Thursday, 26 June 2014

YSL Couture Palettes

YSL Couture Palette in 09 Love
YSL is not a brand that has traditionally been known for producing great eyeshadows. Almost everyone gravitates towards YSL lipsticks and lipglosses, and I think their cheek products are great, as well. But I've always heard that their eyeshadow palettes should be skipped. I was therefore quite surprised when I started to hear some buzz around their new line of Couture Palettes, which are available in 11 different shades.

The 09 Palette (which seems to sometimes be called 'Love' and other times 'Babay Doll Nude') immediately caught my eye. I am trying to break out of my neutral-eye rut, and I thought the peach and bold pink shades in this palette would add something unique to my collection. 

Now that I have seen the palettes both in person, and looked at pictures on many websites (like Nordstrom), a strong word of caution! For some reason, websites that use a computer generated graphic for the eyeshadow palette (rather than an actual picture of it) tend to be incredibly inaccurate. If you aren't able to look at the palettes in person, I would advise doing your research on blogs and/or look at websites with actual pictures of the product (Sephora's site seems to use actual photographs, rather than the inacurate graphics that Nordstrom et al. have used). 

There is both good news and bad news about the YSL Couture Palette 09....the good news is that the quality of these shadows is wonderful! They are beautifully pigmented, super buttery, and have excellent lasting power (at least when worn over my NARS shadow primer). Each palette comes with an insert that contains instructions on how to use the shades to create three different eye looks. The idea is that each palette has one base shade, one highlighter, and three shades to be used on the lid. 

Now for the bad news: as much as it pains me to say, I simply could not get the colors of 09 to work for me. I have no doubt that someone with better makeup skills and/or perhaps with different coloring could use these shades. I simply could not. No matter what I tried, I looked like I had pink eye. And I had pink eye this spring for the first time in my life, and it.was.not.cute. 

Beware the eye-infection look
Wearing 09 Love
As beautiful as 09 is in the pan, I could not face the thought of holding on to a $60 product that I would never use out of fear of looking like I was suffering from conjunctivitis, so back to the store I went where I exchanged 09 Love for 03 Afrique.

YSL Couture Palette 03 Afrique
Afrique is the palette that I would have chosen in the first place, had I not been stubbornly trying to break away from my neutral palette addiction. It is a gorgeous warm-toned, bronzey neutral palette. It is even more creamy--and more pigmented--than 09. And since the shades are more up my street, I know that I will get a lot more use out of it.

03 Afrique also has less shimmer in it than 09 did. Afrique has only one shimmer shade, whereas 09 has three. I'm not sure about the rest of the palettes, unfortunately, as it seems they all vary in finish. All of the shades, regardless of finish, are consistently blendable and easy to apply, though. The idea of these Couture Palettes is that they can be layered over one another to create unique looks with lots of dimension. YSL has really succeeded with that, particularly with Afrique.

If the quality of palettes 03 and 09 is any indication, I would happily recommend any of the palettes from the Couture Palette line. The shade range is also particularly impressive. There are safer neutral options (for scaredy cats like me), as well as palettes for more bold and editorial looks. YSL Beauty has also put up a number of videos on Youtube demonstrating how you can use these palettes.

Wearing 03 Afrique
Have you tried any of the new YSL Couture Palettes yet? Which of the palettes are catching your eye these days?

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