Rant & Rave: Mega Makeup Palettes

Tell us what you love and hate about...

Mega Makeup Palettes

Rave: They can offer a ton of variety in a single product, which can take the guess work out of creating looks–as long as they aren’t actually massive in width/length, they can be easy grab-and-go palettes for travel, too. Rant: They take forever to test/review/add dupes for! It also seems like larger palettes tend to have more inconsistency/under-perform compared to a more edited 12-pan palette.

— Christine

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They almost always have too many shades I won’t actually use, given that I already have so many OTHER eyeshadows I don’t use…

Rant: Mega palettes are not my cup of tea. I prefer more tightly curated palettes as I find very large palettes far too overwhelming.

Rave turned into Rant: Assuming good value for dollar, but given the hit or miss nature of larger palettes, plus colours one will never use, that value is then no longer realized. I’d rather buy a 4 or 5 pan where I use the full colour story.

I find that depending on the brand, sometimes the mega palettes have too many similar colours for the sake of having a high number of palettes.

Rave: They can be so much fun, at least at first, *if* when I initially see it, my mind is instantaneously putting together all sorts of eye looks. I don’t expect to find my browbone shade within it, however. I prefer only a few more matte appearing satins for that job. I’ll be mixing up all the Houses when I get my hands on the one I have my sites set on!

Rant: So many of the most fun, interesting mega palettes are way too bulky and very difficult to store. It’s a serious PITA when one doesn’t have adequate space for them!

No really rave here.

Rant: Just too many colors to choose from and my gut feeling is that several (up to half) of them may have issues with fallout or being a weird/unflattering color or whatever. And unless I can somehow mark the bad ones or remove the pans, I just can’t keep track of which colors are the best ones to use. The larger palettes take up too much storage room too.

I tend to stay away from larger palettes.

Rave: The value per gram of the palette (not all the times **COUGH** PMG) and being able to achieve a variety of looks with the different colors/finishes

Rant: Since the formulations of different finishes are getting more unique, I feel like some formulas don’t quite work in palette form (the cream to matte formulas, Natasha shadow shrinkage, Huda Beauty’s concealer chade in the New Nude, etc)

Mostly, I love them! I like having so many options to choose from and it means I mix things up a bit more and try different combinations than I would do if I was just looking at the same half dozen shades…

Of course, this usually means the size of the palette is bigger and I have a tendency to bang these into my vanity and mirror when I lean in close to do my eye makeup (I have terrible eyesight). They can be challenging to store, but I stack mine upright in a spare dresser, so I have a library of palettes to pick from when I pull open a drawer 🙂 For any with plain packaging, I have written on the spines of them with a gold Sharpie pen.

Rave: They usually offer good value for money. They can be great for travelling as long as the package isn’t too bulky. They usually offer many eye looks as long as there are enough deep shades, matte brow bone shade and pops of colour.

Rant: They frequently don’t include enough shades to make the palettes truly inclusive for all skin tones. They often have a lot of shades that I just won’t use. The more shades the more likely there will be poor performing shades. There is usually a lot of wasted space in large palettes. I don’t personally use the mirror in palettes because I am blind and need a magnifying mirror so for me the mirror is added weight and bulk but I do know a lot of people like and use the mirror so would be hard to please everyone and I think that is the biggest rant, you can’t please everyone!!

Rave: Larger palettes of relatively good quality can inspire you to try out different shades and/or combinations than you would have otherwise.

Rant: Quite often there are just too many shades you don’t use and it becomes less cost effective then. And, as Christine has mentioned, it is much harder to get a consistent quality across the board in these as well.
Personally Christine, I don’t know how you do it -testing and finding the dupes for all the myriad shades in a larger palette. But I do think the tide has turned and we are seeing less of them now than before, do you think so?

Rant: They are overwhelming. I can’t keep track of what works and what doesn’t. Too big to store anywhere!.

Rave: It does let you try out colors that you don’t usually reach for.

Rave: Visually appealing, so many options.
Rant: Almost every palette has a black in it. I never, ever use black, but even if I did, how many black shadows does one person need? Also, even with all the options, I usually end up using the same colors, especially if I’m in a hurry.

I bought a large one while in vacation in Vancouver many years ago it was Elizabeth Arden cause it was tax free (great excuse hubby was with me Lol! not that he’ll try to stop me) and who am lying to all those colors attract me like a bee. But haven’t purchased one again just find them way too difficult to store and some colors never get used too but they still draw me in of course. If I knew of an awesome quality one I might go for it is been a while.

RAVES: Per shadow, they’re usually a good deal. I think they’re lots of fun. They often have cool packaging designs. They usually have a good mix of colors and finishes, so I don’t have to pull from singles or other palettes. They encourage me to use colors or combination I may not have thought of. If the packaging is not too crazy, they can be great for travel, as they have lots of variety (important to me). Most also have a shade or two I can use as face highlighter, shades I can use as blush, and some even have shades I can use for contour or on my brows. So I may be able to pack less face products.

RANTS: Even beautiful packaging can be bulky and unwieldy. Just playing the numbers games: There are usually at least a few subpar shadows and/or similar shades. They almost always include a black I’ll never use (although I get why black is there). The larger, bulkier packaging on some makes them tricky to store. Ones with “geological features” (think UD Heavy Metals packaging) make them a PITA to stack.

Rave: A lot of variety IF you’re creative enough, or if you don’t buy a lot of other palettes.

Rant: They’re usually too big to store and I don’t know what to do for an eye look because there are so many shades to choose from, and they may not all go together. I always think I’m going to get more use out of these types of palettes than I actually do, so ultimately the value for money is not there.

I’ve only purchased 1 mega palette–Urban Decay’s #2 palette, because I couldn’t spot a single color that I wouldn’t use. It also had the added bonus of including a very decent brush with it and a sample of eye primer.

The rants, even for my favorite palettes is they never include enough lighter-toned work horse shades. I went through the wonderful “Booty Call” pan first. Imagine my annoyance in finding they didn’t sell that shade separately!!. I have quite fair skin and a good deal of space between my eyebrows and eyes and sadly, I wear more daytime makeup that not. A make-your-own 6 element palette is the more sensible solution. And a much more green solution as well. One day someone will bring back the lipstick refill option, too.

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