Monday, 20 August 2012

Urban Decay Smoked Eyeshadow Pallet - Review.

Hi everyone!
You may remember last week I posted a blog post about the beauty products I was lusting over at the moment, top of my list was the newly released pallet by Urban Decay, the 'Smoked' eyeshadow pallet. Well, the other day me and my good friend Lucy went shopping at the fairly new Gloucester Quays outlet (some real bargains to be had there, plus its position on Gloucester Docks makes its surroundings lovely) and then we went into town because it was a quiet dull Sunday and I popped into Debenhams to find a completely deserted Urban Decay stand with the new Smoked Pallet sat on it, and I just had to have it. After swiping and swatching all of the lovely shades and them feeling like literal butter underneath my finger tips, I just knew I couldn't leave it sat there on the shelf and needed to take it home for some loving! So that was exactly what I decided to do.
Feeling quite smug, I trotted off home, (after a cheeky Nando's of course) and even though I had just handed £35.00 away I went home with the biggest grin on my face, I love love love love love urban decay, I think it is a love story that will go on for years. Anyway, needless to say I am not disappointed in the slightest. My love affair with Urban Decay eyeshadows started back when I first began reading blogs, I heard countless things about the Naked 2 pallet by Urban Decay and was always in awe of the lovely, glossy, perfectly neutral shades that were in this pallet, so back when I first started collecting makeup and taking the whole thing more seriously it was actually one of the first things I picked up, and I love it, it changed my outlook on eyeshadows and pallets forever, and it converted me to Urban Decay straight away.

Anyway, on to the review. The 'Smoked' Pallet is Urban Decay's newest answer to the famous Naked Pallets, gone are the days when Urban Decay simply created a neutral pallet, this pallet can take you from day to night in an instant and is absolutely beautiful, it is literally to die for. It contains 10 beautiful shades, that take you from the neutrals you need for your every day, day time look, to the gorgeous jewel tone shades you need to have those intensified smokey looks at nigh time.

What Urban Decay say:
On the US's Urban Decay website the pallet is described as below:
"This is the smoky eye done the UD way: a true range of shades (Neutral mattes! Shimmering jewel tones!) for a range of smoky looks.
We’re giving you everything you need to create the perfect smoky eye, Urban Decay style. Zipped inside this sleek, mirrored case are ten decadent shades (five are exclusive), including neutral mattes and shimmering jewel tones for a range of smoky looks. Sure, you can create a smoky eye with a range of gray and black shades. But what about a touch of purple, blue or bronze? The Smoked Palette lets you keep things simple… or get a little more creative. (TIP: If you need a basic daytime look, stick to the range of matte neutrals. Throw the palette in your bag, and add some smoke as you leave the office.)

Our secret smoky eye weapon? A blacker-than-black matte pencil. Included with the Smoked Palette is a full-size 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion, AND a travel-size Eyeshadow Primer Potion.

Also included is a beautifully illustrated, step-by-step guide to 12 smoky eye looks, written by Urban Decay founder Wende Zomnir. Both smoky-eye pros and shadow newbies will benefit from this detailed guide to looks from “iconic” to “smoldering” to “reality star”.

What I say:
I completely 100% agree with every single thing that Urban Decay says, this is the perfect pallet to take you from a slightly smoked up neutral toned shade perfect for work and the office but it gives you the flare in one small compact that means that you have the best shades to take you straight to a night out on the town, which is probably why I think so much of this pallet. It is just completely versatile, it lets you have the best of both worlds. I think Urban Decay has got this pallet completely right, with the Naked Pallets you had the perfect shades for every day and you could add a bit of drama for the nights with some of the darker shades but they were mainly day time shades, but with this pallet and the jewel tones and the bright pigmented colour selection you literally have everything you need in one simple, sophisticatedly packaged compact, and I have fallen in love.
As mentioned above Urban Decay threw in some freebies with this pallet, firstly with each one of these pallets you got a free sample size of the urban decay primer potion (3.7g, so really sample size), which I am loving using, it's such a good base for the eye. Also you get free the full-size 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion, which must be the most creamy, black eyeliner I have ever had the pleasure of trying and finally you also get a booklet which contains 12 looks that you can create with the pallet, I personally found this extremely useful, this step by step guide is honestly fantastic, it tells you within 11-14 steps exactly what to d, in real simple language so that you can create the perfect smokey eye, and for somebody who has just started to take a larger interest in makeup this has really helped me to begin to get the best out of this pallet, and i've actually tried out several looks already. Something else that is really good about the smoked pallet leaflet is the fact it gives you a kind of dictionary where it explains some of the terms you often hear when professionals are putting on eyeshadow, so for example it explains pencil-shadow fusion, downblending, brow highlight, working the crease, and other terms and it also goes on to explain the differences between crease brushes, blending brushes and shadow brushes, so this is a really great gift to get somebody who is just starting to experiment with makeup.
Also this pallet is incredible value, when I visited the Urban Decay counter I saw that each of these eyeshadows would actually cost you £14.00 by themselves, so to get 10 for £35.00 as well as an eyeliner, primer potion, booklet, and a lovely case is actually a really good bargain. Plus with this pallet you know you are ensured quality, Urban Decay shadows are known to be some of the best in the world and therefore you know if you buy this you are getting quality for your money and you really are investing in your makeup collection.


Colour Range
As I have already mentioned the colour range within this pallet is pretty impressive, from neutral shades to jewel toned shades. There are 10 beautiful, creamy shades within the pallet, the shades on the top row are quite neutral shades, they include Kinky, Freestyle, Mushroom, Backdoor and Blackout.

The first shade Kinky, is a very light shade that is between a white and a cream shade, it is really creamy and is perfect for highlighting either the brow bone or also being used as an inner corner highlight of the eye if you are doing a really strong smokey look. This is just a really nice choice of a light shade for this pallet. This is a completely matte colour, which some people may like but I personally feel like I wanted a more shimmery highlight colour.

The next shade is Freestyle, this shade is darker and warmer than Kinky, but still fairly light and neutral. This shade would match up with quite a range of peoples skin colours and therefore it makes a great blending shade and therefore is a good option for any downblending you would like to do within your smokey eye look. This is a completely matte colour and therefore without the sheen this is probably one of the best colours you could choose for blending.

Mushroom is one of the shades that actually really intrigued me the most, it is a gorgeous silvery, taupe colour, in the pan it looks like it almost has glitter within it, but once swatched you can see that the colour just has a nice light sheen to it which isn't too overpowering. This particular shade would be complimented with freestyle and kinky for an everyday neutral look and is probably one of the shades within the pallet that actually has the nicest consistency. 

Now, in the pan Backdoor looks like a matte brown colour, that is dark but not that dark, but Backdoor is completely different when swatched, the shade almost comes out black and it definitely has black undertones, this shade would be best used to put in the crease of a really smokey eye.

Black is Urban Decay's answer to the darkest and blackest eyeshadow you could ever find, and that is exactly what it is, the blackest, black eyeshadow, great for lining the eye and adding intensity.

The next row of shadows is where the smokey and fun shades come in. Within the bottom row of the pallet we have the following shades: Barlust, Rockstar, Evidence, Loaded, Asphalt.

I personally adore this shade, is the most perfect brown I have ever found and it actually really really suits my eyes. Barlust is one of the shades that has that nice sheen to it, without being over glittery, which I hate with certain eyeshadows. Barlust is incredibly creamy and has a gorgeous sheen to it, which when blended out just looks super lovely, I think this is a shade that can suit absolutely anyone, but it would definitely make blue eyes pop.

Rockstar, is just that, this shade would be perfect on a rockstar, it is a deep plumy purple, which is dark enough not to make you look like a 12 year old, and it is a brilliant shade which can be used combined with barlust and backdoor to create a smokey eye with just that extra hint of colour.

This shade is my absolute favourite, I think half of the reason I wanted this pallet so much was for this amazing midnight shade, it is gorgeous. For years i've wanted to create a midnight blue smokey eye, and i've never actually found the right colour for it. After searching and searching I gave up, all of the shades that came close were packed with endless amounts of glitter that just looked awful, but evidence is completely different. It has a nice sheen and glow about it, but the colour is just so intense and deep, I'm actually scared to apply it to my eye, it's definitely going to need such a light hand, but I simply cannot wait to do a look with it.

A gorgeous emerald green, it is to die for. I think the whole of the bottom row of colours are just out of this world, they're all so unique and nice and they'll just compliment the eye so well. Loaded is slightly darker than an emerald green, it has lovely undertones and if you're not brave enough to use it on your eye it would make the perfect liner for the lower lashes, an absolute win of a shade for me.

Now in the pan Asphalt to me kind of seems such a shade darker than mushroom and therefore I was kind of disappointed to see 2 shades so similar within the pallet, especially as neither of them are matte. Once swatched they are of an identical consistency but Asphalt is slightly darker than mushroom, kind of a shame but I guess you could create a lovely metallic eye using these shades.

The packaging of this pallet is the thing that lets it down for me, I haven't heard anybody else say this but I personally feel like it looks like a DS case, I hate the zipper and the whole of the design is quite bulky, yes it looks nice, but I feel like its just going to get dirty every time I touch it. Plus, the inside of the pallet is made of cardboard, and I think this is such a let down for a high end pallet. I personally feel like the packaging of the Naked 2 pallet is much more appropriate and sturdy, where as the packaging of this pallet is to me the one thing that lets it down, it doesn't look like a luxurious pallet and you can tell that if one thing was cut in order to save costs then it would have been the packaging. Some people may love this, but for me it just isn't that nice and i'd have rather had a plastic pallet.

I LOVE THIS PALLET, the only complaint for me was the packaging, and in actual fact there isn't really anything wrong with it, I would have just personally preferred something that was a bit more sturdy. But the contents of the pallet are out of this world, they're such lovely shades that compliment each other, its perfect for nights out and can also be adapted for the day and it is just an amazing pallet that I think absolutely everyone should have in their collection, I highly recommend it and it is definitely 5* for me! Go and buy this now guys! It's actually worth every single penny!

Lots of Love
(P.S Sorry for the rave review, but until you've tried it you won't understand just how great it is!)
Gem xxx



  1. Really great review. Like everyone else, I love the Naked 2 pallet but this one looks even better! This is definitely one to add to my ever growing wishlist : )

  2. aw, yeah i do love the naked 2 pallet, but this is great because it spices things up abit, it's so pretty haha i can't stop staring it! haha yeah do it, you won't regret it xx

  3. i'm so on the fence over whether to buy this! i love urban decay but i really hate the look of this packaging! we'll see! great blogpost! thanks for checking my blog out! i'm following :) xo

  4. I know, i was the same, the packaging really doesn't do it for me either, but the shades are so gorgeous, I just wish it looked nicer on my dressing table, thank you very much hun x


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