♡ Neutral Eyeshadow Palette Collection & Storage ♡

Friday, December 30, 2016

There's nothing more exciting than getting a new eyeshadow palette to play with and create new looks with. As I went through my collection of palettes, I realised that they are all pretty much neutrals, although quite a few of them have a pop of colour or two.

Starting with my newest addition and possibly my favourite of all, the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance. Even from the outside, I was so drawn to this beautiful palette, with its soft lilac suede-like feel and magnetic closing. This one wins packaging for me, as it looks so pretty displayed. (Kylie Cosmetics Lipkits in shades L-R: 'Candy K', 'Posie K', 'Koko K')

But it's whats on the inside that counts, right? Luckily, it doesn't disappoint at all for me. At first glance, your eyes drift to the vibrant pink and rose tones, but the majority of the shade selection is warm neutrals. This palette offers a variety of different looks to achieve, such as subtle everyday looks using more of the shades towards the left of the palette, or something more bold and dramatic with the right side, but of course, there's always the option to stay simple and add something a little extra for more detail, by using shades from both sides. 

The eyeshadows have extreme pigmentation and are easily blended. Almost any colour combination would work together. I think its rare to find a palette that I will see myself using every colour. A few of my favourites would be 'Vermeer' (pale, shimmery champagne) which is the perfect highlight colour or for all over the lid, as well as 'Primavera' (soft, shimmery gold) for the same effect. This would have to be one of my favourite gold shadows as it isn't a bright yellow gold that I don't tend to like as much. The shades I would typically use as transition and crease colours are Raw Sienna (matte, medium warm brown), 'Burnt Orange' (matte, shade as described) and 'Red Ochre' (matte, red toned, darker brown). I love the option of the pink tones, that I have definitely used, but I mostly see this as my everyday neutral palette. (swatch photo credit)

Next is the gorgeous Zoeva Cocoa Blend. I'd say this is one of the most travel friendly palettes as it is the slimmest palette I own. If I ever need to take one in my handbag or squeeze it into an already full makeup bag, this is my go to. Although, there is no mirror inside that might be the travel deal breaker for some, there's always that security of not having it smash. The metallic gold detailing is a beautiful touch to the simple design.

I'd say this palette is quite beginner friendly because there is a simple selection of shades that are very easy to navigate with. There are four matte shades, and in my opinion, these are the shades you want to be matte for transitions, crease colours and adding depth to the outer corner of the eye. The rest are buttery, intense shimmer shades, but I'd have to say the second shade, 'Sweeter End', is a more subtle shimmer which I appreciate for less dramatic all over lid looks. I can't look past the vibrant magenta 'Warm Notes' and the bronze shade 'Subtle Blend' next to it. These are the standouts to me, as they aren't the standard shades you would expect to find in a palette like this. 

This palette is a winner for me, it has all the colours I need for a warm smokey eye or a shimmery lid colour and brown in the crease kind of look. The shadows are so easy to work with and blend well. They definitely are up to standard with the high quality of makeup brushes that are part of the Zoeva brand. (Brushes shown: Zoeva Rose Golden 228 Luxe Crease & 232 Luxe Classic Shader) (swatch photo credit)

The Too Faced Chocolate Bar and Semi Sweet Chocolate Bar palettes are popular favourites, firstly with their unique, delicious chocolate scent to go with the super cute packaging, as well as of course, the high quality and shade selection of eyeshadows. From the outside, they are very similar and you could be thinking 'do I need both?' While I do love both, I don't think it is necessary to own each of them. (Other products shown: Too Faced Love Flush Blush in 'I Will Always Love You' & Melted Liquid Lipstick in 'Peony') 

This is the Too Faced Chocolate Bar, the original that was brought out first. This was one of my first palettes and it has been very loved by me, especially 'Marzipan', the pale eggshell shimmery colour, which would be my favourite lid shade. The shade to the right, 'Salted Caramel', is the perfect soft brown transition colour. I like that this palette offers different variations of matte brown shades; there a pale, dark and both cool and warm toned browns, guaranteeing something for everyone as well as the option to switch things up. I appreciate that the two highlight shades, one matte and the other a subtle shimmer are significantly larger pans, as they are the shades that will be most used. I often like to use eyeshadows as face highlighters as well for their intense pigment, so having them larger is handy for this purpose as you can fit a larger brush in.

The second member in the Chocolate Bar palette family is the Semi Sweet. As you can see, they are quite similar, but then again, that is to be expected when they are both labeled as neutral palettes. The difference with this one to the original, is that it seems to have slightly more vibrant shades, which I really enjoy. The more bronzed and orange toned shades like 'Caramel', 'Bon Bon' and 'Peanut Butter' are beautiful additions. I also love the shimmery highlight 'Butter Pecan' being more of a pale gold as opposed to the previous pink toned highlight. As pointed out by most users of this palette, unfortunately 'Blueberry Swirl' which looks to be a gorgeous shimmery blue colour seems to disappoint with its lack of pigmentation, shown in the swatch below, it doesn't come off vibrant at all, it is dull in colour and seems more of a grey rather than blue. Here is a comparison between the palettes.

Too Faced Chocolate Bar

Too Faced Semi Sweet

Apart from the 'Blueberry Swirl' shade, they each include the same level of high quality pigmented eyeshadows, that are easily applied and blended. With both palettes being so neutral, it is easy to create beautiful eye looks. So if choosing which one to purchase is still a tough decision, I would think about whether you are after the typical neutral shades or slightly more warm toned shades. Personally, the original is my favourite and the most used of the two, mainly for that gorgeous 'Marzipan' shade and my preference for the choice of transition and crease colours over the second palette. I think most people would be happy with either one, they are both great to have and I get a lot of use from each. (swatch photo credit)

The Lorac Pro is another really slim palette (slightly bigger than the Zoeva Cocoa Blend, although this one has a mirror), which makes it a great travel palette that won't take up much room, but has all the shades you'll need. The sleek and simple, professional looking design matches the high quality of the shadows inside.

The layout of this palette is very visually pleasing. The top row is all mattes and the bottom, all shimmers ranging from lightest to darkest. Quite a few of the shades seem to be similar to the one opposite, almost like there is a matte and shimmer version of the same shade. Again, my love for light gold shades lies within this palette as my most used ('Lt Bronze') as well as the shade 'Mauve' which is a nice crease colour alternative to the usual brown. I also love 'Taupe' as a standard neutral brown and 'Pewter' for its unique grey, but with a bit of warmth to it. 

With the shimmer shades, you only need to dip the brush in a little bit, they pick up a lot of pigment and are really smooth to the touch. Not many palettes seem to offer a huge range of matte shades, so it's a nice change from that, because they are equally as important to me. All the matte shades are really blendable and pigmented, even the white, which sometimes have a hard time showing up on my pale skin, but this one definitely shows. There isn't a single shade that is a let down, they are all high quality and there's definitely a lot that can be created with this palette. (swatch photo credit)

As a huge lover of pink, I thought the Naked 3 by Urban Decay would be exactly what I wanted. As beautiful as it is, I don't find myself reaching for this as often as I had originally thought I would. With the majority of the shades being rosy tones, it is hard to do much else, therefor, whenever I'm feeling some kind of pink look, this is the palette I'd choose, but other than that, I'd go for another one of the above. 

As well as (for me) the lacking shade range, there is only three matte shadows, 'Strange', 'Limit' and 'Nooner', which would be fine, except for the fact that the last two are very similar and it seems unnecessary to have both. The second shade 'Dust' was quite a let down for me, as there isn't much eyeshadow to it, only tiny glitter seems to pick up. The shade 'Trick' though, is a beautiful vibrant rose gold addition, that works really well.

This palette isn't my favourite, but for someone that regularly uses pink tones, I think they would get a lot of use out of it. I don't regret buying it however, I've used it quite a few times, and if nothing else, at least the brush is great! (swatch photo credit)

Storing palettes can be tricky. I like to have them on display where I can see what I have and also so they are easily accessible. Also, I think they look cute like this.

I got this display holder from Vanity Collections. It's actually labeled as the 'Large Compact Holder' which is meant for compacts such as powders, bronzers, blushes and highlighters, but after searching for some kind of palette organisation other than having them stacked in my drawer and having to constantly dig through, I saw one of their Instagram posts displaying eyeshadow palettes. It was the perfect solution. You can purchase them for $23AUD in either black, white or clear.

I'd love to know what your favourite eyeshadow palettes are! :)

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