I didn't pay much attention when the Mon Shu Uemura collection launched a couple of months ago. Of course I'd seen all the commentary about the Karl Lagerfeld designed packaging (featuring his creation Mon Shu, who looks an awful lot like a teenage Dora the Explorer), but what was inside the compacts remained a mystery to me.
Recently though I started seeing these two eyeshadow/blush palettes everywhere. When I saw David Jones had them on sale I thought I'd see what the fuss was all about.
I actually quite like the compacts. Personally I think the Mon Shu Girl is a cute character, and the palettes will certainly stand out in my drawers. They're made of very thick, hefty plastic, so despite appearances they don't feel cheap at all.
The mirror inside is partially frosted to create a Mon Shu silhouette, which is a nice (if not particularly practical) touch. Included in the palette is a duel ended sponge applicator and a duel ended brush (which isn't great but would do in a pinch).
The first palette I want to show you is called Smoky Velvet. There were two versions of this palette released, one in the US and one everywhere else. The colours in the non-US palette are much more interesting, so I'm glad I got that one (I wasn't 100% sure which palette was released in Australia before I ordered).
I'm crazy about this palette. It's a little out of my comfort zone, what with all the green, but I'm having a lot of fun playing with different looks. The colours are fantastic (I especially love the frosty mint), the textures are interesting (the 'silk smooth' formula of the top two eyeshadows is amazing. They're powders, but they feel like the lightest, thinnest cream eyeshadows ever), and the pigmentation is great. The blush is lovely, a very pigmented strawberry pink.
The second palette, Prestigious Bordeaux, is a little less unique but definitely not any less pretty.
A gorgeous combination of purples, browns and golds, Prestigious Bordeaux is a real treasure.
Once again we have five eyeshadows and a blush. The top left eyeshadow is a cream that has the same spongy texture as a Chanel Illusion D'Ombre eyeshadow. Otherwise the formulas are the same as the Smoky Velvet palette.
I love all these colours. The dark purple is gorgeous and ultra sparkly in the light, but surprisingly my favourite is the beige. The satin formula is so finely milled it just glows on the skin. The blush in this palette is a little harder to wear. It's burnt red hue is gorgeous, but could easily mimic sunburn so it has to be applied with care.
The palettes do have some issues. The glitter eyeshadows in both produce a fair bit of fall-out. It's actually not too bad considering just how glittery they are, but still, considering the price point it is annoying. The cream eyeshadow in Prestigious Bordeaux will crease, so it's best used as a base for the other shadows. Finally the size of the blushes will frustrate most people. It's almost impossible to use a regular face/blush brush to pick up the product. I've been using the Real Techniques contour brush from the face kit and I even have to be careful with that. I do love the colours, the sparkle and that amazing silk smooth formula enough to overlook all that though!
Overall I think these are fantastic palettes with a few unfortunate flaws. Despite my issues with them I'm very happy to have Smokey Velvet and Prestigious Bordeaux in my collection and I will get a lot of use out of both of them, so for me they were well worth the money. If I had paid full price ($88) I think I'd be less pleased though.
Prestigious Bordeaux is sold out on David Jones online store (it could still be available at counters). It is available from the US Shu Uemura online store. Smoky Velvet is currently still up on the DJ's website, priced at $61.60.
What do you think of Mon Shu/Dora? Which palette do you prefer?