The Neutrogena Kerry Washington Essential Eye Palette Is on the Cusp of Greatness

Lids by Neutrogena and Kerry Washington. I’m wearing the new Essential Eye Palette, which is only $12.99!

It’s not exactly a scandal… Get it? Haha… But I’m definitely getting Olivia Pope vibes from the poised, polished browns in Kerry’s chic new Neutrogena eye palette.

Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I’ve only seen a few episodes from the first season of Scandal (tried but didn’t really get into it), but I remember loving the clothes, like the all-white ensembles! The stiletto pumps! The bags!

Oh, THE BAGS. Olivia Pope’s character dresses like she eats nails for breakfast, and I LIKE IT. No matter what she wears, though, her makeup always looks sophisticated, so yeah, definitely see her wearing this palette.

It has five powder eyeshadows, all in surprisingly cool neutral tones, which is so refreshing betwixt all of the orange and reddish neutral palettes all over the place these days.

neutrogena kerry washington essential eye palette swatches
Swatches of the Neutrogena Kerry Washington Essential Eye Palette

I mean, I like fun warm tones, too, but when you have a slightly hooded lid situation like I do, cool-toned browns are just so handy. They’re perfect for contouring a crease that isn’t very deep, but that really only works with shadows that have a semi-matte or matte finish, because when you’re using them this way, you don’t want them to reflect a lot of light.

I thought Kerry’s palette would focus on semi-matte or satin finishes, but it does not. On my skin, the shadows are shiny… Actually, borderline frosty, even. And they seem to get progressively shinier as I blend.

All of them are moderately pigmented, which I like because I’m not apt to over-apply, and they’re relatively easy to blend (compared to intensely pigmented shadows), but once I get a brush up in the mix and start buffing away, the color diffuses pretty quickly, leaving behind a shiny opalescent finish that highlights every mother-lovin’ line on my lids…

The only one that doesn’t do this is the dark bronzed brown on the far right, and that one is EPIC.

neutrogena kerry washington essential eye palette k2
I’m wearing the dark bronzed brown on my lids and drawn up into my crease. I also buffed out the edges with the palette’s mid-tone golden brown. The blush is a mix of the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Blushes in Rosy and Bronzed, and the gloss is Neutrogena Hydro Boost in Raspberry 60. The foundation I’m wearing is Neutrogena Hydro Boost Tint in Honey 85.

Now, if Neutrogena introduced a few five-pan palettes in the same formula they used for that bronzed brown, I’d call them drugstore Chanel or BECCA, because even though I’m not big on the shininess, I still think this palette a lot going for it, like negligible fallout and long-lasting, finely milled powders that don’t fade.

Oh, yeah, and it’s $13 instead of $50.

Overall, this is a palette on the cusp of greatness, and you still might want to give it a go, even with the shininess.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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