June 20, 2014

LORAC Pro 2 Palette [Swatch] & [Review]



Today, I'm excited to share swatches and a review of the newly-released Lorac Pro 2 eyeshadow palette!

The original Lorac Pro is one of the most popular eyeshadow palettes out there, and its praises are sung on beauty blogs all over the internet. It has cult beauty icon status, but it's not really cult since most people interested in beauty/ cosmetics have heard of it! The Pro 2 is a follow-up to the original, and became available June 15th on Ulta.com ($42 USD). It will be released on store shelves by the end of this month, the 29th, I believe.

I'm a long-time fan of Lorac shadows.  They're among my favorites in terms of texture, pigmentation, and blendability. One of my favorite palettes of all time is Lorac Unzipped, and I really love the original Pro Palette as well. Suffice it to say that I was a little over the moon about this new offering.

Let's take a look at the packaging:


It comes in an exterior box which is identical to that of the original Pro Palette.

Side:


Back:


The flaps open on the top:



Included is a small size of the Behind The Scenes Eye Primer, which happens to be my favorite eye primer of all time. It really is the only thing that will hold my eyeshadow in place through heat and sweating, so it makes a wonderful addition to the palette.

Palette:



The packaging is almost identical to the original Pro Palette, save for the color, which is now a nice heather grey! This is such an improvement because the soft texture of the palette tends to attract smudges, and will have a dirty appearance rather quickly.  This medium gray tone will not show those smudges as much.  Plus, it's just pretty: a wonderful neutral backdrop for viewing the shadows themselves !

Other than the color, everything about this packaging is identical to the original Pro Palette, including the overall dimensions and materials used. (The mirror is also the same size.) Notice there's not even a "2" anywhere on the product. The color is the only thing that distinguishes it from the original.

Back:


(I take it back; it reads "Lorac Pro Eye Shadow Palette 2" on the back!)

Inside!


There is an acetate overlay with the Lorac brand name that protects the interior and the shadows. I'll remove this for ease of regular use.



I love how the brand and name are carried from the front to the interior of the palette as well.  It's great design!





There are quite a few colors here that I am so, so excited for! Between the rosy tones of Mocha and Rosé, to the pigmented Navy, taupey Cool Gray, and richly luxurious Cocoa, the color selection here really hits a sweet spot for me.

Eye Shadows:


Overall the color selection here is quite a bit cooler-toned than the original Pro Palette, but there are still warm-toned shades here: namely, Buff, Lt. Brown, Jade, and Plum is actually a pretty warm-toned purple. The layout is the same as the original Pro Palette as well: there are eight matte finish shadows in the top row, and the bottom row has eight satin and shimmer finishes. The pans hold .02 oz each for a total of .32oz of product all together- the same as the original Pro Palette.

Now, an up-close view of each of the shadows in their pans:

















I noticed that the shadows were somewhat messily pressed into the pans, overflowing a little at the edges.  Whether or not this is normal, I don't know.  It might just be something I'm noticing due to viewing them in macro.  At any rate, it doesn't affect anything but the overall aesthetic of the presentation.  And besides, the hallmark of a well-loved palette is one that is super messy- at least I think so!

Let's get into the swatches! (FTR, my skin is somewhere between NC-10 and NC-15, by my best guess, although I've never been color-matched at Mac.)

All shadows are shown left to right, as they appear in the palette, over naked skin with no primer:



Artificial light:

Outside, shade:

Partial Sun:


Buff, the lightest matte in the palette, is a warm-toned cream.  There's quite a bit of yellow in this nude. On cool-toned skin that can be problematic, but I actually find it wonderful for concealing redness or veining on the eyelid itself! It also works as a highlight color.  It's rich and pigmented for such a light color, and blends out effortlessly.

Lt. Brown is a warm-toned, fawn-like brown. On my cool-toned skin, it almost looks like a light caramel.  This one can work as an all-over lid color, subtle crease color, or blending transition shade. Versatile! It's extremely buttery in the pan, richly pigmented, and blends decently (not as well as Buff).

Cool Gray is really more of a mushroomy-taupe, in my opinion.  There's an undertone of purple in this gray...which is what makes it cool, I guess! It's lovely, and one of the mattes I'll probably end up gravitating to the most! It feels silky and buttery, but is not quite as pigmented as some of the others, although it'll get the job done. Very easy to build up and blend out.

Nectar is a pretty peachy-pink shade- such an awesome matte color to have in a palette like this! Peach is very brightening to most skin tones and eye colors, and this is the kind of shadow I love wearing as a wash of color all over the lid or just on the inner half of the lid, transitioning to something darker.  Nectar is silky soft, pigmented, and blends easily.





Artificial light:

Outside, shade:

Partial Sun:


Plum is a warm-toned matte purple. It's actually exactly the color I imagine a plum shade to be. This one has about the same wonderful texture as Nectar, soft and silky. It can be blended out, or packed on for dense color. Plummy purple shades suit a lot of different eye colors, so I am happy to have this one here.

Navy is simply a dark navy blue matte.  It looks more cobalt or royal blue in the pan, but when you use it on your eyes, it truly is a navy. (It ends up looking a lot like it does around the edges of my swatch there.) This one is very pigmented.  It's less soft and buttery as some of the others, but it's not dry or chalky. Beware, though, that the pigment in this one does stain the skin, so you'll want to have some kind of protective base I think.

Charcoal is a neutral-toned charcoal grey.  It's actually almost the color of the packaging itself. On me, it pulls as a warmer grey, but it's pretty neutral as far as I can tell.  This is a versatile shade to have.  It's very soft- a lot like Plum, and blends super easily. Nice!

Black, despite the name, is not quite what I'd call black.  It's more of a deeper version of charcoal, and I think my swatches do a good job of showing that.  It's also soft and buttery like most of the other mattes, but is not as pigmented as it could be. It does blend out very nicely though.





Artificial light:

Outside, shade:

Partial Sun:


Snow is a frosty white, shimmery metallic. It's very soft, smooth, and surprisingly pigmented. When sheered out, it's very beautiful, almost pearlescent.

Beige is a soft, cool-toned beige shimmer. It's very close to my skin, actually, and contains a lot of pink. Very pretty. This one is luxuriously pigmented- you barely need to touch it!  Also blends out wonderfully. The shimmer in it is really light-catching and sparkly- but not glittery at all! Very fine-milled.

Rosé is along the same lines as Beige- just a little darker and warmer, although it also has pink undertones. This one reminds me a lot of 'Unreal' from Lorac Unzipped, but is a bit darker. It's not quite as soft as Beige, but is almost just as pigmented, and just as easy to work with.

Mocha is a bronze satin finish with pink undertones.  It also reminds me of Unzipped, and is actually similar to 'Unattainable,' although the texture of the two finishes is slightly different. Mocha is everything I want in metallic satin: pigmented, soft, easy to blend. Wonderful!





Artificial light:

Outside, shade:

Partial Sun:



Chrome is kind of like a taupey-bronze with a satin finish. It actually reminds me a lot of Urban Decay's 24/7 pencil in 'Underground.' Chrome has a bit of a duochrome, which is always exciting to see! This one is just gorgeous, and I'll be reaching for it often. It's also soft, wonderfully pigmented, and super blendable.

Silver is cool-toned metallic silver. There's a bit of a blue undertone. This one is also very soft, but the pigment can clump up on itself if you're not careful. Hard to describe! It still has a nice texture though! I did experience some minor fallout with this shade, so next time I'm planning on using it wet.

Jade is a warm-toned, olive-y green with golden finely-milled shimmer.  It borders on being Army green, and is actually far from what I think actual Jade stone looks like. Greens tend to look bad on my skin, but I am excited to experiment with this one. It is very beautiful. This one is also feels nicely soft, but doesn't glide onto the skin, or blend out, as well as some of the others. I wouldn't call it chalky, though.

Cocoa is a rich, warm-toned, purple-based brown shimmer. This one is ultra-pigmented! You barely have to glide your finger or brush on its surface to get amazing "color payoff," as it were. This is the most shimmery shade in the palette, and the shimmer particles themselves are mostly golden, but once in a while I seem to see a flash of green. Interesting! Super soft and blendable.
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Finally, here's the first eye look I've made with the Pro 2:

I tried to take a closed-lid shot so you could see everything going on, but none were in focus. It's hard to photograph your own eyeball!

I'll just describe what I did:
Buff is in the inner corner and continued onto inner half of the lid. I put Nectar on the outer half of the lid and blended out into the crease and above (you can't really see it except at the very top of where all the shadow is blended out- it essentially just became a blending/ transition shade). Then, I used Chrome on the outer third of lid, blended out above the crease. I darkened everything using Charcoal in the outer v, and a little into the crease.

Plum is on the lower lashline, and Silver is in a small place on the upper lashline, inner third- you can kinda see it on the farthest eye. I used Navy for some slightly winged liner, which at this weird angle looks kind of derpy, but was actually a decent wing for me!

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Overall, I think the Lorac Pro 2 is a killer addition to Lorac's line of eye shadow and palettes! It is different enough (no dupes) from the original Pro Palette that, for a lot of people, it'll be worth it to own both. Pro 2 is cooler-toned, but still contains a mixture of warm and cool-toned shadows. I love that you get as many matte shades as you do satins/shimmers, and the finishes on the shimmers are very luxurious, finely-milled, and not too glittery.

The range of colors here is pretty unique! There are enough neutrals that you could do an entirely brown or bronze smokey look, or an entirely grey/ silver smokey look.  Plus you have some fun colors which stray a little away from neutral territory, while still being completely usable in everyday situations (I think): Nectar, Plum, Jade, and Navy. There are colors for highlight, a good range of midtones for lid or crease, and quite a few darker shades suitable for darkening the corners or using as liner.

A minor gripe would be that 'Black' is too similar to Charcoal, and should have either been very dark and richly pigmented, or should have been another deep color altogether. (I actually do miss having a deep brown matte for using as liner.)  And, while I think 'Snow,' is very beautiful and has a great texture, I don't prefer shimmery highlight shades, so I'll have to come up with another use for that one.


TL,DR: Lorac Pro 2 lives up to the reputation of the original Pro Palette, has a well-curated color selection, and the quality of the shadows is almost across-the-board A+. Would recommend!








I'd love to know what you think!



2 comments:

  1. Looks like an amazing everyday eye palette. Great review and swatches of it.

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  2. Gah! I already own the original palette and seeing your swatches makes it difficult to resist buying this! I love that they don't have dupes. Great review!


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