first glance it is a very neutral palette.  That doesn’t change no matter how many glances you give it.  What I found most interesting was that I was very much torn between loving and hating the palette.  The reason is that the mattes and shimmers are so different from each other.

First let’s talk mattes. 

They swatch well.  In fact all of the shades swatch really well. In the pan they feel butter soft. When applied to the lid however the mattes tend to be both patchy and powdery. With a couple of the darker browns I felt like I got more on my nose than on my eyelid.  I found I could use a smaller brush to avoid the problem of powder everywhere, but the colors were still light.  They are buildable though, it just takes a while.  I had better luck when I sprayed the brush with fixing spray, but there was still a patchiness to them that I didn’t care for. 

Swatches from the top row

The shimmers however are another story.  In the pan they feel buttery and they swatch well, just like the mattes.  They are not highly pigmented but they are buildable and go on a little better with a brush than the mattes.  They are also less patchy. With a damp brush they are stunning. I would keep this palette around simply for the gold in the top row, the ice blue in the second row and the copper in the bottom row.

Middle row swatches

If you are into blues, the two darker blue shimmers are fantastically pigmented and pair well with the ice blue to create amazing peacock looks.  If you look closely at the pans you can see the gold and copper have been used the most and that’s because even when I use other palettes, I find myself coming back to this palette for those shades to finish off a look. 

Third row of swatches

I used this palette for my sole palette this week and I really had to restrain myself from going to get a second palette to use other mattes with these shimmers.  I bought this palette from BH cosmetics when they were having one of their 80% off sales a while back.  I think I also had a coupon to go with it at the time so I believe I paid about five or six dollars for it in total.

At that price I would definitely pick it up again just for those three shades.  Without the sale price, to be honest, I still might pick it up for those three shadows.  Admittedly, first I’d look around to see if they were sold individually.  I suspect I will wear those three shades to pan and leave the rest untouched.  I really wish that the shadows had names on them so they were easier to find.  But then again, I don’t think BH sells individual shadows.  Which means I will use these three down to pan and then look for replacements elsewhere rather than repurchasing the palette. For now I am content to keep this palette in my collection.  I just think next time I take it out for a week of use, I will be pairing it with some single matte shadows.

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Palette of the Week: Little Briar Rose

The Little Briar Rose eyeshadow Palette

In a continuing effort to rotate all of my eyeshadow palettes, determine which ones I want to keep and which ones need to leave my overcrowded drawer, I am choosing one pallet each week and using it for the entire week. As I sometimes tend to just grab one of my favorite palettes and use it repeatedly, this also forces me to shake things up a little.

Last week I chose the Little Briar Rose Palette from Storybook Cosmetics (retail $55).  It came in my December Boxyluxe box and I decided to spend a week using it.  It is a very interesting palette.

While I appreciate the design of the palette, and the cute factor of making it look like a book, the packaging does take up a lot of space. While that wasn’t a major problem, I am not sure how I will feel about that in the long run. I only have so much space that I am willing to give to makeup storage. It is in fact mostly limited to my old fashioned dressing table with large deep drawers and a small powder room. This means that I tend to be a bit selective in what I keep long term.

For now, this palette is good enough and something I will use often enough to merit the use of space, but further down the road, I can already foresee the mental debate.

However like I said it is a good palette.

I really like the color story of this palette.  While it does have a number of pinky rosy tones, It also has enough blue and golds to make it more versatile.  In addition while it is a good winter palette, the dark reddish color of Grimm coupled with the gold of enchanted working well for a colder weather look, I can also see some of the lighter tones like Kiss  and Spindle working well as the weather edges towards Spring. There is enough variety that I was able to use the colors this week for various looks without getting bored.

As you can see from the swatches, Briar Rose turned out to be almost invisible on my skin and was my least favorite.  The mattes however are all soft and buttery.  The darker colors such as Prince and Grimm had some fallout from the powder, but they are very pigmented and I found if I used a light hand with them I had no problems. I know everyone says to do you eyeshadows first and then put on the rest of your makeup but I have always done my face first and finished with the eyes.

I apologize for the bad swatches, I will practice and get better. The top color on my wrist is actually the bottom right color called Kiss so technically, it is swatched backwards if you are trying to orient yourself.

Well technically I do the eyes, the setting spray, then I fix my hair, and finally return to add mascara and lipstick, but you know what I mean. When I know a set of shadows I want to use has a tendency to produce a lot of fall out I try reversing the order but I always feel like I am forgetting something.

So I just used a light hand on Prince and Grimm.

I can easy see Thorn becoming my go to color for a simple all over the lid one and done look, in fact I used that a couple of times this past week as I was running around with last minute holiday things. It is a nice light mauve shade that suits my skin quite well.

Then there are the shimmery glittery shades.  If going for subtle, they can be applied with a dry brush, for more impact a wet brush or a finger (which is what I most often use, truth be told) they apply like a dream, however after about an hour, they start their grand migration. I tend to apply glitters on the inner part of my eye and while they looked great at the start, a little later the glitters were making a path down the side of my nose and relocating to my under eye area. This tendency is more pronounced in Enchanted and Fairies than it is in Beauty, but even Beauty starts to pull a runner towards the end of the day.  Castle and Talia generally stayed put though.

All in all it is a mixed reaction.  The glitter relocation I am not a fan of, but everything else about the shadows I like.  I think I may work with the shimmers a bit to see if there is a way to make them work, but I definitely love the color Thorn. Whether that is enough to overcome the runaway glitters and the palette size I don’t know.  I’ll have to see.  For now, since I started with the two most recently acquired palettes in my collection, I am going to my large eyeshadow drawer, pull it open and reach in blindly to choose this week’s palette.  I’ll let you know next Monday how it goes.

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Palette Review: Nomad -Berlin Underground

Nomad – Berlin Underground

I received this palette as part of my IPSY Glam Bag Plus this month and while I initially liked the palette, I wanted a little more time to review it separately. On the Nomab website it retails for $37. Its description on the site is:

Palette interior showing shades and full mirror, which I really like.

Intense eyeshadows formulated with extra-fine pigments and infused with Hemp Seed Oil for buttery feel yet fierce color payoff. 15 alternative shades in shimmery metallics, matte & duo-chrome inspired by the rebellious underground culture of Berlin before and after The Wall. The perfect color palette for creating both everyday go-to looks with bronzes, browns & golds and unique smokey eyes with snakeskin green, burnt orange & distressed black.

I will say, looking at the palette, for the first time, I really liked the color scheme. I could also immediately see how several of the colors could work together to form a cohesive eye look. I’ll admit it. I actually giggled a little at the thought of playing with them. My only initial concern was that there were not many shades that appeared to be mattes. In fat looking at the palette, there are only three mattes NDW, Oranienstrabe and Tacheles.

Not the best view of me I can say but the point is to show the shadows: I used the matte Oraniestrabe as a base then added Poor but Sexy over it. East Side Gallery was used as an accent but needs a wet brush for any color pay off otherwise it is just a bare shine.

As I started to work with them, i realized that not all of their shimmers were shimmers. The black color in the palette, Klubnacht has a shimmer to it in the pan, but looses that sheen on the eyes. The same can also be said for Loveparade. The others retain their shimmer but are not as shimmery as they appear in the pan. When playing with these colors for the review, I tried to use multiple colors so I could see how the bulk of them worked and how they worked together. In reality when using this palette, I think I would grab a neutral from another palette, Or pair the palette with one of my floating single shadows and then just pick one of the colors. As I was using them I found myself wanting to let them stand on their own, without mixing with each other.

I used NDW as a base and then had to use a makeup wipe to cleanse my nose so I didn’t look like I had taken a punch. I then added Klubnacht for the black and tamed the peacock bule of the NDW with Kreuzberg. This really needs eyeliner and mascara to finish it off. Also my love called this my Ming the Merciless look. Not quite was I was going for, but fun.

For these pictures I used the shadows dry and did not lay down a primer base. I just wanted to see what they looked like straightforward on bare skin. I also added no mascara or eyeliner to distract from the shadows. These colors really demand both to finish it though. As you can see, they really do need a primer base under them as they do not pop as much as I thought they would.

In addition, for true impact, many of the shades need to be used with a brush spritzed with a setting spray, specifically the metallics. Tekkno, The Wall, SO36, Deutschpunk, and Hansa all need a wet brush, otherwise they show up as a patchy bare wash of color with a slight sheen to the eyelids. Oddly they made my lids look more greasy than shadowed when used dry. I’m guessing that is the hemp oil infused in them.

For this I used Loveparade as a base. I really like that color. it went on really intense but blended out well. I then used the matte color Tacheles and added the shimmery Chaostage. The shimmer did spread a little further than I planned. Again this look needs eyeliner and mascara to really be finished off, but I really like these shadows, Love Parade is an excellent crease shade I believe I will use a lot.

All of the shades are botter soft and with the exception of a few have little fall out. NDW is very powdery and if you apply it, do so with a light touch in the pan and a dabbing rather than a sweeping motion across the lids. I tried the sweep first and my nose was peacock blue. I normally do not do my eyes first and then apply my face makeup, but with this shade I think I would. I normally lay down extra powder and then clean up, but I don’t think that would work with this shade. This is most definitely do your eyes shade. I expected more of a fall out from Klubnacht, mostly because black eyeshadows seem to always have fall out. This did have a little more fall out than other shadows, but not nearly as much as NDW and was a lot easier to work with than I thought it would be. It is an intense black so co slow and blend. The color pay off is amazing though.

While I did use the pigments dry and without a base, they stayed on my eyelids for four hours at a stretch and the shimmers stayed where they were put, they did not end up too much under my eye. While I think I can do several really nice eye looks with this palette, I really am drawn to using each as a sweep of color alone across the eye with just mascara and eyeliner to finish the look. Over all I really enjoyed this palette and will definitely be getting a lot of use from it. I anticipate the gold color, Poor But Sexy will be making many a holiday appearance this year. The color is simply too rich to let it languish.

In the end I think this palette is worth the $37 retail price. The colors are rich, colorful yet muted shades that are unlike most of the other palettes I have come across and when applied they stay in place. Just remember, when using them apply a primer (or concealer) as a base and be ready to damp down your brush with setting spray to intensify the color. And be very careful with the peacock blue that is NDW to avoid looking like you were smacks in the face by a rampaging peacock. Unless that is the look you are going for. No judgement. While my eye looks aren’t as dramatic as some, I really enjoyed using this palette and will keep using it.