Back in December, Birchbox had an offer for Aces (those who have accumulated 500+ points through referrals, purchases, or reviews) to receive a free Cynthia Rowley Beauty Game Face Eyeshadow Palette with a $50 purchase. I’m an Ace. I was in need of important things and about to go on vacation. The stars aligned and this offer couldn’t be passed up. I’m a palette hoarder and I need help.
Ten eyeshadows are housed in a ginormous cardboard case with a mirror, a brush, and a pencil liner. It’s available at Birchbox, of course, for $40. Personally, I feel that the case is a little oversized for what you get. This is a neutral palette. Not the Urban Decay Vice 3 Palette (seriously, it’s almost just as big). Calm down, guys. It could have been squashed down into a much more portable size.
That being said, I’m still glad that the two highlighter shades are available in larger sizes because those are usually the ones I hit pan on first.
Left to right-
MVP-A light, golden, shimmery beige.
All Star-A light grey with a golden shimmer.
Rookie-A light, warm taupe with a golden shimmer.
Ace-Grey with a golden shimmer.
Undefeated-A matte taupe.
Wild Card-A shimmery forest green.
Winning Streak-A shimmery, warm, bronzy-brown.
Bullseye-A matte grey.
Hat Trick-A warm, dark brown with a satin finish.
Knockout-Black with a satin finish.
Judging by the names of the palette and the shadows, the theme is something about sports. I’m just a runner and one of those weird Americans that doesn’t participate in watching sports, so that’s not really something that appeals to me. If they were all named after Lou Reed songs or something, though, I would be so into it. As always, my swatches are dry with no primer, just so we understand what kind of potential these may or may not have. The majority of these were extremely sheer and patchy alone, but performed much better with a primer, so I would suggest using one.
I cannot express enough how gorgeous the shadows look on my eyelids. Like most 30 year olds, I am aging, and an extremely matte or shimmery eyeshadow has the tendency to highlight lines around my eyes or on my lids and make me look older. These shadows have the perfect finish in between that leaves a nice glow. However, they are not nearly pigmented enough to create any kind of contrast whatsoever unless I pack on tons and tons of shadow. As I’ve already stated, they are very sheer without primer. With it, they are still sheer but glide on evenly and like butter rather than looking patchy. I haven’t had to deal with any fallout with these and they hold up well throughout the day without creasing.
I’ve reviewed this same liner in a past Birchbox. It’s not the blackest of blacks, but it is really creamy and glides on smoothly. Unfortunately, I run into issues with it not setting well, so it bleeds out around my eyes in no time. It’s decent for tightlining, but I would never use it for anything else.
The brush is your typical synthetic fiber brush. The bristles are very stiff and do not pick up much product. With the shadows being so sheer to begin with, this brush is pretty much useless.
Here are some looks I’ve done with the shadows:
I’m really torn on whether or not I like this palette. The shadows look great alone and would be nice for lazy days or for people that just like one solid color across their lids, but it takes quite a bit of work to create a more complex look because they are so sheer. If I’m going to be doing something neutral, it needs to be quick and easy. I have no use for the pencil or the brush, and the case is so unnecessarily huge that it’s not very portable. Something more compact would have been much better and entirely possible, given that the shadows are so spaced out on the palette. Still, I find that this palette will get a lot of use when I am at home and all I have time to do is swipe one color across my lids.