My most favourite time of year with regards to makeup is the holiday season. I love the new palettes, products and collections that flood the market. I’m a sucker for palettes and gift sets, you know, cause of the visual prettiness of them all (don’t look at me that way, it’s called being shallow!).
First up is the Ultimate Party Palette by Bobbi Brown 🙂 I’m actually surprised how compact this palette is, at about 8cm by 7cm by 2cm, much smaller than last year’s “main” Bobbi Brown palette. Unfortunately that also means less product, I found the eye shadows to be surprisingly small!
They look sizeable in the photo, but they are about 0.2g less of product per pan for the eye shadows and 0.4g less product for each of the lip glosses in comparison to last year. And while the price is about $10US / $30AU cheaper than last year, last year’s palette had ten eye shadows rather than just eight.
For comparison, this palette retails for $65US / $130AU, last year’s was $75US / $160AU. But ultimately (pun not intended) I’m providing the swatches below to help you make an informed decision on what sort of gifts you either want to purchase for yourself or others.
I found the eye shadows to generally be very good quality, easy to work with and the shades when applied lightly can be used for every day, with the option to change into a more night time look. Bobbi Brown is the master when it comes to sensible colours, I can imagine the majority of my co-workers and my less colourful makeup friends loving the variety of shades here.
The only shadow I found difficult to work with was Crushed Granite, very sheer and packed with rough shimmer. A real pain. It’s worth noting too that the darker matte shades such as Plum Navy and Black Topaz are good at adding shadows and deepening your eyes, but don’t expect intense pigmentation from these two. Typical of Bobbi Brown, they are designed to give your eyes an elegant “natural” ease into smoky eyes, rather than anything dramatic.
I found the lip glosses to be more on the disappointing side this year in terms of variety and pigmentation.
The first shade “Rave” is probably my favourite, it has the most pigmentation. In fact, I love how the gold shimmers in the pan actually transfer into the swatch! It’s truly gorgeous. However the remaining three is where my disappointment settles in, far too sheer to really see a difference on the lips. On my bare skin you can see each gloss has a different tint, but on my lips, especially those with more naturally pigmented lips, all three are likely to end up almost looking identical.
Don’t get me wrong, great quality, slightly sticky, soft and applies wonderfully. But it would have been even better if there was a more distinct colour range.
All in all, it’s a very cute palette. Probably not the most useful one out there, but you have to give it to Bobbi Brown for usability. Keeping the lip and eye products separate is essential to stop your lip glosses from picking up eye shadow fall out (and yet soooo many companies still put them right together). The additional applicators are actually useable and the mirror is the perfect touch.
Would make a great gift, and I know I’d personally love to receive this! But practical? Probably not.