July 26, 2016

Arbonne's Country Garden Palette || The Perfect Palette Project

Hello there!

I wanted to continue talking about palettes, so today I thought I would share my thoughts on Arbonne's Country Garden Palette, which isn't a new palette but one of the few that Arbonne has made. This palette was actually a gift, but I still wanted to share my honest opinion on this palette. I have talked about Arbonne on my blog before, but I haven't tried their products in a while. They are an all-natural brand, and their products are created to look effortless and natural on the skin. And, while I love the idea of effortless makeup, after using this palette I found that the products were too soft to create a look that I would want to wear. Nevertheless, I decided to share photos and swatches of the palette, to give you a full review and breakdown about each product.

I have to start by mentioning one of my favorite parts of this palette, which is the packaging. The palette is slim and has a really nice big mirror, so it's perfect for travel, and the outside of the palette is totally gorgeous, with mint roses and gold foil detailing. I think it is seriously beautiful. The applicator that comes with this palette actually has a small brush on one side, so it could be useful for smudging on the lower lash line or applying product to the inner corner. The Country Garden Palette has a few different versions, so you can grab this one, which is slightly more cool-toned, or one that has much more warm shades and a bright sheer moisture lippy. At first glance, nothing really stood out in this palette to me besides the bronzer, which is a real bronze shade and has quite a bit of shimmer in it. All of the eyeshadows, except for one, appear to be matte, so I was hoping that they wouldn't kick off too much powder when applied. The palette comes with a blush and bronzer duo, four eyeshadows, and one of their sheer moisture lipsticks, which is a pinky nude shade. 

{the blush & bronzer duo}

The part of this palette that I was initially attracted to was the blush and bronzer duo, which comes in the shade summers meadow. I like the look of this bronzer because it had a nice glow, but the blush seemed a bit light for my skin tone. Once I swatched both shades, I realized that the bronzer was more of a bronze eyeshadow than an actual bronzer. Both the blush and the bronzer were decently pigmented, and didn't kick off a lot of powder, but when I applied the bronzer to the face I looked like I had just had a terrible spray tan; the bronzer was too orange and too glittery to look natural. As for the blush, which looked like a nice baby pink, I just thought it was too pale of a pink for my skin, and I don't think that this shade would work on very many skin tones. It was also somewhat metallic, like the bronzer, so it gave you a nice glow; if this could be used for anything, it could be a soft highlighter, but I don't think this a very good blush or highlight. You could also mix the bronzer and blush together for a more wearable blush shade, or for a powder that could add glow to the face, but overall I think you really have to work with this product to get good results. I don't think this duo would look natural or flattering on anyone.

{the eyeshadows}

This palette comes with a quad of eyeshadows, most of which seem to be matte, and all of which have very cool undertones. The shades themselves, on a first look, seem to be really unique, but I found that the quality of the shadows was not very good and did not create a natural, effortless look. Still, I wanted to give you some notes about each shadow, so you know why this quad didn't work:

bluebell: I don't normally wear light blue eyeshadow, so already I knew that this would be a shade that I would not use. Out of the four colors, this one is one of the best, because the pigmentation is somewhat strong and it blends well. However, if you want a matte, light blue eyeshadow, I think there are a lot of less expensive options, so I think you could skip this one.

woodrose: I was actually really interested to try this shadow, because it is really unique and not a shadow that you would normally find in a palette. It is a steel grey shade with blue undertones and a soft shimmer. It doesn't have a lot of fallout, and it is actually pigmented, so I was impressed with this shade. I don't really have that many uses for it in my everyday looks, but if you like a grey shadow and sport a smokey eye on the regular then you might like this shadow.

birch: I was looking forward to trying this shade because it is a medium matte brown shadow, which I think is essential in any eye look and perfect for a palette. This, to me, was the most disappointing part of the palette, because the shadow was flaky and dry, and not pigmented. It blended shadows without adding any warmth or that much color, and I found myself reaching for other medium brown shadows to make up for what this shade was seriously lacking. It was an underwhelming shadow.

willow: A matte cream shadow seems like it would be really easy to get right, but a lot of brands struggle to make a matte cream shade that isn't flaky or dry, and is pigmented and creamy. So I did not have high expectations for this shade. It did not show up when I applied it to my lids, and it was really dry and hard to work with. It wasn't buildable either, so you can't keep adding product to get your desired intensity. It was not a good quality shade.

{the lipstick}

This was probably my favorite part of this palette, which is ironic because it doesn't actually come in the palette itself. But each country garden palette comes with a sheer moisture lipstick, and this palette comes with the shade rosebud. It is a soft baby pink shade that is really creamy, but it is actually a bit too creamy, and it can be hard to apply out of the bullet. But once it is applied it looks quite nice, and although it isn't long wearing it's one of those lipsticks that is great to have in your bag for when you want to touch up your look without a mirror or a lot of time. I will actually use this product in the future.

I know that this review might have seemed a brutal, but I wanted to be really honest. I was looking forward to trying this palette because it had a unique range of shades, and housed both eyeshadows and face products; I was hoping that it would be a nice palette for travel. However, it just doesn't do anything special. And for the expensive price of 110$, I don't think this palette is worth your money. I don't think that any of the shades go together, and it feels like these colors were just thrown together and put in a palette. And, unless you have extremely fair skin, none of these shades will actually show up on your skin or be flattering. I would recommend finding another palette that has face and eye products and is more versatile and better quality.

My hunt for the perfect palette continues!

Have you found the perfect palette? 

xx BB