Beauty trends come and go but palettes are always relevant. Compact, versatile, and purposeful, they stand the test of time, think of them as the beauty equivalent of a designer handbag or pair of shoes – the investment pieces of your makeup collection.
There’s something about the perfect combination of complementary tones, textures, and shades served up in one single palette that’s so appealing. Everything you need for a trip away, to take your look from day to night, or to change up your look for any occasion.
Whether you’re after the ultimate collection of eyeshadows, blushers, bronzers, or highlighters, hunting down the perfect palette is a mammoth task – the sheer number of palettes out there is majorly overwhelming.
To get you started, here are the ones we rate highest at Beauty Bay HQ.
There’s good reason why this palette is on this list; it has everything you need if, like me, you’re a “glow all over” kinda gal. There’s just no such thing as a one-size-fits-all highlighter in my book – I need different products along my cheekbones, down the bridge of my nose, beneath my brow bone, in the inner corners of my eyes, and for a final dusting all over. This palette makes it effortless, everything I need in one place – like a ‘paint by numbers’ for your face, it’s impossible to screw up.
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I’m no stranger to an eyeshadow palette. Do I have an absolute must-buy, can’t-live-without recommendation? You bet – it’s the ABH Modern Renaissance palette. Not only is it prettily packaged (hello, fabulous pink suede) but inside are 14 eyeshadows which work for EVERY occasion. This versatile palette has seen me through everything from days in work, night outs, all the way through to graduations and weddings – providing me with the perfect eye look every time. There’s a dreamy mix of everyday nudes (shoutout to Primavera, my favourite shade) which are brilliant at both creating a neutral every day look and as perfect transition shades. For the more daring, there are seven truly outstanding bold shades to choose from, in a mix of matte and shimmer finishes (Red Ochra and Venetian Red, I’m talking to YOU). Plus, the free included brush is super soft and ideal to blend with. Palettes just don’t get better than this!
There’s no such thing as too much highlight. Someone (else) who knows this? Cover FX and their Gold Bar Palette. With three super-soft and shimmering shades, the compact palette fits perfectly in my travel bag for maximum convenience and guilt-free multiple choice! With a varied selection of warm toned colours, it can be applied over all skin tones to enhance the high points of the face, add an intense wash of colour to the eyes or (my personal favourite) a highlighting blusher. Need I say anymore?!
The staple in my makeup wardrobe, the Cocoa Blend has the perfect mix of matte and shimmers that work well with all my other favourite shadows. All the eye shadows in the palette are buttery soft with really good payoff: Pure Ganache is the most incredible shimmering gold that really pops with just a light fingertip application. I’m particularly obsessed with Substitute For Love and Freshly Toasted as a warm crease for all my eye looks – from a dramatic black smoky look, to a golden cut crease. They buff out to a seamless finish and are easy to build up, or sheer out with a fluffy brush.
Holy s**t, is this palette not the dream!? For me, nothing comes close – this palette has everything I need; warm-toned browns for a natural smoke, intense golds, a deep liner shade AND the pinky/reds – the ultimate cool-girl shades.
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When it comes to eye makeup I tend to keep it pretty simple and by that I mean I keep it as neutral as possible most days. The struggle to find a palette that suits my not-so-out-of-the-box needs whilst offering something a little different has always been a struggle until I found the EYN Nude Matte palette. Featuring 16 shades in a mix of shimmer and mattes, this nude inspired collection is my must-have, go-to!