Monday, August 15, 2016

Sunsets & Berries: Pacifica Power of Love Eye Shadow Palette* Review

Thanks to my Pan That Palette challenge this year, I have not worn or bought an eye palette other than my theBalm Nude' Tude for the past seven months and some change. A lot of you commented how you couldn't even imagine committing to about a dozen of the same shades for such a long time - and I feel you, because eyeshadow boredom has now become a thing for me, and it's painful. Which is why I was happy and excited to be shaken out of my ennui by this new arrival from Pacifica Beauty, the Power of Love Eye Shadow Palette* ($20 for 0.22 oz, available at, and Target).
Power of Love is a compact palette of ten coconut-infused mineral eyeshadows, which the brand describes as 'velvety rich, long lasting, creaseless' and having ' a soft, cream-like finish'. Like all of Pacifica products, they're 100% vegan and cruelty-free. The shadows are housed in a slim, streamlined carboard palette with a clear top so that you can see all the shades easily at a glance. One thing that slightly annoys me about the design is that even though the brand lists the shade names on the back of the outer box, the shadows are not actually named within the palette so I have no idea which name goes with which shade if that makes sense - it's like they wanted to name them but didn't commit to doing so all the way through. Huh.
Now, the shade selection is what got me really excited about playing with this palette. It's a predominantly neutral eyeshadow palette (my personal preference) that contains shadows ranging from light to dark in terms of depth, thus making it easy to create an entire look without having to look for complimentary eyeshadows elsewhere. However, it also features some fun pops of color: a khaki green with golden shimmer, a gorgeous wine shade, and a turquoise with a gold sheen. Those combined with the fun hippy packaging make for a lovely summer eyeshadow palette - just the thing I needed.
Unfortunately, as soon as I started swatching these eyeshadows on my arm, I noticed some issues with the formula. In short: the quality is not consistent. Like, at all. Let me break it down for you, starting from the top row, going left to right:
A light peach, shimmer/ pearl finish. Medium pigmentation but smooth and easy to apply.
A warm bronze, shimmer/ metallic finish. Slightly more pigmented than the peach, again very buttery and easy to pick up on the brush and blend out.
A matte beige brown, sheer to medium pigmentation, smooth and blendable.
A satin khaki green with golden sparkles, very sheer, hard pressed in the pan, difficult to pick up on the brush.
A satin berry with pink undertones, sheer, hard pressed in the pan, difficult to build up. Doesn't even come close to the deep wine shade I was expecting when I looked at it in the pan.
A matte navy with a slight purple lean, sheer to medium pigmentation, soft and smooth but not very buildable.
A pinky mauve with a high shimmer/ metallic finish, pigmented, soft, smooth, creamy, a dream to apply and blend out on the eyes. This is THE stand-out shade of the entire palette.
A satin ivory with pale yellow undertones, very sheer, difficult to pick up on the brush or build up on the eyes.
A satin turquoise with golden sparkles, again very sheer and difficult to work with.
A satin/ pearl cream leaning light pink, sheer but a bit more pigmented and easier to apply than the yellowy ivory.
Sooo... Let's see - how many shades from this palette did I actually count as reasonably pigmented? I believe it's 4 (maaaybeee 5) out of 10. That's not great, you guys. And the ones that I said were sheer - they really ARE sheer. What you see in my arm swatches (bare skin, swatched with a clean finger) is sometimes 7+ swipes of the shadow. Who has time to do this many layers on their eyes for the colors to even show up? On top of that, all the sheer shades are quite hard in the pan and all got hard pan on them just from rubbing my finger across the surface during one swatch session. When it came to applying them to my eyes, I got quite a bit of powder kick-up by digging in my brush so hard just to get something onto my lids. Yeah. Not cool.
That being said, I do think I got some really pretty eye looks out of this palette. My first take, which I intended to be a bit more colorful, turned out to be somewhat sunset-over-the-ocean themed. I used the yellow ivory on the inner corners, light peach on the lid and navy in the outer V, blending it all out with the matte beige brown, which by the way is a perfect transition shade for my fair skin. On the lower lashline, I applied the golden turquoise shade; it pulled a bit more green on me than I would have liked so I added a bright cobalt blue pencil liner to my waterline. It turned out quite pretty - but it did take me much longer to execute because I had to keep layering for intensity, and some shades looked a bit more muddy on my eyes than I would have liked (namely the matte navy and the turquoise).
For my second look, I decided to play with the ever so trendy pinky berry shades. I used the lightest pink in the inner corners, the stunning metallic mauve on the lids, and the satin berry in the outer corner and crease, again blending everything out with the matte beigy brown. I accented the lower lashline with the warm bronze and finished the look with a subtle aubergine wing (Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen in Deep Purple). I really, really liked how it came together, and actually got a lovely compliment on my eye make-up while wearing it ('Excuse me, but your eye look is absolutely stunning! Are you self-taught or did you go to school for make-up? I would love to learn how to do that!). The longevity on both looks (on top of my usual eye primer) was very good and I didn't notice any fading or creasing throughout the day.

So overall, my feelings on the Pacifica Power of Love Palette are pretty ambiguous. On one hand, I wish the quality (pigmentation and texture) were even - or at least somewhat similar - across all the shades. On the other, the few eyeshadows that do have a good formula are absolutely beautiful and make for a gorgeous look on the eyes. But is it worth it to buy an entire eyeshadow palette for just that one stunning make-up look? I don't think so. I will probably be passing this palette on to a loved one who is still a beginner when it comes to eye make-up; at least with those sheerer shadows, it's more difficult to mess up.

What is the one eyeshadow palette you have been reaching for the most this summer? Have you already jumped on the berry eyeshadow trend? I'm seriously considering picking up MAC Cranberry eyeshadow in the near future.

Disclaimer: Product featured in this post is a press sample I received from the brand's PR for review consideration. All links are non-affiliate. All opinions are 100% honest and unbiased, no matter if the product featured was purchased with my own money or provided free of charge. Thank you for reading!


  1. Ah nice post, I enjoyed hearing your thoughts on this eye shadow palette. Pacifica is one of my fav brands, I normally reach for their perfumes and body care but would love to try some of the make-up. It’s understandable why you would be disappointed with the inconsistency of the eyeshadows. The pink/mauvey shade is stunning though and the finished look is so pretty, I can see why you were complimented! :-) xx

    Helen | Helens Fashion & Beauty Blog

    1. Helen, what are your favorite bodycare products from Pacifica? I've only tried the body wash so far but would like to try out their body butters at some point :) I know, that rosey mauve is amazing - if they carried it as a single, I would buy it asap!

    2. Hi Monika :-) Thank you for your lovely reply. Products I like by Pacifica include their coconut cleansing wipes, Hawaiian ruby guava body butter and waikiki pikake roll on perfume. Their body butters are lovely and rich, and come in a variety of attractive scents so would recommend them. Bear in mind I live in the UK though so stockists might be different. Have a lovely weekend! :-) Xx

  2. I might not be a fan of the shades, but the design of the palette rocks!

  3. I love Pacifica's skincare and their packaging aesthetic, but I just can't get behind their makeup products. I've tried four - two eyeshadows, an eyeliner, and a lipstick, and they're all so disappointing. =( Sad to see this palette isn't amazing either, I love the colors.

    1. I've tried a few things from Pacifica now too, and this is actually the first one I'm disappointed with. The Devocean lipstick they also sent me I really liked, and so far bodycare, haircare and nail polishes have been great as well. I still have a tube of their new mascara waiting to be tested, but I heard good things about their mascara range!

  4. Monika, it's time to say that I love the way you swatch your shadows! That Palette seems to be perfect for low contrast autumn types. What a pity that the pigmentation is not good enough, but I like your colourful looks.

    1. Thank you, Lila - I appreciate it! I decided a while back my swatches weren't clear enough in photos so I tweaked a few things :)

  5. I've always LOVED berry eye shadows. Deep berries with brown undertones are my favorite. Too bad about this palette's inconsistency but you made it work! I love both looks, Monika. Maybe depot and keep only the good ones?

    1. Lily, what are some of your favorite berry shades? They're kinda new to me, I was always a bit apprehensive of them in the past. I toyed with the idea of depotting my favorites but then I have SO MANY eyeshadows. And then I would just have to trash the rest, and in the end I decided I wanted to have someone else enjoy the entire palette, even if it's just for fun and experimentation.