I can’t begin to tell you how excited I was when I lucked into getting this palette (thank you Jerri and Amanda!). The colors are stunning, and they looked gorgeous when Jaclyn Hill showed them on YouTube. So, you can imagine my disappointment when I discovered the low quality. (Be sure to watch the video at the bottom to see the swatches and get more info.)
First off, I want to say that the Sephora employees were absolutely awesome, and I was very lucky (and grateful) to get this. They had not even had a chance to swatch or try this palette themselves yet- if they had, they would have let me know about the quality. Due to Sephora’s excellent return policy, I could return this for a full refund or exchange, but because of the rarity, that’s not going to happen…lol! (Plus, I don’t want a store with awesome employees to lose a sale!)
I first tried the palette out when I was doing my makeup prior to making the video where I swatched both palettes. (We made the video on June 5, uploaded on June 8.) I prime my eyes with foundation, eyeshadow primer, then I use a light shadow all over, from my lash line to my brows. I’ve done this technique since I was a teenager, it makes colors “pop” more. However, it seems that so many formulas now do not require a light shade first to make them stand out- they’re so pigmented. I just continue to do this out of habit, and it always seemed to make the colors last longer, too.
As a result of doing this technique, I didn’t notice the poor quality in the pigmentation right away. The shadows did seem a bit crumbly, but I thought it was just because they were soft. Right after applying my makeup, we made our video of the Champagne Palette swatches. Everything was great and consistent with my original application in regards to the face palette (see more here). But, the eye palette was another story!
It irked me that the eyeshadows were made in China, when most of Becca’s products are not, and they’re very high quality. If I’m spending $40 for a palette, I don’t want something made in China. No offense to the Chinese, but there are so many inferior products with little or no quality control coming from there. Nevertheless, at just over $6 per color, it’s not a horrible price for a limited edition product, especially given how pretty the colors are (in the pans). And they are better than many drugstore shadows.
If you notice that I seemed a bit “off” or “blah” in the video, it’s because I was. Not only did I have a pounding headache that no amount of medicine would get rid of, but I was thoroughly confused by the eyeshadow palette.
It was really difficult to get the eyeshadow swatches to show up in the video. At first, I attributed this to my medium skin tone, which is even darker now from being outside a lot. This is fairly common with many formulas, they just don’t show up as well on my arms as they do on my face. But, the blushes and highlighters showed up almost as well as the shadows, even though they should really be a lot less pigmented.
There are some still shots that Jerry edited into the video just so you could see the swatches. I can’t begin to explain how tired my arm got while he took photo after photo after photo (after photo), for a seemingly unending period of time, just to get a shot where the light was just right and they showed up. (It took only one shot to get the face palette swatches to show up!)
As I adore Jaclyn Hill and have always loved Becca, I want to end on a positive note, so I’ll get this little rant out of the way first. I am VERY disappointed, and disenchanted, with this product. I think it’s a terrible move on Becca’s part that they would compromise quality and market a cheap Chinese product in the interest of getting it out quickly. Even worse, I think it’s really $hitty that they did this with a product bearing Jaclyn Hill’s name.
According to Bustle, Jaclyn announced on social media that there was a quality issue, and that the eyeshadows had been made in a different lab than the brand’s regular ones (Sofi, 2016). After the experience I had, I was kind of speechless to find out the palette was being discontinued. I was sad, but thought it was probably a good move.
I have yet to find anything regarding Jaclyn’s thoughts about the quality prior to the announcement that the palette was being discontinued. I’m going to have to go back and rewatch her video where she did swatches.
I also have a few questions that I hope Jaclyn or Becca will answer: If her opinion was positive, did she have a preproduction palette that was not made in China? Was hers made in the regular lab where Becca’s shadows usually come from? According to Becca, there was some positive feedback, but who was it coming from? This may have been their first high-end palette, they may not have known any better. But most of all, would Becca have discontinued this palette if it weren’t for Jaclyn speaking up?
Even Jerry is mortified that Becca would do something like this, and we feel terrible for Jaclyn. She is the sweetest, kindest person, and doesn’t deserve this. It really pi$$es me off that a company would put Jaclyn’s name and reputation on the line, all in the name of faster production. I’m incredibly proud of Jaclyn for speaking up about this, and my respect for her has grown even more.
As for Becca, I hope this is just a one-time, albeit major, f*ck-up on their part. I once loved the company; I’ll reserve my opinion as to whether or not I still do, depending on what happens over the next few months. Only time will tell…
Sofi, M. (2016). Twitter reactions to Jaclyn Hill’s Becca Eyeshadow Palette Apology Prove the YouTuber Has Loyal Fans. Bustle. Retrieved June 9, 2016, from www.bustle.com.