Monday, July 27th, 2009

NARS Cosmetics – Duo Eyeshadows – Swatches

More important than product photos are swatches, of course!  Who cares how pretty it looks in the pan if it doesn’t look as pretty on the skin, right?  So we bring you swatches of all of duo eyeshadows (including the cream duos).  Which are your favorites? Do you have any?  Which do you have?

Where to Buy:

Check out the product photos

Thebes, Unconditional Love

Unconditional Love, Summertime

Madagascar, All About Eve

All About Eve

All About Eve, Kilimanjaro

Tokyo, Windstar

Tokyo, Windstar

Belissima (right)

Iceland, Heaven

Heaven, Alhambra

Hula Hula, Portobello

Portobello, Wicked

Sandra, Sugarland

Sugarland, Madrague

Kalahari, April Fool’s

April Fool’s, Key Largo

Earth Angel, Bohemian Gold

Bohemian Gold, Surabaya

Egea, Misfit

Sea, Sex, & Sun, Persepolis

Persepolis, Stage Beauty

Charade, Star Sailor

Star Sailor, South Pacific

Cheyenne, Isolde

Isolde, Brazil

Mediteranee, Balthazar

Balthazar, Cordura

Scorching Sun, Caravaggio

Caravaggio, Bysance

Divine, Belly Dance

Belly Dance, Elsa

Island Fever, Cleo

Cleo, Pandora

Paris, Habanera

Habanera, Jezebel

Rated R, Jolie Poupee

Jolie Poupee, Blade Runner

Violetta, Demon Lover

Demon Lover, Underworld

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77 thoughts on “NARS – Duo Eyeshadows – Swatches

  1. Christina

    My favorite duo is Rated R and Misfit. The prettiest greens ever!

  2. Kelsey

    truthfully, there doesn’t appear to be anything special about NARS shadows. i’ve never experienced the formula, but colour-wise, i can get the same colour from a different brand a helluva lot cheaper. however, their blushes are to die for. 😀

    • brenda k

      Agreed, the colours appear to be easily duplicated by other, however the formula/pigmentation is by far superior to MAC and others. Super smooth, buttery and so pigmented a little goes a LOOOONNNNG way :)

    • They’re very smooth, finely milled shadows — they kind of have a velvety texture to them. I don’t necessarily feel they’re worth $22 and $32, but they are very nice. I think, technically, they’re cheaper by the gram, but that argument never sways me, since I recognize I am unlikely to finish 99% of eyeshadows I own.

  3. Macaddict

    I think the last 2 pics are of the same 2 duos…

  4. LannetKrystle

    I’m all about Misfit & Divine. I think i could live with just those 2 out of the NARS duos! Carravaggio looks very dupable, but the colors are pretty :)

  5. Beautiful! Thank you for doing these. I don’t have a place to swatch NARS for myself around here and I want to get a couple duos. Now I can see better which ones I want to get… umm… all of them? Haha.

  6. I have so many nars shadows, but I feel like I NEVER reach for them….if I do use any I use the cream shadows a lot more…

  7. Melody

    OMG!! I want all of them :) they’re so pretty
    I want the Persepolis one specially :) cause I’m Persian! 😉

  8. Heather

    I like Kilimanjaro, Belissima, Iceland, Sugarland, Misfit, and Rated R!! so pretty!

  9. Janelle

    Theyre all so preeeeety.

    I love Rated R, although I probably wouldnt wear it often. I’d just sit there and stare at the pretty colours in the pan

  10. Wilcoa

    Lemming central! I’ve turned away from these for a while, but I think I might have to get a few the next time I’m in Sephora ;P

  11. That Rated R, Jolie Poupee is sooo pretty. I’ve never tried anything NARS but it’s on my ‘to-do’ list.

  12. Shyradynne

    i wish i could have all of them!
    haha i would love that

  13. Brenda

    I have Brazil which i love the texture but find it too dark/red for me..but I’ve made a list of 13 I want!!! Oh, i’d go and buy them right now if I wasn’t moving this weekend!!

  14. cloudburst

    I really regret not picking up Sugarland when Sephora had there 15% off. Next time!

  15. I love swatching them at Sephora, the formula is so smooth. But I’ve never picked up a duo (or a single for that matter) because I’m so used to my palettes that imagine that I’d hardly ever reach for it.. and that’s just too much money to gather dust.

  16. Mariana

    Hi Christine,

    I would love to try these but I have so many other eyeshadows. Would you be able to tell me what MAC dupes for Kalahari and Habanera would be? If I don’t have something dupeable I might have to buy these two!!


    • Bronze/Patina for Kalahari. Habanera doesn’t have any great dupes by MAC. The green side is similar to Aquavert, which was LE.

    • Queentut

      Mariana, I hope you broke down and purchased the Habanera! I just bought it and although I was petrified of the green shade I found that the dark purple has flecks of the same green in it and they combine beautifully! I use Urban Decay 24/7 liner in Crash which is a dark shimmery plum color to really make it pop. Buy the’s soo worth it!

  17. DJ

    In my experience, NARS shadows are gorgeous. I have been wearing NARS since 1997/98. My observation about the eyeshadows:

    1) they can be applied softly or with more intensity

    2) The shimmery ones can be used by older women (my mom, who is in her 60s, wears all textures from Nars and it never looks bad, the frosts are very fine)

    3) when they fade, they actually look even more gorgeous–they melt with your skin. I actually like how my eye makeup looks at the end of the day, even when it is ‘worn’ looking.

    4) even though the shadows are ‘duos’, each side can be used together to make a third complementary colour that is just as gorgeous and useful.


    • Definitely see you’re a long time NARS fan, DJ 😉 What are your must-haves?

      • DJ

        my personal must haves (but I am a pale neutral/warmish toned person with dyed auburn hair and dark brown eyes)

        All about Eve duo
        Kalahari duo
        Blade Runner duo
        Artic duo (if it still exists, it might not)
        thebes cream e/s duo

        (I have other must haves in other categories…of course haha)

        these are all very neutral, I realize that.

        I do use very colourful shadows, and own South Pacific (I wear it with goldfinger single e/s) and Divine (<–use the hot pink side wet, line your eyes with a wider than normal line, then use a soft black liner on top,and lower, and waterline, with a finer line–heaven!).

        I guess I think that the strength of NARS is in the softness. Perhaps not ideal for some people.

        There are some cons–I had no luck with the lighter side of India Song, but the brown side is amazing. Stage Beauty, a similar story..the coppery side amazing, the lighter side, not so much–for *me*. Misfit was too chalky for me personally, but used wet is fantastic. I don’t own any of the cream shadow singles, because the few I have tried did crease–but I haven’t ruled out trying again.

        love the blog and love seeing all the MUFE, Nars, and Mac stuff. I personally love the reviews. keep up the great work!

        • Thanks for your great input, DJ! Can you use them wet without any ill effects? I find some powder shadows get a “wet spot” and it’s totally gross to me, lol!

          And thank you for your support!

          • DJ

            so funny–yeah, the ‘wet spot’ skeeves me out too!
            …but I stick to one area, and just deal with it. lol

            You could use a mixing medium or fix+ instead of water. I have the old smashbox converter liquid that I used to mix shadow on the back of my hand.

            Forgot to say that the Rated R duo does tend to fade (on me) but I haven’t tried wearing it over a paint pot lately. I think wearing a base does help with all shadows, though.

            I have been using my Modern Love palette every day, basically. In my years of using Nars, I had never purchased a palette but this one seemed too good to pass up. It is gorgeous.

            ok, will get off my little Nars podium for today.

  18. Sarah

    I was wondering if anyone knew why Blade Runner is sold pretty much everywhere but Sephora?

  19. thank you so much for posting these, they help a ton

  20. Ashley

    Does anyone know of good mac dupes for Alhambra??


  21. Sonita

    these are awesome swatches! thanks so much. i’m totally eyeing misfit, sugarland, cleo, windstar, kilimanjaro, and unconditional love :)

  22. jolenz

    I’ve been NARS eyeshadows for a while..and last night I finally caved and picked up a duo. I bought Habanera…It was the last box on the shelf. So glad I picked it up because I love the color combo. My next purchase will be Rated R, Underworld, Charade, Jezebel, Kalahari and Cleo.Not all at once but maybe once a month.

  23. I find that NARS light (beige/white) eye shadows tend to be blotchy on me, but I do love the other colors. I will say that Sugarland’s purple side is a bust, make sure you use an appropriate base (one with a similar color), but the champagne side is much better.

  24. Lisa

    Thank you SO MUCH FOR THIS!!! With being in the UK and not actually having a Nars counter in my hometown, i’ve found it super hard to pick what kind of eyeshadows I would like, the only thing i’ve had to go on is some youtube haul vids. But now anytime I want some new Nars colours I can come to this page and pick out the ones I want to order online! I’ve just ordered the Hula Hula duo and a multiple duo! Thank you again you’ve made my day! 😀

  25. Nicole

    hey christine,
    thanks for the swatches! do you know a possible dupe for the green side of Misfit? i’m in love with that color, but not the price :/

  26. I’ve gotta say NARS is good at naming their products. They sound so exotic (sometimes a little racy ie. “Orgasm”) and it’s really become characteristic of NARS – really sets them apart in terms of naming.

    I’m loving Persepolis, South Pacific & Scorching Sun. Do you think there are any good dupes by the MAC permanent line???

    I’d rather not break the bank unless the colours were unique.

    • Persepolis – Shimmermoss/Deep Truth (Shimmermoss is not a great dupe for the lighter aqua shade)
      South Pacific – Aquadisiac / Moon’s Reflection
      Nothing comparable to Scorching Sun.

  27. lauralikesmakeup

    NARS eyeshadows might be appealing if they weren’t so unpigmented. :( There are only a few colors that true to what you see in the pan. It’s a shame. :(

  28. Rosanna

    How does MAC Vex & Vellum compare to the NARS Iceland duo?

    NARS seem to have a more opaque white base to it.

  29. Blue

    Oh my lord, I want Rated R so badly! I just love the colors!

  30. Queentut

    Nars is just the best cosmetic brand as far as color pigmentation, wear and a little goes a long way so they last FOREVER! I own Habanera, Brazil, Kalahari, Surabaya, Angel Eyes, and Kuala Lumpur. I’m dying to get the Carvaggio next!

  31. Marina

    Christine, do you think Kalahari would be a good neutral duo using the lighter one all over the lid and the darker shade in the crease? Or is there a better one? I would like to just buy one neutral everyday duo! I’d get them all….but they are so expensive!

    • corinne

      silk road is an excellent every day neutral duo but it works especiallyw ell for people who have pink undertones, I wear the dark colour all over the lid and up a little over my crease and then the lighter colour as my brow highlight and for a bit of brightness on the inner corner of my eyes. Looked fabulous and i took a nap in it and it was as if i just put it on haha!

  32. corinne

    I just got NARS silk road in the mail today, extatic with it, i got the naked palette and most of the nudes are too yellow toned for my skin, i needed something rosey being extremely severe (pale as heck irish skin and dark hair) and silk road is working perfectly for a neutral eye. My next purchases will be persepolis and blade runner and possibly underworld. thank you for the swatches christine

  33. Sarah

    LOVE your reviews! What is the best MAC dupe for Demon Lover and Cordura? :)