One of the first Sephora purchases I ever made was to buy the original Urban Decay Naked palette. I was still in college, saved for several months, and years later, I still have that palette. I've also purchased the Naked 2 and Basics since then. This is all to say that when Urban Decay offered to send me a few things to try out, it may have been the most exciting day of my blogging career. They sent me their new Smoky eyeshadow palette, and it is beautiful. Below are my thoughts!
What it promises:
Packed with all the essentials needed to create the perfect neutral smoky eye, it offers an array of shades, a double-ended brush, and a detailed lookbook that breaks down four amazing ways to nail any smoky look. The eye shadow pans offer a smoky, transparent base, the magnetic closure on the case prevents shadow from spilling in your bag, and the full-size mirror makes it easy to get a sultry look whenever the urge strikes.
With a dozen alluring, smoky neutrals, including nine never-before-seen shades and three exclusives from past palettes, these shadows range from warm bronzes and dimensional grays to rich browns, gorgeous taupes, and a deep black. From mattes and satins to shades with sparkle, each shade in this palette features Urban Decay’s Pigment Infusion System™, a proprietary blend of ingredients that gives every shade its velvety texture, rich color, staying power, and blendability. The exclusive double-ended brush, with a tapered crease brush on one end and a smoky smudger brush on the other, makes application easy.
How to use it:
I've been using this exclusively for about two weeks now. For an every day look, I used thirteen (the far right color) on the inside of my eyes (it helps to open up my smaller eyes), combust all over my lid, and then radar in my crease. On days I want to have a bit heavier make-up, I will use radar as the all over lid color, and then use the whiskey for my crease. I also use whiskey on my lower eyelash line, and then use black market to "smudge" out my liquid eyeliner.
What I like:
First of all, this is a beautiful piece to just own. The palette itself isn't flimsy, the cover is pretty, and the metallic clasp means it stays closed (an issue I have with my Stila palette is that it's made out of cardboard and doesn't stay closed).
I love that it is less shimmery than previous palettes - I found some of the colors in previous colors were just a bit too sparkly for me. I also really like that the eyeshadow stays put - I have a Lorac palette that I just don't even use because the color sprays all over my face when I apply it. I appreciate that it has a black color in the palette, something I found lacking in the basics palette.
I also really like the shorter side of the brush - it does a great job of blending out the shadow in the crease and lower lash line.
What I don't like:
The issue with any palette is that you may just not use some of the colors. This palette has 3 grey/blue colors that as a blue-eyed girl, I just don't see myself using. That means you're paying for a colors you may never really use.
After trying to use the larger side of the brush, I just felt like it was too long almost - it just didn't give me the control I wanted. I also felt it didn't pick up as much color as some of my other brushes.
Would I buy this again?
Like I said, I was gifted this product, so I can't really say if I would buy it again. Having used it now for a while though, I can say that I would have purchased this on my own. With a year of traveling ahead, it will be nice to have a palette that stays secure in my makeup bag, and that gives me options to stay more neutral or build up to a darker lid. The other point is that I don't think you will ever really need to replace it - like I said, I've been using my other palettes on and off for five years now, and am no where near the bottom. It's one of those make-up items you'll have for a very long time.
Thank you to Urban Decay for providing me with this palette. I was not paid for this post - I just wanted to share my experiences. All opinions are always my own :)