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What’s a better value to you: palettes or singles? Why?

I think palettes tend to be a better value for me, because I’ll often reach for and use whatever is in a palette than I will dig out five different singles across brands. That being said, one REALLY great, go-to single product may be something I use more often than any palette, but this is usually more common with basics like an everyday blush, brow bone shade, etc.

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51 Comments

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Profile photo of Nancy T

For me, I would say that a palette, especially a well edited one, gives me more bang for my buck. Although, in a larger palette, there are bound to be at least a few that rarely or never get used. Only 2 exceptions; UD Spectrum and Lorac Unzipped.
That said, when I do buy a single, it means I put a lot of thought into it, how I’d use it, what it goes with, and most important of all; that I really love it ! Be it a $5 CP or a $29 Nars DI e/s, I picked it because I just had to have it.

A palette is often better value for me. I tend to buy eyeshadow palettes or have singles within a palette. If they are stand alone, I rarely give thought to them. I am less likely to buy a palette of blushes or highlighters unless the product range suits my skin tone and preferences. I’m more cognizant of single packaging for blush, bronzers, highlighters, finishing powders, etc. That said, I do appreciate when I can find products containing more than one item and in a shade range that I can wear: bronzer + highlighter, 2 blushes + highlighter, 3 finishing powders or 3 blush.

Profile photo of Julie

For me, usually singles. I think it’s because I’m cool toned. I only have 1 or 2 palettes that I can make a complete look with. And for me, I hate having to dig out singles to use with a palette…it seems to kind of defeat the purpose, I guess? So I end up using singles about 90% of the time. I think that if I were warmer toned, I might have better luck, since there seems to be more, and better quality, options!

Julie, this is my problem too on finding a cool neutral palette, I feel like “my kind of” palette isn’t born yet.

Palettes for eyeshadow and singles for everything else. Palettes are a better value and even if there are a couple shades I never reach for they’re still cheaper than buying singles in the other shades. It’s also easy to blend colours and create custom shades that could incorporate those less than flattering colours.
I’m particular about lipstick and blush shades and its definitely more sensible to choose individual shades for these. I wouldn’t buy a blush palette for only a couple of colours and I wouldn’t force myself to wear a colour that looks terrible on me just to get my money’s worth. Ditto for lipsticks.

Profile photo of Pearl

Palettes for me! I love eye shadow and having them de-potted and in ready-to-go palettes helps me rotate my stash and make use of what I have. My favorite eye shadows are MAC extra dimension but I don’t use them as much because it’s easier to grab a palette (can’t de-pot an extra dimension product, at least not that I know of, so they all sit in their original pots in a tub in another area). My favorite palettes are the MAC x 15 or MAC x 9 palettes because they have all the finishes and colors for coordinated looks, great price (now) and are easy to store.

At this point, singles are the better value because I own so much that I’m bound to get overlap when I buy a palette. It has to feature truly unique shades or be extremely versatile to be worthwhile in that regard.

Profile photo of Rachel R.

It depends on the item. For eyeshadows, it’s almost always palettes. I’m a eye palette fanatic. I like having everything in one place to do an eye look. I’ve depotted all of my singles that I can into Zpalettes, or else I find them too hard to keep track of.

Blush, face, and highlighter palettes are usually not the best value for me. A lot of them will have shades that are too dark for me. If I can wear most or all of the shades, a palette is a better deal. If I can’t, I’m usually better off buying just a single or two that I’ll actually use. Again, I depot most of my singles into Zpalettes, so I can manage them better.

Profile photo of Fran

The best value for me are make-your-own palette systems where there’s so kind of discount for buying more than one shade at a time — that way I use all the shades that I get, without paying the full higher price of singles.

I think palettes are often a great value for people who look great in warm neutrals and peach, golden, and pink/reddish-purple/burgundy tones, since the vast majority of palettes focus on/contain them. Since I can wear at least some of those shades, they can work for me… but, many contain too many shadows that I’d rarely use, and then singles start to look a lot more attractive, value-wise, since that way I get only shades I love and are especially flattering on me (more ashy beiges and browns, silvers, grays, greens, blues and blue-violets).

Palettes are better value for me because I’ve got a wide range of shades to use and fall in love with. If you buy one without having it in a palette first you might find you’re not that into it! They’re probably good value if, say, you buy the palette and run out of a couple shades because you’re using them so much.

Elese | elesedowden.com

Profile photo of Mariella

So much depends on what’s in the palette. As someone who loves neutrals and less “outrageous” brights, there are some palettes out there that are chock full of shadows I’d never wear so they’re not a great value but something like Lorac’s Pro or UD’s Naked palettes are an awesome “bargain”. Best of all is something like Buxom’s customizable palettes or even MUFE’s shadows where the price drops considerably if you buy 3 shadows at a time (and they throw in the “empty” palette to hold them for free).. That’s what really gives me the best value for money. I wish MAC would do the same – if you buy 4 Pro Pan shadows, for example, you save a bit on each of them and get the empty thrown in for good measure. But at least in Canada, MAC never offers “deals” like that.

Profile photo of Wwendy

I used to be dedicated to singles or only palettes I had created from my own choices of shadows, but over the last year, I find myself using pre-made palettes more and more. Value wise, it is a bit of a wash for me because rarely do I use more than 50% all of the shadows in one pre-made, whereas, for my custom palettes, I tend to use all of the shadows.

In terms of cost per wear, definitely singles for me. I have to admit that I’m not very adventurous when it comes to eyeshadow.

Defninitely singles. I have tried palettes and I always end up using one or two shades and the rest just goes to waste. My last palette purchase was the UD Nakes Smokey and I only use 2 shades out of it. I’ve tried every shade in the palette and they just don’t work for me. I usually return items like this but I kept it and I’ve sworn off palettes for good. I’ve only been shopping for singles lately.

Profile photo of Diane

Single eyeshadow (except the kat von d contour eye palette) simply because there are always a few color that i dislike or it cannot suits me ( i’m nw50) so it’s not rare !

Profile photo of Alecto

Well, I’d have to say singles, since that’s 99% of what I have. However, I’m working on depotting my singles and pressing some (most) of my loose shadows to put as much as possible into Book of Shadows palettes, since it’s easier for me to come up with an eye look if I can take in the whole array of colors in one glance.

I would say singles are a better value bc I will use them and I can get more unique shades.Plus I am more interested in adding to what I already have. Palettes have little value to me bc I don’t wear more than one or two shades!

Singles for me. I have my go to’s for eyes, lips and cheeks, and I don’t like feeling of wasting (not using up) a product, which always happens for me. Also, I’ve had the experience of falling in love with a color in a palette, to find it’s unavailable as a single or is limited edition — a bummer. Going to look into ‘make your own’ palettes, though, now that I know about them.

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