MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette ($39.50 for 0.112 oz.) is a mix of beige, brown, and black. It’s more of a neutral palette than a monochromatic mix of silver, gray, and black. This one is also heavy on the permanent shades–five of the eight are part of the permanent range. After the last few years of disappointing holiday palettes from MAC, it’s not a surprise to see this one perform so dismally. This one is a real skip, I would say, and even the permanent shades in it are nowhere near the performance of their full-sized, standalone versions.

It’s one of three, 8-pan eyeshadow palettes for the holidays. Each eyeshadow is 0.014 oz., and even though there are eight of them, it’s noticeably less than past holiday palettes. In 2012 and 2013, they were 0.14 oz., and in 2011, they contained 0.21 oz. while pricing has stayed about the same. This year’s holiday packaging is very plastic-feeling, and the “pearls” that wrap around the palette lift a bit, so I don’t know if this is going to be particularly travel-friendly as far as durability goes. Since they put eight shades into the palette, each pan is on the smaller side, though it fits a MAC 239 and 217 brush comfortably. I do not find the quality of the holiday eyeshadow palettes to be on par with the average full-sized eyeshadow.

Fancy Dress is described as a “chalky white beige [with a Matte finish].” It’s a cool-toned beige with a satin-matte finish. It had decent color payoff that was blendable on the skin. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Kid is described as a “soft beige [with a Velvet finish].” It’s a medium, subdued brown with soft, warm undertones and a mostly matte finish. It had semi-opaque color coverage with a drier consistency. It’s part of the permanent range. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Honey Lust is described as a “bronze dipped peach [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a sparkly, golden copper with darker copper sparkle. Lustre shades are sheerer, but this is even sheerer than the permanent version. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Satin Taupe #2 is described as a “taupe with silver shimmer [with a Frost finish].” It’s a warm taupe brown with a metallic sheen. It had semi-opaque color coverage, but it was so much warmer and sheerer than the permanent version. (Even warmer than the one in the Gravitas palette, which was off to me as well.) See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Forgery is described as a “sterling silver [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a sparkly, silver-white with cool undertones. Again, Lustres are designed to be sheerer shades with more sparkly finishes, but this one was sheerer than the permanent version. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Divine Rule is described as a “frosty grey mauve with silver pearl [with a Lustre finish].” It’s a warm-toned, taupe brown with a frosted sheen. It had a light sparkle, but it was less sparkly compared to the other two Lustre shades in the palette. It had better color payoff, though, and it was more in line with how the formula is supposed to be. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Noble Spirit is described as a “warm black brown [with a Satin finish].” It’s a dark brown with warm, yellow-ish undertones and a satin finish. It had a very dry, stiff consistency that yielded sheer, uneven color. See swatches of all dupes / view dupes side-by-side.

Carbon is described as an “intense black [with a Matte finish].” It’s a medium-dark black with neutral undertones and a matte finish. It’s part of the permanent range, and it’s been reviewed numerous times, so you can just view an ongoing list of dupes here.

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See more photos & swatches!

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
MAC Keepsakes/Smoky Eyes Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Fancy Dress Eyeshadow
MAC Fancy Dress Eyeshadow

MAC Fancy Dress Eyeshadow
MAC Fancy Dress Eyeshadow

MAC Kid Eyeshadow
MAC Kid Eyeshadow

MAC Kid Eyeshadow
MAC Kid Eyeshadow

MAC Honey Lust Eyeshadow
MAC Honey Lust Eyeshadow

MAC Honey Lust Eyeshadow
MAC Honey Lust Eyeshadow

MAC Satin Taupe Eyeshadow
MAC Satin Taupe Eyeshadow

MAC Satin Taupe Eyeshadow
MAC Satin Taupe Eyeshadow

MAC Forgery Eyeshadow
MAC Forgery Eyeshadow

MAC Forgery Eyeshadow
MAC Forgery Eyeshadow

MAC Divine Rule Eyeshadow
MAC Divine Rule Eyeshadow

MAC Divine Rule Eyeshadow
MAC Divine Rule Eyeshadow

MAC Noble Spirit Eyeshadow
MAC Noble Spirit Eyeshadow

MAC Noble Spirit Eyeshadow
MAC Noble Spirit Eyeshadow

MAC Carbon Eyeshadow
MAC Carbon Eyeshadow

MAC Carbon Eyeshadow
MAC Carbon Eyeshadow

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Product Availability

MAC Keepsakes Eyeshadow Palette $39.50/0.11 OZ.
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About the Reviewer

Reviewer

Christine has normal-to-dry skin with areas of dryness (cheeks, nose, and under the eyes). She has a light-medium skintone with subtle, warmer yellow undertones. Her best foundation matches include: Tarte Rainforest of the Sea in Light-Medium Neutral (best match), Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in Desert Beige 2N1, Giorgio Armani Maestro Glow in 4.0, Hourglass Warm Ivory Vanish Seamless Finish, Laura Mercier Candleglow Soft Luminous in Dusk, MAC NC20/NC25, Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Liquid in Y305 (140). For more matches, please read our full Foundation FAQ. For more information on our review process, please read our Review FAQ.

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63 Comments

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I don’t know why, but it always makes me sad to see a Mac eyeshadow palette fail… I love Mac, but Eyeshadow palettes are just not their thing, which I don’t understand because I love most of their single eye shadows…

Mac palettes circa Cult of Cherry were brilliant, I still adore my Temping and Shadowy Lady quads. With regards to this holiday palette incarnation, no thanks Mac I think I’ll stick to my fascinating Ruby palette from holiday 2008.
Ps. I can’t believe the voiolated Satin Taupe in the way that they have – it’s lke it’s a completely different colour!!

Honestly, this LOOKS like it could be a perfect neutral/”naked” type of palette that just about everyone would find a great thing to have for travel, for every day wear, for tossing into your purse to keep with you throughout the day (assuming it’s as small as it looks). It’s just a total shame that the quality isn’t there (and that Mac is awfully late to the “naked party”). I truly don’t understand why they release sub-standard products but I guess the feeling there is that their name and “stature” will carry them and, besides, “it’s a Holiday collection – the suckers will buy it no matter what”! Personally, I am buying less and less from MAC and much of that is replacing products that have been around and are part of the permanent line!

Christine, I keep meaning to ask you 2 questions about the Dupe List and checking it out now just reminded me…. FIRST – it used to be that there was information about how the dupe is different from the original right there on the page. Now, when I put in a dupe rating, I see all the tags for “how it’s different”, but there not actually there on the page itself, whereas they used to be. Now there is just the % of how close the original and the dupe are but no info on how the differ. SECOND, and it could be because I’m math challenged, but with choices of 80, 85, 90, 95 and 100%, how can an eyeshadow be 82% similar? I was just checking Divine Rule and it’s 82% similar to another shade. I can’t understand how this can be when the choices are in increments of 5%.

Hi Mariella,

Well… that’s… interesting. I see what you mean. I couldn’t possibly begin to understand why it’s not working, since there have been no changes to The Dupe List at present, so that will be something I will look into today. Especially since I see what you mean on the initial page, which are all dupes that I submitted, and I know I submitted tags for all of them (you can rate without adding tags, so some might not show).

Once people vote, it takes an average of the votes, though my vote is weighted more (because I actually compared the two in person) – so if you vote 85% and someone else votes 95%, it should average to 90%.

Thank you so much for letting me know! Now to go figure out the why.

I’m feeling sort of bad now that I’ve complicated your life even more with regard to the dupe “tags”. And the math thing – yeah, I couldn’t figure out how something could have a rating of something like 87% unless a whole lot of people, and an odd number, voted and so the average worked out to 83% or 92%. But math has never been my forte so I thought I’d ask you about it. I guess if 2 people vote 90% and 1 votes 95%, then it might give a number like 92% but just trying to figure out that little bit has given me a headache!

The tags should be fixed now! Please don’t feel bad. It was working, and then it wasn’t, and it should 🙂

I want to eventually have the amount of votes showing, BUT there is so much info/data to show that we haven’t figured out a way to present it… well. Even now, it is more cluttered than ideal!

Yay….yes, they’re back! I find them so helpful (well, I find the entire Dupe List incredibly helpful and informative too). I hope it wasn’t a difficult fix…was it just a matter of clicking a button (sort of like turning on a light)? Can you tell, I haven’t got a clue about tech stuff?

LOL!

You know how if you use a word processor, and you misspell something, a word will be underlined in red? Well, when you write a line of code, sometimes there is an error, and all the errors sit in a file. We went through some of these, and so some lines of code were altered to be “more correct” – and for that particular one, somehow it just broke it entirely instead. Once we figured that out, it was easy to put back the previous version!

I knew I’d hate Carbon (as per usual).. but I was so excited to see how the rest performed, I was very interested in this palette.. I guess I’ll save some money then!!

I hate when a palette’s deepest shades are sheer and patchy, especially in a smoky eye palette — hello, they’re integral to the overall eye look! There’s just no excuse for some poor-quality matte blacks when so many other brands do that shade so successfully. I find that often black is a low-quality “throwaway shade” in palettes (maybe the brands think, “Oh, well I guess we have to include it”) and it’s so frustrating.

Is this palette a joke? What’s wrong with MAC to actually have the audacity to release such a poor-performing palette to the masses.. i’ve seen $3 Wet ‘n Wild palettes perform 10 times better than this.

I was just thinking how that Carbon looks bad, but not in the same way as others, LOL! It doesn’t look as dry, and seems far less pigmented…

OT (sort of!), while I was playing with my Gravitas palette, I found-accidentally-Carbon works quite well with the Real Techniques Shader Brush! Granted, I do have better matte blacks, but I also have worse, and I don’t think I’ll have to pull out an additional product-as long as I have that brush! The really funny part is, I don’t much care for that brush with other shadows, and only pulled it out for swatching so I wouldn’t soil my other brushes.

When I looked at the swatch for Satin Taupe I was flabbergasted! Usually it swatches so nicely, it’s such a great shade, but this one was a bummer. Pity because the outer packaging is adorable, but it’s going to be a skip for me.

I swear, they used to do that with the Smoky Eye palette – it would almost be like 5/6 permanent shades, and then the other palettes would be mostly LE.

Well…

Carbon and Noble Spirit really are just spectacularly bad, aren’t they? I’m starting to wonder if someone at MAC is actually just trolling, now :-/

To be fair, my patience for bland neutral palettes (especially around the holidays) is nearly nil, but this one feels like zero effort was made.

Boring – yet another sub-standard neutral palette on the market – this is all we need. I would like to see a few more monochromatic palettes, just for a change. How disappointing of MAC.

I don’t know, if a makeup company can’t successfully make a black and a brown eyeshadow, I don’t know how I’d have faith in them to make anything else. Pack it up, go home.

Of course, I guess the disappointment will never end as long as there are some poor suckers out there buying these sub-par palettes. 🙁

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