Sunday, February 12, 2012

Brand Spotlight - The Balm

The Balm's many amazing shadow palettes

With so many great makeup brands out there, it can get pretty pricey to sample items from them all. I thought it might be fun – and informative – to do a little series where I point out my three favorite products from a specific brand in case you’re curious about where to start with a certain company’s offerings. I hope you’ll share your favorites as well I’m sure there are plenty of goodies that I haven’t gotten around to trying yet.

I wanted to start with what I think it is one of the most underrated makeup brands– The Balm.  Even though the only products that I’ve tried from them are their shadows (I have a couple of their blushes and their luminizer on my wish list), they are one of my favorite brands. The quality of their shadows is just extraordinary – soft, creamy and so easy to blend. I love their color selection as well – from light shades that work for everyday looks to dark, rich shades that create the perfect smoky eye to bright, fun shades that are perfect for adding a pop of color to your look. 

I seriously can’t recommend the Balm enough, so here are my three favorites in no particular order:

Nude'Tude Palette

Nude'Tude Palette Shades

1.       Nude’Tude Palette – There are a ton of nude or natural eye shadow collections out there, and I own most of them – Urban Decay Naked, Naked2, Too Faced Natural Eye Palette, Too Faced Neutral Eye Palette, Stila naturaleyes, etc.  My absolute favorite is the Balm’s Nude’Tude Palette. Sure, it has super cute packaging – love the naughty pin-up girls on the inside! – but that’s just the beginning. The lighter shades like Stand-offish and Snobby in the palette are super brightening, so they always give you a pretty, wide-awake look. But the dark shades in the palette like Sophisticated and Silly are perfect for a smoky eye. Nude’Tude also includes four matte shades, including a rich dark black that I love to use as liner or to darken up the outer corner. l adore this palette.  If you can only get one item from the Balm, this is probably the one I would suggest.

Shady Lady Vol. 2 Palette
Shady Lady Vol. 2 Palette Shades

2.       Shady Lady Vol. 2 Palette – I own all three Shady Palettes, and while I love all of them, Vol. 2 is my favorite. I bought it on a trip to Vegas, so it gets points for having lots of fun memories, but  I also think it has the most versatile colors of the three. Devilish Danielle on the lid and Mischievous Marissa in the crease is one of my go-to everyday looks, while I love Insane Jane and Feisty Felicia for a dramatic smoky eye. Bossy Bobbi and Makeout Mary are gorgeous colors to use as liners when you want to add a pop of color. The only flaw I see in this palette is that it contains a repeat from the first Shady Lady Palette – Caught in the Act Courtney.  But it is a dark, rich brown that you could get a lot of use out of so maybe it’s not such a bad thing to have two.

The Muppet Show Cast Your Shadow Palette

Muppet Show Cast Your Shadow Palette Shades

3.       The Muppet Show Cast Your Shadow Face Palette – I hesitated to include this palette because it was limited edition and is no longer available, but if I’m being honest, this has to be on my list of Balm  favorites because it’s that fabulous. (I think the Balm made an exact copy of this palette without the cute Muppet packaging called ‘The Balm and the Beautiful’. I don’t see it on their website, but some folks have found it out their local T.J. Maxx and Marshalls locations.)  Of course, I love the Muppets’ packaging, but the eye shadows are just gorgeous – lots of browns and neutrals for everyday looks but also a stunning turquoise shade, Great Gonzo, and deep purple, Kissy Kissy, that I like to wear on my lower lashline for some added oomph. The Palette also includes two cheek and lip stains and a lipgloss, but to be honest, I haven’t used those much.

Are you a fan of the Balm?  What are your favorite or must-have items from the line? 

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