Whatever your approach to make-up is, everyone needs an eyeshadow palette full of neutrals in their arsenal. Stylist beauty contributor Ava Welsing-Kitcher has several to choose from, but this one triumphs above the rest.
I’m very particular about my eyeshadows. I can tell immediately upon opening if the pigment is going to be lacklustre, or the texture crumbly. I can suss out any online swatch photos that have been edited – I’ve been disappointed so many times in reality. On the more positive side, there are so many incredible eyeshadow palettes out there, 34 of which I’m lucky enough to own, but I’ve never found one that ticks as many boxes as the one I’ve been using for the past month straight.
Created by one of the most celebrated make-up artists of our time, Makeup by Mario by Mario Dedivanovic launched in the UK earlier this summer, and with it, the Master Mattes Eyeshadow Palette. A 12-shade collection of powder matte neutrals, it has everything you’d ever need to create whatever nude mood suits. Whether it’s a sultry smoky eye or even an attempted cut crease, the colours sit so harmoniously together, it’s hard to put a foot out of place.
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Even a simple wash of soft ochre brown across the lids instantly adds sumptuous depth, and paired with some boyish brows and bronzer, no mascara is needed. The black is ultra deep, thanks to carbon pigment that makes it five times more intense than regular black eyeshadow, and the lightest shades seemingly adapt to my light brown skin tone without looking chalky.
Colours aside, the thing that truly sold me on the palette was the texture. Notably the most difficult thing to nail when making an eyeshadow palette, there aren’t any discrepancies between any of these shades. They all melt cleanly upon application, managing to somehow move across the skin with the ease of a liquid eyeshadow despite being matte, and fallout is a distant memory.
Once it sets, it’s stuck – it won’t budge or crease, but still gives you ample time to play around with the placement. This makes it excellent as an eyeliner – better, even, than a few of my actual liners – as it can sink right into the lashline without getting destroyed by any liquids as the day goes on. Add a layer of the Master Secret Glow on top as an eye gloss, and the shadow is instantly intensified – just be prepared for it to crease after maybe three or four hours (a lot longer than other formulas I’ve tried).
The only drawback? The price: £41 for a palette (that’s actually on the smaller side) isn’t exactly affordable. But I know that as soon as I hit pan on mine, I’ll be buying another one to add to my ridiculously big collection. While there are so many great palettes out there at a lower price point, I do stand by the quality and colour payoff of the priciest palettes I own – anyone who’s had the luxury of dipping their fingers into a regal Pat McGrath palette or a buttery Natasha Denona one can back me up. £41 for something you’ll use most make-up days, can travel easily thanks to its size, and will suit whoever you use it on (or even lend it to – if you can bring yourself to part with it) isn’t too much. It really is the backbone to any collection.
Makeup by Mario Master Mattes Eyeshadow Palette
Buy Makeup by Mario Master Mattes Eyeshadow Palette at Cult Beauty, £41
Makeup by Mario Master Secret Glow
Buy Makeup by Mario Master Secret Glow at Cult Beauty, £19
Images: Ava Welsing-Kitcher/Courtesy of brand
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