Switching gears from reviewing liquid lipsticks – today’s review is on a new eyeshadow palette – this one is from Smashbox. It is a mini palette from their brand new Covershot range and this one is called “Ablaze.” This palette was pretty much “love at first sight!.” I wanted this one the moment I saw it, quite like the Viseart Theory Palette in Minx which I had been obsessed from the moment I laid my eyes on it. So, let’s jump right in 🙂
What it is: A collection of seven portable palettes, inspired by trends seen at the studio—from matte to metallic to bold.
What it does: These purse-sized Cover Shot: Eye Palettes swipe on highly pigmented, beyond blendable color for endless eye looks. Smashbox popped in two bigger base shades, so you won’t run out of basics before you’ve used all the high-impact accent colors. You’ll be obsessed with the velvety, wearable quality of these shadows—not to mention the hot new eye looks they inspire. The star of Smashbox’s Cover Shots campaign is actress and social media powerhouse Shay Mitchell. Inspired by the distinct vibes of the palettes, Smashbox worked with Shay to create a unique personality for each one. Think: seven palettes and seven shades of Shay. Channel her style or mix shadows to get your own individual look. This go-anywhere palette has been edited to include only the most coveted shades. Each travel-size palette is 0.27 oz/ 7.65 g (4.46W x 2.44D x 0.45H).
Ablaze (hot, desert-inspired shades): With shades in rich red clay and hot terracotta, this palette captures the warmth of the desert in a range of sun-drenched shades—these dimensional pigments are perfect for adding depth and contouring.
- Choose base color and blend onto lids.
- Play with mix-and-match shades and layer to create your own cover look.
USD 29. Yup, the pricing is adorable, but so is the size. It is literally just a tad bit larger than a credit card, but I will take that up in the packaging bit.
Packaging: There seems to be a whole new trend coming up with these petite palettes. Smashbox released 7 of these, Too Faced released a couple, Viseart released one – and you may just have others following suite.
This palette is literally larger by a whisker – to a credit card! It is that small. It is a hard plastic palette with a full-sized mirror. It fits in easily into the palm of your hand. The cover has this 2D graphic thing going, it reminds me of the cover of my Hansel and Gratel book which I used to cherish as a child, very eye catching and mesmerising; not unique per say, but unique to eyeshadow palettes. The same comes packaged in an open window cardboard box. The packaging changes as per which palette it is. So, it will be fairly easy for one to identify if they have more than one variant.
Back to size of the palette. The small size has its pro and cons.
Pros: easy to travel with, a palette which you might actually hit pan on, allows you to pick more than one palette because the price point is more affordable on these. If you want to experiment with a certain range of shades but not comfortable with picking up singles out a big palette – these petite ones will allow you to try the shades at a more affordable price point.
Cons: If the shades are up your alley, you may run out of them. Some people just like large palettes with a huge selection of colours. People might still not find the price point comfortable compared to the price of the palette.
Me? I love the small size. It allows you to travel with it. I have often wondered what I keep harping about when I say that something is easier for me to travel with. Do I really travel that much? Then, I seriously thought about it, yes, I may not travel on a weekly basis (like my hubs), but I do travel about 5-6 times in a year. And when you are a makeup enthusiast, you end up tolerating incredulous stares from the airport security team regarding the amount of makeup you are carrying! But that is a whole different story. Bottom line – I love the petite size of it 😛
The ingredients for each of the shadows is mentioned on the box.
My Experience with Smashbox Ablaze Cover Shot Eye Palette:
Smashbox, the company, which is known for its face primers, hasn’t really done well in the eyeshadow segment. They have rolled out a number of palettes over the years but not a single one has made it to the top of the house. None of their palettes have caused anxious desire or been raved about in terms of quality. Still, when they recently launched the Covershot palettes, the makeup world did get lit “Ablaze” (pun intended). Let us find out why.
Each of these palettes contains 8 shades – 2 larger ones on top and 6 smaller ones. The setup is like a typical KVD palette, which is being adopted by others – I kind of like it.
The flip side of the palette has the names of the shadows. There are 4 mattes and 4 shimmers. The shades are in line with what’s trending nowadays – warm toned, terracotta and bronze shades.
I like the fact that the palette has both light to deeper tones and matte as well as shimmers. It gives enough variance in shades and finish to create a multitude of looks. Out of the 7 palettes, this was the one I was drawn to instantly, not just because these shades are really in right now because I find myself being drawn to them.
Let’s discuss each shade individually. Quick note, I apply my eyeshadows on a primer because I have really oily lids. However, once I was in a hurry and did apply them without a primer – will update you on that as well.
Let us discuss the shades individually:
1. Relaxed: This is a matte soft beige peach shade. The shade had a soft smooth texture and good colour payoff, but it does kick up powder in the pan. I generally use this as a matte highlighter or as an all over the lid colour.
2. Moccasin: This is a soft, smooth, frosted peach shade which works very well as an inner highlight or a brow bone highlighter or even as an all-over the lid shade. It was smooth and easily blendable.
3. Siesta: This is a gorgeous soft rose gold shimmer shade with a light golden shift and a pearly finish. Again, the shade is soft and smooth and easy to work with. It works very well as an soft shade on the lid.
4. Nirvana: This is where things get interesting. Nirvana is a matte finish, super pigmented pinkish berry shade. It was drier in texture to Relaxed and did not kick up any dust when you dip in your brush into it – unlike Relaxed. Having said that, the shade itself was easy to work with and blend out.
5. Delirious: This one is a medium dark copper brown and has a frosted finish, quite like Sienna. When used with Sienna, it blends right in – without getting muddy – and still provides that extra depth to the eye look. The shade works well on the lid or on the outer corner for a non-smokey eye look.
6. Torch: This is another standout shade from the palette. It is a medium dark, orange flamed shimmer shade. Again, a shade which has been doing the rounds in a lot of palettes and singles. This one isn’t over rate top but still gives the desired pop to a look. It’s smooth, blendable, and easy to work with.
7. Throwback: This one is another beautiful matte shade which pulls the palette together. It is a terracotta brown with warm red undertones. This again seemed drier in the pan than Relaxed. However, it was too easy to work with and blend on the lid.
8. Dark Horse: The last shade in the palette is this deep brown with warm undertones and a matte finish. This one had a smoother texture than Nirvana and Throwback and had excellent pigmentation. This shade really helps the palette by adding depth and can also be used as an eyeliner.
In short, all the shades in the palette are warm coppery terracotta feeling shades which are so in trend right now. They work well together and help produce a variety of looks. An important point to note is that they do not muddy up – which can be a cause of concern with certain palettes.!
Texture: The texture of each of the shades in the palette is comfortable to work with. The shimmer shades are buttery smooth and blend well. They aren’t super high shine or foiled. They are regular shimmer shades which is great because the foiled ones aren’t always comfortable for textured lids like mine.
The mattes were inconsistent. While Relaxed and Dark Horse were super smooth, blendable, and soft in texture; Nirvana and Throwback – though highly pigmented – seemed a tad bit drier and would sheer out easily. Having said that, they are equally easy to build up too!
Pigmentation: This aspect is important to me – the color in the pan has to be the same as the colour on the eye, whether on the go or post building. Honestly, I didn’t even realize there could be a slip between the cup and the lip till I tried a mid-range all-matte palette from a popular brand – the shades looked fab in the palette, but I would get the same not on the lid, even with building up. There would always be a difference in tonality or the actual shade. So, I really appreciate palettes like ABH Modern Renaissance, Viseart Matte Dark Matte and Neutral Matte palettes, which give you the same color as you see in the pan.
Pigmentation for all shadows is good. The only deviant being that Nirvana and Throwback can get a bit sheer but can be built up to desired intensity of shade.
Without a primer:
Staying Power: As I have mentioned earlier, I apply my eyeshadows with a primer beneath because my lids are way too oily. Almost all of the looks that I have tried with this palette – the shadows stayed put the whole day, for about 9-10 hours. Once, when I tried without a primer, they still did fairly well, for about 6 horus of wear before the shades started melting together. I really do have oily lids.
That was exhaustive! While I enjoy sharing a palette review – it can get fairly exhausting for me.
Pros of Smashbox Ablaze Cover Shot Eye Palette:
- Good array of trending shades.
- Good array of textures.
- Smooth texture – for most of the shades.
- Good pigmentation for most shades.
- Long wearing.
- No creasing, except when I used Torch without a primer.
- Does not transfer.
- The colours blend easily and mesh very well together without getting all muddy.
- Did not irritate my eyes.
- Travel-friendly packaging.
- A variety of looks possible – from office to day time neutral to evening glam.
- Sturdy packaging.
Cons of Smashbox Ablaze Cover Shot Eye Palette:
- I wish there was one less shimmer shades which could have been substituted with a dedicated transition shade. I presume Relaxed works as a transition shade for fair to lighter skin tone. Having said that, I do understand that when you are doing a small themed palette (and a number of them) – it can be a challenge to provide brow bone highlighter, a setting shade, a transition shade – for all skin tones. This itself takes away about 6 shades from the palette!
Post the initial release, there have been a lot of mixed reviews about the palette. So, while I cannot comment on the other palettes – this one, I don’t mind recommending. The palette reminds me a lot of my most favourite palette ever – The Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette. Is it a dupe? No, not really, it isn’t a dupe in terms of the range of shades or of the sheer quality of the ABH palette. However, the colours are in the same ball park. So, if you do not have the funds to shell out for the ABH palette or not too comfortable with these really warm-toned shades that are trending currently but would like to dip your toes in it – this palette is a great way to try out such shades.
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