Monday, February 15, 2016

Urban Decay XX Vice Ltd Reloaded Palette - Swatches & First Impressions!

Hello! Hope you're having a great day! For this post, I want to share with you the Urban Decay XX Vice Ltd Reloaded eye shadow palette.
Ooo, fancy box! This is a special, Ulta-exclusive palette that's supposed to celebrate 20 years of Urban Decay eye shadow. You can't even buy this from Urban Decay directly; only from Ulta and Ulta.com. This palette is very similar to the lime green Ltd palette both in price (this palette is $56; normal Vice palettes are $60) and idea (a mixture of past Urban Decay shadows instead of a bunch of new ones). Unlike the original Ltd palette, there are some new shades in this one, but it's mostly a mixture of some of Urban Decay's (UD's) most iconic shadows, include some old discontinued ones.
Because I am impatient, I purchased this palette as soon as it became available. Since I am a Platinum member at Ulta, I got a special invitation to order this palette before the official release date (I got it around the time when it released to everyone, so I didn't get it super, extra early or anything). If the other Ltd palette and the Vice 4 are any indication, this palette will likely stick around for a while, before going on sale for $39 or so. I didn't want to risk missing out on it (and I had points), so I didn't mind paying full price, but if you're on the fence and don't want to drop the $56, you might be able to get it on sale at some point.

This is essentially a slightly less expensive version of a Vice palette, so the packaging is very similar (if not downright the exact same). One of the biggest disappointments about this palette is that the box it comes in has such a cool watercolor kind of pattern, but the palette itself is matte black and boring.
Why? The matte black looks kind of cheap (again, this is almost like a "budget" UD palette, so it's kind of fitting) and is such a let down after the design of the box. At least the Ltd palette, which is a matte lime green, came in a matte lime green box, so you expected it to be dull. This palette also has the "push button to open" like the original Ltd palette does, which is odd. The other Vice palettes are all magnetic closures; why would the cheaper versions have fancier opening mechanisms? One theory I have is that there's a lot more that can break and go wrong with a push button mechanism than with a magnetic closure; you don't ever have to worry about not being able to close your Vice palettes, but there may come a time where these Ltd ones won't stay shut.
The back of the palette is shiny and black with a matte black sticker. 'Oogschaduwoosje' is 'eye shadow palette' in a different language according to this sticker, which is actually kind of awesome.
As in all the other Vice palettes, you get a double-ended brush. These aren't super amazing, but they're nice and they work well so I'm glad that UD throws them in. I also like how it's not always the same kind of brush (though they're all double ended); this brush has a fluffy blending side and a flat, shading side.
And here's the palette in all its (slightly crooked) glory! ...also sorry about me being in the shot; the plastic inside is shiny (thought not as shiny as the back and sides). One thing that I've heard from a lot of people who got early access to this palette is that it doesn't seem cohesive. Initially, I felt the same way, but after playing with it and swatching it, I find it to be way more cohesive of a palette than the original Ltd. Like in the Vice 3 palette, the shades seem to be arranged in vertical quads; it's a little hard to see when you're looking at the palette as a whole, but when you swatch the quads individually, it makes a lot more sense.
So that's how I'm going to swatch them! I'm also going to swatch each shade individually, but I really wanted to show that there is some organization going on here.
The first shadow of the first row is Suspend. Suspend is a "greige-brown matte" and is a great transition color. Or all over the lid/base blending color. It's an UD matte, so it's almost more of a satin than a true matte, but I much prefer these types of shadows over actual mattes (which I think are almost always dry and powdery).

Next in this quad is 501, a "deep metallic blue w/copper micro-glitter". I thought this shadow was going to be gritter, with a lot of glitter fallout, but it actually applied well with good pigmentation.
 Ah, Smog. What is there to say about Smog that hasn't been said already? I think this is the fourth or fifth pan of Smog that I now own. Smog is a "deep coppery bronze shimmer" and is in every UD palette ever for a good reason; it's gorgeous and works well in many different eye looks and on many different skin tones.
 Last in this quad is Moonflower, one of the shades that really called to me in this palette. It is described as a "metallic rose-gold w/gold micro-shimmer" and it has that perfect, shimmery UD shadow texture. Just an overall gorgeous color, and very flattering for blue eyes.
 The second quad is a little more out of the box, but I think the colors still work well together and could create a cohesive look (plus I've seen other palettes/quads made up of very similar colors, so it's not that out there).
 The first shade in this quad is Oil Slick, another shadow that I have multiple pans of. Oil Slick is described as a "black matte w/silver micro-glitter" and is one of the weaker shadows in this palette (and in the other palettes I have that include it). It's not a very strong black; it's more of a deep charcoal grey, and the glitters don't always make it from the pan to your lid. I never find much use for this shadow and end up using either a shimmery black or a matte true black and layering shimmer on top over this one.
 Next is Shallow, a "pale taupe-silver satin". It's shimmery in the pan, so it's clearly different from UB mattes, but it performs about the same (which is a good thing). This is a good transition/blending shade if you want a little shimmer. It's more on the unique side, too, so it's less likely you'll have something similar to it in your collection.
 This is Misdemeanor, a "deep olive green matte w/green micro-shimmer". Again, I don't think the "matte bade with glitter" kind of shade really works. At least it doesn't for me. No matter what brand I get them from, I just don't like them. If I want to add glitter to a matte, I'd rather do it by layering products on my lids than having them already mixed in a pan. It's not as chunky as Oil Slick, though, and it's a bit more green in real life (it's pulling super blue here).
 The last color in this quad is UV-B, which is pulling way more blue, too. It looks more purple/blurple in real life, especially in the pan. This color is described as a "bright blue w/violet shift", which makes its color changing properties make a lot more sense. It did swatch well with good pigmentation, but I find that UD's purple shadows are often their weakest ones.
The third quad in this palette is another more unique set of colors, but still completely workable in a look. Especially if you love an opulent color combination!
 First up is Roadstripe, which is one of the most interesting shadows in this palette. In the pan it looks like a shimmery cream/off white, but when you swatch it, it has a really intense blue/purple shift. In fact, it is described as a "iridescent white w/blue-violet shift", which is very accurate. This is a great shade to use as an inner corner highlight, or to layer over other shadows to change their color and/or add depth and shimmer.

Next is Laced, another great UD matte. It is a "pinky-taupe matte" and it's a perfect base layer shade for my skin tone. I love laying this down first all over my lid to make it easier to blend out all the crazy colors I want to layer on top.
This is Freakshow, a "bright purple satin". The shadow swatched really well for being a purple; better than UV-B, actually. I wonder if these more red-based purples are easier to make then blue-based ones. I was actually pretty impressed with this purple, especially compared to some of the purples in the other Vice palettes.
 The last shade in this quad is Goldmine, which is a stunning bright, shimmery gold. It's described as a "bright metallic gold" and it looks so molten and shiny and gorgeous! I went through a phase where I wanted to gold all the things on my face, and I wish I had this shadow back then because I probably would have put it everywhere.
 The second to last quad is a fierce combo of what I like to call "Valentine's Day" colors. It also includes my favorite shade in this palette, Gash.
 Gash is a very old Urban Decay shade that was discontinued, but they brought it back for this palette (in the new, improved shadow formula no less!). It's described as a "metallic brick red", which really doesn't do this shadow justice. It's quite unique, and if I do have something similar to it in my collection, it's going to be something from an indie company since this is not a common, mainstream color. This will be the perfect color to blend with an orange to help emphasis my eyes and look wicked fierce.
 Hot Pants is almost like the pink version of Roadstripe. It's described as a "pearly medium pink", but it's sheer enough that you can use it as a layering color to add shimmer and depth. I don't think you'll be able to get it as opaque and bright as it is in the pan without a lot of effort, so if that's what you're looking for, you might be disappointed in this shadow.
 The last shade in this quad is Twice Baked, another quintessential UD shadow that I'm sure you already own if you have any UD makeup in your collection. It's described as a "rich brown satin w/gold micro-glitter", but I don't remember my other Twice Baked as having as much micro-glitter as this one has.
 The last quad in this palette has a pleasant, soft green color scheme.
The first shadow in this quad is yet another common UD shadow, Midnight Cowboy. Midnight Cowboy is a "pink champagne shimmer w/ silver glitter" and, like Twice Baked, it seems to have more glitter than the other pans I have of it. If you like shimmery highlights and inner corner colors, this is a great shadow. This shadow also works well on the lower lash line if you're trying to make your eyes look more open and bright.
 The next shadow is Mildew, a "deep metallic green shimmer". I think is a less common shadow color, at least in UD palettes, but I actually do already own this color (it's in the Ammo palette). This is one of my favorite green shadows; it's undeniably green, but it still looks, well, not natural, but not over the top.
 This is another old Urban Decay shadow that they finally brought back in the new formula. This is Acid Rain and it's described as a "pale yellow-green shimmer w/green shift". This shade goes amazingly well with Mildew, and it's an interesting and unique highlight/inner corner color. It's also similar to Hot Pants in that it's a little on the sheer side, so you can layer it over other colors. Very cool, and another shadow that drew me to this palette.
And finally, the last shade in the quad and in this palette, this is Anonymous, a "pale peachy cream matte". This color is a great matte highlight, or blending/transition/all over the lid color if you want something a little paler. It's the same kind of "satin matte" as the other mattes in this palette and it blends and applies just as beautifully.

And that's the Urban Decay XX Vice Ltd Reloaded palette, which is kind of an excessively long name. Hmm. Overall, this is a good palette; the shadows are good quality (basically the kind of shadows you'd expect from Urban Decay), the color selection is interesting and varied (some "weird" colors like Gash and Acid Rain, some "normal" colors like Smog and Laced), and at $56 for twenty shadows, not a bad deal. Again, if you're not completely sure about this palette, and can live with not owning should it sell out, I would recommend waiting to see if it will go on sale like the original Ltd and the Vice 4 (though if you decide you can't wait and pay the full price, I do still think you'll be getting your money's worth!).

Thanks for reading! <3

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