Product Purchased by IMBB
Today’s review is on the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette which is the first permanent palette launched by the line. They have a permanent line of eyeshadow singles, which I haven’t tried and they do keep coming up with limited edition palettes. However, this one is the first permanent one from their line and could well be the make or break for future offering from the brand. Anyone who follows me on Instagram, already knows my opinion on this one, I think I have been fairly vocal about it. I’m super excited to finally review it for you on IMBB.
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What it is: An essential eye shadow collection with 14 shades in neutral to berry tones.
What it does: A present-day take on Renaissance colors, this eye palette features 14 shades that let you create stylish, day to night looks. From the earthy yellow and ultra-matte finish of Golden Ochre to Primavera’s shimmer gold with a metallic finish, this palette’s high-pigment shadows are crease and fade-resistant and are sure to bring modern elegance to your eye looks. This palette contains: – 14 x 0.02 oz Eye shadow in Tempera (beige with an ultra-matte finish), Golden Ochre (earthy yellow with an ultra-matte finish), Vermeer (iridescent shell with a metallic finish), Buon Fresco (antique lavender with an ultra-matte finish), Antique Bronze (metallic sable with a satin finish), Love Letter (raspberry with an ultra-matte finish), Cyprus Umber (dark coffee with an ultra-matte finish), Raw Sienna (neutral amber with an ultra-matte finish), Burnt Orange deep orange with an ultra-matte finish), Primavera (shimmery gold with an ultra-matte finish), Red Ochre (sienna with an ultra-matte finish), Venetian Red (crimson with an ultra-matte finish), Warm Taupe (earthy gray with an ultra-matte finish), Realgar (brick with an ultra-matte finish). Double-ended shadow brush. It is formulated without parabens, sulfates, phthalates.
USD 42 / GBP 41. (Yup – the economics does not make sense – but what to do!).
My Experience with Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette:
Packaging: The packaging of the palette is gorgeous, but it’s also a pain. It is a cardboard packaging with a velvet feel, much like the original Naked palette. However, this one is a mauve-y pink exterior which once stained, is going to lose lustre soon! It comes packaged in an exterior box. All ingredients are listed on the flip side of the package.
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The brand which has been known the world over for their brow products, suddenly switched gears a couple of years back and forayed into other makeup products. What amazes me about the brand is that, though they moved into other products, it wasn’t a half-hearted effort. They really did produce some amazing products. The highlighters that they launched a couple of years back (Starlight etc., ) were very well received. They still upped it and went and made the ever-in-demand highlighter palettes and everybody and their grandmother wants them! Their line of liquid lipsticks – launched some time back – also seems to be doing fairly well. They keep releasing their limited edition eyeshadow palettes which seem to have many takers. However, recently, they changed their eyeshadow formula, released a permanent eyeshadow palette and upped its price from $30 (the price point around which their limited edition palettes used to fall upon) to a whopping $42. Was is worth the gamble?
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Hell, YES!! The eyeshadow palette blows away, any and every eyeshadow palette they released prior to this point and also any and every eyeshadow palette released by the competition – with similar price point and shade range.
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What’s special about this palette:
1. It has an excellent mix of mattes, satins and shimmers. I’ve enjoyed playing with the Viseart Satins and the Natasha Denona metallics. However, I realize that I do love more matte/satin looks with maybe a pop of shimmer/metallic. It may be me trying to act sophisticated 😛 or it may just be my ageing lids! *eye roll*. This palette has about two shimmers, a couple of satins shades, and the rest are mattes. (I am not going as per the product description – but as per my actual swatches).
2. What do we all want when we go out to buy a palette? Ever since the N*k*d revolution happened, we all want a good neutral palette, but we also want a pop of colour here or there – for times we feel a bit more adventurous! This palette has it all covered. You have a lovely array of neutral shades with some true renaissance shades thrown in – like Venetian Red, Red Ochre and my most favourite colour in the palette – Realgar.
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3. What is our pet peeve with pre-made palettes? You generally end up having too many lighter shades or too many darker shades or a plethora of medium ones with not enough of the other kinds or no transition shade. How many times have you had to carry more than one palette because of lack of transition shade. Again, this palette has your back. You have a light shade for dusting all over the lid, you have crease colours, you have darker colours, you have shimmery ones for pop or for inner corners. For the more conservative, there is also a light satin for the inner corner or brow bone. It literally has everything you could want to create a complete look- in one palette.
4. A pet peeve of the “desi” customers – or say, women with medium skin tone? Most palettes cater to the Caucasian skin tone. The lighter shades are meant for the fairer skin, so are the transition shades. This results in two issues, you end up with a plethora of lighter shades which don’t do anything for your skin. Worse, you end up using a certain portion of your palette – leaving a couple/few shades totally unused. The Modern Renaissance palette seems to be made to cater to the medium skin tone. The light to transition to deeper shades – all seem to be put together keeping in mind the medium skin tone. How often does that happen??
5. In continuation with point number 4 – I can actually use EVERY SINGLE SHADE in this palette! No jokes!! Considering that there are 14 shades here – that is amazing!
6. Texture: The texture on this one is amazing. These are quite smooth – they mesh so well together and go on evenly and blend effortlessly. Venetian Red and Love Letter feel a tad bit drier but it isn’t chalky or anything. Actually, none of the colours are chalky.
7. Pigmentation is spot on! The colours need a soft touch of the brush. I did not feel the need to build any of them up – except Venetian Red and Love Letter – to show their true colour. Yes, a couple of shades do not show up too well on my arm swatch that is because the shades are too close to my skin colour. With the darker shades, a little goes a long way. You get exactly the colour which you see in the palette. While they blend well, they still retain the colour – its doesn’t become a big muddy mess.
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8. Staying Power: I apply my eyeshadows with a primer because my lids are way too oily. These shadows stay put the whole day and retain their true colour, irrespective of the primer, I generally rotate between MAC 24 hour base, NARS smudgeproof eye primer and MAC Paint pot. Maximum, I have tried is about 8-9 hours and there was ever the slightest fading!
9. This palette has been out for a few months now, but if you haven’t bought it till now, this is the perfect time to get it because these colors will work so well for the fall.
10. The palette has a decent-sized mirror. Though it does not stay up on its own, it needs to be propped. I don’t use the mirrors that come along in palettes, so it didn’t make much of a difference to me.
11. This palette also comes with a dual-ended brush – one side is a shader and the other side is a crease blending brush. The quality of the brush is okay-okay. I tried it once, it did not shed, and is fairly usable. So, if you don’t have a collection of eye brushes, you could quite easily use this, but if you have your own set of brushes, you probably won’t be reaching for this one.
12. It is formulated without parabens, sulfates, and phthalates.
Coming to the actual shades:
- Tempera – This is described as beige with an ultra-matte finish. In reality, it’s a peachy beige with a satin finish. It is very smooth and has an excellent colour pay off. Works very well to highlight the inner corner or the brow bone, without it being too shimmery or over the top.
- Right next to it is Golden Ochre – described as an earthy yellow with an ultra-matte finish. The shade is a very muted yellowish olive. This one sure is matte. I use this colour to dust my eyelids post application of the primer to ensure all colours going on later, blend easily.
- Next in line is Vermeer – described as iridescent shell with a metallic finish. This is a slightly peachy + pinky frosted shade. It has excellent colour payoff and is buttery smooth, perfect for pop of colour on the lid or inner corner.
- Buon Fresco – described as antique lavender with an ultra-matte finish. This is probably the only slightly cool toned shade in the entire palette which runs distinctly warm. It reminds me of MAC Haux, but is a bit pinker and is definitely much more smoother and easily blendable than the MAC one. This shade is available as a single from Anastasia.
- Antique Bronze – described as a metallic sable with a satin finish. It’s a muted dark brown with a touch of lavender and red and has a pearly sheen. This too is quite smooth in consistency and a little goes a long way.
- Love Letter – described as raspberry with an ultra-matte finish. This is one of the more unique shades in the palette and is distinctly matte and as I mentioned earlier – a tad bit stiffer. It is a lovely medium dark berry shade. Because of it being a tad bit dry, it takes a bit of layering to show up as true to pan. The point is that you anyway may not want it to be totally true to pan on your eyes, in which scenario, you won’t really need to build it up either.
- The last shade in the top row – Cyprus Umber is described as dark coffee with an ultra-matte finish. This is the darkest shade in the palette. It’s a deep taupe brown with a smooth, almost creamy texture. It goes on opaque and very evenly.
Coming to the second row of shades:
- Raw Sienna is described as a neutral amber with an ultra-matte finish. To me, it doesn’t look too amber. Instead, it’s a medium warm brown with a smooth matte finish.
- Next is Burnt Orange – described as a deep orange with an ultra-matte finish. Again, this muted medium brown with a hint of orange, not really a burnt orange color. This is similar in texture to Raw Sienna and has a smooth matte finish.
- Primavera – described as a shimmery gold with an ultra-matte finish. I am not sure in which universe is this shade “ultra matte”. This one is similar in texture to Vermeer, though the shade is more golden beige and has a frosted, almost metallic sheen.
- Another unique shade – Red Ochre – described as sienna with an ultra-matte finish. This is a medium reddish dark brown with a matte finish. If you look at the swatches, it isn’t really opaque in one go but is definitely buildable to colour in the pan and is very smooth in texture – not unlike Cyprus Umber.
- Another true Renaissance shade – Venetian Red. This is described as crimson with an ultra-matte finish. This again, like the shade Love Letter was a tad bit drier and not fully opaque, but it is easy to build it to the colour in the pan. It does blend smoothly.
- Warm Taupe – described as an earthy gray with an ultra-matte finish. It is a medium taupe brown with a smooth texture and a matte finish. This reminds me of MAC Charcoal Brown.
- My most favorite colour in the palette – Realgar! Described as a brick with an ultra-matte finish. This is muted, medium dark orange brown – this is closer in shade to “Burnt Orange.” This shade is again matte and very smooth in texture and easy to apply and blend. Love, Love, Love this shade!
Overall, an excellent set of shadows. The ones which had red pigment in them and matte finish, were a tad bit drier and less opaque (only as a comparison). But, to me, that did not work as too much of a con, since with such bright shades, I would be more likely to overdo the colour, had it been too pigmented.
So, is this palette a perfect one with no cons? Not quite. On the flip side, just penning the cons here:
1. The packaging itself, which I had mentioned earlier. earlier. The mauve exteriors will not stand the test of time!
2. The palette has a shelf life of 6 months!!! Yes, you read that right! Whoever finished a palette in 6 months??
3. Couple of the colours run similar. Raw Sienna and Burnt Orange; Venetian Red and Love Letter, these look quite similar. Yes, they do have the minutest of differences in the shade or undertone – but not enough to probably warrant both being in the palette. These could easily have been replaced by another distinctly different shade.
4. Inclusion of shade blue in the palette. A Renaissance palette without the inclusion of the shade Blue (Ultramarine – to be precise) seems a bit lost. Some may say that the palette has a nude and berry theme, so addition of blue would have thrown the balance. However, considering that the theme is “Renaissance period” and the palette is inspired by it, the shade Ultramarine would have fit in nicely – after all, it was the most expensive colour at that time or even the addition of Azurite would have been welcome. My point being, a distinctly different shade – in keeping with the theme – could have added to the overall value of the palette. This obviously, is my personal opinion.
The last point while discussing this palette – I can’t add to the pros or cons because it depends totally on the person using the palette. Th point being – the lack of a matte black shade. There are a whole lot of us who believe that a palette is incomplete without a matte black in it and there are an equal number of people who are sick of a black matte in each and every palette they buy. Honestly, I wanted to have a matte black in this. And that deterred me from buying this. However, having used it for more than a month – trust me, it doesn’t need a black! Cyprus Umber works very well as an intense dark shade. And you can create a whole load of looks with it – even without using black!
Since I never know when to shut up – the other con about this palette – though it is a neutral and berry toned palette. So, in essence, you can create neutral look with it. However, every time you try to create one, you can’t help but add a bit of Realgar or Love letter or Red Ochre. Those shades are just so inviting. Net result, you can forget about creating a neutral look *eye roll*
My initial reaction on seeing this palette on the social media was- “and yet another palette with the berry and magenta shades”!! eye roll. I don’t know what tilted the balance for me – I do think it had a lot to do with the name itself – “Renaissance” – which is my favorite period and I love the art and artists from that period – Leonardo da Vinci, Michelanglo, Raphael, Botticelli. Having experienced their work in person, you are literally blown away! Any reminder of them is always welcome for me. Having said that, today, this palette for me is more than a gimmicky name! It’s just about the most gorgeous and likely to be most used and abused palette that I have. I just can’t stop using it! And as you can see, I just can’t stop talking about it! You have to see my Insta to believe me. I can’t help reaching out for it again and again! I don’t know when I have last been this excited about a makeup product!
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