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Smashbox Matte Exposure Palette Review

By 9:42 PM

We all know we probably don't need another matte palette, but it doesn't change the fact we'll somehow talk ourselves into purchasing one.  I think my conversation went, "Purple!"  Yeah.  I have issues.

Front of outer packaging

The Smashbox Matte Exposure Palette is $49.00 for 49 oz of product.  There are 12 .035 oz matte wet/dry shadows and 2 .07 base shadows.

Back of outer packaging
The back shows the items that are included.

The guide
There is also a card that shows tips for different eye shapes.


The package is nice looking.  It's a matte black with raised lettering in glossy black.  It is on the thick side.


The back lists the colors included, unfortunately, they are not listed on the inside.  The shadows were made in Italy, while the brush was made in China.




The included brush is red with double ended black ferrules.  One end is good for packing in eyeshadow on the lid.  It is dense and fairly soft.  The other side says its for eyeliner/brows.  It is thick and dense, I'm not sure it would be too good for liner, but I don't often use shadow for liner, so I could be wrong.  It's not a horrible brush.


This has two sides, the left six shadows are warm and the right six are cool.  The center shades are both base shades with the left one being little warmer and the right a little cooler.

Warm Side
So, let's start on the left side.


Spice is a matte burnt sienna.  The pigmentation is fairly good and it blends okay.





Desert is a matte light neutral leaning camel brown.  It has okay pigmentation and blends well.





Tonal is a matte soft peach.  It has okay pigmentation and blends well.






Blackberry is deep matte blackberry/brown color.  It has good pigmentation but can be patchy.  It blends okay.





Sumatra is a matte chocolate brown.  It has good pigmentation, can be patchy, and blends okay.





Suede is a warm matte brown with red orange undertones.  This and Spice are two of the best quality shades in the palette.

Cool side
Buff is there, I promise.  It's a matte pink nude that just blends right into my skin tone.  It has okay pigmentation and blends well.





Drizzle is a soft matte lavender.  It has okay pigmentation and blends decently.  I like this color, so this is one that I use the most out of the bunch.




Truffle is a pale matte grey.  It is really lacking in pigmentation and blends okay.





Grounded is a soft cool buff brown.  It has okay pigmentation and blends well.  I like this one as a transition color.





Black Plum is a deep matte plum.  It has good pigmentation, blends okay, but can be patchy.  I use this shade quite a bit simply because I like the color.




Blackout is a matte black.  It is all around, okay.







Middle Ground
Lastly, the two base colors in the middle.

 Wheat is a soft matte warm brown.  It isn't very pigmented but blends well.





Vanilla is a pale matte beige.  It barely shows up on my skin but has light pigmentation and blends decently.






This isn't a palette that will blow your socks off, to be fair, that's not really the point of a neutral matte palette.  However, that is acceptable if a certain quality is met.

Left: KVD Succubus and SB Spice
Kat Von D has her Shade and Light Eye Palette and that is another basic matte palette.  If that's the stick you measure this by, Smashbox doesn't come up smelling roses.  It lacks the pigmentation and blend-ability that makes a good matte palette.  I also fear that on deep skin tones this will look powdery or ashy.  It isn't worth $49.00 and to be honest I don't want mattes that I have to wet to use.  If it were $29.00, I would think it was worth the price.

However, this may be good for those of you who don't want a pigmented palette.  If a subtle wash of color is your jam, behold, the jelly.

I use it because I have it, but if I had a time machine, I wouldn't buy it again.

* I purchased my own matte exposure.

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