Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Eyeshadow Palette Swatches and Review

Self-Purchased

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette - Front of Box

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette – Front of Box

I bought this baby back when it was first released in a VIB Rouge preview at Sephora last September. It’s taken me 8 months or so to post this, I know, I’m horrible! But my review is here and just in time for it to go on sale at Sephora!

This palette was $55 but is now on sale for $39 both on the UD website and Sephora’s site and it contains 19.5 g of product. As a comparison the Naked palettes are all $54 for 15.6g so even at full price this palette is a much better bang for your buck both compared to the Naked palettes and the UD eyeshadow singles.

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette - Back of Box

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette – Back of Box

What UD says about it:

Satisfy your color addiction with a stunning spectrum of 15 shades of our iconic Eyeshadow. Experiment with never-before-seen shades, as well as cult favorites. Arranged in a gorgeous ombré rainbow of greens, blues, purples, pinks and neutrals, this limited-edition palette is a shadow junkie’s dream.

With a veritable rainbow of shades, the combinations in Urban Spectrum Eyeshadow Palette are endless! Match up the carefully coordinated trios or go wild and mix them up. We loaded Urban Spectrum with five totally new shades, four of the most popular shades from our current collection, and six returning favorites from past palettes (like the original Book of Shadows, The Vice Palette and Vice 2).

Each Eyeshadow in Urban Spectrum features our Pigment Infusion System™, the proprietary blend of ingredients that gives every shade its velvety texture, rich color, serious staying power and blendability.

Urban Spectrum comes in a stunning, collectible black case with a smoky gray, faceted “UD” jewel and laser-cut, filigreed edges. The detachable lid houses a full-size mirror and stands up on its own—perfect for on-the-go touchups. Since a palette this gorgeous should live on long after the shadows are gone, we built Urban Spectrum to last! When you’re done with the shadows, remove the tray and use the velvet-lined box to stash jewelry and other mementos.

The Packaging

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette

Urban Decay Urban Spectrum Palette

The design of this palette is a throwback to the 15th anniversary palette. The lid removes completely and has a mirror inside. The panel with the shadows can be removed by a little hole in the bottom right corner revealing a velvet lined compartment that you can store things in. The panel holding the shadows fits snugly in the case and I need to use either a hair pin or a fingernail to pry it up; I have no issues with it falling out. The compartment is fairly shallow with the shadows in the case so you can’t store much in it with the shadows in it; it might be enough room to store a few thin handled (and short) shadow brushes.

I think the concept is beautiful in theory. After owning and using this palette for 8 months however, it’s come to frustrate me. The matte black lid constantly looks a little dingy from fingerprints. The raised jeweled “UD” on the lid is pretty but makes it hard to store when stacked with other palettes. If stored standing up (as most of my palettes currently are, like little books standing against each other), the palette falls open any time I pull out the palette next to it to use.

The Shadows

This palette contains five new shades, and ten previously release shades (six from other palettes and four permanent shades). They are laid out roughly as a spectrum from green to blue, purple, pink, and gold/brown. They’re all shimmers, satins, and glittery shades; there’s not a matte in the bunch which doesn’t bother me, but might bother some.

Swatches

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - First Row. Left to right: Protest, Junkie, Deep End.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – First Row. Left to right: Protest, Junkie, Deep End.

Protest is described as a “golden forest green shimmer.” This shade is highly pigmented, buttery smooth, and looks a bit brighter and more reflective in person than it ended up in this swatch photo.

Junkie is described as a “teal green shimmer.” There’s a little bit of pale teal glitter in it that you can almost make out in the swatch, but it’s not super glittery and doesn’t translate on my lids as a glitter shadow.  It’s smooth, pigmented, and blends really nicely.

Deep End is described as a “bright teal shimmer.” This is probably one of the most pigmented and buttery smooth shades in this palette. It’s a dream to work with!

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - Second Row. Left to right: Madness, Evidence, Prank.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – Second Row. Left to right: Madness, Evidence, Prank.

Madness is described as a “bright metallic blue shimmer w/blue micro-glitter.” The glitter in it isn’t super evident and it doesn’t translate as a glitter shade on the lids but it’s fairly pigmented and blendable.

Evidence is described as a “deep navy blue shimmer.” It doesn’t look shimmery in the pan but when packed on and blended well it buffs to a beautiful sheen as seen in the swatch above. It’s a little powdery to work with and does need to be built up.

Prank is described as a “deep navy matte w/turquoise floating pearl.” The turquoise pearl they mention is very very subtle in the pan and almost invisible on the lid. On my lids Prank looks like an almost-matte dusty navy. It’s thin on pigmentation and dry and powdery for me.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - Third Row. Left to right: Omen, Flashback, Voodoo.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – Third Row. Left to right: Omen, Flashback, Voodoo.

Omen is described as a “bright metallic purple w/blue shift.” This is my absolute favorite shade in this palette! It reminds me a little bit of Tonic but the shift in it is more lavender and less blue than Tonic. It’s one of my favorite inner corner highlights. It’s nicely pigmented and blendable.

Flashback is described as a “bright deep purple w/pink sparkle.” There’s more glitter here than in Junkie or Madness, but it’s not quite as glittery as I’d like it to be. Then again I am the kind of person who really likes glitter bombs. The pigmentation is ok but I find a sticky base really helps amp up this color and gives it brighter color payoff.

Voodoo is described as a “metallic purple shimmer w/iridescent purple micro-glitter.” It has the chunkiest glitter in the whole palette. I love this shade but I find it difficult to get full pigmentation without a sticky base. UD’s Bondage glitter glue really brings out the shimmer in this though!

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - Fourth Row. Left to right: Flatline, Bordello, Backlash.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – Fourth Row. Left to right: Flatline, Bordello, Backlash.

Flatline is described as a “metallic pale pink.” It’s super pigmented, very blendable, and an amazing highlight color!

Bordello is described as a “pale mauve shimmer w/gold micro-glitter.” This is a pretty rosy shade that’s super buttery and pigmented. The glitter doesn’t really translate on the lid for me though. I love using this as a transition color.

Backlash is described as a “bright pink w/orange floating pearl.” I don’t really see the orange pearl either up close or from a distance, but it makes a great Barbie pink kind of shade on my lids. Pigmentation and blendability are good.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - Fifth Row. Left to right: Daybreak, Burn, West.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – Fifth Row. Left to right: Daybreak, Burn, West.

Daybreak is described as a “soft bronze w/silver glitter.” Full disclosure, I had to really work for the pigment in this swatch! Maybe I got a bad press but this shade is super hard in the pan for me and the pigmentation is poor. I find I have to scrape the top with my nail to load a good amount on my brush and a sticky base really helps get true to pan color payoff.

Burn is described as a “medium golden brown shimmer.” I had to build up this swatch a bit too, but it’s not as hard to work with as Daybreak. It’s hard but not as hard and the pigmentation is a little bit better. It’s still a bit difficult for me to work with using a brush.

West is described as a “deep metallic brown shimmer.” It’s smooth and buttery and just such a beautiful rich brown shade! I’m not big on brown shadows but I adore this one!

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches - Left to right: Protest, Junkie, Deep End, Madness, Evidence, Prank, Omen, Flashback, Voodoo, Flatline, Bordello, Backlash, Daybreak, Burn, West.

Urban Spectrum Palette Swatches – Left to right: Protest, Junkie, Deep End, Madness, Evidence, Prank, Omen, Flashback, Voodoo, Flatline, Bordello, Backlash, Daybreak, Burn, West.

I think these zoomed out swatches do a better job of showing how luminous and brilliant these shades are, but they look even more magical in motion. To see all of these beautiful shimmery shades in action, check out this short video from my Instagram.

 

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