Now don’t get me wrong, I love a good bit of packaging, but none of us are beauty gurus or with a limitless supply of funds to get our hands on every launch that the beauty industry churns out. As the industry becomes increasingly crowded, each launch and campaign is becoming increasingly ostentatious to compete for sales. Suddenly presentation comes before the performance of the product. It isn’t a new thing for brands to push their exclusivity or “limited edition” items to push their profits to the max. Many of these “limited edition” items can also be used for charity and other proceeds. However, when we consider some of the latest releases over the past few years, we should consider whether we should start calling brands out for pushing quantity over quality by creating a campaign that is irresistible, even if we own something similar to it already.
- Too Faced: Clover Eye Shadow Palette
Let’s begin with this palette that took quite the bashing in some reviews. This palette was inspired by the founders’ dog, which encapsulates the “playful spirit” of their dog Clover. It’s safe to say some were not impressed by the concept or the composition of the palette itself. There are some different colours, but it is similar to many of the other palettes the company has produced. There were proceeds that went to charity from this palette, but many have argued that because many of these colours are already available from their standard palettes. They urged other consumers not to purchase this product if you hold other palettes from the company. Then there was the issue that this product was used to raise funds to protect animals, but also used animals for ingredients. Not a good look.
- Sephora x Moschino: Bear Eye Shadow Palette
This is only one of their collaborations. This palette was one of the most hyped-up products of 2017. It was a gorgeous palette, but apart from the odd colour here and there, it was a standard palette in a gold teddy bear. You can find various dupes for a far cheaper price. There’s even an “I Heart Revolution Teddy Bear Palette” available at Superdrug for £10.00. This collaboration is an example of how gimmicky some of these products have become. It also highlights how makeup has become a hot commodity, like art, where some pieces hold value for those who collect pieces.
- Kylie x Balmain: Blamain Palette
This palette was part of a larger collection that was launched in Paris at Balmain’s S/S 2020 show at the Opéra Garnier. The packaging was inspired by the Balmain F/W 2019 runway, featuring pastel tones, and Parisian street-art paintings. This collaboration again showcases the collective nature to these palettes. It highlights another concern though that the makeup we are being asked to buy is not for the pleasure of being used, it is for the pleasure that comes with acquiring it, to have it be part of a wider collection.
- Tarte: Minutes to Mermaid Brush Set
These brushes are standard. They are vegan- and cruelty-free. You get five brushes, all with a whimsical mermaid tail handle. There were complaints about functionality, one reviewer argued that they don’t perform like most brushes should. Many reviewers also pointed out how the set does not give brushes that consumers need, they are too large, and ultimately impractical to use. Brushes are there to provide precision, it’s not easy when the gimmicky nature of the handle makes them hard to control.
- Christian Louboutin: Loubiléopard Velvet Matte Lip Colour
This one takes the crown, pun intended, for its steep price for a standard red lipstick. Yes, I have one and I have been using it for a long time now. I purchased this one because the packaging was gorgeous, but it performs the same way as every other r red lipstick I own, and I didn’t need to shell out anymore than £20.00 for those ones. If you want a luxurious box and a ribbon that transforms your lipstick into a necklace, this product is for you, but I must say it is quite heavy for a necklace.
Be sure you’re buying products for what they are, not what they look like, because you should put performance over presentation!