I don’t consider E.L.F. to be a hyped brand like Morphe or Sigma, but it’s definitely well liked and very talked about in the beauty sphere. I’d heard a lot about this palette specifically on social media, and decided to pick it up while at my local drugstore.
Did I need more blush? No.
Was it only $6? Yes.
Into my cart it went.
E.L.F. has always seemed like a different type of drugstore brand. Their products are incredibly affordable, bested only by Wet ‘n wild. I mean, at $6, I might as well be paying for the full mirror (which is way bigger than the one that comes with Benefit Hoola and that’s 5x the price)!
Unlike most drugstore brands (I’m looking at you Milani), E.L.F. has incredibly sleek packaging. Most of it is their signature matte black, featured in this palette, but I’ve noticed how they’ve began to introduce a more high end reflective packaging.
So it’s clear that E.L.F. has a strong following for both it’s affordable prices, mostly good quality and sleek packaging.
But I was still a little skeptical. Does this palette reflect it’s price, or does it compare to those sold at Sephora and other high end stores?
I really like the packaging in this. It’s my only palette with strictly blush, but I defiantly think it’s more compact then any other palette I have. It’s not as beautiful as my well loved BECCA x Chrissy Teigen palette (review here), but it’s sturdy and functional.
Oh and let’s not forget the mirror! My only compact I have is from Julep and it was part of their holiday collection. I got it free with purchase, but it cost $18 to buy alone. This is 1/3 of that price! I admit, I’m unlikely to take this in my purse because it’s bigger than my compact, but this is perfect for applying makeup in!
Also, the pans in this pop out. If you push up from the bottom, the individual pans will pop out and then snap back into place if you push them down again. This means you can mix and match your own custom palette with other E.L.F face palettes like the contour palette, the darker blush palette, the bare face palette, and more!
I’ve labeled each color through editing (please note, the palette does not come with that inscribed on it) because a few look similar and I want to clarify which color goes with what swatch. I’m also going to review each shade individually, because I’ve found the formula varies slightly by color.
Pink 1 is a light lavender-pink shade that is really nice. The formula on this is unlike any other blush in my collection. It’s almost wet, but not cream. This shade is pretty pigmented and I do have to tap off my blush before applying it. It’s got a bit of powder kick up, but not enough that it dirties the container or gets everywhere.
This shade works great with almost any look. I love this, and most of the times that I reach for this palette, I’m using this shade.
Okay, so with this shade I’m sure your reaction is something along the lines of what the heck happened?
Here’s what happened: This shade got serious hardpan (when a shade seals over from liquid being introduced to the formula) and I was completely unable to get any pigment from it. So, I scraped back the hardpan and tried to use it.
Then it got the same film over the top again.
I was really frustrated with that, so I scraped it off once more and then left it to be. The formula is clearly a pain to work with, and the color is also too brown to wear by itself. I like to wear this mixed with the coral shade because that yields a nice pinky-brown but otherwise I don’t use this alone.
Coral is also a bit of finicky shade, but it’s nowhere near as difficult as brown. As you can see from the photo, this has a bit of a hard pan over it, however I’ve given up trying to deal with it. This is a nice shade on it’s own (I’m a sucker for coral blush), but like I mentioned above I also wear it mixed with brown.
Finally pink 2 is the only other normal shade. Unfortunately, this is identical to pink 1. I’ve tried to convince myself that it’s not and there’s a slight difference in the pan but the swatches look essentially the same and there is no difference when their applied to the cheeks.
The formula in this is fine. I haven’t gotten any hard pan in it which is great, because it happens to be a beautiful color.
Aside from the brown and coral, this entire palette has a weird formula. It took multiple swipes to get the color shown above and when I apply these to the face I have trouble blending it out. It has a similar formula to the E.L.F. contour palette, so if you own that and enjoy it, you’ll like this.
Overall, I don’t love this palette. I only get hard pan on drugstore/inexpensive/cheaply made products, which this definitely is. Half of the shades have a weird formula and the other half are literally identical. I will continue to use this, or at least the pink shades, but I most definitely will not repurchase. I don’t recommend this, unless you’re willing to essentially buy one shade. Or, if all you really care about is the mirror (ONLY $6!!!), then it’s a fine purchase to make.
The only pro I can think of is that all the shades are matte. I lean towards matte blushes because the first blushes I every used were a shimmery disaster. Now, I keep a safe distance (and tap my blush off before applying).
If you want a palette where you can use every color inside, this isn’t it. I don’t recommend this, and I think the drugstore has many better selections for blush (like this blush from Milani or this one). I also think none of these shades are particularly unique (I mentioned how similar this is to some of the Clinique cheek pop blushes here), so if you like these shades I would recommend checking out the Clinique blushes (however those have a luminous finish, not matte).
In total, I found this palette underwhelming. In this case, I feel you really get what you pay for, and here this feels cheep. There are many better drugstore blushes that I recommend you put your money towards. I only suggest this if you’re looking for a mirror or you’re willing to pay for those two pink shades.
All products discussed in this post were purchased by me.
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