Category Archives: Swatches

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette

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TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette

Today I want to show you the new(ish) Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette from theBalm.  Ipsy had the palette available for half off, so I went ahead and grabbed it.  I own the Meet Matt(e) Nude Palette, but I think that this new matte palette is better.  Though it is definitely not going to be a palette for everyone, the Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette is a great addition to my collection.  TheBalm describes it as “The special occasion palette. Featuring nine versatile shades, these matt(e)s are ‘suit’able for any occasion. With a velvety smooth texture, triple-milled formula and true-to-pan payoff, your look will live on happily ever after. Always easy on the eyes, Meet Matt(e) Trimony transitions from business casual to black tie in no time.” Take a look.

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette

The Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette is a good palette for those who like neutrals and purple tones. It contains nine romantic shades that are great for a date night or a wedding, but neutral enough to fit in at the office.  The pans are huge and easy to get a brush into.  The formula is not creamy like Lorac and Urban Decay, but that could be a good thing for those who find soft shadows crumbly and hard to work with.  TheBalm shadows are easy to blend and have great pigmentation, but don’t have the same fall-out issues that softer shadows do.  I think it’s a good formula that applies evenly, blends smoothly, and looks great.

The shades in the Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette lean toward the purples, so if you avoid those colors normally, then you should skip this palette.  If you like purples though, Meet Matt(e) Trimony is laid out really well.  There are several medium crease or transition shades.  There is a lovely bold cranberry shade and a deep purple for your pops of color.  A matte cream, dark brown, and soft black round out your basic neutrals, making this a solid palette.  With my skin tone, I can create several whole looks with this palette, without needing to bring out any supplementary shades.  The brown and black make good liner shades.  This is sort of a simple, unassuming palette, but I think it is really good and worth picking up.

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette Swatches

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette Swatches

The Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette is available on thebalm.com for $42.  Like I said, I did not pay full price for this palette, and I’m not sure that I would do so (the Nude ‘Tude palettes are only $36).  However, it is definitely worth it if you can find it on sale.  TheBalm is often featured on Hautelook, and they have sitewide flash sales once or twice a year.  You can get 20% off theBalm right now (for a limited time) by using the code Ipsy20.  That brings the palette down to around $34, which is much more reasonable and I think a fair price for the Meet Matt(e) Trimony Palette.  I think that it is definitely worth checking out.

Lorac Pro 3 Review and Swatches

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Lorac Pro 3

Lorac Pro 3

I am so excited about today’s post where I get to show you the brand new Lorac Pro 3 palette.  It’s no secret that I love Lorac shadows.  I have both the previous Lorac Pro palettes and the Mega Pro 2.  In fact, the Lorac Pro 2 is my all time favorite eyeshadow palette.  So, when I saw that Lorac had released another Pro palette, I had to get my hands on it.  The Lorac Pro 3 will be available online on Sunday 6/12 at ulta.com and in stores on 6/26.  Ulta did a pre-release for Platinum members, so I got my palette in the mail last Saturday.  I’ve been playing with it all week and have done several looks with it, so I am ready for a review.

Lorac Pro 3

Lorac Pro 3

The Lorac Pro 3 comes in similar packaging to the previous two Lorac Pro palettes.  I am not a fan of the fleshy greige color this time around, to be honest.  The black and the gray packaging was much more attractive than this one, in my opinion.  But, the palette is still sleek and easy to store, and comes with a full mirror.  All of the Lorac Pro palettes come with that NARS-like rubberized exterior, so they do tend to collect fingerprints and powder.  They wipe down easily enough, though, so if that bothers you it is an easy fix.

Lorac Pro 3

Lorac Pro 3

If you have the previous Lorac Pro palettes, then you know the drill here with the Lorac Pro 3.  There are 16 shadows total, the top row are all matte and the bottom row is all shimmer.  I really like the Lorac Pro formula.  The shadows are buttery and smooth, have great pigmentation, and blend like a dream.  The soft shadows do kick up a lot of powder, and that is a big complaint for some, but I don’t mind it.  As long as you don’t dig in with your brush and you tap off the excess you should have no problem.  I think the shadows in the Lorac Pro 3 live up to the quality that I expect from the brand with one huge disappointment.  The third shadow in on the bottom, Medallion, is a terrible shadow.  It is gritty with chunky glitter that gets everywhere.  When I tried to apply it the first time I could feel the fall out dropping on my cheek and I had glitter all over my face.  I don’t know what happened with that shadow, because I’ve never had that issue with any of the other Lorac Pro palettes, but it is a major dud.  Otherwise, if you loved the formula of previous Lorac Pro palettes, then you will love the Lorac Pro 3.  All of the Pro palettes are neutral, and the Lorac Pro 3 is the most neutral and natural palette of the bunch.  The first two Lorac Pro palettes had pops of color, but all 16 shades are neutral in the Pro 3.  The shades are lighter than the previous two, so if you thought that the original Pro and the Pro 2 were just too dark for you, then the Pro 3 will be perfect.  The shades are lovely, with a good mix of warm and cool tones.

Lorac Pro 3

Lorac Pro 3

  • Blanc– Off-white matte with slightly yellow tones.
  • Canvas– Light cool-toned beige, and a perfect shade to dust over the whole eye to give you a blank canvas.
  • Cool Taupe– Medium-dark taupe brown.
  • Pink Nude– Light beige with strong pink tones.
  • Lt. Gold– Very light peachy gold with a pearl finish.
  • Almond Pearl– Shimmery champagne with a touch of mauve undertones.
  • Medallion– Warm bronze with chunky glitter.  As I said above, Medallion is gritty, and the worst shadow in the palette.
  • Lt. Pewter– Light-medium shimmery taupe.
Lorac Pro 3

Lorac Pro 3

  • Clay– Light mauvey-brown with red undertones.  This is a great transition shade.
  • Terracotta– Medium brown with very strong orange tones.  This is a great transition shade if you have neutral or warm skin.
  • Dk. Brown– Dark brown with neutral tones.
  • Jet Black– Matte black.  This shade is in every Pro palette.
  • Amethyst– Deep plum with a satin finish, a really beautiful shade.
  • Rose Bronze– Aptly named rose toned medium bronze.
  • Dk. Mocha– Deep, rich shimmery brown.
  • Truffle– Deep blackened plum with subtle micro-glitter.

And there you have it.  The Lorac Pro 3 is $44 and comes with a mini of the Behind the Scenes Eye Primer.  It may not be the most unique or inventive palette, but it is solid and can be used by almost anyone.  Do you already have these shades?  Possibly.  But it is a lovely palette and I am glad that I own it.  It has been compared to the UD Naked 3 and the Lorac Unzipped palettes.  I don’t have Unzipped, so I can’t really compare, but I do have Naked 3 and can say that they are not similar.  Though there are a couple rosy shades, Lorac Pro 3 is not a rose toned palette.  If you like lighter neutral shades that are appropriate for any occasion, then you will love this palette.  And of course, if you are a Lorac fan, you will probably feel the need to buy this palette to complete the set.  (Gotta catch ’em all!)  You can find the palette at Ulta later this month.  The Lorac Pro 3 is not limited edition, so don’t feel like you need to stalk the internet to be the first to get it.  They hype over LE palettes selling out has been crazy lately, but rest assured that Lorac Pro 3 is part of the permanent collection, so you can take your time.

Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

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Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

Today I am reviewing and swatching the Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs. Neutrals Eyeshadow Palette that I mentioned in my last Monthly Favorites post. Since it was a favorite, it should be no surprise to hear that I love this palette.  Like I mentioned in that post, the shadows are gorgeous and they apply smoothly.  The formula reminds me of the Wet N Wild 8-pan palette shadows like Comfort Zone that I’m sure most of you are familiar with.  They are cult favorites for a reason.  While Makeup Revolution shadows aren’t going to compare to higher end shadows like Kat Von D, for instance, they are still really nice.  I don’t have issues with flaking or fading, and I think that the Makeup Revolution formula is solid.  According to Ulta: “New-Trals are the new Neutrals! Upgrade your new natural eye looks with the new generation of natural shades in Makeup Revolution’s New-Trals vs. Neutrals.”  I do want to point out that this is the second Makeup Revolution palette that I have reviewed, and they are very different.  Back in October, I reviewed the Essential Mattes Redemption Eyeshadow Palette, which is one of the $7 palettes with a clear plastic lid as opposed to the $10 New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette that comes with a full mirror in the lid.  While it is a decent palette for the price and worth a look, the shadows aren’t as good as the ones in the New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette.  Perhaps it’s because the other one is an all matte palette, but the New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette is definitely a better buy, and only $3 more.
Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

I bought this palette because the shades looked similar enough to the Too Faced Sweet Peach Palette to allow me to resist the temptation of buying it, but as it turns out, the New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette is a good alternative to quite a few palettes.  Violet Voss, Manny MUA/Makeup Geek, these warm neutral palettes with pops of peach, copper, and red are all the rage right now.  I am not necessarily one to follow makeup trends, but if you do, then the New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette is right on trend.  These are great shades for the Summer that can bring you right on through the Fall.  And don’t get scared away by those bright red tones.  You can get a ton of neutral eye looks with this palette that are completely office approved.  Then, when the work day is over, pop some of those fun colorful shades in the crease, and take your look from day to night.  Let’s look at the shades.  The palette comes with a clear plastic cover that has all of the shade names.
Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

  • Bias – light pearl shade.
  • Neutral – very light pinky brown with a matte finish.
  • Personal – vibrant peachy pink with shimmer.
  • Vogue – fiery coral with a satin finish.
  • Trend – orange toned brown with a matte finish.
  • New-Tral – deep berry pink with a satin finish.
  • Tone – deep red wine shade with a satin finish.
  • Custom – cool-toned deep brown that is mostly matte.
  • Cool – matte bone shade.
  • Style – light glittery pink with metallic finish.
  • Partial – pinky mauve with metallic finish.
  • Mode – copper bronze with metallic finish.
  • Adapt – medium brown with mauve undertone.  It has a matte finish.
  • Buff – satin shimmer taupe shade.
  • Suit – deep gray-brown with a demi-matte finish.
  • Strong – matte blackened plum with burgundy glitter.
Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette

These swatches are over naked skin, no primer or anything.  Most of the shadows are great.  I did have trouble getting Neutral and Cool to show up on my skin.  They are both very light shades, and not quite as opaque as the others.  Custom can apply a little patchy, so you have to blend it out a little more than the others, but it is still workable.  I am personally not a fan of shadows with a matte base and glitter, so I will probably not reach for Strong, but that is personal preference and not a problem with the formula.  Otherwise, I have no complaints about the shadows.  They last really well on me, and with a primer they can last all day.  I recommend the Makeup Revolution New-Trals vs Neutrals Palette to everyone.  For only $10, you need this in your life.

Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

I have the Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice to show you today.  You may remember that I reviewed the Sugar and Spice palette in November.  Definitely check out that review for all of the information about these blush palettes.  Both palettes perform with the same great quality and I go into detail in the previous review.  Today I mostly want to show you swatches of the Hot Spice palette so you can decide which one would suit you best

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

The Makeup Revolution Blush Palettes are both sleek and thin, with a full mirror.  The packaging is sturdy plastic that clasps shut and is great for travel.  The palette contains eight shades in varying finishes.  All of the shades in the Hot Spice palette have peach and coral undertones, and are all warm shades.  If you have cool undertones to your skin, stick with the Sugar and Spice Palette.

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

Many of the shades in the Hot Spice Palette have some shimmer.  There are only two true matte shades.  The two shades on the far right of the palette are baked shimmery highlight shades, which I swatched last.

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

The first shade in the Hot Spice Palette is a dark, burnt orange shade with very subtle shimmer.  It is absolutely beautiful, but a little goes a long way.  The second shade is a warm medium pinky-nude shade with a matte finish, very wearable.  The third shade is a bright peachy pink with subtle shimmer.

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

The first shade of the second row is a very shimmery coral with orange undertones.  This shade has straight up glitter, which is unfortunate.  The second shade is matte and is a medium peachy nude.  It is very similar to the shade above it, but leans slightly less pink.  The third shade on the bottom row is a bright satiny peach.

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Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice

The first of the two baked highlight shades looks cool toned in the palette next to all these super warm shades, but it swatches as a neutral pink shade.  The second baked shade is a fiery coral, really lovely on the right skin tone.

Just like the Sugar and Spice Palette, I think that the Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Hot Spice is a winner.  Unless you have very fair skin, I think that you can probably make most of these shades work for you.  You definitely need neutral or warm undertones, though.  Light-Medium skin will fall in the sweet spot, but there are some shades that will look gorgeous on deep skin too.  The Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palettes are only $10, and can be found at ulta.com.  Some Ultas carry the brand in-store, but mine does not, so be sure to call first before you go.  Makeup Revolution is available for the $3.50 off of $10 coupon that Ulta always offers, so don’t forget to use it.

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Review and Swatches

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e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

This is my first post of 2016, and I am very excited to show you the e.l.f. Illuminating Palette today. You may remember that e.l.f. released a Studio Ambient Palette back in June that disappeared almost instantly.  It was obviously meant to be a dupe for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette and I wonder if e.l.f. may have run into some legal issues with using the word “ambient” because after months of nothing but questions, the palette returned under a new name.  The Illuminating palette is here to stay, so now I can show it off to you.  I have had the palette for about six weeks now, and have thoroughly tested it and am ready for the review.

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette comes in the same packaging as the new(ish) Contour, Blush, Bronzer (etc.) palettes.  They have the large square mirror that is very good quality and the four pans of product that can be popped out.  If you have several of these palettes, you can pop out and mix the pans to create a custom face palette with the blush, bronzer, and now highlight that you use most.  E.l.f. is not currently selling replacement pans, but I think it is inevitable with this new system.  I think the packaging is functional and I really like the mirror.  I am interested to see what else e.l.f. does with this format.

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

Here is what e.l.f. has to say about the Illuminating Palette: “This beautiful illuminating palette holds 4 gorgeous complementary shades to mix and match for a custom blended radiance that captures, diffuses, and softens the way light reflects on the skin. The soft-focus powders are great for highlighting around the eyes and on cheekbones to enhance the skin with a luminous effect. Perfect for all skin tones.”  The highlighters in this palette are really lovely.  They are not super sparkly highlights like theBalm Mary Lumanizer, for instance, but they give the skin a gorgeous sheen.  I really appreciate that.  I do not like highlighters that make me look like I got up close and personal with a unicorn.  These shades give me a radiant glow without making me look like a disco ball, and I am a fan.  I don’t think that there is any doubt that this is being marketed as a dupe for the extremely popular Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette which retails for $58.00.  The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette features three of the Ambient Lighting Powders in one palette and e.l.f. shades 2, 3, and 4 are the shade dupes from the Illuminating Palette. I do not own the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette, but I do have two of the Ambient Lighting Powders and can confidently compare the quality between the two palettes.  Let’s look at swatches first.  I numbered the shades because there are no shade names.  Please keep in mind that the swatches below are very heavy so that they would show up on camera.  You would not wear them this heavy on the skin.
e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Swatches

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Swatches

Shade 1 is an opalescent highlight that packs a decent punch.  The first two shades are definitely brighter, and this shade is the brightest in the palette.  There is no noticeable glitter or shimmer, though, and it is still universally wearable in my opinion.  This shade works wonders as an inner corner highlight to brighten the eyes.  Shade 2 is an icy pink highlight in the same color family as Benefit Highbeam.  It is my least favorite shade and I think the weakest link of the palette, quality-wise.  It does not seem as finely milled as the other three shades, and I think it is a bit chalky.  It is a bright, bold highlight as far as this palette goes, and I am sure that many people will like it, but it is not the shade for me.  This is supposed to dupe Incandescent Light from the Hourglass palette.  Shade 3 is a subtle champagne highlight.  I love this shade so much and think it is worth it to buy the palette just for this shade.  I prefer subtle highlights, and this is perfect for me.  Color-wise this is very much like Hourglass Dim Light.  Shade 4 is a warm golden peach shade.  It is also a subtle highlight and because it is so warm and so dark, it will not work for everyone.  I love it as a blush topper, and will wear it more as a highlight in the warmer months to give my skin a golden glow.  This shade is close to Radiant Light, though it isn’t as close of a shade match as the other two.

The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette is a wonderful highlight palette, but it is not Hourglass.  While I think the e.l.f. highlighters are finely milled and good quality, they are softer than Hourglass and they kick up more powder than Hourglass.  They are not as extremely finely milled or as silky as Hourglass.  I can use Diffused Light all over my face like a setting powder because of its satin finish, but I couldn’t do that with any of the e.l.f. shades.  The Hourglass powders also have a smoothing effect that e.l.f. didn’t manage to replicate.  If you really want to know if this palette can replace Hourglass as an exact dupe, then the answer is no.  Though e.l.f. did manage to dupe the shades in the Ambient Lighting Palette, they did not dupe the formula.  But you know what?  That’s okay.  Not everyone needs Hourglass quality.  The Illuminating Palette is really good.  Most people will find that it meets their needs and will be perfectly happy with it.  If Hourglass is too expensive for you but you like the shades, then this palette is a great option.  The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette is $6.00 at eyeslipsface.com, and I think that it is absolutely a worthy buy.  With the exception of the pink shade, I think the highlighters are stunning and the formula could easily fit in with many mid-range brands.  I absolutely recommend the Illuminating Palette.

MUA Professional Eyeshadow Palette Review

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MUA Eyeshadow Palettes

MUA Professional Eyeshadow Palettes

I am very excited to show you a couple of palettes from MUA that I have been playing with for the last month or so.  MUA, or MakeUp Academy, is a UK brand that hit stores here in the US earlier this year.  It is a drugstore brand, and I believe that it is exclusively at CVS in the States.  I have seen some MUA products over the years on Youtube, but this is my first experience with the brand.  I was originally only going to get the MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette, but CVS had a Buy One, Get One Free sale, so I picked up the MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette as well.  There is also a Neutral or Nudes palette in this collection, but I passed on it. Here is what CVS says about these palettes: “This set of artist-inspired shadows is everything you need to play up your eyes. Enhance your eyelids with base shades, intensify with crease shades, and add a luminous touch with highlighting shades. Palette holds 10 coordinating shades that apply with ease for fallout-free intensity. Build, blend and play for hours in this spectrum of supreme pigmentation. Featuring pearl and metallic finishes to dress eyes up or down. Every enviable look stays put for hours on end, day or night.”

MUA

MUA Professional Eyeshadow Palette Brush

I’ll start with packaging.  The MUA Professional Eyeshadow Palettes are a hard plastic palette with a clear window to the shadows.  They have a snap closure.  These palettes are no frills, but the packaging is functional and the shadows are nice.  There is a thin strip mirror in the lid, which I don’t find useful.  They also contain a shadow brush that is cheap, but will do in a pinch.  They are 10-pan palettes, and the wells are an inch wide, so there is plenty of room for large fluffy shadow brushes.  The palettes are $14 at CVS, but you can often find a sale.  As I mentioned above, I bought my palettes on a BOGO Free deal, so they came to only $7.50 each for me.  For the most part, the shadows are pigmented and wear a long time, even without primer.   I think that they are a good buy.

MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette

MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette

I saw a review of the MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette and had to know more.  I loved the look of the colorful metallic shades in this palette, so I went on down to CVS to get one for myself.  I have to say that I really like it.  Obviously with “metallic” in the name, most of the shadows have a metallic or shimmer finish.  Eight out of the ten shadows are fantastic.  They are intensely pigmented and just gorgeous.  They wear really well without fading, and they did not flake or crease on me.  Two shadows were off for me.  I am not sure if they were designed to be sheer, or if they just have terrible pigmentation.  I’ll go through each shade and you can see what I mean.

    MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow PaletteMUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette
  • Metallic Taupe: This shade is gorgeous on the lid.  It is a cool-toned taupe that leans a little bit more brown than gray.
  • Metallic Rusty Copper: This shade is super intense on the lids and for a copper, does not pull too red.
  • Metallic Olive Green: This is definitely an olive green shade, but it still manages to look very bright on the eyes and has great pigmentation and intensity.  I love this shade.  The formula is looser or grittier in the pan, so you will kick up a lot of product if you aren’t careful.
  • Iridescent Purple: This is a sheer shade and not at all what I expected based on the other shades in this palette.  It is a light purple color with a blue flash and can be built up for a little more intensity.  It is still a beautiful shade and looks pretty on the eyes when used with a good base.
  • Blackened Navy Glitter: I don’t know what to say about this shade.  While I think the purple shade may have been intentionally sheer, this one just seems like a dud to me.  You can build this shade up a little, but not enough to hold up to the glitter particles.  I think it ends up looking patchy and I don’t think this shade is worth the effort.
MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette

MUA Professional Metallic Eyeshadow Palette

  • White Pearl: This pearly white shade is pretty basic, but still good to have.  This is the only shade that would work as a browbone highlight.  I personally prefer less shimmer on my browbone, but it is good for highlighting the inner corner.
  • Metallic Brown: This metallic brown has just a hint of bronze, and is quite lovely.
  • Metallic Cobalt Blue: I like to call this shade Superman blue.  It is vibrant and bold on the lids.
  • Metallic Purple: Now this is what I’m talking about when it comes to purple!  This shade is gorgeous and intense.  It has the same loose formula as the metallic olive, so be careful when applying this one to avoid fallout, but it is totally worth it.  This blue-based purple will knock your socks off.
  • Deep Metallic Plum: This may be the most intensely pigmented shade in the whole palette.  A little of this brown-toned plum shade goes a long way.  It is absolutely gorgeous.

Overall, I really like the metallic palette.  There are a couple shades that aren’t great, but the other shades are wonderful.  As long as you like metallic simmer shades, and can handle seriously pigmented dark shadows, then I think you will like this palette.  Now on to the Smokey palette.

MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

I honestly didn’t expect to like the MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette.  I am not a fan of smokey palettes in general, and I only got it because it was free.  Boy was I wrong.  I have found myself using the smokey palette way more than expected.  What’s great about these shades is that, despite having a lot of pigmentation, they can also be sheered out.  They blend out smoothly and evenly, even with a very light application.  I’ve been using the Smokey palette for  daytime looks and getting great results.  The three lighter shades on the bottom row are beautiful.  Unlike the Metallic palette, there are no duds.  All 10 shades are “what you see is what you get” shadows.

MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

  • Satin Cream: Though it is hard to see on my skin, this satin cream shade is a great browbone highlight and something that was missing from the Metallic palette.
  • Deep Brown Shimmer: This chocolate brown shadow is very dark and has some micro shimmer in the finish.
  • Deep Plum Shimmer: This is a very similar shade to the plum in the Metallic palette, but it is less metallic and more of a shimmer shade.  It is equally intense and a little goes a long way.
  • Satin-Matte Black: This true black has an off-matte finish and makes a great liner shade.
  • Metallic Cobalt Blue: This is almost the exact shade that is is the Metallic palette.  This one may have a touch of purple in its undertones, but they are indistinguishable on the eyes.
MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

MUA Professional Smokey Eyeshadow Palette

  • Satin Tan: This light tan shade has a satin finish and is a gorgeous lid color.
  • Shimmery Taupe:  This is a gray-leaning taupe shade with a shimmer finish.  It pairs equally well with grays and blacks as it does with browns.
  • Icy Pink Simmer:  This icy pink doesn’t look like anything in the pan, but it is lovely on the lids.
  • Soft Black Glitter: I think this is what MUA was going for with that dud of a shadow in the Metallic palette.  It is a soft black or maybe a blackened navy, but this time there is some pigmentation, and it can hold up to the micro glitter in the finish without being overpowered by it.
  • Satin Purple Shimmer:  This is a similar blue-based purple to the one in the Metallic palette, but it does not have the same loose texture.  Without the intense metallic finish, the shadow comes off as a little darker and less in-your-face.  I think the satin shimmer finish makes this one a little bit more wearable than the other.

I am enjoying both of the MUA Professional Eyeshadow Palettes.  The Smokey palette is better in quality, but the Metallic palette is good too.  It really depends on how much color you are looking for.  Are they as good as the LORAC palettes, or the Naked palettes?  Of course not.  They aren’t trying to be.  They are drugstore palettes and I would put them on par with the original Wet N Wild 8-pan palettes.  They are pigmented, they blend well, and they last well on my eyes without creasing or fading.  Using  primer is always recommended, though all of my swatches are without primer.  I have heard that the neutral version of these palettes is hit and miss, but I have no direct experience with it.  I don’t think I would pay the full $14 for one of these palettes, and definitely not for the Metallic palette.  But if you can find them on a sale, I would say to give them a try.

Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos

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Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos

Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos

I picked up a few of these Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos from Sephora for the Holidays, and I wanted to swatch them for you in case you were interested in them too.  I have been impressed with the limited exposure that I have had to Bite Beauty products.  I find that these Luminous Crème Lipstick duos are very comfortable on the lips, and beautifully pigmented.  I do have one full sized Luminous Crème Lipstick in Shiraz that was a gift, but the line runs a little expensive for my taste.  That’s why I jumped on these Mix and Mingle Duos.  I can explore more shades in the line for a fraction of the cost.

Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos

Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos

There are six Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos available this year, and I chose three of them.  The three duos that I chose are in the shades:

  • Latte/Cortado: This coffee themed duo features Latte, a warm nude, and Cortado, a nude pink.
  • Holly/Tannin: Holly is a bright, warm red while Tannin is a deeper, more Christmas red.
  • Mulberry/Scarlet: Mulberry is a deep berry shade and Scarlet is a dark red wine shade that is just a touch sheer.
Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duo Swatches

Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duo Swatches

The swatches are from left to right: Latte, Cortado, Holly, Tannin, Mulberry, and Scarlet.  These duos are small, .05 oz on each side, two-thirds of a full size Luminous Crème Lipstick.  However, they are also only $14 instead of the $24 that a full size will set you back. I am someone who likes to experiment, so I never get through an entire tube of lipstick anyway.  The Bite Beauty Mix and Mingle Duos are perfect for me, and I am so glad that I got them.  These duos are just here for the Holidays, and they are going fast.  If you see that a duo you wanted is sold out online, don’t despair.  It may still be available in your local store.  I definitely recommend giving them a try.