Beauty · Make-up

Review: Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics palette

For years (literally), I haven’t worn eyeshadow.  I’ve been stuck in my comfort zone of eyeliner and mascara; this being my comfort zone because I was convinced that my eyes weren’t defined enough (but rather more tired looking) without some form of eyeliner and if I had time to apply that, I didn’t have time for eyeshadow as well.  I still count myself lucky I have time for make-up at all (there’s always one sticky pair of hands or another reaching up over the edge of the bed and running off with whatever brush/product they can reach!) and, for a long time, choosing eyeshadow colours and blending them just seemed like a faff too far…

Something changed recently (I don’t know what) but I’m happier with my eyes without eyeliner and this brings with it not only a new-found confidence but also a licence to go shopping for more make-up (sorry husband).  Years of going shadow-free diminished my personal collection, so now (surely) I’m entitled to stock it back up again…

After much deliberation, (I’m a comparative shopper), I settled on the Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics palette and by ‘settled’, I don’t mean I was in any way settling. After all my research into palettes with a fair selection of colours, I kept coming back to this one, primarily (I think) because of the diversity of colours and the fact that almost all the shades are matte. But I really did try to at least be tempted by another brand; I already own the original Naked palette by Urban Decay, so I was well up for a new discovery but I guess that fact only made me more likely to buy from them again, because that palette is just the dogs…

This palette covers a wide field of possibilities for the looks you could create with it; it has everything from nudes, blushes and purples, on-trend yet timeless rusts and smoky shades. Because of the diversity, I just know I’ll get plenty of use out of it (I’ve never been one to buy frivolously without feeling sure that something wouldn’t be wasted).

Historically, the colour payoff with Urban Decay eyeshadows has always been consistently fantastic, so I had no worries there. I ordered this form the Urban Decay website; it arrived within 3 days and I was so excited when I saw the packaging: it is beautiful! The rose gold box it comes in has a fantastic image of the shades on the front, giving you a real feel for all the looks this palette can accomplish but, even better than that, the casing on the palette is a stunning, textured rose gold with the Urban Decay logo and title embossed on the front. It’s superbly light-reflecting and an impressive addition to any collection. I was practically dribbling at this point…


Opening the casing you’ll find a large square mirror, which I really won’t use but it’s an impressive size nonetheless for those who do appreciate it (I like to hold just a mirror in my hand and if I hold a palette with a mirror in it, it just feels too big and clunky). It also comes with a double-ended brush – one end is ideal for blending over the whole lid (and is also small enough to manage blending in just the socket) and the other end is my favourite: a short bristled ‘scribbler’, as I call them. Perfect for picking up darker colours (that you want over a smaller area), for clutching onto plenty of pigment and also for ‘scribbling’ into the skin, to build up an intensity and avoid fallout (which you rarely get anyway with Urban Decay).

The colour payoff (as I said earlier) is fab and you can get away with using very little and still get the colour to come across well but it’s also easily buildable if you want a more striking look. I also said earlier that almost all the shades were matte and that’s because the palest shade ‘Blow’ is more of a satin than a matte and offers a very subtle sheen to the skin, a little like MAC’s ‘Brulé’ eyeshadow. It still works perfectly with the rest of them though, no moaning here. I’ve had this palette some weeks now, I’ve used it daily and can concur that each shade is beautifully wearable for both daywear and evening but also that THEY DO NOT CREASE, no matter how hot the weather! We’ve had some stonking hot days recently and, even without eyeshadow primer, this stuff stays the day.

I really can’t knock this one in anyway, shape or form. The price (£39.50 with free delivery) is reasonable if you’re wanting to invest in your collection of shades and want to buy something that’s timeless and great quality. There are cheaper brands out there (and I’ve tried a lot of them) but you normally sacrifice on pigment, intensity, shade range or lasting power for the sake of a few quid. I’m getting older now and, at the ripe old age of 33, my husband and I often agree, we like to buy less but better quality these days (I can just see the younger me rolling my eyes while my mum says “I told you so”)!

Have you tried this particular palette or any of the others from Urban Decay? What other brands would you recommend for eyeshadow palettes?

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Thanks for reading x

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