Review: Viseart Eyeshadow Palettes
Well, I wanted to give these a good thorough testing before I reviewed them, and I think it’s safe to say I’ve had plenty of time – after all, I originally posted swatches of the Bridal Satin & Paris Nudes palettes a little over a year ago (yikes!). In the meantime I’ve also picked up their Theory palette in Cashmere and decided that no really, it is time. And after 12 months of using them I still have mixed feelings.
Urban Decay Naked 3 for scale
Viseart is a brand geared toward professional makeup artists, so it’s not a bad thing when I say the packaging for these palettes is very no frills. The 12-pan palettes come lightweight plastic palettes that don’t waste any space. Normally I like packaging that has some weight behind it – so I don’t accidentally brush it off the table, if nothing else – but of course if you’re toting a massive makeup collection on site with you, you want that stuff to be light as it can. The layout doesn’t leave much separation between the colors, but the pans are big enough to fit even my biggest eyeshadow brushes. The covers are clear so it’s easy to grab the right one. While I’m sure the flat rectangle layout is perfect for stacking in professional kit, the palettes are a little wide to easily fit in my travel bag. Between that and the color selections (more on that below), these are a strictly at-home product for me.
The Theory palette is a little different – I feel like these were Viseart’s foray into palettes for the everyday user. It comes in a wraparound cardboard packaging with a slightly rubberized surface. It’s also very compact. In fact, for some reason I was surprised at how small it is (about the size of a typical eyeshadow quad compact) even though the pans are the same size as the ones in the 12-pan palettes. One nice thing about it is the pans are removable, so if you like to de-pot your eyeshadows you can take them out without destroying the packaging and put them back later. I’ve been a little afraid of the pans popping out accidentally, but so far I haven’t dropped it, and the magnet that closes the cover is pretty secure.
Again with the “pro artist” thing. Each of the 12-pan palettes has a very cohesive feel, but there’s not really enough contrast between the shades in each palette to create a lot of different looks. If you’ve got several of the palettes, sure – you’ll have a great range of warms/cools, darks/lights, satins/mattes, enough to do whatever you feel like. But you need to draw from several palettes to do it, which at $80 a pop is a lot of money to spend. On the plus side, the shades all have really good payoff and don’t appear flat or chalky.
The Cashmere palette is a little more friendly for everyday use. The mixture of mattes and shimmers with a light, midtone and dark shade for each is everything I want an eyeshadow palette to be.
Considering we’re looking at 30 different eyeshadows here, I’m glad to say the texture and performance is remarkably consistent between colors. That apparently is tough to pull off (based on my past experience with lots of other brands), and inconsistent quality within the same range of products is a MASSIVE pet peeve of mine. For the majority of the shimmers, the texture is really smooth and the colors have good coverage. There are a couple of exceptions – the lightest ivory in Bridal Satin is a bit sheer, and the light peach shade in Paris Nudes (top row, 3rd from the left) is a bit gritty and has some fallout. The dark charcoal in Bridal Satin has a great texture, but it isn’t quite as opaque and rich as the others.
I’m not losing my mind over the mattes in the Cashmere palette. They’re good, but good in the way any well-done matte formula is, not OMG IT’S INFUSED WITH UNICORN FARTS good. You know? They’re smooth, don’t have a lot of fallout and most importantly, they blend easily without getting patchy or blending away.
In Short: Objectively these are really nice eyeshadows. I think the 12-pan palettes are more suited for professional use due to the packaging, color selections & price, but I think everyone should check out the smaller Theory palettes.
Viseart Eyeshadow Palette ($80/each) and Theory Palette ($45) are available at Sephora
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