It's old news - I know. But after being gone for years, the eyeshadow bug has come back and bit me on the behind, and I'm 96% sure this is what brought it on! Since getting this palette, I've been on a bit of an eyeshadow whirlwind.
In case you've never seen this before, it's TooFaced's Chocolate Bar Palette, which came out earlier this year. I've been trying this for a good few weeks now, and I'm ready to share my thoughts!
I love it. I'm usually not one for gimmicky packaging, so it's not the actual chocolate pattern that draws me so much to it. It's firstly the tin feeling, which is super sturdy and nice. I also like that it's a decent width that's sufficiently filled up with colour (i.e. not huge gaps between the shadows) and the height is also good.
Actually, for those of you with a keen eye for detail might have noticed that as time went by, the palettes being reviewed became skinnier - and no need to call the doctor, it wasn't your imagination. Be sure to look out for the pink sticker on the box as shown above to make the most of this new design. I have to commend TooFaced for doing that, because it's not often a brand reacts at all, never mind so quickly, to their customers' opinions. Trust me - the old ones were CLUNKY.
All of these things come together to give you a palette that just feels good in your hands. It's just so easy to hold and use, and the tactile experience is great.
My only negative would be the magnetic lid - I love magnetic lids, I think they're great and adds again to the nice feel overall but this one is a tad weak. This is why I've kept the box so I can use it travel with it! (and because it's a really pretty box..)
This is the part where I was the most sceptical - would I really like a palette that isn't as organised as other ones I've seen? For me, the colours are a little bit scattered and not grouped logically, and there's that crazy baby pink and purple hanging out that just look a little bit lost.
But look closer, and you'll notice that a lot of these colours are as odd and out of place as the pink and purple. Basically, most of the shades have some twist to the traditional shades you'd see in normal neutral palettes, and this is what makes this palette generally quite unique. Whether it's the very very warm, almost orange matte brown, or the almost olive based dark brown above it - these aren't your standard champagne, light matte brown, bronze etc., shades.
Yes, there are a few like that - the shimmery peach, gold and the two on either side of the gold are quite standard. But everything else seems to have a quirk, or some difference in tone that make many of these undupeable in my collection. To me, there's SO MANY differences between this and the Urban Decay Naked Palette, but that'll take a whole another post.. one thing that really annoys me is someone calling every neutral palette that has ever come out since 2010 a Naked Palette 'dupe'. I mean, come on.
Anyway, for this reason, I find this palette to be much more advanced than the Naked Palette. It has shades that really deserve some creativity on the part of the user, unlike the Naked Palette which really address the basic shades that most people should have if they like doing neutral looks. This gives the scope for choosing the tone of neutral colours, and actually offers a choice - four matte browns, and four medium browny tones - there's so much choice. It also gives you a bit more flexibility to adjust looks you may usually go for to make them more warm or cool depending on your skintone, mood, eye colour etc.,
Ultimately, this palette is why my eyeshadow bug came back - because it reminded me how fun it can be to just experiment a bit and not stick to a mold. Sometimes it's hard to be creative when there's so many tutorials and how-to's out there that tell you exactly what to do (they're great but obviously can cause some complacency on the viewer's part), and when it isn't really encouraged to try different looks - many magazines just seem to either do very basic eyeshadow looks or something that's just not acceptable for everyday wear.
I also want to give TooFaced another set of kudos for doubling the size of the two highlight shades - they're always the ones that go first for me in palettes, so super hugs for that one, TF.
So overall, I adore the colour selection in this palette. I think it's so refreshing to see something that isn't trying to be your necessity, but something fun that you can enjoy and really play around with.
To me, these rank quite similar to MAC and Urban Decay. They have great pigmentation, easy to blend and apply evenly and beautifully. I do think they're a touch harder than MAC or Urban Decay, and so require a bit more motion and friction from the brush to break the colour apart and load your brush.
But they're just not up there with the NARS and Chanels - they'll wear after a full day of use (I look at around 6-8hrs depending on which shades), and will start looking tired and muddled together towards the end. BUT this is quite normal for me generally - I have very unforgiving eyelids so if MAC and Urban Decay last well on you, I imagine these will too. Overall, great formulas and nothing to complain about from me.
Some last thoughts..
I love this palette - I'm sure you can tell. But I have to be honest and say that I had decided not to buy it, and a month or so later, was sent it and tried it. I didn't quite "get" it until I used it myself. Knowing what I know now, would I shell out £45? I definitely would. The fun I have with it would've been worth it because it's a collection of shades that are SO useable but just aren't as mainstream. It's like you don't have to branch out to neon greens and electric pinks to jazz up your looks - these different tones can make a world of a difference.
You can get this palette in Debenhams for £45.