Saturday, January 31, 2015

Coastal Scents Revealed 1 & Revealed 2 Eyeshadow Palettes: Comparison + Comprehensive Review + Swatches!

Coastal Scents's Revealed 1 and Revealed 2 palettes have been around for a while, and they're infamous for being considered inexpensive dupes of Urban Decay's Naked eyeshadow palettes. The similar naming sequences, nearly exact shade matches, and comparable pigmentations have recently put the Revealeds in the makeup spotlight, so I decided to grab both during Coastal Scents's 50% Black Friday sale (yes, I know this review is a bit overdue).

I'll be comparing the two palettes with swatches in this post, as well as show you some dupes between the two to prove that they're really not ALL that different from each other. If you're torn between the two, look no further, this review will cover everything you'd ever want to know.

The Basics


Both Revealed 1 and Revealed 2 retail for $39.95, but seem to be at a fixed discount price of $19.95. Actual 50% discount, or Coastal Scents's sneaky tactic to make you think you're getting one? The world may never know!

Several times a year, CS will have the Revealed palettes on sale for 50% off, including during Black Friday's site-wide sale, which is when I got mine. I highly suggest waiting for these sale events to purchase these, or sign up for price alerts from each respective product page so you can be notified if they go on sale individually. $9.98 is a bargain for each palette, but 20 bucks is pushing it. I love these eyeshadows, but not that much.


Each palette is identical in size and packaging, other than the difference in color of the covers. The palette is slim and quite sturdy, made from cardboard with a magnetic closure. Neither sports a mirror inside the case, and since they are just an open fold, I don't think they would be ideal for traveling. The top flap is literally a piece of cardboard folded hamburger-style on top of the palette—not very secure for tossing around. A thin cardboard box is included for each, but who keeps those things anyway?

In comparison to the Naked palettes, the Revealeds are slightly shorter and wider (more square), but only about half as thin, which means you're most likely getting less product. Coastal Scents's website states the net weight of the shadows in each palette is 30 grams, which is around 0.05 oz per eyeshadow.

The color range is not drastic to me, but when swatched, you can see subtle differences between each and every shade.

Revealed 1:

Revealed 2:

Revealed 1:

Revealed 2:

And now for the swatches! All swatches were made on top of eyeshadow primer (I used Proof 10 from Etude House), in both direct sunlight and natural indoor lighting. I've numbered them the same way as they are in the palettes photos above.

Revealed 1:

Revealed 2:

As you can see, the color range is gorgeous in these palettes, and although many of the colors are strikingly similar, they're not exactly the same. The gradient of colors is perfect for nighttime-going-out eye looks, as well as for blending. These palettes are overall neutral, with only a few darker colors towards the end of the spectrum that can achieve super dark smokey effects, which means they're multifunctional—perfect for everyday eyes, as well as for more intense looks!

MOST of the shades are incredibly velvety and buttery; I can see where the resemblance to the UD Naked palettes would be apparent. However, I think it would be a far stretch to say they could replace the Naked palettes or are better. To me, they are significantly lower in quality, as made obvious by the powderiness of many of the satiny and shimmery shades. Two in particular from the Revealed 2 palette, shades 4 and 19, were absolute nightmares to work with. They don't just have fine microglitters in them; they have actual chunks of glitter that made the texture grainy and just overall terrible. This was particularly disappointing for me because #19 in Revealed 2 is supposedly a dupe for "Darkhorse" from Naked 3 (black with multi-chrome maroon shimmer), one of my all-time favorite colors from UD, and it was one of the worst ones I'd swatched. Even over primer, there was no way I could get them to blend out properly, and every time I dipped a finger or brush into them, they made powder fly everywhere, including into the other shadows :( I'm a huge stickler against color cross-contamination, and both those shades are the biggest downside to the Revealed 2 palette.

The few matte shades included are pretty much duds (e.g. shades 1, 4, and 20 in Revealed 1, as well as shades 2, 17, 18, and 20 in Revealed 2). It's extremely difficult to produce a well-made matte eyeshadow color because usually they're so patchy and unpigmented. Shade 1 from Revealed 1 is pretty much invisible; as you can see in the swatch, it didn't even show up on my forearm.

The aforementioned shades required multiple attempts of rubbing during the swatching process, which isn't something I have the patience for when actually applying shadow to my eyelids.

There are very, very few cosmetic companies that can successfully pull off matte eyeshadows (off the top of my head Urban Decay, theBalm and Lancôme are among them—coincidentally, their products are my eyeshadow holy grails), so I didn't have too high of expectations to begin with. Just based off the Revealed swatches, the shimmery colors are what appeal to me anyway, so I wasn't too disappointed by the patchy matte shades.

All that negativity aside, MOST of the colors, I absolutely loved—especially the shimmer finishes. The color, pigmentation, and blendability of the almost foil-like shades are phenomenal, and because of these, I do think the palettes are worth getting, even if you already have the Urban Decay ones! They're really not a huge investment if you catch them during a CS sale, and they're so smooth in texture and striking in color, that you won't regret buying them—I promise!

Now, it isn't absolutely necessary for you to buy both, especially since they seem quite similar overall, with only minor differences between the shades. Based off the packaging alone, you can tell Revealed 1 has more cooler-toned neutrals, with some warmer golds on the right side, while Revealed 2 is completely rose and rose-gold based, with several plum and pinker shades dominating the darker hues.

Comparing Revealed 1 to Revealed 2


You might be wondering about exact overlaps because you don't want to have to buy both if there are multiples in each palette. Fortunately, I couldn't find any obvious duplicates, which means you're getting 40—yes, 40!—distinct shades across these two palettes. That's serious bang for your buck that even most drugstore brands can't beat.

I did find several almost-dupes between the Revealed 1 and 2 palettes that I swatched side-by-side for you here:

The last shade in each palette was the only one that seemed obvious, but even when swatched they were not identical. They're both matte blacks, but for some reason the one in Revealed 2 is significantly patchier and more powdery than the one in Revealed 1. I found this to be a trend in quality overall; Revealed 1 simply had less "low quality" shades in both the matte and shimmery eyeshadows.

These seem almost identical under sunlight, but are slightly different in hue in the shade.

All four of these shades are comparable, but I thought they were all really pretty, so no complaints there :D


I already mentioned how grainy and powdery #4 from Revealed 2 is, as you can see closer up in the picture above. It's not even decent, it's completely non-workable. I'm tempted to depot it completely because I know I'll never use it!

Both of the above colors are pretty accurate dupes of Urban Decay's "Virgin," although #1 from Revealed 2 is slightly more yellow-toned than #2 from Revealed 1 is.

As you can see, none of them are exact dupes, just very very similar, so again, it isn't the end of the world if you can only get one of them, but it also wouldn't hurt for you to get both ;)

Verdict


While the Revealed palettes aren't exact dupes for the UD Naked palettes, they come pretty damn close. For the affordable drugstore price, the quality is simply unbeatable. I love how Coastal Scents offers a more affordable alternative to the overpriced Nakeds. Considering both Revealed 1 and 2 contain shades that Naked 1, 2, and 3 don't, I would definitely recommend these over the Nakeds you're shopping for makeup on a budget... and aren't we all??

I will warn you that the formula of some of the shadows will be too loose and powdery, and some won't even show up on the skin (eek!). Regardless, the versatility and overall performance of both palettes really impressed me.

I personally like Revealed 1 better than 2, even though the 2 has rose-gold colors I'm normally fond of. The quality of the shadows in Revealed 1 is noticeably better, and there are almost no dud colors, like there are quite a few of in Revealed 2. If you only had to pick one, Revealed 1 is the way to go. Or, you could be a crazy person like me and just get both Americanflag

p.s. This is the first swatch & review I've done—what do you think of the format?