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The Too Faced Merry Macarons Palette

23 November 2016

Waiting for Too Faced to come out with their Christmas collection is like waiting to see what Sydney has in store for NYE. You know it's coming, you know it's going to be good, but will it be better than what they did last year? Sadly, I don't own anything from the 2015 Christmas collection, but I know that Too Faced followed a similar premise to last year's designs (i.e. the house idea and the pop-up scene in the background). 

In Australia, two of the three options are available at MECCA: the Grande Hotel Cafe set which retails for $70, and the Merry Macarons Palette which is priced at $57. I had a look at both in-store, and while some of the shades in the Grande Hotel Cafe set really spoke to me, I decided I wanted the convenience of having all the eyeshadows in a single palette. I also wasn't too fussed on having cheek products.

The Merry Macarons Palette comes in a super cute pinky lilac box with a lid. When you remove the lid, the front side of the box flips down so that you have access to the palette itself and can see the pop-up background scenery. I'm not usually one for girly designs but there's something really sweet about the whole 'Christmas in New York' idea. The thought of spending Christmas ice-skating near the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree with a loved one seems ridiculously romantic and a little bit magical, as lame as that might sound. Fanciful thinking aside, displaying the box on a vanity would look quite cute, though it's personally not something I'd do, so it wasn't a factor that came into play when deciding whether to buy this palette. 

You also get a deluxe-sized Better Than Sex Mascara in this set, which I've always been interested in trying, though I have a feeling it will overload my droopy lashes with product and become a smudgy mess on me. Still, it's a best-seller and a favourite of many, so it's quite nice that they've included it in this set.

The palette itself is very slim, compact, and made of cardboard. It's actually surprisingly small, like the size of a typical greeting card. The palette houses 12 eyeshadows with varying finishes, and it claims to be vanilla scented, though it doesn't smell particularly authentic to me. 

  • Coconut is a matte light creamy beige
  • Dulce de Leche is a matte mid-tone honeywheat
  • Banana Cream is a golden bronze with slightly chunky shimmer
  • Almond Mocha is a matte deep cool brown
  • Champagne Rose is a champagne with slightly chunky light gold shimmer
  • Mint Chocolate is a matte cool brown with hints of dusty purple
  • Tiramisu is a matte salted caramel
  • Chocolate Raspberry is a shimmery dark purple-brown
  • Praline is a yellow gold with slightly chunky shimmer
  • Honey Lavender is a sheer lilac taupe with slightly chunky silver shimmer
  • Violet Cassis is a shimmery violet
  • Cookies & Cream is a teal black with blue and silver sparkles

All the eyeshadows feel smooth to the touch but I feel that the pigmentation is ever-so-slightly lacking in this palette. The mattes are blendable and easy to work with but you're not getting the intense payoff that KVD or ABH shadows will give you. For me, that's both good and bad. While I love pigmented shadows, sometimes the intense colour payoff can scare a rookie (like me) off. As for the shimmery shades, most are verging on glittery, which is fine if you're looking for a bit of festive glam this holiday season. I don't mind it but I do prefer my shimmer shadows to either be subtle and pearlised, or frosty and metal-like. These are kind of a weird in-between. I'd recommend swatching these in-store if you can, just so you can get an accurate sense of if the shimmer shades would work for you.

I like the shades and I can get some nice looks from it, but for $57, is it an essential palette? No, at least not for me. I could've easily done without it but the cute packaging and the FOMO got to me in the end. I don't exactly regret buying this, but if I could go back in time, I'd probably convince myself not to buy it.

In saying that, I think this little set would make a wonderful gift for someone who is in their teens and just starting out with makeup; perhaps a daughter, a younger sister, cousin, or just for someone in your life who loves makeup, loves Too Faced, and is a sucker for cute packaging. You have all the essential matte shades you might need to create a simple eye look, but there are pops of shimmer throughout that gives this palette a youthful feel.

One last thing to note is that the palette was made in China. That's not necessarily bad, but I do prefer the quality of the shadows in the brand's permanent palettes. I find that Christmas collections are often of lower quality because they either appear to be a rush-job, or a large bulk of the cost goes into the exterior packaging, and so corners need to be cut which sometimes results in the company outsourcing to a cheaper factory. I'm not opposed to buying cosmetics manufactured in China, as long as the quality is relative to the asking price.

I think the Merry Macarons Palette would've sat better with me had this been about $10 cheaper, but objective to the price, I think the shadows are actually quite decent overall, even though my review might've made it seem otherwise.
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