What makeup palette were you most disappointed by?

What makeup palette were you most disappointed by? Share!

Just about every blue-themed Dior eyeshadow palette.

Thanks to reader Genevieve for today’s question idea Do you have a question idea? Submit yours here.


Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

Comments on this post are closed.
Alice Avatar

Nars Andy Warhol/Debbie Harry. I’m glad I only paid $15 for it on ebay, but it’s not even worth that much. I feel sorry for anyone who paid full price!

Also the Urban Decay Black Palette. It’s not an F like the Debbie Harry, but a solid C- for sure. The shadows don’t apply evenly, they’re hard to blend, they have a ridiculous amount of fallout, and if you work them too much they just turn gray.

xamyx Avatar

I tried to block the whole NARS/Warhol debacle from my memory… I set aside money for months, hoping to buy quite a bit, but… Although, I did pick up the black/silver/purple trio on eBay, and really like it!

As for the UD Black Palette, it’s actually a favorite of mine. It’s definitely not a “one-and-done” palette, but individually all the shades are gorgeous, and I’ve had no problems with mine!

Heidi Avatar

The Tarte Holiday palettes. I own 2 from a couple Christmases ago and the pigmentation on them are just total duds! I’m pretty unimpressed with Tarte eyeshadows.

Jan Avatar

I would have to say smashbox’s full exposure pallet 🙁 I tried every single prime out there & different ways of applying it by pressing & blending, & all were really hard to work with such a shame since it’s a gorgeous pallet

Karen Avatar

I was also quite disappointed with this palette at first. But then I noticed the texture and pigmentation changed as I kept using it. Now it is one of my top palettes! Everyday I use both this palette as well as my naked basics. I always encorporate them in every look that I do, I don’t know what I would do without these two palettes!! They are perfect for everything from blending out colours to filling in my brows! I think it’s probably an issue with the shadows being pressed so hard that they almost seem to have a sort of crust that needs to be worked through.

Kat Avatar

Most recently, the Too Faced matte palette. The colors are sooo pretty and it’s so rare to find matte greys and I was so excited and then!… Disappointment. Swatches nicely, but to actually try to use the shadows and especially to blend is futile. Oh well.

Susan Avatar

Same. I have tried many times to like it but the light colors all look the same on me and I just can’t deal with the amount of fallout.

Also, I have become leery after being burned once too often on those palettes they put out at Christmas that have an unbelievable number of shadows for a really low price. They are almost never the quality of the line’s regular shadows.

JulieS Avatar

Ewwww…. the NYX love in Paris palette. Lovely colors, but very little pigment, or not as much as I was wanting.They seem to last forever on my eyes, though. 😀

Cathy Avatar

I’ve just bought the Butt Naked set. The colours are quite buildable, and I agree, they last all day without creasing. I’m very impressed with the NYX range.

A Name Avatar

Urban Decay Naked. It was my first pallette, and while the quality was OK (a few of the shades were faulty, had horrible pigmentation compared to swatches I’ve seen online, but I realised too late to return it) most of the shades just didn’t look good on me even though I’m very warm toned. Smog and Darkhorse were the only ones I really liked.

zainab Avatar

Too Faced Romantic Eye. I found the quality pretty poor. I was disappointed by Urban Decay Naked Basics but I think that’s just because matte neutrals aren’t so exiting to me.

makeuptray Avatar

I agree with you Melanie. I am over 30 and it is much to shimmery on me. It isn’t my regret but it is close. I am learning that apart from Choc Bar and Ro Eye, Too Faced is a younger ladies makeup line.
My regret is Naked 2. I bought it because I read and was also, told, that it is better for pale skin and over 30. I couldn’t get into it at all and rarely use it.

ilovemakeup Avatar

I’ll probably get a ton of flack for this, but mine is the original Naked palette. I kept seeing people gush about it online and I kept seeing it in the store and thinking, “That’s not really all that special,” until I finally gave in and purchased it myself. When none of the color combinations looked good on me, I went to youtube for tutorials, and when none of those looked good on me I gave up.

I guess what I was most disappointed in was that people kept saying, “It looks great on every skin tone!” but it looks flat out awful on me, except for the two crease colors.

renee Avatar

OMG. finally someone else who feels the same. I ended up giving it to a friend who wears it all the time and swears by it and almost exclusively wears that one.

then I went out and bought 2 and 3… and those sorta work for me. much better than #1 did. now I’m confused and worried it was all in my head and I should go back and buy the first 1. but no. I will not. now that someone else agrees with me I know it’s not in my head.

Ilovemakeup Avatar

You are not the only one at all! 2 looks pretty good on me and so does 3, so I use both of those on a regular basis. The original looks dirty on me, regardless of the combo of colors I use.

I bought it after reading everyone say, “Browns are best for blue eyes!” But with my cool undertones, purples and pinks look so much better. I should have just stuck with what I was using before! A nice purple combo makes my eyes stand out so much better.

Veronica Avatar

I had the same experience. It’s good quality, but it is by no means universal. Way too warm for my skin tone. I used the hell out of about four shades and wound up giving it away when I realized the rest was pretty much untouched.

KaseyCannuck Avatar

This is probably the only palette I have that I have issues with. I find the quality is good, but every colour looks the same on me. Naked 2 is still my most used palette.

furandlace Avatar

Count me in here too. The original Naked palette was the biggest disappointment ever. That was the last time I gave into pure hype when it comes to a product. It put me off UD shadows entirely. They are so muddy and there is SO MUCH FALLOUT. I feel like the shadows just take over my entire eye area lol. Apart from Buck, none of the colours look right. I kept trying and trying to make it work and I finally gave up. I too realized too late how hopeless it was and now feel awkward returning it.

Taylor Avatar

The Half Baked shadow in Naked 1 looks awful on me. I tried to wear it the other day with buck and darkhorse and it just looked like a dull brown mess. Definitely not for every skin tone, so it’s not all in your head! I do love Virgin, Sin, and Sidecar though.

Mariella Avatar

Wendy, I’ve got Vice2 and love it and I haven’t experienced any fallout (or maybe my eyesight is so bad I just don’t see it!). I’m always wary when buying new UD shadows because some of them (LE and permanent ones) are just a nightmare of all day/all night fallout but I haven’t experienced that with Vice2. Which colours give you the worst trouble?(they might be ones I haven’t used yet – and there are several I haven’t even touched!)

Wednesday Avatar

Oh Mariella, my bad.. the palette is actually UD Vice 1, not 2. The problem shades are all the shimmery and in particular: Rapture, Occupy, Armor. These are three I would go for quite often if they were not so problematic. They shed during application, but even worse, during the course of the day so I’ll come home a see myself in the mirror and yeah, great, I’ve been walking around looking like eek..just awful like I threw my makeup on so I just won’t wear them. I really love Laced (the really boring shade in the palette ), but I never use it because I have packed this palette away in disgust.

Nina Marie Avatar

Apart from a Chanel quad that is way too dry and shimmery because it’s the European baked version, I’m most disappointed by my mac quad that I created myself… Shroom and naked lunch are not really pigmented enough and I have to scrape to get some colour payoff, all that glitters look terrible on me (I think I’m too pale and cool-toned) and cranberry isn’t as flattering as I hoped it would be… So I guess what I’ve learned from that is to not 100% relay on others recommendations. :/

Taylor Avatar

I’m with you on Shroom. I feel like I’m scrubbing the pan with my brush to get any color payoff. It is gorgeous once I apply it, but for $10 a pan, it should be buttery and just need one or two swipes for good payoff. I’m a much bigger fan of Nylon.

TG Avatar

The Marc Jacobs Starlet palette. For the money, the pigmentation was mediocre at best. Any Dior palette I’ve ever owned (I think there were two) has either been returned or given away. They do not know how to make good eyeshadow in palette form.

Andrea Avatar

Any Chanel eye palette… Specially the older ones. I bought the Charming palette… 80 dollars, and have no idea why I did not returned it. Still pisses me off.

Aida Avatar

Tom Ford Cocoa Mirage – I might have gotten a dud, because mine was dry, chalky, powder everywhere, completely the opposite of everything I had heard about it. I returned it and will not risk it again.

Dior Extase Pinks (so much freakin’ glitter)

Dior Blue Lagoon – I don’t know why I bought it and didn’t return it. It’s just sitting in a drawer. I prefer my blues darker, richer.

Sylirael Avatar

*sniffle* @ the Dior palettes! :-S

I’ve been quite lucky, and haven’t been disappointed by anything I’ve actually *bought*, but in recent times I have to admit to having been kind of disappinted by the UD Pulp Fiction palette – just because it’s *another* palette of neutrals in a(n) LE collection. Somehow it really disappointed me!

Lee Avatar

I can’t remember the name of it but it was a Lorac eyeshadow palette from like seven or so years ago. It was before there were bloggers that reviewed things so I bought it blind online. Everything was so chalky and unpigmented, it’s one of the only beauty products I’ve ever returned to Sephora. And it pretty much turned me off Lorac forever ’cause the quality was so abysmal.

tricia Avatar

Naked basics by far was my biggest disappointment. I’ve read endless good reviews on it and it turns out it only works for cool skin tones. I tried to mixed it with other palettes that I have but I ended selling it for a lower price because just dnt have the time to mix and match it with other colors

Fashn Avatar

I was totally disappointed by UD’s Feminine palette(the more recent one.) I usually research color pay off and pigmentation to make sure it will look good/show up on my skin tone. Colors look too frosty pale, the only thing I really enjoyed out of this palette was the small bonus lip gloss that came with the palette. Love all my other palettes though!

Janelle Avatar

I wish that there was a “like button” because the minute I saw the question I immediately thought about every single blue Dior palette. I actually found my Bleu Jeans palette when I was moving and it looked like I used it once and only once Lol. I put it in a shadow box by my makeup table where I put all of my “vintage” cosmetics that my grandmother gave me since there is not much other use for it (aside from the fact that it is probably expired now always).

Irene Avatar

Sadly, I concur. I received one of the blue palettes as a birthday gift a few years ago and was super excited because I’d heard su h great things about Dior shadows. And, hey, it’s Dior! But, alas, I was so disappointed. Some applied unevenly and others lacked pigmentation. Or both.

makeuptray Avatar

Yes! It washes me out. I am pale with yellow undertones. I am not peaches and cream. I believe the level I am on isn’t even fair, Celtic I think it is referred to. Anyway, it made me look more pale.

Meghan Avatar

Stila In the Moment palette. I don’t think I’ve even touched it after swatching & then using the colours once… I love purples but that palette they are dry, flakey and blend out terribly… At the same time I feel like I haven’t given it much of a chance & should reach for it again – maybe the gold-y colours are better. It has a 4.5 star rating on Sephora and generally I’ll base purchase decisions on the Temptalia grade &/or Sephora reviews. Maybe I got a dud?…

Maria Avatar

Naked 1. Way too warm for me and wear time is only 8 hours.
By the way, I’ve wanted to get your advice, Christine, and I’m not sure where to ask this question, so I’ll just ask here. I am tempted to buy Smoked palette, but I’m afraid that it also won’t last on my lids. What do you think: are Naked 1 and Smoked different in terms of longevity or do they have the same wear time?

Lisa Avatar

Wet n Wild Petal Pusher. I bought it not only because I love purple eye shadows, but it was also getting rave reviews. Sadly, the eyeshadows and my body chemistry just don’t like each other, I guess. All the shades last maybe an hour before they’ve faded and creased terribly.

xamyx Avatar

MUFE Smokey palette… I stalked 5+ Sephora stores, and the website, when it was first announced, and did so (almost daily!) for over 2 months. Then, it was announced the US would not be getting this palette. Several years passed, and I found it on eBay for a *really* great price, so I jumped at the chance to finally get it. When it actually arrived, I tore it out of the box, and began swatching immediately-only to find a serious lack of pigmentation! I have several MUFE singles, and have had no issues with any of them, so I was expecting the same. I think I’m just going to buy a few of the shades in full-size pans, and recreate my own palette, as the combination is stunning.

Miss J Avatar

Naked Basics and Naked.

Basics: WOS and Foxy had like zero pigmentation and were so dry/ chalky. Crave is also on the stiff, dry side, and is flaky/crumbly. I do use the palette, but it is still disappointing.

Naked: It’s not terrible, but it does not meet the hype and claims so many made about it. So many people complain about N2 and N3, but IMO they are improved formulas.

Alisha Avatar

Urban Decay Theodora! I think I hate it so much because I watched the movie and I abhorred the character! I have literally only worn it the one time i did the get the look card. It’s my least used palette out of everything I own.

kellly Avatar

oh, *sigh* Nakeds 3. It took me forever to finally get one with them being sold out and when it finally arrived, it was soooo beautiful. I loved the colors and the gorgeous sheen/finish, how easily it applied and wore all day long still looking gorgeous. After two days using it, my eyes started tearing and crusting up at night. It contained carmine! And that’s what I since found out I’m allergic to. I wasn’t disappointed in the pallette – I loved it. I was disappointed in my own doggoned eyes and my allergy. The pallette itself was totally gorgeous and wonderful and I loved it and still wish I could wear it.

Katrin Avatar

Yeah, in my experience, Stila has been really up and down in quality. Some of their limited edition palettes like the mini 3-palette collection from last year’s holiday season was not so great, nor was the palette I got from their “Dancing with the Stars” special theme edition (wasn’t too disappointed about that, though, since I got it for $6 at Nordstrom Rack). However, I have three of their “In The…” palettes, and love them. (In The Garden is probably one of my most-reached-for palettes.) I’ve been intrigued by their new “eyes are the window” line of palettes, but definitely want to wait until some more reviews are out before I make a purchase.

Mickey Avatar

Honestly the palettes that have disappointed me the most are:
1. Sigma Bare Palette
2. Sigma Dare Palette
3. Sigma Flare Palette
I just you can say that I’m not a huge fan of Sigma eyeshadows LOL

Tricia Avatar

The Chocolate Bar Eye Palette – Too Faced

The palate was full of messy powder the first day, two of the shadows were loose and could easily fall out, The palette itself was clunky not sleek, The shadows did not have there names printed on the palette but on a plastic cover you have to fuss with every time.

I ended up returning it and getting Smashbox masterclass 3 and it is my best beauty purchase ever.

Mariella Avatar

The more I read, the more relieved I am that I didn’t cave in on Naked 3 and Naked Basics because of some glowing reviews. Those seem to be the 2 that have disappointed people the most. As I read through everyone’s lists, it occurred to me that I haven’t been disappointed in the performance of an eyeshadow palette largely because of Christine’s thorough and honest reviews and swatches. I’m sure I’d have bought some duds without the information on this site.

Genevieve Avatar

I think the Naked 1 palette is a disappointment because many of the colours are similar and it is too warm for me. I don’t use it, apart from one or two colours, as much as I thought I would. I was going to purchase the Smashbox Full Exposure, but I read too many negative reviews about its pigmentation and decided to save my money. I have the Dior Navy palette and it is very good, but I think some of the other Dior blue’s are very hit and miss. I also have read about many disappointed customers about the UD Basics too. However I love my Vice 2 palette.

Katrin Avatar

Recently, I would have to say the Lorac SummerGlo and AfterGlo palettes. I’m a sucker for teals and blues, and while some of the colors look gorgeous in the pan–and despite some beauty blogger raves–the pigmentation once applied to the lid (even with primer) was a HUGE disappointment. I tried a number of different combos, and had to apply the shadows wet, and even then, REALLY build the color, to get them to show up at all, basically. I’ve read in a couple of places that Lorac’s seasonal/limited edition palettes don’t use the same formula as the shadows in the Pro palettes. Don’t know if that’s true or not, but if it is true, it’s really unfortunate, and in my opinion, not a great business practice–lots people are buying the brand specifically because of their experience and their expectation of quality from the Pro palettes, and the seasonals shouldn’t be any different.

Brianna Avatar

Oh I’m so glad it wasn’t just me! I too had the pigmentation problem with the afterglo palette and was very confused and saddened. That’s interesting what you said about the different formulas. Maybe I can steal a friend’s pro palette and see if the two feel different. I did also get the lorac mint edition eye/cheek palette and it didn’t have any pigmentation problems, it’s actually quite lovely.

Lotus Avatar

UD Nakeds. They look better than what they are, not the formula that made me love UD. I’m a hoarder but I never reach for them. I wish I did as I truly was in love with #3 but it wasn’t getting the job done. No more for me! I’ll make my own with pigments if I truly find a shade I can’t dupe.. Haha

Trina Avatar

Smashbox full exposure. It (glitter shades) looked so pretty in the pan, but were so poorly pigmented! There was no color distinction for the lighter colors once applied and the fall out was terrible! The matte shades were amazing! Way to much money to only use half the palette.

Trina Avatar

Don’t know if this counts as a palette but Givenchy Les Mini Prismes is awful! for starters sephora gave the wrong product info on the website. so everyone that bought it the first week or so that it was out thought they were getting a huge amount product in reality it’s 1/3 or less of a full size palette for each drawer I think .10oz. the quality is not that great very dry chalky and hard to work with and definitely not universally flattering colors. I have medium to tan skin (mac NC40) and the face powder is way too light. Trust me when they say mini they mean it I can wrap my very small hand around it. so working with it is extremely frustrating because the squares are so tiny.

Sarah Avatar

Oh I’m SO glad you said this! I thought I was the only one. I just bought this palette a couple of weeks ago because of the glowing reviews it gets and I HATE it. The pigmentation is seriously lacking and the shadows creased and faded on me within an hour even with primer. I’m so disappointed in this palette

Alexis Avatar

Yes, I totally agree Sarah! Some of the colours looked muddy, they creased even with primer and they felt just awful on my eyelid. I think the idea was good (the choice of colours in the palette), but the actual product sucks! I own a lot of makeup and nothing in my collection is as much a disappointment as this one was.

Christina Avatar

Kat Von D’s Ladybird palette. I was so excited for a warm matte palette, as I have hooded hazel eyes, but aside from Cleopatra which is buttery burnt orange, this palette was a total dud. The dark shades (plum, a chocolate brown, and slate blue) were patchy. There were no highlight shades; the lightest was a flesh/khaki colour. The accompanying brown eyeliner flaked and smudged within an hour of application. I attempted a few looks from it, and finally called it a draw and returned it. So much saddness!

L. Avatar

One of the first big palettes I ever bought: The Smashbox Eye Wish holiday palette, circa 2009 (the hot pink one). From the pigmentation/ dryness of the shadows, the uncooperative cream liners (they were waxy, yet they’d migrate on the lid! wtf!?), to the lame accompanying lookbook… *sigh.* I remember it being so excited when I got it. :-/

Georgia Avatar

LORAC Pro. After the girls on MUA raved on and on about it, I reluctantly bought it and have tried to make it work, but it’s not for me. I seldom reach for it.

Cassidy Avatar

I haven’t tried many palettes, but the sigma warm neutrals was a let down for me. It had a lot of hype on youtube and when i got it I just thought the colours were so-so and the pigmentation wasn’t there.

Wendy M. Avatar

I don’t hate the palette but I was rather disappointed by the Esperanza palette from Kat Von D. To be honest, I bought it for the lilac eyeshadow, Selena, and while it looks pretty in the pan, it’s kind of a dud in action. XD I have yet to try it over a white base, so that may help it look better but using a simple primer didn’t do much for it. Ah, well. Lesson learned.

Cathy Avatar

Well, that’s solved one problem for me. Do not buy any of the Naked palettes! I’ve just been reading so many good things about these palettes, I thought, yep, gotta have. But I think, seeing these comments, my money will be better spent elsewhere. I hated all the Smashbox palettes. I seemed to get eye shadow everywhere but on my eyes. I was a tad disappointed with a Bobbi Brown palette: inconsistent quality of the shadows. The new Chanel 4 Ombres are great, but the older quads lacked pigmentation. I have a problem with nearly every Dior palette, not just the blue one. There’s always one in the collection that just disintegrates. I was also a little miffed with a Laura Mercier palette. Super colours and great pigmentation, but massive fall-out.

Helene Avatar

In later years it’s Smashbox Full Exposure. I had read some good things about it and the concept is so good, but the pigmentation in the lighter colours and the shimmery ones is almost non existant, the shimmery ones are more of glitters and the fallour is just awful both during applicatioon and wear. I always use primers, and I don’t have this problem with other simmer/glitter eyeshadows.
I should have swatched it better, but I was in a hurry. Lesson learned, always do research and, or at least, do a proper swatch befor buying 🙂

Some Dior 5 colour palettes, have been less than good, even less than mediocre.

The old Chanel quads were lacking in pigmentation and generally disappointing.

angie Avatar

Lorac Pro Palette: not because lack of colors but quality of the pressed shadows. Once i dipped my brush in any on the colors …….. POOOF!!!! shadow dust everywhere!!

xo Avatar

Too Faced Naked Eye and Too Faced Romantic Eye. They were dry, crumbly, chalky and would not show up no matter what I used for a primer. I feel like the quality of Too Faced palettes have gone way downhill over the past few years in general. Boudoir eyes was nothing to write home about either.

Robyn Avatar

Actually I have two and both are by Tarte. The Neutal Eye palette and the Amazonian Escape palette.
It’s unfortunate because Tarte has some really good products but their eyeshadows are very disappointing to me. I will stick to their blush, lip, and eyebrow products but they need to go back to the drawing board on shadows. Too chalky and little color pay off.

GloriaKate Avatar

I was disappointed by Sugarpill’s Heartbreaker palette, and I was so surprised! The previous two palettes were just dreamy to apply and blend. I even tried to stick it out and see if I could get to to work… All the colors were powdery and blended away into nothingness. 🙁 I returned it.

linda Avatar

dior and chanel…i don’t really know why but in italy they are really embarassing for the name and the price they have. you can easily find something better in any drugstore. i guess in the usa things are different cause i saw some really good swatches

cilla Avatar

Anastasia Beverly Hill – Amrezy palette. Caved and bought it after seeing all of the great reviews on IG. Should have past and waited for the Maya Mia Palette instead. The browns don’t blend easily and the shimmery colors were quite dull. Totally did not live up to all the hype. Also the packaging is super cheap. I wanted to like it but it’s now just collecting dust 🙁 .

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!