For some reason, I tend to stray away from palettes just a bit. I really don’t own many; my paltry collection is a disgrace to beauty bloggers everywhere, I’m sure. But when I find a good one, boy do I fall hard. It takes a lot to sweep me off me feet when it comes to palettes–I always feel like there are the few shades that I love and the rest of are just meh, so I end up kinda wishing that I had just bought a few singles instead. But every once in awhile, a palette comes out that truly knocks my socks off. For me, that palette was LORAC’s PRO Palette.
LORAC’s PRO Palette contains 16 shades and a mini tube of LORAC’s Behind The Scenes Eye Primer. Those 16 shades are split into 2 main categories: mattes (top row) and shimmers (bottom row). The matte shades are: White (matte white), Cream (pale cream), Taupe (mid-tone brown with gray undertones), Lt. Pink (light baby pink), Mauve (mid-tone mauvy-purple), Sable (rich coffee-brown with slight red undertones), Expresso (blackened-brown), and Black (matte black).
The shimmery shades include: Nude (pale frosty beige), Champagne (very similar to Nude in the pan but swatched, it has less of a frosted finish and more of a sheen with pink and white micro-shimmer strewn throughout and a slight blush tone), Gold (an intense mid-tone coppery-bronze), Lt. Bronze (pale, slightly frosty peachy-gold), Pewter (burnished chocolaty-bronze), Garnet (rich fiery red-bronze), Deep Purple (shimmering blackened-eggplant), and Slate (gunmetal grey).
The shadows are packaged in a sleek black cardboard compact with a rubberized exterior à la Nars. It’s slim and seriously sturdy. I accidentally sat on the palette (whoops!), which was sitting on my carpeted floor so it did bend and crack the mirror inside (bad luck?? Nooooo!!!). Thankfully, the shadows inside were okay and the actual palette did not show any other signs of damage whatsoever despite me putting my full weight on it. If it could withstand that, I think it could easily withstand being thrown in a purse or kit and being lugged around.
Meanwhile, the primer comes in a small plastic squeeze-tube with a rounded nozzle tip. The product itself comes out of the tube white with a slight pinkish-beige cast but dries to a translucent finish. It’s very easy to blend into the skin and once it’s set, it’s easy to blend shadows on top of, as well. It has a slightly thick, creamy consistency–much thicker than Nars’ Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base and less slippery.
I tested the 2 primers against each other for 2 days. On the first day, I applied a single wash of Mauve all over the lid using it over LORAC’s primer on the left and Nars’ primer on the right. On the second day, I did the same thing except used a wash of Pewter all over instead.
Right off the bat, I noticed that Nars’ primer intensified the shades much more than LORAC’s primer–it seemed to grab onto the pigment much better. The shadows applied over LORAC’s primer were a bit easier to blend out but they also didn’t stay put as well and were more faded by the end of the day. It wasn’t by a lot though–the difference was only really noticeable when compared side-by-side. If I had never tried the Nars primer, I would have felt happy with the wear LORAC’s primer gave. But alas, I do know how well the Nars primer performs so I will be sticking with it.
Now back to the shadows: the texture of these shadows is incredibly silky, smooth, and super soft–though the level of softness varies from shade to shade. Of course, the shimmery shades are a good deal softer than the matte shades, as per usual. Every one of the shimmery shades were so soft and smooth that they had a very creamy feel to them. I almost wish they were just a touch less soft though–if I wasn’t careful of the pressure I used to pick up the product (whether using a brush or sponge), they would smoosh/dent in and sometimes even crumble a bit.
As you can imagine, there was also a tiny bit of fall-out due to the soft texture. It wasn’t very much at all, though–I think when you have this soft of a shadow, it’s really to be expected. I also will admit, some of the matte shades were just a touch powdery–particularly White, Cream, and Lt. Pink. All the other mattes displayed the same smooth, silky texture.
Of the matte shades, I think Expresso was the softest and most pigmented. One swipe yielded rich, opaque color. Sable was almost as pigmented but a touch less creamy. Mauve was decently pigmented and a touch drier, as was Taupe. Black was very soft but went on quite patchy–it took quite a few swipes to build up the color in the swatch photos below. All of the shimmery shades were very pigmented and had pretty much the same very soft, very creamy texture. Nude was a hair softer than the rest and Deep Purple, Slate, and Champagne just a touch less soft.
I had only one other bone to pick with this palette and it has to do with the amount of product you get. The net weight of the palette is 0.32 oz., which means each pan contains only 0.02 oz. of product (LORAC’s single shadows contain 0.06 oz.). Urban Decay’s Naked Palette is $8 more than the PRO Palette and has a net weight of .6 oz., which means that each individual pan contains 0.05 oz. of product (equivalent to UD’s full-sized single eyeshadows). It does contain only 12 shades as opposed to LORAC’s 16 but still, if you divided those 0.6 oz. into 16, each pan would still contain more product than LORAC’s (not to mention UD’s palette comes with a nice brush and primer while LORAC’s only comes with primer). Because of this, I do wish the PRO Palette was either a bit cheaper or contained more product.
*my swatches always seem to get wider the further up my arm I go
Still, while I own both the PRO Palette and the Naked Palette, I reach for the PRO Palette much more than I ever did the Naked (which has only been used a handful of times). I think it’s much more versatile and has a nice blend of both warm and cool shades, both light and dark, matte and shimmery. I know Urban Decay released the Naked 2 and now Naked Basics but honestly, why bother having to go out and buy all 3 when you can just buy the PRO Palette and enjoy a nice, balanced mix of shades?!
All of the shades lasted all day on my eyes over the Behind The Scenes Eye Primer, though White, Cream, Taupe, Lt. Pink, and Mauve were a bit more faded by the end of the day than some of the other shades. Still, I really, really enjoyed this palette and I know it will become a staple in my collection. I’ve been reaching for it daily since I started testing it and I don’t see my devotion to it dying anytime soon. Have you tried this palette? If not, what’s your favorite palette?
»»Pricing: $42/0.32 oz. (8.8 g.)
»»Availability: Ulta, Sephora, and LORACcosmetics.com (though as of the date of this posting, it’s sold out on both Sephora and LORAC’s sites for some reason. But it is a popular item–I’m sure they’ll be restocking soon)
»»Recommended for: anyone looking for a beautiful, truly versatile palette!
»»Overall Rating: A- for the shadows/B+ for the primer
Disclaimer: the product(s) featured in this post were provided to The Beauty Sample free of charge by the manufacturer/PR for review purposes only. Regardless of how the product was obtained, my priority is to you, my readers, and I will always give you my honest opinion.