ABH Modern Renaissance palette review & 5 looks
If you know me, you know I have a neverending love for pink/red eye makeup. Blogger favourites like the Huda Beauty Rose Gold palette, Kylie Burgundy palette, Violet Voss Holy Grail palette or the Lime Crime Venus palette are selling like hotcakes, and burgundy smokey eyes are raking in the likes on instagram. I already stocked up on a bunch of red/pink/gold eyeshadows earlier this year when I filled up a Z palette with Makeup Geek pans (ordered from Beauty Bay), so I never felt like one of those popular palettes would be a real addition to my already pretty huge stash.
If there is one blogger that knows her shit and doesn't just hype up every product they're being paid to promote, it's Stephanie Nicole. And even if you don't agree with what she says, her swatches of the palette compared to those of the Huda Rose Gold palette spoke volumes to me. Rarely had I seen eyeshadows swatch so opaquely in one swipe. The more I saw beauty lovers like my girl Natasja rave about Modern Renaissance, the more I realized that I might just need this palette in my life. I put myself on some waiting lists and then pounced on that shit when it came back in stock on Cultbeauty. About a week later, I opened the pink velvet box and fell in love.
I've been planning this review for a while now, but I wanted to play around enough with the palette to demonstrate its versatility. Enjoy!
I feel like I have to apologize: before taking pictures, I already used the palette once so it doesn't look as pristine as it should. But how was I supposed to resist?? Look at that plethora of beautiful warm colours, that perfect balance between light shades and deep, vibrant tones. Ugh, love at first sight. The palette is thick, high quality cardboard with a nice size mirror and a pink velvet outer lining. Apart from 14 eyeshadows, the palette also contains a great makeup brush (new fav) with one fluffy blending end and one densely packed precision end.
The palette contains more mattes than shimmers: 10-11 out of 14 of these colours are matte (Venetian Red has a bit of a satin finish to me although everyone labels it as matte). I personally love wearing foils and metallics, so I wouldn't say no to some more shimmery finishes in there, but it's much easier to find cheap metallic eyeshadows of decent quality than great mattes. And mattes are more versatile than metallics, for sure.
Swatches! All of these are ONE swipe of my finger, no build up. I hate those eyeshadow swatches that are basically just packed on so the eyeshadow looks just as opaque on your arm as it does in the pan. That's not informative, people.
CONVINCED YET? Seriously, one swipe. Just grab any of your palettes and tell me if they give off this much pigment in one swipe. The lighter shades don't seem as impressive, but that's just because they are so close to my skin tone because all of the shadows are excellent. Love Letter is drier than the other shades, but poses no issue when you use it in a look.
The shadows are a bit powdery, so you only need to "touch" the pan with your brush to pick up plento of product instead of having to swirl your brush in the shadow to load up on pigment. They adhere nicely to the skin, making it so much easier to create a beautiful, pigmented makeup look.
Let's look at how these perform in makeup looks.
This first one is the most heavy statement look: a halo eye using Primavera (the gold center lid), Realgar and Red Ochre. See how gorgeous the colours stand out next to each other rather than over-blending and becoming muddy? That's a sign of high quality eyeshadow.
The second is my fav: Tempera and Vermeer from the inner corner towards the middle of the lid, and Buon Fresco + Love Letter in the outer edges. So soft, so pretty on my complexion and against my hazel eyes!
The third is a look I put together inspired by a very soft, matte look I spotted on pinterest a while ago. I used Tempera all over the lid, and Golden Ochre + Warm Taupe along the crease and on my brow bone as well as on the lower lashline. I love this one because it's so different from all the heavy looks we see everywhere these days.