Palette test: No7 anniversary palettes

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So here is the palette test that I promised ages ago: the Boots 80th anniversary No7 palettes. This review is a little dated now, but the smokey palette seems to still be available on the Boots website even if you can’t get them in shops now. The nude one might have sold out, but as you will see, it’s the weaker of the two. Apologies for the limited and crappy pics in this update, BTW, I have no idea what was going on.

Smokey palette

Smokey palette

These two palettes were released as part of a limited-edition collection of make-up for No7’s 80th anniversary. I have to say, I’m not a particular fan of No7 and don’t own that many items by them, but they were doing a free gift if you spent over a certain amount of money, and the free gift was pretty good, including a lipstick of your choice, mascara, eye shadow and illuminator. So I took the opportunity to purchase a few items from them to see what they would be like. I got these two mini palettes and some eyeliners as part of this. I will post about the eyeliners at some point, and I’m sure, but they are really disappointing. The colours are absolutely beautiful and they swatch really well on your hand, but they don’t transfer to the eyes at all. Their nail polishes are also a bit eh, although the lippies and illuminator are OK.

the nude palette

Nude palette

As for the two palettes, one is nude focused and one is smokey. They both have a nice, unthreatening range of shades in them. However, you have to really build them up in order to get the colours to show up, especially in the nude palette. They are very, very subtle.

Spot the shades... nude swatches

Spot the shades… nude swatches

...smokey swatches

…smokey swatches

Subtlety is not necessarily a bad thing and may well make these a more attractive proposition for those who are not into heavy make up, but I was a little bit disappointed that you needed to layer up quite a lot to get decent colour payoff out of these, especially in the lighter shades.

Daytime nudes... this is about as dark as they go!

Daytime nudes… this is about as dark as they go!

So nude it's barely there!

So nude it’s barely there!

Very barely there

Very barely there

Daytime with smoky palette

Daytime with smoky palette

Smokey lid

Smokey lid

Sorry for the blur... smoky eye

Sorry for the blur… smoky eye

Here are the different looks that I tried with these: mainly work-related, nothing especially glamorous for the evening – to be honest, I don’t think they would stand up to that job on their own, although they would work well as base colours with some other shadows. The darker shades in the smokey palette you could probably just about get an evening look with, but these are more daytime-friendly pieces.

Overall, I was a little bit disappointed with these. They look really pretty and I love the packaging-very compact. The brush/sponge is pretty useless, but that’s not really a surprise. They would be great for travelling, but I did take the smokey palette to a wedding and wished I’d taken something else, as it was hard to get the look I wanted. Eight shades for £13.50 feels very overpriced compared to MakeUpRevolution, Sleek, MUA, L’Oreal and Maybelline, all of whom have bigger and better offerings for less.

Overall, these are fine if you want something timid and you can get them cheap on eBay but they’re not something I would strive to look out for if you don’t already have them as there are far better options out there for the price.

Next time: Tartelette by Tarte.

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