So, firstly, let’s address the elephant in the room: I haven’t posted in nearly 3 MONTHS. Besides having not been feeling my best physically, 2020 has been, needless to say, interesting…and for a long time I didn’t feel like it was appropriate to continue talking about makeup when a deadly pandemic was upon us all. I’ll be honest – my creative motivation flattened, which I know has happened to a lot of people. I’ve been enjoying the prolonged sunny, warm days the UK has miraculously seen, while de-stressing, studying and allowing my mind to fully relax back into it’s best state. With that, my motivation to be creative picked up and I thought I’d start the rebirth of my blog by sharing a list of my favourite eyeshadow palettes out of the ones that I own. I love eyeshadow palettes and I can’t wait to try more – particularly the Tati Beauty Textured Neutrals, which I’m still yet to order! But, for now, here are all the ones that live on the shelf in my bathroom and swatches to go with them. I hope this inspires you to try a new one! Plus, they’re in no particular order of preference.
The NARS eyeshadows are formulated in a way like no other. The mattes are fine, yet pigmented and blend effortlessly. What I can’t get over is how little these eyeshadows crease – including both the mattes and the shimmers! I’m someone who wholeheartedly believed that I could NOT apply any eyeshadow without a primer and for it to not turn into crease-central until I came across the NARS ones. What I also love is how many of the shimmers have a pressed glitter-like formula, giving a pigmented sparkle across the lid, and the Afterglow palette is perfect for people who want to dabble with colour but don’t want to go overboard. Some creamy satin shades are included as well which give a beautiful shine to the lid and brow bone. This palette will, without a doubt, be the one I travel with as soon as we are able to again – if I don’t hit pan that is, as this is currently limited addition!
FENTY BEAUTY ‘ROSE 4’ SNAP SHADOWS
Rose (4) is definitely my favourite of the Fenty Beauty Snap Shadows (so far…I hope more come out!). Even though the matte shades are not the easiest to blend, they’re still really pretty and pigmented. I particularly like this palette because I can do a vibrant pink shock for a night out that’s really different from the typical browns I think we all tend to gravitate towards. This palette is the epitome of comfort zone colour – you can have fun but stay in the realms of “I can apply this, I can pull this off”. This is also a stand out palette in my collection because of one particular shade – Diva Feva – which is a pressed glitter with a dark base and high shine reflection. It’s best applied with a finger in tapping motions, building up intensity in thin layers to prevent fall out onto the cheeks and to achieve the neatest look on your eyes.
KYLIE COSMETICS ‘PEACH EXTENDED’
I can’t count, or remember, how many times I have recommended the Kylie Cosmetics Peach Extended palette – even to strangers – when I’ve been asked “ooo, what have you got on your eyes?”. Incredibly, and very flatteringly, whenever I have worn the shade Peach Please (second to last in the right-hand column in the image below) I’ve always been complimented on it by someone who I don’t know (to be fair, I used to work on the checkout at a supermarket, so people did have plenty of opportunity, ha!). The eyeshadows are pigmented and seamlessly blend, and how the metallics look on my eyes solidifies this palette one of my all-time favourites. I always say to apply metallic eyeshadows with a finger, making sure there isn’t too much being applied at one time and building up in thin layers until optimum pigmentation and shine has been reached. Also, Juicy (4th down in right-hand column in the image below) on the inner corners looks amazing – however, if you buy the single eyeshadow version of Juicy, it’s even significantly more vibrant (don’t know why!).
CHARLOTTE TILBURY ‘PILLOW TALK’ INSTANT EYE PALETTE
Charlotte’s Pillow Talk collection is probably (ok, let’s face it, more likely undoubtedly) the most iconic range of products in the makeup industry. I regularly reach for the Pillow Talk lipstick, liner and eyeshadow quad (listed below), so when I heard the line was being extended, my excitement to know what the products would consist of and look like could not be contained. When I first saw this Pillow Talk Instant Eye palette I knew I’d need to eventually grab it. Again, like the Fenty Beauty Rose 4 palette, these mattes are not the easiest to blend, but once they have, they are stunning. In fact, the matte shades in this palette are easier to blend without a primer, but I find that they crease quite a lot on me if I apply them like that, so I use a primer and spend a bit more time blending. (Also, the Fenty Beauty tapered blending brush is the best for blending mattes…thank me later). The metallics are super creamy, and I think that this would be great for anyone who wants to have all their basic shades but with the option of incorporating a bit of fun with colour without the risk of going overboard.
CHARLOTTE TILBURY ‘PILLOW TALK’ LUXURY PALETTE
I adore this little quad. The mattes are so easy to blend and look natural and effortless on the eyes. The rose-gold metallic pop is super fine and lightweight, giving a sheen of sparkle on the lids. It looks gorgeous on, I just wish it wasn’t so expensive!
KYLIE COSMETICS ‘BURGUNDY EXTENDED’
I had already bought – and was regularly using – Kylie’s Peach and Bronze Extended palettes before I caved in and bought the third, and I wasn’t disappointed. The formulas within the Burgundy version are exactly the same as the other two extended palettes (the Bronze one is also listed below), and it allows me to play with pinks and purples while maintaining a warm undertone, which keeps these ‘cooler’ shades flattering on the eyes (rather than looking tired or bruised). The two deep red-toned matte shades look rather intimidating in the pan, but come off much lighter on the eye and in a swatch (3rd and 4th in the right-hand column in the image below). I particularly like the shade Tokyo (1st in right-hand column), which, despite looking warmish as a swatch, is actually a light, almost frosty, lilac and is super unique.
FENTY BEAUTY ‘TRUE NEUTRALS 1’ SNAP SHADOWS
Basic but beautiful. When I hear Beauty Gurus on YouTube saying “there are so many neutral palettes out there, we don’t need another one”, I have to say, I disagree. There actually aren’t that many plain and simple warm-neutral palettes on the market that just do the job, with no frills around the edges. Like the other Fenty Snap Shadows, the mattes within True Neutrals take a bit of time to blend but look fantastic once they have. The metallics in this palette are particularly creamy, and if I had one complaint it would be that the metallics don’t have enough shine and sparkle to them, but that’s a personal preference. It’s a staple and will probably be many peoples preferred palette to travel with once they can, both due to the colours and its compact size.
NARS ‘MINI WANTED’
I cannot express enough how BEAUTIFUL these shadows look together on the eyes – swatches don’t do them justice at all. The formula of the NARS Mini Wanted palette is generally the same as that of the ones in the Afterglow palette – and it was this teeny-tiny little palette (which is smaller than the palm of my hand) that inspired me to get Afterglow with the whole-hearted confidence that I would love it…and I do. The single mid-tone matte shade is quite highly pressed (so no fallout occurs), meaning you need to dig in a bit to make sure you have enough shadow on your brush. The shades are a neutral lovers dream and the shimmers have a multi-coloured dimension to them, making the wash of sparkle on the eyes in the sunlight absolutely beautiful. One thing though: the packaging makes the product feel cheap – it’s very small and light weight – so, I’d recommend getting the larger version, called the Wanted palette, which has a few more colours. This will hopefully help you to feel as though what you’re getting has more substance to it and that you’re getting your money’s worth when you hold it in your hands.
FENTY BEAUTY ‘PEACH 5’ SNAP SHADOWS
Now this is a fun palette, and I particularly love the pink-gold duochrome shade Bellini Baby (top-left), which I either apply all over the lid or just in the inner corner when doing a more simple warm-neutral look to add a little bit of colourful dimension to the eye. The three matte shades in Peach 5 are actually much easier to blend than those in the other Fenty Snap Shadows palettes, which actually tends to be a feature of warm tone matte shadows generally in comparison to neutral and cool ones.
KYLIE COSMETICS ‘BRONZE EXTENDED’
A classic and a staple, the Bronze Extended Palette is one I constantly reach for to get my classic matte taupe and warm browns, and gold metallic. It could almost be viewed as a basic product – one that you need, that has the essentials that may not be present in other palettes, such as a taupe, which is not included in any of the other palettes I have mentioned, yet it is a shade that I regularly use when starting a deeper, smokier eye for a night out. Like Kylie’s other Extended palettes, the mattes blend effortlessly and the metallics have a gorgeous high shine.