In the world of beauty the, “eye-shadow palette” has become a point of wonder. Beauty lovers from all walks of life are constantly searching for the “perfect one,” the “holy grail” that offers great shade range, pigmentation and staying power. With such high standards and competition out there, is the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani creation a worthy contender?
The Urban Decay and Gwen Stefani collaboration line has been around for a while now having launched back in January 2016. It now includes a range of products including lipsticks and shadows but perhaps most notably the ‘UD x Gwen Stefani Eye-shadow Palette.’ The announcement of this creative partnership was a big deal in the beauty world; it was the first time that Urban Decay had collaborated with a celebrity – they have since went on to work with the likes of Ruby Rose and the ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’ Franchise.
There was a lot of buzz about this product when it first hit the market. I mean, what wasn’t to love? It was the ultimate mash-up. Urban Decay the coolest and edgiest beauty brand around was pairing up with the music world’s equivalent. It seemed like a match made in heaven and the beauty world couldn’t wait. On the whole, its release gained a positive reaction – people were rushing to get their hands on this and, even now, it is sold out. However, there are many other “cult” eye shadow palettes that have overwhelmingly captivated and demanded our attention (Too Faced Sweet Peach, Anastasia BH Renaissance, Morphe Copper Spice.) This is one that I feel is often over-looked. It doesn’t seem to have achieved quite the iconic, “cult” status I feel it deserves. Here’s why I think dismissing this palette is a mistake.
First of all, I think it is really inspiring that Stefani was very hands on with the creation of this product. She openly talked about how she had a lot of input into the branding, the product names and the colour range herself! At a launch event she was quoted as saying that, “everything is very real”. On their website Urban Decay also stated that the product development team spent, “countless hours at Gwen’s house talking make-up and working closely with her on every detail.” As a result, the shades themselves are those that Stefani felt she would want when creating her own make-up looks at home. In other words her “must have” shades. The idea of having a palette full of what a make up icon like Gwen Stefani loves (on a personal level) seems worthy of cult status to me. This personal connection with the product is something I really value as often celebrities will put their name to something (or endorse it) with no actual personal input!
Secondly, the packaging is to die for! It screams Gwen Stefani! The combination of black, white and antique gold (all of which are her favourite colours) have shades of her epic “Sweet Escape” video and Love.Angel.Music.Baby album. Meanwhile, the geometric design on the front paired with the gold edging adds that rocker vibe she is so known for. The whole thing is a perfect blend of Gwen: glamorous yet edgy. There is even a subtle little reference to her No Doubt days with the little sticker transfer on the corner of the mirror that reads: “The Magic’s in the Make-up.” There is so much attention to detail in this palette that every inch of it is worthy of our attention.
So, what about the shadows themselves? On a whole, they don’t disappoint. They offer the same quality and performance as the other UD Naked Palettes that everyone still continues to gush about. I know there are lots of people out there who feel these powders have a lot of fallout but I’ve never really experienced too much of this. The colour range also makes this palette really versatile. I’ve been able to use it to create classic everyday looks, smokey evening eye looks and it’s come in handy for my more daring Halloween and fancy dress styles too. I love palettes that offer this kind of flexibility! The Naked palettes (whilst I will always be a fan) don’t offer this – hence their name! So, it’s nice to see a product combining UD’s skills in the Naked neutrals and vibrant colour pops. The names are fun and quirky and, again, personal to Gwen with many linking to her music – “Danger,” “Harajuku,” “Baby.” I do feel that perhaps the richer colours such as the pink and purple could offer a little more pigmentation but, as the products as so build-able it’s definitely not a deal-breaker.
I’ve included a full list of colour names below:
(As per official product description)
- Blonde (pale beige w/pink iridescent shift)
- Bathwater (pale beige w/gold pearl)
- Skimp (pale nude satin)
- Steady (medium rose w/metallic gold shift)
- Punk (reddish brown matte), Baby (cool metallic rose)
- Anaheim (light taupe-brown matte)
- Stark (nude-pink matte)
- Zone (medium brown matte)
- Serious (smoky gray w/iridescent floating pearl)
- Pop (pale coral w/iridescent sparkle)
- Harajuku (metallic blue-pink w/iridescent micro-shimmer)
- Danger (deep metallic royal blue w/blue micro-sparkle)
- 1987 (bright metallic yellow-gold) and Blackout (blackest black matte)
This is most certainly a palette that I will continue to use – in fact it’s become a staple! It might be a little pricier than the Naked Palettes or some of the others on the market but, if you are looking for something of good quality that is versatile and also looks good on the dresser, then this is definitely one to consider!