I was always intrigued by these Essence eyeshadow palettes because they are so affordable and I’ve been looking for super affordable eyeshadow palettes with great quality.
These are some of the most affordable eyeshadow palettes out there, retailing for only US$5.50 each at Ulta and AU$8.20 each at Priceline. (I actually purchased these for less than AU$5 each during the recent Priceline makeup sale!)
There are four palettes in the range with four color themes: Nudes, Bronze, Roses and Bronze.
Check out my thoughts below!
These are packaged in a see-through plastic packaging, which is nice because you can see all the colors through the packaging. It looks fragile but it’s actually pretty sturdy because I’ve dropped these palettes a couple of times and they haven’t even chipped a tiny bit!
The shades in the Nudes and Bronze palettes have warm undertones, and the Roses and Greys palettes cool.
The Nudes palette contain in a variety of finishes – mattes, shimmers and metallics. The transition shades are my favorites! They’re very nicely pigmented and smooth, buildable too!
The shades in the Bronze palette are all shimmery and metallic, in fact there are no mattes at all, so it was a bit tricky to do a complete eye look with only shimmery eyeshadows (but it turned out to be just fine as you’ll see in the eye looks I created below). The colors seem rather repetitive, I’d rather have a combination of the mattes in Nudes and the shimmers and metallics in Bronze.
Roses and Greys palettes look very different but the softer colors in the Roses palette are very sheer when applied on the lids. In the swatches below they were layered several times.
I honestly really like the colors in the Roses palette, I just wish they actually showed up!
Application & Color Payoff
No primer or eyeshadow bases were used to create the eye looks below, which is very impressive because they looked pretty intensely pigmented!
As you can see below the Nudes and Bronze palettes can end up looking similar, so does the Roses and Greys palette.
I was surprised my Bronze eye look turned out nice even though all I used were shimmery shadows!
I tried using the pinker shades in the Roses palette but they were way too sheer they didn’t show up at all, so I ended up using the darker colors making it seem very similar to the Greys eye look, except it has a much pinker tone to it.
As you can see the colors in the Greys palette end up looking a bit patchy and creasy. The black pigments were all sheered out after blending. I had to use a tape at the end and created a sharp edge because the fallouts were pretty intense and the black shadow would sheer out after being blended too much. Having the tape at the end just helps intensify the shadow.
Without primer or a base, most of these shadows weren’t long-wearing at all, only lasting for a maximum of 4 hours before creasing (the Greys palette started creasing almost immediately). The Nudes palette had the best longevity without primer, lasting for up to 6 hours.
With primer, they held up pretty well, lasting for more than 8 hours but the glitters in the shimmer all faded out by the end of the day.
For US$5, I really can’t complain! I really, really like the Nudes and Bronze palette. I wish they were combined as one. However, if I had to pick one I would go for the Nudes palette because it has the widest variety of shades and finishes. You can create a whole eye look without needing to use another palette. I wish the Bronze palette had come with a couple of mattes.
As for the Roses palette, I wish the lighter colors showed up better and as for the Greys, they should really work on the blacks.
So out of the four, I highly recommend the Nudes and Bronze as they’re actually better than some high end shadows I have! You really get your money’s worth!