Fierce Nerditude: Urban Decay's Naked Palette

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Urban Decay's Naked Palette

When I bought the Naked Palette, I had no idea about the hype. I was out at Sephora the very same week it came out and there were about twenty sitting there. No shortage, not yet. I figured, 'Heck, why not? I like Urban Decay!' However, as I was walking around the store looking for other things to add to my little Sephora basket, several sales associates came up to me and told me what a great choice I'd made (four different ones!), so I was ridiculously excited to get this particular item home. That was last summer. Now, because of the high demand for this palette, Urban Decay has had to replace the double liner that came with it with one of their brushes instead (and up the price two bucks). Since the demand for the Naked Palette is still so incredible, I thought I'd give my take on it.

I think a huge part of the appeal of the palette is that this palette has the quality and pigmentation that everyone associates with Urban Decay with the more universal appeal of neutral and nude shades. As with most Urban Decay shadows that I've tried, the pigmentation in these shadows is amazing. Additionally, most of the shadows have what I'm going to call 'good slip'. They sweep across the eyes effortlessly and blend effortlessly, with three exceptions that I'll list in the colors.

The double-sided pencil included in the palette is exactly what people have come to expect from the 24/7 liners. Two very creamy, long wearing liners with intense pigmentation.

On to the colors:
The first six shades of the Naked Palette are lighter and softer. Many of them would make great highlighting shades.
Left to Right: Virgin, Sin, Naked, Sidecar, Buck, Half-Baked
 Virgin is a pale peachy shade that looks white on me. It's very easy to work with for a matte finish, even when being swatched.
Sin is a shimmery, pale, champagne-y pink. All of the shimmery colors in this palette swatch very well and this is no exception.
Naked is a matte beige that swatches dreadfully. Like most mattes, this is incredibly dry, but very pigmented. It goes onto the eyes with a brush much more easily than it goes onto my arm. This shade is more difficult to blend.
Sidecar is a light, shimmery beige. It has distinct tones of pink, which makes it feel a little like Sin's cousin, or something. It swatches easily and has a lovely texture.
Buck is a matte, camel-toned, warm brown. This isn't quite as difficult to swatch as Naked, however it doesn't swatch as easily as Virgin. I had no blending issues with this.
Half-Baked is one of my favorite Urban Decay shades. I've had it in multiple palettes, but I still don't mind it's inclusion because I just love it so much. It's a bronze-y gold that's super blendable, super pigmented and very easy to use.

The next six shades in the naked palette are on the deeper side, for the most part. They're amazing for contouring the crease and shading.
Left to Right: Smog, Darkhorse, Toasted, Hustle, Creep, Gunmetal
Smog is a mid-tone, shimmery, golden brown. Very buttery and easy to both use and swatch.
Darkhorse is aptly named, because it was quite unexpectedly my favorite shade of the twelve. It's a very deep bronze-brown with plummy notes to it.
Toasted is a champagne-y pink with some taupe to it. If Sidecar was Sin's cousin, Toasted is Sin's brother-from-another-mother. This shade is obviously much deeper, but it's in the same (beautiful) family.
Hustle has a shimmer to it, but it's much less pronounced than in the other shades of the palette. Like the other shimmers, it blends very well.
Creep was the last shade that I had trouble blending, it did swatch well, however. Sephora.com describes it as a "near-black metallic." I agree with the "near-black" bit, but I don't think this looked "metallic" to me. It was more like a matte with a barely present, fine glitter. The glitter wasn't really too visible on the eyes.
Gunmetal is a dark grey that looks very blue, to me. It's a pretty color that's easy to swatch, blend and work with. I'm not quite sure how it really fits in with the rest of the palette, but I do like the color.

And last, but not least, the double-sided 24/7 Liners:
Left to Right: Zero, Whiskey
Zero was my favorite black liner until I got Perversion (from the Urban Decay 15th Anniversary Set)! Urban Decay seems to put Zero or a mini Zero in with everything, so if you're an Urban Decay fan, it's likely you already have one (or twenty) of these. At least you'll never run out of black liner!
Whiskey is a deep, neutral brown. It's very pretty and has the same amazing formula as all of the 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencils.

The Good:
  • Super pigmented shadows.
  • Most of the colors are neutral and universally flattering (Gunmetal is cool, so it may not work for the very warm-toned).
  • Most shadows are easy to work with and super blendable.
  • Wide variety of colors to work with.
The Bad:
Nothing I can think of! I genuinely love this palette!

The Neutral:
  • There are twelve 0.05 oz shadows in this. Each shadow is about half the size of an average one. You're getting your money's worth, plus you're getting variety. If you're like me and have never run out of an eyeshadow before, this is a plus. Since not everyone's like that, though, I listed this under neutral.
Overall, this is a great palette. Since I'm not a humongous neutral-wearer, I don't really understand the hype, per se. If I were a neutral girl, though, I can see myself really, really wanting this. If you have trouble working with mattes, there are three shades to look out for (mentioned above in the color section). If you love neutrals or were thinking about experimenting with neutrals, this isn't a bad way to do it (if you can get your hands on it!)

This palette becomes periodically available at Sephora and is currently available (while I'm posting this) at Urban Decay. It currently includes a mini Urban Decay Primer Potion and brush instead of the double-sided liner (though you can still find the double-sided liner in certain stores) and is $48.00.
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