What don't you want to see in an expensive product offering?

Since it’s rare that it’s the actual product that costs the most, and it is packaging, then I’d want to see premium packaging – it shouldn’t feel flimsy in any way. I shouldn’t see off-center labels, printing, etc. on the packaging.

— Christine
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Oh, where do I begin… Poor quality, as in, utter GARBAGE! Other big en-ohs are crappy, flimsy packaging, and can we please stop it with the cringe-worthy names!

I agree with flimsy/poor packaging. I had a “luxury” lipstick where the lid wouldn’t stay on… what a waste. I lost a lot of product that way. I also don’t want to see a palette without a mirror – if I’m paying that much money I don’t want to have to set two palettes out (one with a mirror to make up for the one without).

Orangey/peachy brown mattes. They’re a common “transition shade” at this point and not only does no one need ten of them in their collection, they aren’t flattering on everyone. They look so horrible on me when I use them that I will NOT buy another bloody eyeshadow palette with a ruddy orangey brown. Plus, not every palette needs to be “complete.” We all have so much makeup at this point, bitch crack open a second palette, there’s no need to keep spending money on the same shades over and over.

Some of us don’t have the space, or time, to deal with pulling out additional palettes, and/or carry palettes for on-the-go application/ touch-ups, so having “complete” palettes is essential. It’s not always about “already having shade X”, especially if it’s a shade I use, such as black; on the other hand, I don’t use the ubiquitous gold/bronze shadows, but I’m not going to dismiss an entire palette if I’ll be able to make use of the rest.

And that’s why we each answer these opinion-based questions differently and don’t spend our money in the same places. I have more difficulty storing lipsticks than eyeshadow palettes – which are roughly the same size and easily stacked or put in a row.

In my case, I have dozens of palettes, and they’re all different shapes & sizes, with the bulk being stored in an old nightstand, I also have a small, crowded desk where I apply makeup, so pulling more than one palette, plus finding a space on my desk, is often more trouble than it’s worth… Lipstick, on the other hand, at least for me, all are fairly “uniform”, so I keep them in bins on a built-in closet shelf, organized by brand. Eventually, I do want to buy an ALEX drawer system, or something comparable, but I’ll still be paranoid of dropping a palette if I pull more than one, LOL!

Z, I agree. I don’t look good with a really warm transition shade, plus, I have 2 dozen already…same goes for black…how many do we need. I currently have a lifetime supply.

Ugh, I despise those plastic sheets. At higher price points especially, they should be printing the shade names under the shadows or on the back of the palette

Poor or even average quality product. If I am going to splurge on a true luxury brand (not just mid-range prestige cosmetics), I want it to be blown away. A $35+ lipstick should not perform the same or even worse than a $7 lipstick. A $100+ palette shouldn’t have a single color that under-performs. And yes, I expect the packaging to look and feel nice too, and properly protect the product. I’m still mad about my Marc Jacobs eyeliner that had the bad cap so it would always be dried up when I went to use it!

I had a Marc Jacobs eyeliner dry out too!! There are eyeliners in my collection that are several years old and show no signs of drying up, the MJ liner with the properly fitted cap dried up in about three months.

Tacky, juvenile packaging (especially cardboard) & punny shade names. Being in my 40s, I don’t want my makeup to look like I bought it at Claire’s…

I also expect pricier products to not contain mineral oil, or other petroleum byproducts; if e.l.f. & Wet n Wild can do it, I expect the same from brands like Becca…

Poor quality and deceptive packaging, i.e. it looks like it could be a nice sized product on the outside, but you open it up and half of the inside is taken up with a crappy brush that no one will use. I’m talking to you, Burberry.

Those goofy, 1980s, your-gramma’s-makeup-ass sponge applicators in an eyeshadow compact. Serge Lutens charges A HUNDRED AND SIXTY DOLLARS for a three-pan compact and there are sponge applicators in it.

This made me laugh! I used those sponge applicators for so many years in my past, before I discovered the wonders of eyeshadow brushes. Some people still like them, though, and I believe Chanel is another brand that includes them in some of their palettes. I recently watched a GRWM video recently in which a woman did a great job of applying her eyeshadow using those little sponges.

I have to put a little vote in for the sponge applicators. They are actually really good for applying shimmer/glitter shades. They grab the shimmer and apply it quite nicely to the lid. I save them from palettes that don’t have a shimmer/glitter shade and use them with palettes that do. I also use them for travel when I am worried about my expensive brushes being lost of damaged. For me personally they fit the inner tear duct perfectly so they are handy for applying highlight there.

Yes! I agree, the sponge applicators are great for the type of creamy shimmery eyeshadows that would otherwise need to be applied with the fingers. I love them and now they’re an indispensable tool for me.

Palettes that have a lot of wasted space and could have been a lot smaller (just put the shades closer together!) and space wasted for a brush I’ll never use. Another space-waster: round eyeshadows in a palette. Vulgar shade names. Cheap packaging. Tacky design. Sparkly overspray on powder products. And, of course, bad quality of the makeup product itself. (Today I’m wondering why the $8 Sephora Lipstories lipstick I’m wearing today is performing SO much better than a similar $18 shade I have by MAC.)

I don’t want to see known allergens in the ingredients. Sure, anyone can be allergic to anything on a rare basis but there is no need to put ingredients in that any allergist knows commonly causes problems for lots of people. Luxury products should aim first to do no harm (easy enough to consult with a medical expert) … and then they should have killer quality and some uniqueness to color, tone, finish, usage. For me, packaging is least important, though I do have a pet peeve with $50 lipsticks that spontaneously break in their cases …

In an expensive product, especially an eyeshadow palette (which can be the most expensive), I don’t want to see:
Sexualised names for the products
Black and white shades
A palette without a mirror ( I really need one to apply my eyeshadows)
Cardboard packaging that is flimsy
Lots and lots of similar shades, particularly those in orangey tones.
Poor reviews

Oh, I should have included a bit of a rant about the sexualized names and also those that include drug and crime related names. Yes, they’re just words but they’re ugly words and I’d sooner not have them on my cosmetic products. Thanks for reminding me, Genevieve!

1) Poor quality product. If I’m spending extra money, I want something that performs. Otherwise, what’s the point of buying a spendy product?
2) Crappy packaging. No cheap cardboard or paper-thin plastic, lids that fall off, hinges that break, etc. I want the packaging to be sturdy, and look luxe.
3) Strong fragrances. A lot of us are allergic. Keep the perfume scents in the perfumes.
4) Sponge-tip applicators, crappy brushes, low-quality eyeliners. Do the “extras” right or leave them out.

As long as packaging is practical and reasonably sturdy and compact, I’m not fussed about it. I want good quality product and the recent bunch of woeful stuff from Tom Ford and Make Up For Ever (to name just 2) illustrates that even if, as you said, Christine, it’s not “the actual product that costs the most”, some pretty pricey products have shameful “quality”. So, a well curated product (if it’s a palette of some sort) and good pigmentation, texture, wear-time, application. And unlike the poster Z, I do like a palette to contain everything I need to do my eyes. I may choose to add other products but I don’t want to have to reach for another shadow or palette when I am applying my makeup in the morning and it’s one of my complaints about a few palettes I’ve purchased. I like them just fine but would like them even better if they had a brow-bone/inner corner shade that suited me.

Definitely packaging! I picked up By Terry’s 2018 holiday highlight and it’s gorgeous – but the compact just feels so cheap given the $65 regular price point. It’s as heavy as a Maybelline highlight and the sticker is off center. Even by the standards of the $33.50 I paid, it feels cheap. The product inside is so good but it makes me never want to consider investing in their full priced line.

Ditto on packaging, but also I want to ses quality: highly pigmented (with little product), excellent performance: blendable and maintaining it’s color even blended)

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