November 13, 2014

Clarins The Essentials Palette - 2014

It seems that every few weeks now there is a new 'it' palette; a must-have that is more often than not limited edition. The beauty industry have finally cottoned on to out nude eyeshadow obsession and seem to be doing quite well out of it. 

Last year, it was very interesting to see a rather traditional brand like Clarins get right on the bandwagon; I never tried it myself but, by all accounts their first Essentials palette was a very nice piece of kit indeed. I heard back during the summer that Clarins would be releasing another Essentials for 2014. I've been trialling this for a couple of weeks now and, although I can't compare this to the original, what I can tell you is that I would have been quite disappointed had
I purchased this myself. 
It can be quite easy to get a bit carried away with all of these lovely nude palettes and tar them all with the gushy, 'ahhmazing' brush, simply because the nude eyeshadow palette is a brilliant concept that didn't exist within the mass beauty market up until a few short years ago. When I break down the pros and cons of this particular palette, though, I'm  afraid it doesn't come out too favourably.

Let's look at the packaging first. It's a sleek, easy-on-the eye chocolate brown and a very similar shape to the original Naked palette. It's made out of laminated cardboard, though, and I'm not too fond of the rubber band closing in place of a magnetic fixture. 

Realistically, this won't be the first or last flimsy palette in my collection - I could totally overlook that if the product within was worth it. I don't really think it is, to be honest. British Beauty Blogger was one of the first to put her thoughts on this palette online, and said that the colours kind of all blend into one too easily - I totally agree. As you'll see from the swatches above (which I kept strictly to one pass), the pigment on these shadows is quite inconsostent - I found the lighter ones difficult to use. The darker browns swatched well, but again kind of all blended into the one shade far too easily. Some of the shades are cooler and slightly dull colours that I don't naturally gravitate towards so that is worth noting. The shades that I did like using were, predictably, the warm browns and golds. Whilst I do like the look I came up with below, I don't think it's striking or unique enough to warrant recommending this palette whole-heartedly to you all. I have plenty of very similar shadows that are of superior quality and last longer on the lids. 

If you're a bit nervous with strongly pigmented eyeshadow, perhaps you'll get along famously with this. Equally, you might get more wear of of this if you suit cooler tones like the Urban Decay Naked 2. I have droned on quite a bit in this review, but it was important to me to be detailed in why I didn't get on with this and why I don't think it's necessarily worth the money. It is such a shame as Clarins are a brand that I am so fond of; their exfoliating toner, Instant Concealer and Instant Smooth primer are all holy grail products for me. 


  1. I'm definitely suffering from nude eyeshadow overload!

  2. Ugh, Space NK, the beauty lover's haven. :P Love the little Eve Lom Lip Balm in the Christmas packaging.. adorable - but that Laura Mercier collection!! <3 <3 <3

    XO, G from grace'd

  3. I have my eye on the Laura Mercier set, those Space NK crackers are amazing!

    Emma x

  4. So am I... although I did just order the Lorac Mega Pro ;)

  5. I missed last year's one the first time around but later picked it up for €20 on a blog sale - I do like it, and I do use it an awful lot, but I wouldn't consider it in the same league as my other favourite nude palette, Smashbox Full Exposure. Considering both are around the same price, I'm happy with the Clarins for €20 but would have been annoyed if I'd spent double that. I won't be buying this one! I do love the look of the new Bobbi Brown one though....


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