When I first started in makeup I only knew about drugstore makeup. The most variety I had ever seen were the quads that you see from Covergirl, Maybelline, Wet N Wild (not quads but whatever you call three shadows together), etc.
Then youtube happened...and slowly I was aware of the Urban Decay Naked palettes. Were those the first large variety palettes to exist? It surely seemed to be. Now there are palettes from all sorts of brands...Stila, Too Faced, Tarte, Anastasia Beverly Hills....and on and on and on. When I first saw them I was shocked at the price! Fifty dollars for ONE palette. That's quite a price hike from the under five I was used to spending on my shadows. Sure, I was curious about the high end shadow world but, c'mon, fifty dollars.
Then my birthday rolled around and my sister bought me the Urban Decay black palette. I wasn't completely convinced. I liked that palette. The shadows were pigmented...but that palette wasn't a standalone. More of an accompanying palette. I wasn't wholly convinced. Are they REALLY better than my prized L'oreal Hip Shadows?
It wasn't until my following birthday when she got me the Naked Palette that I understood that the quality can be better. SOME of the shadows just work. Nothing in the palette was chalky or hard to blend. And in general the shades lasted better for me. I didn't have the dreaded creased, faded shadow thing going on anymore. But then I had discovered primer around that time so my shadow was holding up a lot better anyway.
Then I started doing the math. Urban Decay shadows are nearly $20 a piece on their own. You get 12 shades in the naked palette, times 12 would set you back nearly $240. Granted they aren't full sized shadows but they take FOREVER to get through. If you dived the cost you are getting each shadow for $4.50. Not including the brush (better than any sponge tip, applicator), and it comes in cute packaging. When I got mine I think there was a liner or mini primer in it. Unfortunately they don't offer that anymore but it's still a great value. Almost to drugstore priced.
Now let's compare that to other brands-
Wet N Wild- No comparison. You can't get better shadow at a better price. Some of it can be a miss but for the most part the shadows are really nice.
NYX- Cost is $4.50 a piece. NYX is nice for shimmers, their matte shades could be more pigmented and more creamy!
Makeup Geek- These are all over youtube. I've never tried them and refuse to purchase from the brand. They are $6.00 a piece and you have to supply your OWN packaging. Depending on what you choose you can pay up to $20 for a Z palette. And you have to pay shipping. As far as I know they do not do sales. I'm not sure why people keep saying these are so affordable.
MAC- MAC has some really nice shadows- but they are $10 for the pan. They are offering palettes lately that give you a significant discount on the shadows, which is nice.
E.L.F- Their quality is very hit or miss. This is reflected in the price.
Inglot- I haven't tried any of Inglot's Shadow but they are seven dollars a piece and you have to supply your own packaging. I still do want to try them because I hear so many great things and they have every color in every finish.
They aren't the absolute cheapest out there, but compared to a lot of decent eyeshadows, you can see the price is comparable and sometimes even cheaper. Of course the Naked is just an example. Their are some shadows that are priced even lower (Lorac Pro Palettes, Urban Decay Vice, Too Faced Chocolate Bar) and you can get them as low as $3.00 a piece.
There are some cons though.
1. You May Get a Shadow that you don't particularly like. BUT that can happen with any shadow you buy. And on the flip side, you make get a color you may not have otherwise tried and fall in love with it.
2. You Don't Get to Pick Your Shades- You just get what they give you. If I were able to take out any shadow in my NAKED palette it would definitely be the Virgin shade. It's not a great highlight shade on my skin tone.
3. The upfront cost can be a bummer- When I get a Wet N Wild shadow...I can fork over $5 and walk away with my purchase. A $50 palette, not so much. A sucky $5 palette I can get over, a $50 one not so much. The expensive ones are palettes I have to save up for- and I usually look for some type of savings! Or I get them as Birthday presents.
Those are just a few I can think of now.
Yes, the initial cost can be quite high. But sometimes a higher end palette is just worth it. Kind of. I always still wish they were cheaper anyway.
I love my collection of palettes. I seem to be stuck on Urban Decay and Too Faced. But they have the funnest colors and cutest packaging. I tried to branch out to the Lorac Pro but half the palette is light shades. I only need the latter half of the palette. Or when I check out a Tarte palette the shades always seem so boring.
What palettes do you have? Which are your favorite? Would you replace it if you lost it?
Random: Have you heard the new chocolate palette is coming out soon...It's supposed to be the Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons. From the pics I saw I wasn't interested in it...but the colors weren't too clear either.