::: press sample :::
I'm hoping a bit of makeup chat can help me forget about today. It's been... interesting. The kind of day wherein nothing goes as expected. To say I am off schedule is a complete understatement and will be up into the wee hours trying to get back on track. Oh well, let's get to the goods. Today is all about the cute little palettes from Essence in the form of their How to Make Makeup Boxes. I have four varieties How to Make Bright Eyes, Nude Eyes, Smokey Eyes and Brows Wow. Interested? Read on!
Essence How to Make Bright Eyes Makeup Box $9.99 CAD
Essence is know for affordable makeup and pretty decent quality. Like all brands, there are some misses here and there, but for the most part you can score some great bits for just a few dollars. The range of Makeup boxes (aka palettes) are pretty great. $10 in the beauty world doesn't always get you very much, but there are some promising shadows (and brow powders) to be found.
First up, How to Make Bright Eyes. The cute pink themed box is home to six shadows, a mirror, a dual ended brush/sponge, and two how-to cards in the lid. All of the palettes come with tools and how-to cards to give you an idea of how to use the shades within. The shades in Bright Eyes ("turn around bright eyes..." you know you want to sing it) includes shades that, well, to put it simply, brighten eyes. Most of the shades (with the exception of Eyes Bright Open) are soft, pearly/frost shades that give a wash of colour and radiance. Eyes Bright Open on the open on the other hand, is a pop of satin pinky-coral. The shadows are not intensely pigmented, but have a smooth, easy texture and do exactly what you want them to- brighten.
Neutral palettes are everywhere (and I doubt we'll ever stop seeing them) but it's not often you find a great one at this price point. I found one! I am very impressed with this little guy! With six neutral shades the How to Make Nude Eyes palette features buttery, pigmented formulas and gorgeous wearable shades. You get mostly frosts/shimmers, but they wear beautifully and are really great shades. I'm very partial to All About Nude a cool, silvery, taupe, but really, none of the shades disappoint.
Essence How to Make Smokey Eyes Makeup Box $9.99 CAD
For a bolder look, How to Make Smokey Eyes has you covered. With six shades ranging from silvery smokes, purples, and greys in shimmer, frost and glitter finishes you're ready to get smokey. I found the glitters to be a bit drier, but not too difficult to apply. There was a bit of fall out, so I do suggest a good base/primer. I like that they've included the purple to the mix for more interest than just your typical black, grey, and silver selection.
Brows get in on the fun too with How to Make Brows Wow. The kit includes three brow shades- blonde, universal, and brunettes- along with a highlight shade, mini set of tweezers, and dual ended brush. While cute, the brush is kind of useless, and the tweezers are best left for emergencies when nothing else is around. The powders however are pretty great. The formula is nicely pigmented, but not too powerful, and fills in brows quite well. The shades run a bit warm, but I am able to use the deepest shade on my naturally black brows. The highlight shade is a frosted pale pink that blends nicely on skin for a wash of radiance with a soft glow.
Overall, I am pretty pleased with all of these palettes. I do have a favourite though, and give top marks to How to Make Nude Eyes. These palettes are great for anyone, but are especially great for those starting out with makeup as you get a lot for your money but don't have to sacrifice quality. What do you think of these palettes? Have you tried any of them? Thoughts?