New Stuff: Lorac Pro Palette 2 (with comparisons)
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As soon as I saw this, I knew it was going to be mine. I’ve had the original Pro palette for a while now (a year, maybe year & a half?) and I’m not bored with it yet, which is a pretty good indicator of a great palette. As much as I like the original, though, the cooler shades in the updated version look like they’ll be better suited to my neutral/slightly-cool skintone.
There’s already a huge amount of hype about the Lorac Pro 2, so it’s about to get reviewed absolutely to death now that people’s Ulta orders are arriving. I’m incredibly excited too (I mean, I pressed the checkout button at 12:30AM on the release day), but I’ll attempt to take a deep breath and a step back here, and stay objective with my first impressions here.
The packaging for Pro2 is identical to the original, aside from the color (light grey instead of black). It’s a sturdy cardboard case with a soft-touch finish, and a mirror lining the inside of the lid. Personally I think the mirror is a bit too small to be very usable, but it’s very rare for me to use the mirror in the palette anyway, since I carry a folding one with me when I travel. The palette is very slim and light, which is good for portability, but it’s unusually long for an eyeshadow palette – so long that it won’t fit in the zip pouches of my travel organizer. If you use a larger makeup bag that shouldn’t be an issue. Obviously I haven’t had time to test this one fully for travel-worthiness, but I’ve taken the Pro1 with me biking to work, on road trips and in my checked luggage on airplanes, and it’s held up to everything with just some minor wear on the corners. The Pro2 case feels exactly the same in build and materials, so my makeup crystal ball says it will probably be pretty sturdy.
Texture, application & wear
Clearly I haven’t had time to fully wear-test every single color in the palette (I just got it a few days ago), so please consider this a first impression only! If anything changes or I find any duds, I’ll post an update. If you’ve tried the Pro1, you’ll have a pretty good idea already about the texture and pigmentation of the shades in Pro2. They have an almost creamy texture (probably due to the silicone in the formula), but they are very very soft. It’s definitely possible to kick up some excess powder if you’re a little too enthusiastic about getting the product onto your brush. I saw some fallout when I tested these with a synthetic brush, but not with natural hair; that’s more of an issue with the brushes than with the eyeshadows, but possibly still a good thing to know.
The pigmentation is excellent, which is a good thing since you don’t have to worry about loading up your brush too much and then dropping shadow everywhere. The ones I’ve worn have applied evenly and blended smoothly. The only exception to that so far has been the shade Navy; it feels a little more dry and stiff than the other mattes, and has a tendency to go on a bit patchy. It’s not terrible at all, but it does take a tiny bit more work than the others. The mattes in general feel a little more dry than the shimmer shades. The shimmers have a finish that’s somewhere between pearl and metallic, but without obviously glitter particles.
Wear time for the ones I’ve tried so far is great. Over NARS primer (the Lorac one just doesn’t control oil quite enough for me in the summer), I only had very minimal creasing after 9 hours and that was at the very deepest part of my hooded lids.
Colors & comparisons
The palette comes with 16 neutral and color shades – 8 mattes and 8 shimmers, with .02oz/.57g each. The palette also comes with a .19oz/5.6ml tube of the Lorac Behind the Scenes Eye Primer. The mattes are:
Buff- a buttery cream shade. It looks very yellow in the swatch, but shows up as a warm cream on the skin.
Light Brown- a light brown with reddish undertones
Cool Gray- medium taupey grey
Nectar- medium muted warm pink
Plum- medium blue-toned muted purple
Navy- deep blue with a slightly turquoise lean
Charcoal- exactly what it sounds like – the color of cooled coals
Black- deep blackened grey
And the shimmers:
Snow- mother-of-pearl white
Beige- light beige shimmer
Rosé- coppery rose gold
Mocha- medium red-toned bronze
Chrome- medium grey with a lavender pull
Silver- light, bright silver
Jade- deep blackened green. For whatever reason, it reminds me of dinosaur skin.
Cocoa- deep neutral brown
I’m sure a lot of people will be wondering about the similarity between the original Pro palette and the new one, so here ya go. I’ve swatched photographed/swatched them in the same order that they’re lined up in the palette.
The only repeat shade from the first palette is Black, but even that isn’t a totally identical dupe – the version in the Pro 2 palette comes off more as a very dark grey than the deep, inky black from the original Pro palette. I’m not sure if that’s intentional, or maybe a variation in manufacturing processes. I consider it a welcome change anyway, since the Black shade from the original palette comes off a bit harsh against my skintone and is incredibly easy to overdo. The new softer black version is a bit easier to work with.
I also noticed as I was swatching these that some of the shades in the Pro 2 palette seemed pretty damn similar to some colors that I got in the Lorac Dazzling Dozen set a while back. I double-checked and while there aren’t any repeats (meaning, no shades with the same names), some of them were definitely close in color.
When I swatched them, even though they were close, they weren’t exact dupes at all. Light Brown was more pink-toned than Smokin, and Navy looks pretty green-toned compared to Sapphire. Au Naturel is much whiter-toned than Beige, and Rosé is slightly more golden/coppery than Serenity. Mocha and Bronze were the closest, I thought, though Mocha isn’t as warm. Even though these aren’t exact color dupes, the browns and bronzes are close enough that you could probably use them interchangeably.
I love that the shades in the Pro 2 palette are so different from the original one. They’ll be flattering on a wide range of skin tones, and it has a nice split between light/mid-tone/deep shades. I know the big question is going to be “do you really need both?” Well, the shades in both palettes will work well together and there’s not much overlap at all. I guess need is a pretty relative term, but I think they’re both worth having if you like Lorac’s eyeshadow formula. I know some folks aren’t a fan of the soft texture, and if that’s you then you won’t want this. The color shades included make it more versatile than some all-neutral palettes (like the various iterations of Urban Decay Naked) since you can easily make office-appropriate or evening-out looks. If you missed out on the Dazzling Dozen collection, then this is a good replacement for at least some of those shades.
This post is already seriously long, so I’ll be doing some looks with the Pro 2 palette in the near future. If you have any requests, please let me know!
The Lorac Pro Palette 2 ($42) is available at Nordstrom