Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Smashbox Full Exposure Travel Palette

Hello again readers!

I think that places like Sephora and Ulta are really stepping up their game with their travel selections. Anything from mini-versions of their hair care/skin care/cosmetics/beauty tools/etc. are just getting better and better! A while ago, Smashbox added their Full Exposure mini to the mix, and well, I just couldn't resist.

I found it first at Sephora (but it's available at both retailers both online and in store) and I liked how it swatched on my fingers. It picked up pigment, but placing them on the back of my hand, I found that it was a bit more powdery than I expected, and it was easily brushed away. A primer is necessary for these, for sure.

The Mini-Full Exposure Palette retails for $22, and comes packaged in this sleek cardboard box. I really like the packaging for mid-range and high-end products, because even the packaging that you end up recycling just feels higher quality. It's not glossy, but smooth, almost like a rubberized finish on the cardboard. Not really entirely sure how to explain it, but touching it is a delight.

The travel Full Exposure Eyeshadow Palette from Smashbox is, dare I say it, adorable. It's slim, the size of a credit card (though thicker than one!), and packs a hell of a punch inside.

The black packaging collects fingerprints and oils like crazy though, and just touching it once will leave smudges and prints behind. It may not be as dirt attracting as say, my Naked Basics, but it's still a magnet for oils.

In the palette, you get 8 shades at .026 oz each! That's an amazing deal, because the full size palette gives you 14 shades at .035 oz each. You get a good pick of colors, more than half of the full-size, and it's less than half of the price of the full size (which retails for about $50).

You get four Shimmers, and four Mattes. They have the numbering system that matches up with the original Full Exposure Palette, and seeing them out of order is rather amusing. It goes S1, S3, S4, and S6, for the shimmers, and M1, M3, M4, and M6 for the mattes.

S1, S3, S4, S6
S1 - A chocolate brown shimmer

S3 - Gold Shimmer

S4 - Nude Shimmer

S6 - Gunmetal Shimmer

The shimmers I found to be a little dusty. If you just apply them with one swatch, you'll get some shimmer on the lid, but the pigment doesn't show up unless you either use a wet applicator, of you apply multiple layers.

On top of that, there are chunks of glitter. Not that it's a deal breaker, but if you're not fond of chunky glitter in your shimmers, these will be a turn off for you. 

M1, M3, M4, M6
M1 - Chocolate Brown Matte

M3 - Tan Matte

M4 - Nude Matte

M6 - Dark, Ashy Brown Matte

Swatching the mattes in store on my fingers made the final decision for me to get this palette, but the swatches are really disappointing. This is with multiple passes over my arm (no primer) and they just came out patchy, and uneven. The pigmentation didn't get built up like I wanted it to, and it was just a let down. Though the eyeshadows feel smooth, it's because of how powdery they are, and it kicks up fallout when dipping the applicator into the product.


I bought this palette for the mattes, and ended up liking the shimmers more. Weird how that happens, right?

I should mention, that this palette is best used with a primer. I know, that seems like an obvious statement to say, and I know I mentioned it earlier, but I mean they really need a primer. If you want them as pigmented as you imagine, and you want the shadows to remain crease-free, then a primer is your best friend.

Another issue I have with this, is that it doesn't have a matte black, and the browns are just too light to really get the definition I desire. It's easily solved with packing a matte black single shadow, but then it kind of takes away from having a conveniently packaged travel palette.

I think, with honesty, that you can pass on this. If you're looking for shimmers, there are better options out there for you. If you're looking for mattes that you can keep with versatility, check out the Naked Basics palettes.

Though this palette is cute, it's just under the bar for me, and when I can say with honesty that I have drugstore shadows that out perform this, then it's sad.

Thanks for reading!

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