Thursday, February 28, 2013

It's Ok Thursday Link Up

Its Ok Thursdays

It's ok

...that I often take my vitamins with a soda.

...that I am completely uninspired when it comes to cooking dinner. I'm bored with all of my regular dinners, but I'm not motivated to hunt down new recipes to try.

…that I chose not to work on Tuesday and was happy that I didn’t have to work today.

…that I placed a large Vitacost order because it was almost entirely essentials, like conditioner.

…that I only seem to be able to accomplish small bursts of cleaning.

…that both bags of Starburst jellybeans from last week are gone.

...that I always intend to get on a regular sleep schedule and always fail.

What's ok with you this week?

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Urban Decay Glinda Palette - Good Witch?

Darn Urban Decay caused me to break my resolve to cut back on my makeup spending when they came out with their two limited-edition Oz palettes.

I've already reviewed the Theodora palette here, so it's time to take a closer look at the Glinda palette.

Just like the Theodora palette, I love the exterior design of the palette. I actually love the ethereal quality of this palette a bit more than the other one, but they are both beautiful. I also like that the palette is metal and relatively sleek compared with palettes in the Book of Shadows series.

My slight disappointment when this palette arrived was this:

Tornado wasn't quite attached. Thankfully this was a minor issue compared with my issues with the Theodora palette. I pulled out my hot glue gun and glued the pan back in.

On to the swatches!

Left to right: Tornado, Aura (dual shadow), and Magic
Tornado is a deep, plummy purple shimmer.

Aura is a dual shadow that consists of a blue shift shade and a pink shift shade. Here's a picture that shows the color-shift nature of the shadows a bit better:

Magic is a mid-toned pinky purple shade that has fine golden shimmer. The shimmer doesn't really translate into swatches or on the lid.

Left to right: Illusion, Oz (dual shadow), and South
Illusion is a satiny peach shade. It reminds me a lot of the shade Bootycall from the Naked 2 palette.  It makes a really nice lid shade.

Oz has a gold shade with chunky silver glitter and a silver shade. The chunky silver glitter is unfortunate because I'm sure there will be fallout. *sigh* Here's a better look at the glitter:

South is a really nice warm grey/taupe shade with silver shimmer that also doesn't translate onto the lid.

Also included with the palette is a mini 24/7 Glide on Eye Pencil in Rockstar, which is swatched below.

I love Rockstar. It's a great color for people afraid of color because it is dark enough that it isn't initially obvious that it is purple.

The final product included with the palette is a Super Saturated High Gloss Lip Color in Glinda, which is the same as the permanent shade Naked.

I was hesitant about this color when I ordered this palette. I can't do shades that are too light. They make me look dead. This, however, is a mid-toned nude that looks really nice. It's a great everyday color. The formula is feels creamy but not heavy on the lips. I think I'm going to get a lot of use out of it.

Just like with the Theodora palette, this one also came with a look card:


It's always nice to see how the company intended for the colors to be used. I haven't actually tried out this specific look yet, but I do plan to eventually!

Final Thoughts

This is another winner from Urban Decay. The one glitter bomb is a minor disappointment, but one in two palettes from Urban Decay is a pretty good average. The other shades in the palette are neutrals and colors that are relatively easy to wear, which is great. I'm very happy that I've added this palette to my collection.

If you haven't read my review of the Theodora palette, I would urge you to check it out though. I had some issues with the palette itself that I think it important to note.  It leads to to question the durability of the palette over time and the quality about the customizable palettes in general.

Did you add the Glinda palette to your collection? Are you excited about the movie Oz the Great and Powerful? I'm excited about it, but I don't know if I'll end up seeing it in the theater just because the only movie theater near me isn't very good and probably won't end up showing it.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Urban Decay Theodora Palette - Bad Witch?

I was hoping there wouldn't be anything released for a while that was limited edition that I couldn't resist.

Darn you Urban Decay!!!

I ordered both Urban Decay Oz palettes as soon as they became available on I tried convincing myself to only pick up one, but there were colors in both that I really wanted, and I have no will-power.

Today I'm going to talk about the Theodora palette, which retails for $49, and can be found wherever Urban Decay products are sold.

I love the design on the exterior of the palette. It is perfect for the movie. I also like that the palette is metal and is in the customizable palette format. I have to wonder if this is Urban Decay's response to all of the complaints about how expensive their customizable palettes are. This way, people can start out with a full palette for a reasonable price and switch out colors as they see fit later on. I'll be talking about the customizable palette a little more later in this post.

This palette includes six shadow pans, and two of those pans have two shades, making for eight shades total. I know some people are disappointed that this palette contains so much brown, but I like how basic most of the colors are. They also got with Theodora's look from the movie.

From left to right: Broken, Beware, Bewitch, and West
Broken is a slightly yellow cream color with some sheen to it. Thankfully, it isn't as yellow as Foxy. I would say that the sheen is similar to the sheen in Virgin.

Beware is a warm-toned, matte brown shade. I love matte browns for the crease, so this is probably the color that I'll use the most in this palette.

Bewitch is a cool-toned, satin brown shade.

West is also a cool-toned brown with a bit of a plummy undertone. Compared with Bewitch, it has more of a metallic finish and is slightly darker as well.

From left to right: Spell shades and Jealous shades

Spell is the first dual shadow shades. It has a satiny black with multi-colored shimmer (with green and gold being the most prominent, which you can see in the second swatch picture. The other half is a metallic gold with gold shimmer and some glitter particles. This gold is the only shade in the palette that makes me nervous about fallout issues, but I haven't tried it yet on my eyes. I just don't reach for golds this intense very often.

Jealous consists of two satiny green shades. They have the same yellow-green tone; one is just a few shades darker than the other.

The palette includes a mini size of the 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in Zero. I'm sure there are plenty of people who are disappointed that they didn't include Perversion instead because it is a more intense black. Perversion intimidates me, so I'm okay with having Zero. Having a different color would have been nice since I have too many black liners to begin with (including full sizes of Zero and Perversion), but I understand that a black liner goes with the look they are trying to create with the palette.

24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in Zero
 The last part of the palette is a Super-Saturated High-Gloss Lip Color in Theodora, but I believe I read on Urban Decay's Facebook page that it is the exact same shade as the permanent color F-Bomb. It's a gorgeous bright red shade. The color itself is creamy and pigmented. I'm a big fan of pencil lip colors, so I was thrilled about this addition to set.

Along with the products, Urban Decay also included a look card explaining how to get Theodora's look from the movie. I haven't tried it out yet, but I love this addition. It's great to know how they intended these colors to be used together (most of them anyway...they don't use all of the colors from the palette for the look).

Packaging Problem and Excellent Customer Service

I chose to review the Theodora palette first because I had some disappointing problems with the palette itself, but I also had a wonderful experience with Urban Decay's customer service.

When I got my Theodora palette, I realized that both Spell and Jealous were not locking down properly into their slots.

Here's what I mean:

The front edge of both colors keeping popping up so the casing doesn't sit flush with the palette. It seems to be some combination of a problem with the casing for the pan and the palette itself because switching pans around leads to some sticking down and some popping in the original slots and in other slots.

To show the difference, here is how a pan should look sitting in the palette:

Needless to say, I was disappointed in the flaw. If I pay $50 for a palette, I expect it to function correctly. It was also frustrating because it isn't easy for me to exchange products at Sephora, since I live over an hour away from one.

I contacted Urban Decay through their Facebook page about the problem and was told to email their customer service, which i did on a Monday afternoon. After not receiving a reply two days later, I sent a quick follow-up email, and I received a quick response. Even though I didn't purchase my palette through,Urban Decay sent me a replacement palette. It took several emails back and forth because they required proof-of-purchase, pictures (which I ended up having to send 3 times counting the initial lost email), etc, but by Friday everything was cleared up and a replacement palette was on it's way to me. 

I was quite impressed with their customer service. I was slightly irritated over having to send pictures several times, but the fact that they replaced a palette purchased elsewhere was fantastic!

Sadly, the replacement palette had the same issue with the same two shades. However, when I switched their places, they now sit correctly. It's disappointing and makes me question the quality of the customizable palettes overall. If I get other colors to switch into this palette, will they lock in correctly or not? If I bought another customizable palette to fill, would those slots function correctly?

Final Thoughts

 I love that most of this palette is neutral basics that will make a gorgeous brown smoky eye. I'm thrilled with the lack of glitter bomb shades. I really like the fact that it's in the customizable palette format and I can switch out colors if I choose. The biggest downside of this palette for me is the issues I had with the palette and colors not locking down properly. I wasn't thrilled with the design of the Urban Decay customizable palettes, and this just confirmed my doubts. Thankfully, I have most of UD's permanent shades in palettes already, so I'm not tempted to run out and buy a bunch of them or a bunch of their customizable palettes. I might one day buy a couple of basics to switch out the colors I don't use in both Oz palettes or to make them better traveling palettes, but I'm not in a rush to do that.

Did you indulge in either of the Oz palettes? Which is your favorite?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

It's Ok Thurday Link Up

Its Ok Thursdays

This week, it's ok

...that I waited until Thursday evening to write this post.

...that I have started checking my email obsessively on my phone, even though I really need to stop that.

...that I bought two bags of Starburst jellybeans this week even though I've been trying to cut back on the sweets.

...that I felt like I frowned all day on Wednesday because I worked with a challenging first grade class.

...that I choose to stay up later than I should on Thursday because I want to watch TV shows.

...that I take longer to respond to blog comments than I should. Sorry everyone!

What's ok with you this week?

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lorac Pro Palette - Review and Swatches

I have to start this post out by sharing this link to It's from forever and a day ago, but this particular page has a short video clip of her talking to Carol Shaw, the founder of Lorac Cosmetics, and they discuss pronouncing Lorac correctly (LU-rock would be my best attempt at spelling it how it sounds). Since I saw this so long ago, it drives me crazy to hear so many people mispronounce Lorac, even though I completely understand why they are mispronouncing it. I just wanted to do my part to help out the beauty community with one of the confusing brand names out there. :-)

 Now that I've got that off my chest, I'm going to go ahead and review the Lorac Pro Palette, which retails for $42 and can be found at Sephora, Ulta, and Lorac's website.

 I love that the palette itself is nice and compact. There's not much excess packaging. One downside that most people point out is that the rubberized texture of the palette is a magnet for dust and fingerprints.

The palette also comes with a mini Behind the Scenes eye primer. Sadly, it doesn't work for me. My shadow creases when I use it. I've read plenty of positive reviews of the primer though, so I'm assuming it works well for most people.

The palette comes with 16 shadows, 8 matte and 8 shimmer shades. It's this feature that really got people talking about it and what originally drew me to this palette. I'm a big fan of matte crease and highlight/blending colors.

White, Cream, Taupe, Light Pink, Mauve, Sable, Espresso, Black
Nude, Champagne, Gold, Light Bronze, Pewter, Garnet, Deep Purple, Slate
 I love that this palette has an interesting mix of really basic colors and some that are a little more unexpected. It has a shimmery nude shade along with matte browns and a matte black, but it also includes the matte mauve shade, which is something I was wanting to add to my collection, and Pewter and Garnet.

One change that I would make is getting rid of the Champagne shade. I just find it too similar to Nude. I would have liked to see a shimmery soft brown shade in the mix instead.

The shadows are soft and creamy to the touch, but I agree with the people who point out that they are also a little powdery. Tapping the excess shadow off your brush is an easy solution to that problem, and it is a good habit to get into anyway. I also haven't had any trouble blending these shadows.

My favorite shade in the palette so far is the Light Bronze shade, which I actually consider a light golden color. Some golds are so in-your-face that I enjoy finding ones that have good pigmentation but are a bit more subtle, and this one fits the bill.

Final Thoughts

Is this palette worth picking up? Definitely. You might pass if you already have one or more of the other neutral palettes that have come out of the past couple years, but the Lorac Pro Palette has such a great combination of basics in one slim palette that it's worth checking out in person.

Have you jumped on the Lorac Pro Palette band wagon? What's your favorite palette of basic, neutral shades?

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Products I Want to Use Up! Volume 1

I've had a container of products I want to use up sitting on top of my makeup table. After seeing carlyjeanx's video about products she wants to use up in 2013, I realized that would make a good blog post series.

Let me be clear that I'm not attempting a project pan here. I'm not going on a spending ban. I know I would fail miserably if I tried. I am trying to cut back on my beauty spending, but that's not the purpose of this.

My purpose here is to use up products that I would like to see go away or products that I have multiples of in my collection (like foundation, black eye liners, etc). I tried to pick things that I use daily or smaller sized items that I'm more likely to finish. I don't want to get frustrated with myself or get completely bored with the colorful products.

Let's take a look at what I'm currently working on:

Lumene Double Stay Long-Lasting Makeup in Vanilla Meringue

Confession: I finished this prior to getting this post written. I've already switched to a new foundation product: a Holika Holika BB Cream.

Revlon Photoready Perfecting Primer

There's no particular reason why I threw this into the mix except that I've got several primers, so I picked this one to try and finish up first.

Tarte Clean Slate Flawless 12 Hour Brightening Primer

I threw in this sample primer too because it's formulated for drier skin, so it makes my face look greasy before the end of the day. I try and use this on short work days or days when I'm just running errands.

Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Dark-Circle Roller

This product just won't die!!! I've been using this consistently for over a year now. I don't love it and don't plan on repurchasing, so I just want it gone. 

Darling Girl Cosmetics Sweet Lips on the Go Sugar'd Lip Scrub in Creme Brulee

I love this stuff. The best part is that you get to choose the flavor. I'm trying to use it up because I've had it around for a while and I don't want it to go bad.

Yankee Candle Lip Balm in Pomegranate Fruit

I like this lip balm well enough, but the size makes it a little awkward to put in my pocket. It's getting close to being gone, so I'm trying to finish it off.

Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss in Naked - Mini Size

As you can see, this is almost gone. I have too many lip glosses in my collection, so I chose a mini size to try and use up first. After this one is gone, I'll probably work on another mini Lip Junkie.

Burt's Bees Radiance Body Lotion with Royal Jelly

I dislike lotion with shimmer in it, and this one has shimmer. It's small enough that it won't take me too long to get it out of my collection.

EcoTools Sustainable Softness Body Lotion

If you've followed me for a while, you probably know that I have a big stash of lotion since I end up mentioning it when I have a lotion in a finished it post. This is a small bottle, so I grabbed it to try and use up. I'm also not a big fan of the smell.

Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream 

I'm not in love with this cuticle balm, I've had it for a really long time, and I've hit pan on it. It's time for it to go. I've got a mini size of this to work on after this one is gone.

Silk Naturals Colt Eye Shadow Sample

This was a sample made for me by a friend. Colt is a dupe for Urban Decay's Darkhorse (By the way, Silk Naturals now has dupes for the Naked 1, Naked 2, and Naked Basics palettes). A friend sent this to me a long time ago. I have too many baggie samples in my collection. This will be a start in the right direction.

Physicians Formula Black Eye Liner (From the original Nude Eyes set) 

I have a lot of black eye liners in my collection because so many brands throw them into value sets. After I finished off a mini of Urban Decay's Zero (it'll be in my next finished products post), I pulled this one out as the next eye liner to finish off.

Hard Candy Pencil Concealer

This came with the Glam-o-flage concealer. I'm using it to brighten up my lower waterline. Even though the pencil is quite small, it's going to take me a long time to finish. I've used it a handful of times already, but I haven't had to sharpen it yet.

Urban Decay Primer Potion

I use this every day. I have a full size and a jumbo of this in the old-style packaging. This mini tube is almost gone.

Silk Naturals Naked Eye Shadow Sample

This is a dupe of MAC's Naked Lunch. At first look, you might this this little baggie would be easy to finish, but you would be mistaken. If you've had baggie samples like this, you'll know that they last through quite a few uses.

Silk Naturals Bone Eye Shadow

I pressed this a while ago. It's a nice browbone highlight, but it doesn't match my Wet n Wild Brulee, so I want to finish it off. My goal is to work my way through my matte highlight shades that aren't Brulee and then not purchase any more. For the quality and the price, I don't think anything else can beat it.

Silk Naturals Panache Cream Blush Sample 

This has been collecting dust, and it shouldn't be too hard to finish if I just grabbed for it regularly.

Silk Naturals Lovelace Blush Sample

This is a much brighter peach than it is appearing in the picture above. I'm not a big peach blush person, but I really like this one. The second picture was included to show how much product is in the jar. Again, it doesn't seem like a lot, but this will last through quite a few uses.

Meow Ballerina Blush Sample

Again, this baggie holds a deceptive amount of product. I'm hoping since the color is pretty light I can go through it faster than a brighter color because I'll be able to apply more of it.

Those are the products I'm working on right now. Do you try and focus on finishing specific products? What products are you working on finishing right now?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

It's Ok Thursday Link Up

Ahhh...another week has passed, so it's time for another It's Ok Thursday link up.

Its Ok Thursdays

It's okay....

...that I spent all day Sunday in my pajamas.

...that I had a large slice of red velvet cake at lunch on Monday.

...that I've fallen back into drinking more soda than I should.

...that I haven't had a whole lot of patience this week.

...that I got irritated with my fiance over something silly.

...that I took a nap both yesterday afternoon and today.

...that I don't care in the slightest that it is Valentine's Day.

I'm also going to throw in a Thankful Thursday:

I'm thankful for the students I had today. They behaved themselves wonderfully today. They did what they were supposed to do with very little whining and complaining and made my job this morning enjoyable. 

What are you ok with this week? What are you thankful for?

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Random Thoughts - Social Media Icons, Ads, Followers, and Family

I haven't done one of these random posts in a while. It seemed like a good time.

Social Media Icons

I just added some social media icons to my sidebar. I've been wanting to do this for a while, but I wasn't sure how or where to find them. Thankfully, Chelsea Dawn over at Life Unpublished saved the day.  She did a post about free social media icons that she had found on Carrie Loves. There's 19 different icons in 30 different colors!

I've added links to my Facebook, Twitter, and Bloglovin' pages. Please check them out. I'd actually really appreciate it if someone went and liked my Facebook page. It keeps reverting back to being unpublished, and I'm guessing that's because I don't have anyone following me there yet.


I tried signing up for Google AdSense over the weekend because I'd like to start making a little (and I do know it would be a little) money off of this blog to help fund my makeup addiction. Sadly, my application was rejected almost immediately. The page that they sent me to that was supposed to explain why wasn't really helpful. Anyone have any experience with this they can share?


I somewhat recently surpassed 100 followers! That felt like such a milestone. I know this is still a baby blog that is growing really slowly, but I'm proud of how far it has come. Thanks to all of you for reading, following, and commenting. I've got a giveaway in the works to celebrate, but I don't know when it will go up. Definitely keep a look out!


As I mentioned in my previous post, I spent my Saturday helping my future brother-in-law work on finishing trim for the new house he's building. I wasn't really looking forward to it because I like being lazy on the weekends, but it ended up being a really good day.

Two of my three nieces (I've been around since before they were all born, so I just consider them my nieces, not my future nieces) came out to the new house while we were working. In between sanding and moving boards, I had time to play with both girls. The 7-year-old did a little bit helping me sand boards and wipe them down. She seemed so proud to be helping. The 5-year-old took a very impressive nap curled up on the concrete floor right by where an electric sander was being used.

I feel lucky getting to see all three of these girls grow up. They have such interesting personalities, and it is fun watching those personalities develop.

Consistent Posting

I'm also going to give myself a pat on the back for sticking with posting more consistently. As life has gotten back into full swing after the holidays, my other resolutions have fallen to the wayside a bit, but this one has stuck *knock on wood*

The next step is getting posts scheduled more than a week in advance. It hasn't happened yet, but I'm optimistic that I'll get there.

I hope all of you are having a great week so far!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Essence Quattro Eyeshadow - To Die For - Review and Swatches

I hope all of you are having a nice, relaxing weekend! Mine is going to be busier than normal, but I'm hoping to get some relaxing and blogging squeezed in too. Around the time this post is going up, I'll be getting ready to go help my future brother-in-law stain a bunch of trim and doors for the new house he is building. Sunday is always laundry day for me, and I also need to try and get caught up on things around the house that I've been neglecting due to being busy and then getting sick. A well-thought-out trip to the grocery store (with a list and everything) should probably happen too, but that might get put off until Monday.

 When I finally got access to an Ulta at my favorite shopping location, I kind of went a little crazy. I picked up several items from NYX, Real Techniques, and Essence. What can I say? I was excited to have those brands easily accessible.

I picked up the Essence quad in To Die For because it seemed like a good basic palette (not that I don't already have plenty of basic palettes).

 This quad retails for $3.99 on It comes in a clear plastic compact that feels quite sturdy and isn't overly bulky. There aren't any applicators included, which is a plus in my opinion. Since I don't generally use sponge-tip applicators, they are a waste for me and just add to the bulk of the packaging. 

I like the design of the pans as well. It's a cute pattern, and the sizes of the pans coordinate with how much I would use each color. 

 I haven't used the highlight shade much because it has a satin finish to it and seems to have a slight grey tone. My regular highlight shade is completely matte. I will use this shade most often as in inner corner highlight.

As you can see, the assumed lid shade is really close to my skin tone, so the swatch doesn't show up very well. This shade also has a satin finish. While I would say the swatch appears decently pigmented, this shade seems to apply somewhat sheer on the lid.

The two darker brown shades are clearly very similar. The one on the left is a bit warmer and has sparse bits of tiny gold shimmer along with a more apparent satin finish than the other shades; the one on the right is the most matte of the four, although I would still call it a satin. They both work well as crease shades. They blend out easily. 

All four shadows have a really smooth, creamy feel that is pretty impressive for the price. The satin finish of all the shadows is so subtle, they really come off as matte on the eye. Under a primer, they seem to last well throughout the day except for the assumed lid shade. I think it fades throughout the day, especially on the center of my lid, but it's so sheer that it's hard to tell.

Final Thoughts

This is an okay quad. I like the look that it gives, but it isn't anything special. I think it would be nice for someone looking for a everyday drugstore palette without a lot of shimmer or sheen. It would also be a good palette for someone just starting out with makeup who is intimidated by eye shadow. Anyone with a larger collection probably has similar colors and could pass on this without regret. 

Do you have any fun weekend plans or are you doing chores and playing catch-up too? What is your favorite basic shadow quad or trio?

Thursday, February 7, 2013

It's Ok Thursday! Link Up

My friend Amber from Book Geek Speaks has been doing this link up started by Amber over at Brunch with Amber for a while now, and I finally decided to jump on board.

Its Ok Thursdays 
It's ok
...that I didn't work Monday through Wednesday because I had a nasty cold. 
...that I make Hamburger Helper for dinner way too often. I know it's not healthy, but it's easy and my fiance likes it.
...that I read a lot of cozy mysteries and fluffy romances and very few things with actual substance. 
...that I pre-ordered the new Tarte Amazonian Clay Concealer on QVC, even though I'm trying to cut back on my beauty spending.
...that I have over 1000 new emails in my inbox just because I've been too lazy to delete them.
...that I've been meaning to clean the bathroom floor for about two weeks now, and it hasn't happened yet.

What's ok with you this week?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Battle of the Freestyle Palettes

In the process of pressing loose mineral eye shadows and depotting larger palettes of shadows, I've picked up a variety of freestyle palettes to accommodate them all. I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at all of the options.

Homemade Palette - Approximately $5 to make

I did a post about how I made this palette here. The best feature about these is that they are inexpensive to make. This particular tin can hold 23 shadows (26mm pans). If you've got a lot of shadows that you are trying to store, these might not be big enough. You'd have to have quite a few to store a large collection. Another downside is that the lid isn't attached. It didn't seem like a big deal to me until I went to grab a stack of them and didn't get a solid hold on the bottom palette. The palette when flying, and I had some damage to a few shadows (thankfully none got completely destroyed).

  • Inexpensive
  • Holds a decent number of shadows, depending on size
  • Easy to make
  • Lid isn't attached, which means it isn't good for traveling
  • Might be hard to locate tins
  • Not ideal for a larger collection

Stars Makeup Haven Large Freestyle Magnetic Palette - $19 per palette with $7.95 shipping minimum)

This is just a plain black plastic palette that I ordered from Stars Makeup Haven. It's sturdy, but it's too large and flimsy for me to feel comfortable traveling with it. The biggest pro of this palette is that it holds a ton of shadows. I can fit 45 standard-sized pans in it.

Stars Makeup Haven also has a small freestyle palette that sells for $14. I don't know how many shadows it holds since I don't personally own it. 

  •  Holds 45 standard shadows, which is great for larger collections
  • Sleek black design
  •   Cost - it seems really pricey, especially with shipping added in. I held out for a sale, which doesn't happen often
  • The case shows smudges easily
  • Not ideal for traveling because of the size and the construction isn't extremely sturdy (although good for everyday, at-home use)

Z Palette - $20 for a large palette; $14 for a small palette; Free shipping on orders over $60

 I picked up some Z Palettes at the tail end of December when they had a few different palettes on sale. These palettes are cardboard with clear plastic for the lid, but they are really sturdy. Magnets hold the lid closed. The large palette can hold 28 standard-sized shadows, and the small palette can hold 9 standard-sized shadows.

I love that this palette had a clear lid so I can see what shadows are in them. Another great feature about these palettes is that they come with metal stickers that you can put on non-metal pans to make them stick to the palette.

  • Variety of colors and styles
  • Has a clear lid, which makes it easier to locate specific colors
  • Sturdy construction
  • Comes with metal stickers to put on non-metal pans
  • Expensive - the large size holds 17 less shadows for approximately the same cost as the Stars Makeup Haven palette (I wish they made an even larger palette)

Unii Palette - $29 for a palette, free shipping after you buy 2, and buy 4, get the 5th one free

 I bought this Unii Palette on a deal site over the summer and was able to get is for somewhere around $10 (I'm not listing the deal site because I read awful reviews on it after I made this order and don't trust promoting it). I would never have bought it at full price. It only holds 13 standard-sized shadows. The place where this palette really shines is in how sturdy this palette is. It is super solid plastic with a rubber seal around the edges. I took the second picture to show the latch. This is a super solid latch. I could throw this loosely into a bag without any concern about it popping open.

  • Super sturdy - clearly designed for travel
  • A variety of colors
  • Finger grip
  • Only holds 13 standard shadows
  • Expensive, especially for how small the palette is
Final Thoughts

I think each of these palettes has their uses. My favorite overall is the Z Palette, followed by the Stars Makeup Haven one. I would only buy the Unii Palette if you are able to find a good deal on it. I don't think it is worth the full list price. The homemade palette is great if you just want to depot one or two bulky palettes, but aren't ideal for anything more than that.

Do you have any freestyle palettes? Which one do you think would work best for your needs?