While putting this post together, I realized that it was reaching unreadable, epic-length proportions. Instead of covering the product, swatches, and looks in one post, I’m splitting this review into several parts. So let’s start with how I first met my new favorite eyeshadow palette. Oh yes. IT’S STORYTIME.
A month ago, I promised myself that if my grades reached a certain (what I assumed would be unattainable) GPA, I could buy myself any high-end beauty item which caught my fancy. And when grades finally did come out, I suddenly found myself debating the merits of a Chanel quad versus a bottle of Diptyque Philosykos.
As I was strolling past the beauty section at Nordstrom one day, I had a sudden premonition. I’ve only had that sense of something marvelous lurking outside my peripheral vision once before, and it led me straight to my favorite pair of leather boots. True story. So of course, I went over to investigate this mystery palette. The more I looked at it, the more I loved it. It was neutral, as in perfectly neutral, not too warm and not too cool. The packaging was to die for. And the finishes were just what I had been searching for, subtly luminous and entirely wearable. I decided to go home and think it over, since I was having trouble getting over the sticker shock (the list of things that can still give me sticker shock after 3 years of beauty blogging is quite short, so well done, Guerlain).
Despite the exorbitant price tag, I couldn’t help falling in love. I went back the next day to pick it up, and unfortunately, it wasn’t the best experience. I rarely mention customer service when reviewing products, but I must say, paying upwards of $90 (the sales tax here is ridiculous) for a piece of makeup only to be called ‘sweetheart’ multiple times in a condescending tone and then told, “You don’t look like you wear much makeup” when inquiring about application techniques? Not my favorite thing in the world. I’ve come to expect good customer service from Nordstrom, and I don’t think this SA had evil intentions, but her manner put me off from wanting to give her an undeserved commission. In the end, though, I couldn’t bring myself to leave empty handed.
Back to the product. Let’s talk about the packaging of the Guerlain Écrin 6 Couleurs Eyeshadow in 2, Place Vendôme ($85).
It’s glorious. Observe:
The world’s most expensive oyster shell?
This palette is one of those pieces that has such heft that you just know whatever’s inside must be truly special. The lid is decorated with curlicued cutouts and an engraved bee, which you can read about here. It also comes with a black velveteen case, which I’ve neglected to photograph because it’s frighteningly good at attracting dust, and I do not enjoy Photoshopping out dust particles.
The lid features a magnetic closure, which keeps the compact securely shut while making it easy to open. Inside, Guerlain includes a double-ended brush and a black lid which latches over the eyeshadows. I suppose this is an extra security measure to protect the integrity of the shadows within, but honestly when I first tried to get this thing open without covering it in fingerprints, all I could think was oh god I can’t take this suspense anymore.
Alright, let’s open this thing.
Wait for it…
WAIT FOR IT…
The underside of the black cover is actually a mirror, a design element I’m quite pleased with. I have no idea why I’m enamored with the idea of a flip-out mirror, but it lends a sense of…movement to the palette. While I’m willing to bet no one else gives a fig, it made the shooting experience feel incredibly dynamic (I read that back and I realize I sound ridiculous right now, but it’s true. I hardly do nighttime shoots these days because it’s a complete pain in the ass, but for this, it was worth it).
In anticipation of the next installment, in which I promise to actually talk about the eyeshadows:
Anyone else drooling over this palette? Has bad customer service ever prevented you from purchasing something you really wanted? What’s your favorite item from Guerlain?