Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Video Review/Demo: Urban Decay Build Your Own Palette System

You asked for it, so here it is! :) I hope I covered everything!

P.S. — If the blush looks heavy, that’s because it is — I was testing out of the wear of a new cheek product. In order to see how well it wears and how much it fades throughout the day, it’s infinitely easier when I can make notes over a 6-10 hour period on how fast and how much it has faded that way!  I can only test one cheek product for wear per day, so I have to multi-task as much as I can!

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57 thoughts on “Video Review/Demo: Urban Decay Build Your Own Palette System

  1. while there seems to be a lot of buzz around these new customizable UD palettes, i’m shocked by the price tag! one of the reasons i don’t buy individual UD shadows is because of how expensive they are. boo.

  2. Sarah

    I really hope UD cops on and lowers the price of this, give us a deal when we buy the palette + eyeshadows, something. That price tag is too hefty to consider buying.

  3. Hannah Spano

    Awww… you look beautiful Christine. I thought your makeup looked very pretty. Thank you for the informative review of the new Urban Decay formula and palette.

    I agree that the price is quite high and than to pay the same price for the palette that only hold six shadows isn’t too appealing to me. I do love that Loaded color and it might be the only color I buy. I think for the most part I’ll stick with the palettes :) Great video!

    • I’d definitely buy the singles and just keep ’em as singles. If you wanted them in palette form, then you could always do a full depot later on… or even buy a palette at some other time! :)


    • Ellie

      I agree on everything. I love loaded and may get that one only (I have plenty of ‘old’ colors).
      Christine does look super pretty with that makeup. I hope we’ll get a tutorial soon. 😉

  4. I love the palette you’ve customized! Though I would replace the lighter blue/gold duochrome with something green/teal. The palette does seem quite bulky and I don’t like the fact that there is no system of picking the refills for lesser price like MAC, Inglot and MUFE have.

  5. Melissa

    I don’t have any motivation to buy the new palette. I don’t like that if you want several palettes, you’re stuck with multiples of Walk of Shame. I also don’t like that there’s no sort of discount. I feel like I have so many of the shades already from the different palettes that I couldn’t justify $18/piece for a new formula on shades I already had. If I do find a shade I want, I’ll just stick to depotting them and popping them in a palette that holds more like the mac palettes. =\

  6. ellie

    If only someone would listen to you Christine! You are OUR voice. $100.00 for six eyeshadows! Come on, UD you’re smokin’. The market is fierce UD, sober up and get with it!

  7. Andie Szabo

    I think when you were showing the individual colors still in the regular packaging (right before you put them in the new palette and swatched them) you forgot to include Last Call. Just a little note, with editing a video that long I’m sure you just overlooked it.

    Thank you so much for your review. I really appreciate you telling us what you really think. The palette really does not make very much financial sense, which I may have overlooked without you breaking it down. Thanks Christine!

  8. nitnot

    First off, I love your eyes here! Tutorial or just a close up, please? :3

    Secondly, I think the customizable palette looks great, but as a working woman I usually do my make up when I arrive in the office, and I’d grab something like my Dangerous palette instead of a bulky thing like that. Plus, the black plastic insert looks cheap.

    Thirdly, with that price point for 6 shadows, I can get Guerlain’s Les Fumes AND Les Gris palette instead. It is 8 shadows against 12, but with the packaging, the mix of finishes, I’d really go for 2 Guerlain 4 couleurs. And I’ll still have some change! Also here, a few times a year Guerlain offers up to 20% discount for purchase over $100. By no means am I saying Guerlain is better than UD, but Guerlain is as high end as it gets and if it comes down to *kinda* cheaper than UD.. come on. Which one would you buy?

  9. Morgueanna

    The palette is thicker than most other palettes because they give you so much more PRODUCT in a single eyeshadow. People are commenting about how you get such a good deal in their prebuilt palettes and you do get the variety, but I don’t think anyone here has actually bought a single Urban Decay shadow before- they’re deep and big! I can wear a color every day for a year and still not use it all.

    • Actually, they’re almost the same size – for instance, the Naked palette is famous because they are full-sized eyeshadows – exactly the same size if you bought them individually.

  10. annie shebuski

    Christine, I can’t imagine what we would do without you! Shame on UD for that pricetag. Your video is great. And, LOL – first thought I had was “wow, BLUSH!!!”

    You funny girl, keep up the great work!

  11. Jessica


    If I wanted to depot the Urban Decay eyeshadows into a Mac Palette, how easy are they to remove from the plastic insert? I’m scared I’ll end up digging my fingernails into the shadow! Thank you for the video.

  12. Wow I went from excited about this to crushed. As someone thats purchased every large pre-made palette from UD in the last few years I’m not even slightly tempted to buy singles at this price point and configuration. I think that when you have a reputation for amazingly beautiful larger palettes for a somewhat decent price per shadow when you try to do something like this your loyal fans aren’t going to buy in. There is NO deal here.

    • Carrie

      There really isn’t! Their palettes are comparably priced to say, Inglot, but then their individual pans are closer to MUFE. Talk about sticker shock! I have a feeling I’m not the person who plans to stick to side products like the 24/7 pencils instead.

  13. Vana

    You’re beautiful even with this heavy blush!!! ;D

  14. Mari

    can you put urban decay eyeshadows in a mac pallete. Like just take out the pan and put it in the mac pallete??

  15. queenfrostine

    Given that I’m relatively comfortable depotting MAC and Urban Decay shadows the “old school” way, I can’t imagine buying into UD’s new palette system. Building palettes to me is as much about saving space as it is about organizing, and it doesn’t look to me as if moving the UD singles into an UD palette saves any space at all. If there was some sort of value incentive, I might give the palettes a whirl, but when I have to pay $18 for the bulky palette? No thanks. You’d think at least they could run a special where if you pay 5 or 6 six eye shadows at once, you get a free palette. That likely still wouldn’t be enough for me as when I build my own palettes I usually do it a few eyeshadows at a time, but it’d still be something!

  16. Sydney

    Ridiculous pricing. I will not use this system. The idea of having 5 or 6 of the pots lying around really turns me off. It’s not environmentally friendly at all. Urban Decay earned huge success for themselves by putting 12 eyeshadows in sleek, efficient packaging with the Naked Palettes and putting a great price on it. It blow my mind that they would go so far in the opposite direction. What on earth are they thinking?

  17. xtina

    I like your review. You’re very practical and objective. I think it’s easy for people to get sucked into the hype of something new, but you’re sophisticated enough to see past the gimmicks. I agree with you that the design does look bulky. I’m also not sure that I see a usefulness to having the ability to move the eyeshadow back and forth from the single shadow compact to a 6 pan compact, especially when the compact is that bulky. It doesn’t look like there’s any advantage size-wise to putting the shadows in a 6 pan compact versus taking 6 individual compacts.

    I was bummed that they didn’t do any yellows, and that they didn’t include hot pants in their new line up. I think it’s funny that Mildew is now a duo chrome and they didn’t mention that as being a formula revamp. Maybe I’m just really old, but I had purchased a mildew eye shadow when their packaging was just a circular metal tin that said “urban decay” in black on the front, but that mildew eye shadow I had from 1998 was a veluxe pearl kind of finish green. Definitely not a duo chrome. It seems like their overall color palette has become a bunch of boring neutrals with lots of shimmer, and a few stand outs in the blue-purple spectrum.

    Can you compare some eye shadows in the old formula to those in the new formula? I’d just like to see if there’s really that much of a difference. My hunch is that there isn’t, but a side by side comparison would be awesome!

    • Hi Xtina!

      Nope – it actually takes up MORE space, because you have all the empty pots plus the palette, haha! I’m also surprised there’s no more gold or yellow in the line, and the lack of a light pink seems weird, too. I agree that it seems like they rolled in a surprising amount of neutrals into the line.

      In the post below the video review, I compared the old vs. new for 4 of the 6 shades I’ve tried so far (Chase was always new formula, as was Walk of Shame, and I didn’t have the original Shattered). HTH!

  18. bxboricua

    i had stopped buying Urban Decay palettes because they had a bunch of repeats and a bunch of glitter bombs. This new packaging with its hefty price tag won’t encourage me to buy this palette either. (Although I will buy Mushroom in its individual pot packaging.)

  19. YellowLantern

    Thanks for the video, I’m glad you explain the pros and cons of these palettes while ignoring the “Oooo shiny new product” feeling (I admit sometimes I fall prey to that feeling) that can make us overlook obvious shortcomings.

  20. Carrie

    Thank you for your honesty!

    I was feeling kind of meh to begin with, but the more I see the more I’m just completely turned off by this. I really wish they’d listened to you at least on some of this because you had so many valid points. While I get that by then it was too late to really go back on at least the packaging, I can’t help but feel like this is just overall a huge miss.

    The color selections are meh. Urban Decay was one of the few brands that were reliable providers of colorful and unique shades, it feels like they’re trying to go mainstream and safer.

    The palette is too bulky – do they ever actually talk to women when they design these things? You need ridiculously big bathrooms to store all their stuff!

    The biggest is the price. I know they’ve kind of shot themselves in the foot with their value palettes, but even beyond that, $20 is just too much money for what it is. Honestly, if I was going to spend $120 I’d rather get a filled 20 pan palette from Inglot – it’d cost the same!

    I still have a few singles from them and I may supplement my collection with one or two more shades that I have my eye on, but on the whole I’m just feeling let down.

    • Yes, I really do think having all of those palettes with tremendous value has made it VERY difficult for people to buy individual eyeshadows at full price, let alone create their palettes at that price point as well. You could, theoretically, own a good chunk of the core shades just by buying the past 3-4 palettes!

  21. It’s almost like they aren’t palettes to store your shadows in, but to use when you’re going places – so you can pop in a bunch of neutrals one time and then something for evening looks another time. Which seems pointless to me! I’d rather have a MAC palette, with a simple design that maximises the amount of pans you can put in, than a chunky tin that only holds six. And every time you buy one you get a shade that you probably don’t even want, especially not three or maybe four times over! I don’t know, I’m pretty disappointed with this.

  22. With It

    Hey Christine,
    Thanks for the great videa-really informative! :)
    Is UD going to continue releasing pre-made palettes as they have in the past or is this going to be the only way to make a UD palette in the near future?
    If so, that’s really sad! :(

  23. Laura

    Thanks for the breakdown, so not into it! What is that blush? It’s heavy, yes, but so dewy! Did you do something special to get it like that?

  24. Lizzi

    Wow… I hope this comes back to bite UD in the butt. Poor marketing decision to not do any kind of discount for creating a palette. Doing the 15 MAC eyeshadow palette costs me $188, where buying 15 individual ones would cost $225. I do like the new subway token design for the individuals compared to the old, but I’m not liking the way UD has been heading in the last year or so. They have been continuously raising prices more and more. I started buying the UD liners at $16 each but they are now $19. And they’re doing that for many of their products. Funny, my makeup obsession started with them, but this is the last straw and I’m no longer purchasing their products. I will use what I have but that’s it. I’m done with this brand.

  25. Coco

    Hey Christine,

    Will they still have the discontinued shades in the “vintage” eyeshadows?

  26. Allison

    So what was the point of inviting you to look at give feedback for their product if they were just going to ignore you?

    I’m really hoping this is some early April Fool’s joke or something.

    Honestly, I’m insulted. Last year I bought 15 full-size eyeliners from UD for $100 and the BOS4 with 16 full-size shadows, a full-size liquid eyeliner, with a mini mascara and primer potion. I spent $129 total on those two products, but for three dollars less I can buy just six eye shadows? Ok let me rephrase this… so for 3.5 times more money than I spent on the vegan palette, I can own the same amount of eyeshadows. Am I supposed to be jumping up and down? Their math makes no sense!

  27. Carly

    I agree. I had sent them an email last year about making their own customizable palettes (like MAC but stylish) and was disappointed with this bulky thing. It’s good for people who aren’t pursuing the business or a palette for when I stay at my bf’s but I won’t ever buy it..I’m so glad you mentioned that the formula was the same as the newer palettes! I was so curious about that.

  28. Miss J

    I really would love to know how much the palette is going to cost because UD web site states that $18 is the SHORT TERM PRICE. So, it’s eventually going to be more expensive to buy their empty palette. WTF?! I don’t want your damn Walk of Shame or sucky eye shadow brush! Even without the “extras”, why would a 6 pan palette be more expensive than ones that actually hold more??? I do think the palette is cute, but I don’t think it’s that great for someone who would want multiple palettes. I do think the individual pots are an improvement in packaging since they look more sleek. I don’t I hate the new changes necessarily, but I think the price point is ridiculous, and I don’t get their thought process. I feel mixed about the new changes. Initially, I was excited, but then more thoughts started to roll in that made me question it.

  29. I appreciate you being dedicated enough to us that you think it’s ridiculous to pay $126 for only six full-size eyeshadows. :) Despite getting the palette free and all. Just reason #2934873 why you rock, Christine!

  30. Heather

    Christine you’re so feisty in this video, I love it!

  31. Thu

    Request (and I apologize if this has already been addressed): It looks like there are two deluxe shadows that made it into the new permanent line (Fishnet and Peace). Do you know how similar the new versions are to the previous ones, in terms of shade/color?

  32. Claire

    Great review :) I thought it was a good idea if you want an all matte palette or an all vegan one but don’t like their vegan palette, but I think you’re right. Compared to others it’s bulky and doesn’t hold a lot. A while ago I committed what you could call sacrilege and tore up my Alice and NYC books of shadows ant put them in a Z-Palette. Best thing I’ve ever done!:D

    • Thu

      I did that too, to all my BOSes. It made me better able to access all the colors I wanted, since it was impractical to have two or three of them open at the same time.

      • Claire

        Yes, as cute as the packaging is, it’s frustratingly impractical. I use the eye shadows much more often now too :)

  33. Krista

    So excited with this! Would they eventually change the formulations of their palettes as well? I would love to repurchase another Naked 2 with the reformulated version. :)

  34. Sarah

    Thanks for your HONEST opinion! I already purchased the palette and one new shadow, but may have to return depending on what I think once I get it! Everything you said makes total sense though, and it sucks that UD didn’t listen to your honest opinion, especially since they say they make a lot of their decisions based on their customers’ reviews/opinions.

  35. T'halia

    Christine, it’s so nice to see you in front of the camera! I feel like it really connects you to us as your audience.

  36. Cait

    Lol the 50 dollar price tag of the naked palettes doesn’t seem so huge anymore.

    $126 for 6 eyeshadows or $50 for 12 hmmmmmmmmm

  37. GiegieLuv

    Thank you for the time, thought and effort that you put into your reviews. And thanks especially for your honest opinions.

    About the product. Urban Decay is my favorite brand, but this is just silly. If they had mixed both MAC and MUFE’s good ideas together by offering single magnetized pans, and a palette that fits at least 10, it would have been one of the best custom palettes on the market. If you fill the palette when you buy it, it should be free, or at most half price. Between this and the awful gimmickyness of BOS IV, I don’t know who’s doing the thinking over there, but they need to think better.

  38. Jessica

    Thanks for the video- I will not invest in this palette for several reasons: 1. I don’t want “walk of shame” 2. The price for individual eyeshadows is much too high to fill this palette 3. I didn’t realize how bulky and impractical the packaging was until you talked about it

    If UD would have some kind of offer for this palette, and I think several different offers would sell me on this, I would buy it.

    For example:
    1. pay $18 for the palette BUT get to choose from a variety of shades instead of “walk of shame”. So maybe they would offer 10 popular shades, such as: Chopper, Graffiti, Midnight Cowboy, Baked, etc. I feel like if there were more choice in which freebie you get with the palette, it would be more appealing. Walk of shame just looks like a really standard peach color that everyone already has. I would even be willing to pay a little more, say $20 for the palette if I got to choose what color comes with it.

    2. Any sort of discount- like if you buy 2, get 1 free; or even buy 4 get the 5th one free (since walk of shame is included). I just feel like they are going to have a hard time selling this palette to people because very few are willing to shell out well over $100 for this. The only people I can imagine investing in this are people who literally wear the same make-up every day for work (teachers, business professionals, bankers, etc.), but even at $100, you could get BOTH Naked and Naked2 palettes and end up with literally 4x as many shadows!

    3. If you pay full price for 5 singles, you should just get the palette with “walk of shame” for free. I mean, come on, I know this is a business, but UD, compared with many other mid/high-end cosmetic companies, just has NO grasp on the importance most of their customers place on value. Look at Smashbox- they have the pretty points program, you always get deluxe samples, free shipping, and Let’s Do Lunch specials. Smashbox knows they have a great line of quality products, but they are willing to put out a little more money to make sure that their customers are not only able to try new products, but to also feel rewarded for buying directly from the company. Freebies are FUN and everybody likes getting them, even if we end up not liking the product itself! UD fails SO HARD on this concept, it’s really unbelievable. Honestly, who wants a little smart card with primer potion on it? Everybody has primer potion!! How about a free mini lip gloss, a travel mascara, or even a sample of the NEW eyeshadow formula that they are trying to sell anyway? I hate to rant, but UD could do so much better at reaching out to customers if they did ANY of the things I just listed. Also, they never have big promos or sales- maybe twice a year at most. And even at that, it’s only like a 20% discount and you can’t use it on some of the products, which sends customers running in the other direction.

    So that’s that- I love UD’s products but they really need work in some areas, and this palette is definitely one of them.

  39. HazelWang

    Thank you for reviewing! I have the naked2 and book of shadow 4 from urban decay and I really enjoy my naked palette. It was such a great value! So when I first saw that they were releasing this new eyeshadow and customiziable paletter I was really excited. However I had never gotten my hands on them yet because I feel that the paletter itself is way too expensive and can only hold 6 shadows. Plus I don’t need that walk of shame shadow at all. I love a lot of shadows in my naked2 palettet so maybe I will just buy some individuals shadows of them and pot them in my uni makeup palette. That way I can get more of them in one palette and uni palette is much more easy to carry around than a naked2. So NO, i won’t be purchasing the urban decay shadow palette.