Paul and Joe used to sell these really cute eyeshadow singles for $20 - they were housed in the signature adorable Paul and Joe packaging, and came in a range of colors (check out Sabrina’s post over at The Beauty Look Book for more information). However, I have to say that I personally found pigmentation to be less than spectacular with the eyeshadows. Most of the colors were shimmery but sheer-ish, and I have to use the ones I own wet to get them to show a truer color on my tanned skin. However, the size of the shadows was decent for the price, and the color range was great (lovely neutrals!), so I really could not complain about them too much.
When I found out the eyeshadows were being discontinued and replaced with more pigmented shadows and a palette system, I was thrilled! I pre-ordered three shades and an empty palette, and waited patiently for almost two months for my eyeshadows. Luckily, they arrived in time for Bergdorf Goodman’s Gift Card Event, so I also purchased Eye Gloss #1 (a shimmery gold) and Lip Gloss #8 (a pale, NARS Turkish Delight-ish color). Just a FYI: the Lip Glosses are also being discontinued, and will be replaced with new colors in June.
I will tell you my complaints about the new shadows/palette system first. These eyeshadows are small and expensive. They are significantly smaller than the old eyeshadows (the old shadows were the size of a quarter, the new shadows are the size of a nickel), but are only $2 less ($20 vs. $18).
Also, you are forced to buy a palette even if you just want one eyeshadow, because to use the single itself is somewhat unwieldy due to its small size (and the clear plastic camellia cover is cute but isn’t the most protective shield for the eyeshadow).
Also, the palette is somewhat pricey at $12. Think about this: if a palette fits 3 eyeshadows, a filled palette is $66USD before tax. That’s more expensive than a Chanel quad, a Dolce and Gabbana quad, or a Dior quint! However, I think it is fair to hold Paul and Joe to the same luxe, high-end standard as those other lines due to its exclusivity, so maybe the price isn’t entirely outlandish. I only winced a little when I handed over my credit card.
What I believe makes the new Paul and Joe eyeshadows worth their price is the level of pigmentation. These shadows are insanely pigmented - maybe that’s why they’re so small, because one doesn’t need much of the shadow to cover the lids.
(top row: Eye Gloss and Lip Gloss swatches; bottom row: eyeshadows #06, #16, #15 - WAY more pigmented in real life)
Also, the range of shades and textures are beautiful. Shades 01-09 have a satiny shimmer finish. Shades 10-17 have a silk finish, and are glowy. Shades 18-25 have a suede matte finish. I picked one shade from the Satin finish, #06 Pussycat (a bright shimmery pink), and two shades from the Silk finish, #15 Belladonna (a deep, sultry purple) and #16 Chateau (a gorgeous mauve-taupe). Housed together in the palette, these shades look sophisticated and lovely, and I am glad to own such a beautiful piece of makeup! Also, these shadows wear extremely well, holding up in the heat and humidity of my job. If you’re in the market for a luxurious splurge, I definitely recommend these shadows. They certainly are not cheap, but the product is excellent, and oh-so-pretty!