It’s been about 4 years since I last purchased an Urban Decay eyeshadow palette, and it was so bad that I was too turned off to even buy an eyeshadow single from that brand. But recently one of my fav Youtubers, Nikkia Joy, reviewed UD’s new Born to Run palette and based on her positive experience, I decided to try it out.
The Born to Run palette was just released on the Urban Decay website on 6/12/2018, and with 21 shades and a gorgeous range of colors, I thought for sure that this was UD’s chance to redeem themselves. It retails for $49 + tax, which seemed worth it to me given the number of colors the palette comes with. I ordered Born to Run as soon as I woke up the morning it was released, and was super excited when it arrived 4 days later in the mail.
Here are the Born to Run shades:
- BREAKAWAY (warm ivory shimmer)
- STRANDED (pale rose gold with tonal micro-shimmer)
- BLAZE (light metallic peach with pink shift)
- WEEKENDER (light neutral beige matte)
- STILL SHOT (bright peach)
- RIFF (brown-nude matte with floating micro-sparkle)
- GOOD AS GONE (deep brown with iridescent micro-shimmer)
- HELL RIDE (deep fuchsia matte)
- BAJA (burnt orange matte)
- ACCELERATE (reddish copper metallic)
- GUILT TRIP (smoky purple shimmer)
- IGNITE (rose gold metallic)
- SMOG (deep coppery bronze shimmer)
- WANDERLUST (forest green with gold micro-shimmer)
- WILDHEART (bright fuchsia)
- PUNK (red-brown matte)
- DOUBLE LIFE (metallic rust)
- JET (black with deep shimmering purple shift)
- DRIFT (charcoal satin with tonal micro-sparkle)
- RADIO (deep emerald satin)
- BIG SKY (frosted green shimmer with iridescent micro-sparkle)
The Born to Run palette concept is travel, experiencing different cultures, wanderlust – you get the idea – and it has the packaging to match. The box the palette comes in is a matte black, with the “UD” logo being made up of snapshots of different places in the world. Simple and pretty – I like it.
The actual palette itself is covered with more graphics from around the world and is really colorful. It reminded me of in the early 2000s when the Polaroid camera that spit out mini-sized pictures was popular…but in a good way. The palette has a nice weight to it. For me, I equate the weight of a product to the quality of its materials, so I was really pleased with the heavier packaging. The inside of the palette has your standard mirror, and then the shadows. It does not come with a brush, which is okay with me because I find the brushes that companies usually include with palettes to be a little flimsy.
Like I mentioned before, I watched a demo/review of Born to Run by Nikkia Joy and she had a great time creating looks with it. I decided to recreate a dark, smokey black and gold look that she had done in her video. First, I primed/set my eyes with an eye primer and powder slightly lighter than my natural skin tone. The first transition shade I used, Weekender, went on all right – it’s described as a “light neutral beige matte” so I wasn’t expecting crazy color.
The second transition shade I went in with was Stillshot, a “bright peach.” First red flag. I used a decent amount of product and you could hardly tell I had deposited any pigment. I went in with more product, and there was a little change, but not nearly enough for what I was expecting. UGH – Stillshot looked practically neon in the pan, where was all of the pigment?! At that point, I gave up and went over everything with the burnt orange matte shade called Baja. That one was pretty pigmented, and at least left me looking purposefully peachy instead of like I had pink eye. Then, I moved on to darker colors.
The matte brown shade called Punk and the black shade called Jet were unfortunately more of the same – super difficult to build up and not very pigmented. The shadows also felt pretty dry and powdery vs creamy and velvety. At this point, I was SO ANNOYED but thought maybe the shimmer shades could salvage the look. I was in love with the way the shade Stranded looked when Nikkia Joy used it on the center of her lid, but when I tried it both with a finger and a brush, it was hardly saturated and not nearly as “bling-y” as it looked in Nikkia’s video. WTF?! I used the correct brushes for each formula and the desired finish but noooo, Born to Run made me feel like I was born to throw the palette in the trash. Between the lackluster pigment and the pile of fallout I had underneath my eyes, I knew this wasn’t the palette for me.
As a last ditch effort, I swatched the palette on my arm. I thought maybe seeing some rich swatches would inspire me to keep experimenting. Girl. Some of the colors hardly showed up at all! One of my fav shades in the palette was a bright fuschia color called Wildheart, and it was the worst one – I went over the swatch with pigment multiple times and the color always fizzled out at the end. Honestly – if you have to work that hard to get vibrant, consistent pigment for a swatch, it’s just not worth it, especially when there are so many great palettes out there (e.g. the ABH Soft Glam palette). I will say that some of the shimmers swatched better than others – particularly Ignite, Drift, and Wanderlust, but 3 nice shades out of 21 wasn’t enough for me to want to keep the palette.
I only wore my less-than-demure Born to Run look for a couple hours at home. I looked at it in different types of lighting thinking that maybe it wasn’t as bad as I thought, but it was. It honestly made me feel like I had used that kiddie makeup you get when you’re like 6 years old that is just the worst quality ever but looks good in the pan.
I did attempt another purple/pink look with Born to Run, but while the pigment results were the same (I even used the shadows with a wet brush), it’s hard to say what the wear time was like because I ended up packing shadows on from a different palette just to make things look more vibrant. There is a very fine line between a bright purple look and a “I didn’t get any sleep last night” look.
Eeeeeeeeeeerm no. I wanted to love this palette so much – the shadows look so beautiful in their pans, but for $49, I expected SO much more. Unfortunately I’m sending Born to Run back to Urban Decay in the mail. I can definitely see those with a little less eye glam experience being even more frustrated with this palette because you gotta WERK to get it to look anywhere close to decent.
Oh well, the nice thing about eyeshadow palettes is that there are so many out there, and now I’m on the hunt for my next holy grail palette – stay tuned!
Thanks for reading,