Palette test: Zoeva Cocoa Blend

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The second palette I’m reviewing in this series is Zoeva’s Cocoa Blend palette. I fell in love with this as soon as I saw it appearing on Instagram and blogs with lots of people swatching and swirling it and I decided then that it would be mine. Unfortunately, this led me to look into the company and I discovered that all of their palettes look gorgeous. It’s been a trial not to buy them all! So far, I have one other (mixed metals), but I expect that will change over the coming months.

Look, it comes in a wrapper, just like chocolate!  So do their other palettes, but lets ignore that fact)

Look, it comes in a wrapper, just like chocolate! So do their other palettes, but lets ignore that fact)

Flash on

Flash on

Flash off

Flash off

The cocoa blend palette has a mixture of mattes and shimmers in brown, taupe and red shades mostly.

Flash off

Flash off

Flash on

Flash on

As you can see from the swatches, this is a very pigmented palette. I wasn’t quite prepared for how pigmented it would be when I put the first lot on: Bitter Start had a lot of powder-more than I wanted for an undercoat! The only colour that is difficult to work with is the second one in, Sweeter End, which is far less pigmented than the rest of them for some reason. (Not sure why some of them have Madonna-inspired names but not all!) I love all the colours although I’m less keen on Full of Beans, which looks lovely in the palette itself but when applied to a brush or skin is a much more black, muddy shade – it’s the one that’s really smudged in the top right.

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As per the rules of this challenge, I created three different looks with the palette.

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The first look was for work.

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A very simple nude look using the paler matte shades in the palette.

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The second look was for work, too, using the more medium and shimmery shades.

Please excuse the angle!

Please excuse the angle!

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Look three was meant to be smoky and deep, using the darker red/plum/taupe shades but I used the red in the crease and it made me look ill, so I kept removing it, as in the part-way pic above which is after I started to get rid of it and remembered I needed a pic.

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However, after this, the eyeliner and mascara went wrong, so I got rid of it before making up a full face and then I couldn’t be bothered to redo it as my eyes were getting annoyed with all the faffing about.

The pigmentation is great on these shadows. They lasted all day-there was a muddling together of colours by the end of the day, but they outlasted me, going for a good 12 hours or so and they probably could have gone on longer. With the palette, you can create nice nude looks, smoky looks and something in between! It’s not going to be a palette that serves your every need: with 10 shades in a fairly limited colour range it can’t, but it can do a range of things and the colours are (with the two caveats mentioned) exceptionally lovely.

At £15, it’s not the cheapest palette (we have plenty of Makeup Revolution coming if you want an idea of my traditional price range), but it’s much cheaper than any of the high-end brands yet with an equivalent quality. If the rest of the Zoeva range is like this, I can’t wait to try them!

Next time: I inject some colour into proceedings with Freedom’s Clubbed to Death.


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