Thursday, 9 January 2020

Shane Dawson x Jeffree Star Conspiracy Palette REVIEW

Thursday, 9 January 2020

Happy New Year!

No, your eyes do not deceive you -  the year is 2020 and this is a brand new post!

I'll spare you all the details of where the hell I've been over the past several months (hint: a combination of living a busy adult life and being plain lazy whenever I've had time off to myself), and jump right in.

The Beautiful World of Jeffree Star

If you're at all familiar with the Youtube world, there's a very probable chance you've heard of the massive Youtuber who goes by the name of Shane Dawson. With an impressive 23 million subscribers, he's been posting vids to YouTube for over 10 years, mixing up his content significantly over the last 2 years. From viral food videos and conspiracy theories, he's recently stepped up his game by producing and directing a variety of docuseries, bringing in millions of views per video.

Now, if you're familiar with the 'beauty community' side of YouTube, you'll definitely know about the series Shane did with make-up mogul Jeffree Star last year. Whilst the series focused on Jeffree's rollercoaster life, upbringing, and incredible success within the beauty industry, there was talk about a potential collaboration between Shane and Jeffree on an exlusive make-up range.

After much anticipation, Shane released 'The Beautiful World of Jeffree Star' back in October last year, marking the beginning of a 3-month long series showing the process and behind-the-scenes of their make-up launch and collaboration.

About a month ago, Shane and Jeffree released their finished product into the world - the Conspiracy Palette - and the world went mad for it!

The collection consisted of the main Conspiracy eyeshadow palettte, a mini version of the palette, a set of liquid lipsticks, lipgloss, and merchandise. Selling out within hours (due to the website servers being overloaded and crashing within minutes of the launch), the ShanexJeffree collection was a roaring success.

I followed the docuseries from start to finish, and it was so interesting to see the entire process and stages of development that goes into creating a high-quality make-up product. It was even more surreal, then, when my boyfriend surprised me with the palette as a belated birthday present after thinking I'd never get my hands on one! (I legitamately cried I was that happy - don't judge me).

I knew I had to dust off the keyboard and return to my blog to write a review of this incredible palette. I've created a combination of different looks since owning it, some I came up with myself and some from gorgeous tutorials I found online. I will be sharing some pictures of these looks below with what shades I used, and will 'spill the tea' on my thoughts on the palette - from intial impression to final takeaway.

Without further ado, here's my review of the Shane Dawson x Jeffree Star Conspiracy Palette!

The CONSPIRACY Palette: First Thoughts


First of all, I'd like to take a minute to simply appreciate the design of this palette - you can tell the packaging and the case itself are of high-quality, with a lot of thought put into the aesthetic. The outer packaging has a cardboard sleeve to protect the case, featuring a black and white spiral design and 'Conspiracy' printed in gold. It's certainly fitting to the theme of conspiracies and all things unusual, with another plain white cardboard box to contain the actual palette. The outer sleeve did arrive with a little bit of a dent in the cardboard at the top, but this was probably due to the shipping and handling and otherwise looked to be in perfect condition.

The actual palette itself - my god, I know it looked good in the series, but actually being able to see it in person and hold it with my own hands confirmed this for me! The palette is crafted out of a plastic material that is heavy enough to be good quality whilst still being lightweight enough to hold while you're applying your make-up. The case is a smooth, matte black, with the the same spiral design of the outer packaging in a darker, glossy black. Shane Dawson's initials, "SD", are featured on the centre of the box, in a triangle shape and pointing upwards in a three-dimensional style. Almost like a pyramid - illuminati confirmed!

'CONSPIRACY' is plastered across the front of the palette, this time in contrasting white, and the design of the product as a whole follows the similar theme of  Jeffree's other bestselling palettes, including Blue Blood.

The metal latches outside of the case keep the inside of the palette, and eyeshadows, safe and secure. Opening them up felt a lot like opening a treasure chest - very satisfying! You can also tell these latches are not flimsy nor cheap - throughout the series Jeffree emphasises he likes his products to be of the best quality, and this one certainly doesn't disappoint.

Now comes the part I was looking forward to the most - opening up the palette and seeing those beautiful shades!

The Shades

Although I'd already seen the big reveal of the eyeshadow shades in the closing episodes of the YouTube series, it was still an an amazing experience to be able to see them up close and personal. My first impressions of the shades was nothing short of bewilderment: the colours are just as pretty as they appear in the pictures and there is such a range of different ones - some I would never usually go for - which makes it all the more exciting!

My eyes were immediately drawn to the centre of the palette the most, particularly the striking 'Trisha', 'Cheese Dust', and 'Flaming Hot'. After eyeing up the palette a little more (can't resist these puns, sorry!) I inspected the shades that I could see myself using the most and were probably my favorite just on initial observation : 'Just a Theory', 'Not a Fact', and 'Diet Cola'.

Out of all the shades, I'd say the ones I were the least drawn to (or at least, couldn't see myself using as often/too afraid to use!) were 'Food Videos', 'Conspiracy', and 'What's the Tea?'.

Of course, these were only my initial thoughts, so I was intrigued to see how/if my opinions would differ after trying on the colours.

For your benefit, I attempted to do a swatch of all of the shades on my arm so that you can get a real feel for how the shades look when applied to your skin, at least on my skintone. I made sure to only swatch each shade once, so you can see how pigmented each one truly is. Apologies if this is a bit of a messy job, it's my first time ever swatching - go easy on me!

As you can see from the swatches, certain colours from the palette showed up a lot better on my skin than others. From the first swatch (left to right), 'My Pills' and 'Ranch' were barely there, which is a shame as I initially quite liked the baby pink of 'My Pills'. However, the reason these shades may not have shown up as much as others or shown as much pigment may be due to them being so close to my very pale skintone - can't really do much about that! It's also worth keeping in mind that I didn't apply any other make-up to my arms like I would normally do with my face e.g. eye primer, foundation, so this could be another factor. I usually opt for a slightly darker shade for my face make-up and so I figured the colours may end up looking different when applied over that instead.

That said, the darker shade 'Spiraling' showed up the best. My favourite out of these swatches is definitely 'Just a Theory' as it's quite metallic and so pretty. The beige hues of 'Tanacon' and 'Diet Root Beer' would also make a lovely nude/everyday look.

Moving on to the middle swatch, I was very surprised to see how well the yellow from 'Food Videos' appeared on my skin! I would never normally wear this shade and don't recall ever even wearing yellow eyeshadow, but you could create a really beautiful summery look mixing the shades 'Food Videos' and 'Cheese Dust' together. That said, 'Cheese Dust' and 'Flaming Hot' looked slightly underwhelming when swatched to my arm. Luckily, though, they looked much better on my actual eyelids once I applied the shades properly using make-up brushes (pictures below).

The one I'm most impressed with in this swatch, though, has to be 'Trisha'. I thought this seemed like a very, very bright pink when I first opened the palette - and don't get me wrong, it is - but it is somehow still wearable. It's a gorgeous metallic pink that looks amazing combined with pretty much any colour in this collection - even black! (see pictures below). It's a shame that 'Conspiracy', much like its counterparts 'My Pills' and 'Ranch', appeared to be a little shy on the skin. However, I've given this one a go on my face since using the palette and it's pretty - subtle green with a slight shimmer.

And last but not least, the final swatch. My absolute favourite from this swatch is most definitely 'Not a Fact'. I don't know why but I'm always drawn to deep. smoky purples, and boy does this one deliver! I'd also argue that this line of shades look the best together - there is a clear theme going on and they could probably all be combined for one look, which could be a little tricky with the other swatches. My second faves from this swatch would probably be 'Sleep Paralysis' and 'Illuminati', but the Diet Cola is stunning and the black shade, 'My Ride's Here',  is incredible.

'What's the Tea?', on the other hand, could potentially be my least favourite of the palette. On both my arm and eyelid, the shade did not appear very well at all, and I found myself going in for multiple coatings just so the colour could be seen. All in all, though, the majority of the palette is stunning and I had so much fun experimenting with some looks.

The Looks

I've included some pictures below of just some of the looks I've tried out so far and noted what shades were used in each application. I apologise in advance for the camera quality as I had to take these on my iPhone! Also please keep note that I am no make-up artist or professional, but I gave it my best shot and, to be honest, I think with this palette you don't even need to be a pro to make it look great ;-).

(I also included some pictures with and without fitlers so you can see how the make-up looks with both)*

Everyday Look

This was probably one of my favourites, and is too easy! I followed the tutorial in a review video (linekd below) by British beautuber Hannah Renée, and I have to say she is extremely talented and gorgeous. The first few pictures are without eyeliner and the following ones with, but it works both ways! This look uses a combination of the beige colours, blending Tanacon and Diet Root Beer whilst adding Ranch to the inner corners to make your eyes 'pop'. The 'Ranch' shade is perfect for this and really does make your eyes look beautiful.

Dramatic Smokey Eye

Following another one of the the tutorials in Hannah's video, this time using Diet Cola on the inner eyelid to highlight. The winged eyeliner really transforms this look. I wish I could pull off these looks as well as Hannah, as I did struggle a bit with my low price range make-up brushes and making a bit of a mess that I had to clean up afterwards as there was a little bit of fallout from the darker shades, but I'm happy enough!

Glam Green

Another of the tutorials in Hannah's video, I attempted to imitate this glam look for my work Christmas do. You can't really tell in the pictures, but I used 'What's the tea?' and 'Conspiracy' to try and create a teal-green colour to match my sparkly dress.

Pretty in Purple

This is definitely one of my favourites and my boyfriend was also a fan as he loves purple! This was one of my own looks that I put together by blending 'Not a Fact' and 'Trisha' with 'Ranch' on the inner corners, and the result is mesmerising. I included a picture of how it looks without the filter (top right) and with a filter (bottom right) so you can see the comparison. Even in dull light it looks fantastic!

Sunset Eyes

I figured I had to face my fears and incorporate the 'Food Videos' yellow into my make-up at some point, so I went for the obvious option and played it safe by mixing with the orange 'Cheese Dust'. I think I may have taken inspiration again from Hannah's tutorial for this one, so I can't take full credit, but honestly it looks brilliant. My blending skills could be a lot better but for an amatuer it isn't half bad and looks gorgeous against blue eyes.


Last but not least, I'll leave you with my own creation I put together on New Year's Eve Eve. Before heading out for a few (many) drinks in town, I decided to be bold and go for a shade I hadn't yet tried - the dark and almost intimidating 'My Ride's Here'. I couldn't make my mind up on what colour to pair the black with, and ended up choosing the bright pink 'Trisha' - pink and black is something I probably haven't used on my face since high school!

But, I absoltely loved it. The black is VERY black, so you have to use it sparingly (!) but blended with the pink, it created a dramatic look perfect for nightlife. Again, you can see the picture compared with filter and no-filter.

Final Thoughts

Overall, I am super impressed with the palette. It looks great, feels great, has been crafted with so much thought and care gone into it, and really provides you with a creative, daring and colourful palette of shades to experiment with. Whether you're a beginner to make-up or fully-qualified expert, I'd say this palette is suitable for everyone of all levels of experience. There are more neutral colours for those who prefer to keep it lowkey, and some shocking, bright colours to take you from day to night.

The make-up applies easily, with most shades pigmented enough to show up on the skin. I did find the make-up application better after dipping my brushes in water prior to applying it to my eyelid, but I find that's the case with most eyeshadows. There was also a little fall-out in some of the more darker shades, but again, it's nothing a little tap of the brush to get the excess out first won't fix. 

I'd give the Conspiracy palette a solid 9/10 overall: the only let-downs for me, really, were that some of the shades didn't show up that well on my skintone (particularly 'Conspiracy' and 'What's the Tea?) and I would also maybe have preferred to have seen some more 'wearable' shades for everyday use. But hey, it was a special, limited edition conspiracy-themed palette from the incredible duo that is Shane and Jeffree - I expected nothing less than shocking, vibrant and dramatic!

What are your thoughts on the palette? Would you consider purchasing once they're back in stock? What's your favourite shade?

Maybe Shane and Jeffree will release a second palette and I can fire up another review - until next time!

Emily x

P.S Shoutout to Daniel for gifting me this palette - you're the best! xo


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