We’ve already taken a look at the spring Smashbox collection, Bloom. It’s on-counter this month and is a really nice-looking line up that contains one of the season’s best palettes. We were sent one to trial, so here’s the low-down. Above is the pretty outer packaging you’ll get when you lay down €49 for the 10-pan Bloom kit.
The palette housing is a sturdy black plastic case with ten good-sized shadow pans, a large mirror in the lid plus a decent shadow brush – no sponge-tipped applicators for this beauty brand.
It contains 10 mattes and shimmers in (top row, left to right) ballet pink, lavender grey, golden pink, warm taupe, bone, (bottom row, left to right) soft violet, marine blue, shimmering copper, moss and nude.
Here’s a closeup of some of the textures and colours in the set. Shade-wise, this is a really good collection of wearable tending-towards-neutrals that offers a lot more variety than Urban Decay’s Naked Palette.
With that set, I find I use about three shades of the endlessly slightly-different browns, but this does offer you some more choice. And none of it is tangerine, lemon yellow or any other awful shade they banged in there to make up the weight. Result. These are all decent, if muted, tones.
And here’s a shot of the included brush.
So, lets take a closer look at the shades. The first four are matte and satin: we have ballet pink, lavender grey on top and soft violet and marine blue below. These are the most disappointing in pigment terms and are all relatively sheer. Textures are nice, but you won’t get a massive amount of payoff from them.
And y’know what? That’s ok. There’s value in subtlety and not everyone wants to colour in their faces: some actually seek to flatter features and prefer sheer, fine washes of colour. That’s what you’ll get from this quad of shadows.
Left to right, we have lavender grey, ballet pink, marine blue and soft violet. These are fairly heavily swatched, when applied to the back of the hand, for example, the payoff is a lot more sheer.
Next up in the palette are golden pink and warm taupe on top, with shimmering copper and moss below. This foursome puts me in mind of Mac’s Cham Pale palette, for some reason, even though there’s a green in here. These shades are all shimmers.
And here we go: shimmering copper, moss, warm taupe and golden pink. Payoff with these is more on the medium side of things.
Our last two colours are both mattes: bone and nude are the pair, and on the right you can see them on my fingers. Both seem to be a bit more intense than the first four, but not as much as the middle quad of colours.
So, what do you reckon? My take is that this isn’t a palette for a teenager or anyone who wants va-va-voom payoff. If you’re a fan of subtle tones, are looking for something that’ll be good for work or you just don’t go for madly deep colours, then you’ll get use out of this.
And it’s well priced at €49 too – the pans are all decently-sized and with ten included, you’re effectively paying €4.90 for each – a heck of a lot less than what you’d spend on a regular single Smashbox eyeshadow.