The Balm always has eye-catching and interesting packaging that makes their products unique. This product is no different. This eyeshadow palette is in a “menu” theme with the names of the shadows being plays on food and men’s names (stay with me, it’s weird, I know). Part of me thinks that the way that their products are packaged is cute and the other part of me thinks it’s too much and makes takes away from the actual quality of the product because it feels young. Regardless of how you feel about the theme of their products, they do work well.
When I first saw this I must admit that I bought it immediately because I knew that it would be one of those things that would either be totally fantastic or it would be a complete dud. The Sephora Play! Iconic Edition was limited to VIB Rouge Sephora shoppers and cost $20. Immediately after launching there was some black lash from customers about why this would be considered a perk of being VIB Rouge. There was also some hoopla about Sephora deleting 1-star reviews on their site. Honestly there were a lot of 1-star reviews from people that couldn’t possibly have received their boxes, but I did notice that many comments and reviews that where there the first time that I checked were gone later when I went back to look into it.
Moving on, I purchased my box for $20 and I received it two days later with the use of Flash Shipping. To be totally fair, I really do not gravitate towards the “luxury” brands that I knew would be in this box. They generally are not geared towards people my age or skin type and I have other brands that I prefer. I did; however, take into account that there are a lot of people that are careful about what they spend their money on and would be interested to know what was inside. I figured that spending $20 would be worth seeing what some of these brands would have to offer and here is what I got.
Just because something is from a drugstore does not mean that the quality of the product has to be lacking. Drugstore makeup that works has been my current favorite thing to find when I am looking for things to include in my posts. I have found that there are some things that cost much less than my high-end makeup that I prefer.
The Lorac Pirates of the Caribbean Cheek Palette is a limited edition launch that is associated with the upcoming movie. The collection included an large eyeshadow palette, a cheek palette, and several lip products. The cheek palette is the one that I was most interested in because it is different than most limited edition launches that are associated with movies. I am used to seeing eyeshadow palettes and typically they look pretty but are not practical.
The cheek palette has 6 shades and a large mirror. The packaging is typical cardboard with a magnet to keep it closed. It is very detailed and pretty and looks like a book (I have to assume that the packaging is based pretty closely on the movie).
I am skeptical about oval brushes and prior to purchasing this set, I only owned one. When Artis brushes became all the rage, it seemed like every makeup brand hopped onto the trend and produced replicas. The first oval brush that I purchased was from Artis (oval 7) and it is still my most favorite brush. They are an investment and it seems silly to spend so much money on brushes that you may not even like as they take some getting used to.
I use my oval 7 brush purely for foundation when I want it to be a little more full-coverage than what I can get with a Beauty Blender. With all of that being said, I came across the Moda Prismatic face perfecting 4 piece brush set at Walmart. It was around $20 with tax making the 4 brush set about a quarter of what one Artis brush would cost (I know).
Elf has really been stepping up their products in the past few months, and you can definitely tell by the amount of great reviews some of their stuff has gotten recently. I have always been the type of person that would rather spend 60 dollars on a product that works, than 60 dollars worth the drugstore products that are only so-so. With that being said, and with all the higher-end brands putting out products that have been misses, I am getting more comfortable with drugstore makeup. I have even been able to find a ton of products that I can really get a lot of use out of. I watched and read several reviews on the elf Matte palette and most of them were great. I didn’t see a whole lot of reviews on the Rosegold palette, so I decided to pick it up from Target.
Cost: $48 for 1 matte and 4 metallic shadows. This makes each shadow about $9.60 each. Each pan contains 2.5 grams.
Where to buy: Sephora
Important Notes: These shadows are made in Italy, not tested on animals, and paraben free. They expire 6 months after being opened.
Packaging: The packaging on this one is pretty basic but easy to use because of the clear lid. The snap on the closure is pretty secure, but the packaging is very light. There is small area to store a brush but no brush is included. This packaging also does not include a mirror.
I really, really very much wanted to hate this product. In fact, I did not even want to try Natasha Denona eyeshadows because they are absolutely beautiful. They literally look like the most amazing things I have ever laid my eyes on. The trouble is that they are so expensive. Like really expensive. I wanted nothing to do with it because I knew I would either hate them, and find myself out a couple hundred dollars on something I would barely use. Or, more likely, I would fall in love with them and I wouldn’t want to use anything else. Here’s what happened: after having a really bad day, I walked into Sephora and I saw this little version with 5 eyeshadows. I tried to ignore it. I milled around the store and I ended up coming back to it and I ended up walking out with it. I figured what could possibly be the harm in spending 50 dollars at least it’s not the 240 dollars that the big palettes cost. That was my process.
Maroon, Light Coral, Shell, Lavender Gray, Rosewood
These are the best eyeshadows that I have ever used. I am legitimately mad that I now need every one of them. First, they are super soft. Some people aren’t into that because they can be messy. I personally think they are a lot easier to use if you are careful and do your eye makeup first. There can be a lot of kickup and you can get a lot of fall out on your face if you’re not careful. Since they’re so soft, they are so easy to blend together. It is also important to note that since I purchased this, I haven’t used anything else. This is wild considering there are some palettes that I think are good that I only end up using them a few times. I haven’t tried any of the metallic shades with a setting spray on my brush because they have worked so well without it that I haven’t seen the need. This is all pretty bad news for the people like me that didn’t want to love something that is so expensive, but that’s the truth.
I am so smitten with this palette that I cannot think of one bad thing to say. The packaging is plain, but nothing important enough to complain about. I can’t wait to build up my eyeshadow collection with these pretties.
Sephora Play is a subscription box service that costs about $10 a month and is delivered mid-month. This is the only subscription box service that I currently receive and I am typically not disappointed. When I signed up for this service I was able to avoid being placed on waitlist because of having VIB Rouge status; however, I believe that the waitlist for Play is relatively short.
Benefit Cheek Parade is a limited edition value set that contains full-size pans of some of the brand’s favorite box bronzers and blushes. Each boxed bronzer or blush that is purchased individually is around $30 but this set is $59 making it an excellent bargain for those that want to try out these products without shelling out $30 a piece for the individual versions. Each of the 5 pans in this palette contain between 5-8 grams of product. Hoola Lite and Galifornia are included in this set both of which are new to Benefit. The six pan in this set contains the normal brush that you would find in the individual sets.
You can find this set at Sephora.com and I was able to pick it up in-store.
(From left to right)
Hoola: Matte powder bronzer
Hoola Lite: Light powder bronzer
Galifornia: Sunny golden-pink blush
Dandelion: Baby-pink brightening powder
Rockateur: Shimmer cheek powder
I am in love with the idea of this set and it is perfect for spring and summer. The value of this set versus how much cost makes it absolutely worth purchasing. The addition of the new products makes this excellent for someone who is already familiar with Benefit’s products; but this would also be the perfect set for a beginner because it truly has everything you could need to get a full bronzed, highlighted and complete look.
Too Faced recently launched their new Natural Love palette which is a total lifesaver for everyone that loves natural looks. This palette is filled with every shade that you could possibly need to pull off an easy daytime look to a dark smokey eye. A palette similar to this one was produced in 2009 and the new release has an updated version of everything that you need. The packaging, the size and the arrangement of the shadows in this palette makes it so perfect and girly. It is very reminiscent of classic Too Faced which I am extremely grateful for considering I have been disappointed by some of their newer products. I would also like to point out that I did not purchase this palette myself, I borrowed it from a friend, but after using this a few times I will definitely be adding it to my collection.