We don't want to play favourites, but when it comes to choosing a workhorse of an eyeshadow palette, you can't go wrong with a good mix of nudes. Aside from being timeless and flattering, they're the easiest way to sling on shadow without too much risk.
That said, things can go south if two things happen in a day-to-day nude palette:
1) If there are too many shades containing big glitter particles everything gets a bit trickier. We're not anti-glitter - far from it - but an illuminating wash of caramel on your eyelids is speedy and easy - and to do that, you need something that's finely milled and applies smoothly,
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2) If there are too many shades, picking one can be a faff. While a make-up artist when faced with 50 eyeshadow shades may delight in the opportunity to play about, but when it's 7am, and you're throwing on shadow before your commute, too much choice ain't necessarily a good thing.
Those rules established, here's why you need the new Limited Edition Nars Wanted Eyeshadow Palette, £55 out on the 15th of January, which falls foul of neither of the above.
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It nails matte nudes
There are four of them - deep chocolate brown, cream, a sandy brown, and deeper brown. Between the four, you can create a classic smoky eye, a wash of definition, or a base for the other finishes. Consider these your staple shadows.
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... But the shimmers and satin finishes and are a dream
This is where it gets interesting. Nars are masters of colour and have decided to channel this into different textures. The four shimmers in this palette look fab in lieu of usual defining shadows, or pressed on top of lids (as per the picture of me wearing it), while the creamy satin is ideal for an 'I'm not wearing make-up' shadow.
... And there is a glitter shade if you fancy taking things up a notch
Because every now and then sparkle is mandatory.
The colour pay off is IMMENSE
You may expect as much from Nars, but in case you're new to their shadows, they're great because make-up brushes grab the colours enormously well, and they don't flick around your face too much if you're blending, which means minimal clean up time, even if you're going for a smoky eye (top tip: make like make-up artists and grab a cotton bud coated in moisturiser to sweep fallen shadow off cheeks if need be).
Most of the colours are classic - but you'll also be able to tap into the red eyeshadow trend
Make-up artist Lucia Pica has been espousing the virtues of a little red around eyes for years, claiming that it's surprisingly flattering. If you're not convinced or are yet to try it, the sunset hues in this are a risk-free way to have a go, given that you'll definitely hit pan on at least two thirds of the palette.