BGF? Olivia Palermo’s Soiree

If you’re Asian, you know what being disappointed feels like. That’s how I feel about this palette from Olivia Palermo’s Brand. It checked all boxes on my checklist — Made in Canada, beautiful packaging, and an influencer I can get behind. But then, it happened. The palette disappointed me… like an academically poor progeny.

I ordered the Olivia Palermo Beauty palette in Soiree during the Black Friday sale. I’m so happy I bought it during the sale and did not pay full price. I chose the Soiree palette over O’Naturel because of how many browns there are in O’Natural palette. I hate brown palettes and while the Blue in the O’Natural was tempting, Soiree looked like it would suit my brown skin better.

Olivia has launched cosmetics (eyeshadows and lipsticks) and some skin care. You can tell that Olivia is involved in the brand because of the beautiful packaging. While I was tempted by the lipsticks, I decided to purchase just the eye shadow palette.

Here’s my review of the product:

  • Packaging: This palette gets A++ in packaging. It’s heavy and well crafted. I wish she had made it reusable because I’d love to switch up the shadows in this palette. The outer box packaging was a beautiful light green. The box it was shipped in was a bottle green, and as I’m sure you would’ve figured out by now that green is the brand’s color.
  • Palette colors: Now this is where things go downhill. The palette has 6 shades: Amaretto (light beige), Plush Tulle (light pink), Magnum Mauve (dark mauve/pink), Black Tie (black shimmer), Skyline Dusk (dark blackened plum), Gilded Glimmer (gold). The color scheme is a bit… off to me. I know it’s a night/party palette, but the black shimmer and plum are such a waste of opportunity. I understand black shimmer, but the plum? It looks like someone punched me in the face. The only shades that looked good on me were beige, pink, and gold.
  • Performance: These shadows, especially the mauve and beige, disappeared on my lids. It takes a lot to build up the pigmentation. To be fair, she does recommend applying the eyeshadows with your fingers, but I was in no mood to apply mattes with my fingers. I love the beige and light pink – – they look so good on my eyes when I build it up. But all the shadows, without a primer do not last for more than 2 -3 hours on my oily lids. And this performance was during a bout of WFH. I used my foundation as a primer and it lasted a tad bit longer. The plum was patchy.
Swatches: L to R – Amaretto, Plush Tulle, Magnum Mauve, Gilded Glimmer, Skyline Dusk, Black Tie

If you look at the swatch, I got better pigmentation from a finger swatch than the brushes. I think the problem is that the shadows are tightly packed, especially the shade amaretto. It took considerable effort to pick up that shadow, even with my finger.
So in summary, it took a while to build up pigmentation and when you do, if you use it without a primer it lasts about 4 hours.

Brush Swatches on the left and Finger Swatches on the right

Final thoughts

My heart breaks to say it but this is not BGF (brown girl friendly) and it’s a pass. It makes for a beautiful paper weight, but those shadows do not work. My only hope now is to use it in conjunction with another palette, so that even if it fades the other eyeshadows will compensate for it. I’ll also try it with a primer, but I haven’t tried it that way so far because it’s not the way I do my makeup every day.

For me to buy this palette again, the formulas need to be reworked and that plum has got to go. I’m sure it’ll look great on darker skin than mine, but on mine it just looks awful.

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