Earlier in Spring this year, somewhere in the period that my blog started quietening down and I had stopped being so up to date with the beauty industry due to my New Job move, YSL put out two very elegant and beautiful 10 piece eyeshadow palettes.
When those were first launched, obviously I didn’t manage to catch wind of them given how swamped I was with work at that point.
Though of course somehow along the way I caught glimpses of these here and there, some raves and some mentions and it wasn’t till now that I really got to get down and personal with the YSL Couture Variation palettes.
Of the 2, one is a neutral mix of browns (#1 Nu) that are perfectly safe and pretty, something that will definitely strike a chord with neutral lovers.
The other is the more dangerous sibling – a little dark, a little edgy, with a whole lot of mystery.
Meet, Tuxedo (#2).
Smokey and edgy aren’t exactly colors that I swear by and go to on a daily basis but I felt in the mood to challenge myself a little where looks are concerned and also because the mix of colors, while intimidating at a glance, are really quite unique and stunning.
Going full out with smokey looks is kind of the name of the game with this palette but it’s not to say that you can’t attempt to tone it down somewhat and put together looks that are fit for day-wear!
Though that of course depends on your personal definition of wear-ability.
Aren’t those smokey sparkly colors just beautiful?
Let’s have a closer look at them and share a little more on how they feel and swatch!
I’m not sure what I was expecting with the pigmentation or texture of these shadows but knowing YSL’s penchant for that slightly drier and more translucent eyeshadow formula (perfect for layering but not so ideal for ‘normal’ use), I prepared myself that this palette was going to feel and swatch the same.
Though after giving this palette a quick once-over with swatches (which I’ll get to below), it turns out that all the shades are rather pigmented, creamy and pick up very well on both fingers and brush!
It was a nice surprise indeed after having tested the Rock Resille palette out – again, not that that isn’t nice but it’s got a different purpose!
So, strong pigmentation and smokey colors, what could be scarier to someone who’s usually more at home with neutrals or softer and easier to throw on colors right?
While I know the Tuxedo palette can be highly intimidating at a glance, after giving this palette a closer look, I’ve realized that the shades can easily be grouped into trios for a better sense of ‘color direction’.
For those who need a little aid to get accustomed to the palette, that is.
And that includes me…
Though you can always mix and match across the ‘groupings’, I thought I would give them a mention too to show you that not all things colorful and smokey are scary.
So, apart from the one pale bone-white shade on the extreme left of the palette – that functions as a pretty kick-ass and universal brow highlight shade – there are 3 color trios within Tuxedo.
Of course you can always go across the board with them but if you need a sense of order in chaos, let me break it down for you.
The Silver Smokes
The first trio is what I call the silvery almost-taupes because the shades are definitely silver and neutral in that sense but they’re cool and almost a little taupey at the same time.
Especially so for the deepest shade with a satin finish. It’s more of a charcoal given how dark the color is but at the same time it’s got an ashened hue to it that strikes me as ‘taupe’.
This trio is that perfect dressy, slightly sexy and smokey but yet not over the top or too intimidating to wear set of colors.
Wines & Berries
The next trio would be the cranberry-ish and purple-ish hues where there’s a beautiful darkened champagne (I love this color so so much), a bejeweled deep purple and a mid-tone aubergine shade for a color kick.
Purples are usually my go-tos if I’m opting for color but still want to keep it a little low-key and easy but these purples amp up the drama so so much due to their smokiness and intense pigmentation that even I was a little surprised at their intensity.
If you ask me, while you could dumb the shades down for the day, I think they’re best worn full-on especially so for that deep dark purple so that the sparkles within can really stand out.
Blue Sparkly Blue
The last trio – the smokiest and probably dressiest – seemed the most intimidating to me because I don’t often reach for such deep and dark hues, much less blue hues but as it turns out this Look was a little more wearable for me than the purple variant.
And strangely enough I have more to say about this mix of colors because, just look at that bejeweled blue, beautifully sparkly silver-grey and also the smooth charcoal black shade to help add a little ‘ground’ to the look amidst all that shine.
This trio is definitely beautiful if you’re up for a smokey blue-hued look and, just like the purples, while these shades can be worn watered down, they’re best packed on for the full complexity of color and sparkles!
More Snaps & Tools!
Aaaand here are more snaps of the swatches, just because!
Shadows-aside I thought it would also be nice to give the double-ended brush within a little mention.
If you ask me it’s nothing much to shout about but it isn’t horrible either. The bristles are synthetic, if I’m not wrong, and it seems like a decent enough brush to use for some quick on-the-go color packing on and blending.
One end of the brush is your regular mildly fluffy paddle shaped brush and the other is a blending brush but not of the fluffy and pouffy variant but the inbetween that works for blending and also for pointed color placement (namely in the outer corner for me).
So… I know ultimately we’re still talking about a palette that’s a tad daunting, a whole lot of smokey and not something everyone is going to reach for on a daily basis. I’m sure there will be a few that lives for smokey eyes everyday but it’s not the vast majority.
Though hear me out, even if you’re tuning out slightly due to the shades within this palette ‘not being up your alley’ because they can be toned down if need be and I guess… you never know when you need to smoke up a look for a night out, right?
It’s a very pretty and sleek looking good-to-have item, that’s for sure!
I think I’ll let my upcoming looks speak for themselves so stay tuned for some Look Features (with this Tuxedo palette coupled with other YSL Color Items) coming your way real soon!
I will still say that I highly urge you all to check this out, or #1 Nu out even, because the quality and pigmentation of the shadows are really quite beautiful.
Thanks for reading!
The YSL Couture Variation Eye Palette in Tuxedo retails for S$119 at all YSL counters and boutiques.
This is a permanent item.