I am not ashamed to say that I fell for the hype with this one.
I had a Naked Palette – the first iteration and I used it regularly and enjoyed it, but after three years I decided it was time to bin it and indulge in a new palette.
It is really really pretty… which is both good and bad. Good because it is perfect for travel, but not good but you feel slightly mislead when you open it.
I have seen lots of swatches on this palette but few for women with deeper skintones and in common with the Naked palette it had a fair few colours that I was seeing described as ‘skintone’ which did not match my skintone.
Top Row from left to right
1 – All about Eve – (from the duo) warm champagne with shimmer. The swatch (see below) was taken with flash so the champagne element is lost but this is a good texture and had good longevity.
2 – Madrague – (deeper shade from the duo) Matte biscuit / stone colour . It has terrible pay off, terrible application (not at all even) and the colour looked ashy on my skin.
3 – Fez – bronze shimmer, lovely colour, lovely texture, would purchase this one.
4 – Bali – muted grey/brown colour, matte, soft and easy to apply. Great as a wash of colour with lots of liner and a statement lip. Texture not as good as the shimmers, but miles better than the Madragues. I like this one a lot and would purchase it.
5 – Coconut Grove – matte espresso brown and the only NARS eyeshadow that I own and I love. I have reviewed it here.
Middle row from left to right
6 – Madrague – (lighter shade from the duo) matte beige (lighter than the other Madrague) again terrible colour pay off and application and ashy on the skin.
7 – Nepal – rose gold shimmer that is really pretty on the skin. Lovely texture and wear time, would purchase this one.
8 – Ashes to Ashes – the first colour from the palette that I tried, it has a warm lavender undertone, my favourite of the pale shades.
9 –Brousse – (from the duo) mid tone purple shimmer – my favourite colour from the palette (of course). Love it and would purchase.
10 – Mekong – deep brown (like Coconut Grove) with gold shimmer. Beautiful on the skin, lovely texture. I love it (but I can’t find it on the NARS website)
Bottom row from left to right
11 –Bellisima – (from the duo) creamy white with gold sparkle, it is not the easiest to apply and looks chalky on my skin. I am not a fan
12 – Lhasa – silver with a lavender undertone. Very pretty, and a nice texture.
13 – Bad Behaviour – This is a limited edition colour, a deep grey (pewter) with shimmer, love it
14 – Dogon. (from the limited, now discontinued duo) is a midnight blue with a very slight shimmer. The texture is not as soft as some of the other shimmers but it is a great colour.
15 – Pandora. Not the blackest matte black that I have ever used but it has a soft like Coconut Grove, blends out beautifully.
The swatches – I’ve been posting different eye looks on Instagram over the past week but here are the swatches by column.
Column One (L-R) All about Eve, Madruge, Bellissima
Column Two (L-R) Madruge, Nepal, Lhasa
Column Three (L-R) Fez, Ashes to Ashes, Bad Behaviour
Column Four (L-R) Bali, Brousse, Dogon
Column Five (L-R) Coconut Grove, Mekong, Pandora
What I liked – the deeper shades with shimmer all have great texture and longevity.
What I didn’t like – the palest colours were very very similar on my skin, the two pale matte colours (Madragues) were terrible.
If you have Naked 1, 2, 3 Naked Basic, the Clarins Palette, the Clinique palette and / or any other iteration of a neutral palette, you don’t need this.
If you are not a fan of shimmer shades, you don’t need this (Wayne Goss was beauty consultant on the Paula’s Choice neutral palette and that has matte shades – it may be a better option for you)
If you have a deeper skintone you may like me find that five of the pale cream/beige/stone colour do not all kind of look the same on the skin.
Notwithstanding all that…it is a great way to get to know that NARS brand (most the colours are permanent) and when I am ready to buy more colours (which I will) it will be done from a place of knowledge having had a chance to play with the colours. It is the perfect travel size and it is beautiful.
Ultimately, if you like it/want it/can afford it you should get it.