Welcome to another spooky Makeup Monday for the month of October! This week we have the Drop Dead Gorgeous collection from BH Cosmetics, and let me tell you: I have a lot of feelings!
Before we get into it, let’s just start by saying that the collection is by no means terrible. I’ve owned terrible makeup in my day, and this isn’t it. But it’s definitely disappointing considering that this collection came out after the Sweet Shoppe palettes. Those palettes are amazing, and yes, they were expensive by BH Cosmetics standards, but they really set me up to expect a bump in quality form what we normally see. I have all 6 of the Sweet Shoppe palettes, and I adore them! They were limited edition and several colors sold out almost immediately so I never bothered to do a review, but you can see me use them in Face Friday Posts HERE and HERE!
The Halloween collection is in cardboard packaging, like the Sweet Shoppe palettes, but it’s much lighter weight and feels flimsy. The shadows are ok, but they are much more prone to chalkiness and inconsistency than the Sweet Shoppe palettes. I love Halloween, and it makes me a little salty to see a brand play so fast and loose with my high holy day.
I picked up all three cosmetic items in the collection; there was also a red brush set, but I’m maxed out on brushes for a little while. I have some brushes from BH and they are decent for inexpensive brushes, so if you did pick up that set I’m sure you would find them perfectly acceptable. They won’t blow you a way, but they are fine and get the job done. If anyone purchased them and would like to share their feelings about them, please let me know what you thought in the comments below. The pieces that I picked up were the 14-pan Full On Crazy palette and the 8=pan Lil’ Bit Psycho palette, as well as a very small tube of “glitter blood.”
The swatches below are done over the ABH eye primer with a finger swatch on the left and a brush swatch on the right. The top photo is under my studio lights with no flash and the bottom photo is the same lighting with a flash.
Let’s start with the large palette:
L to R: Devil Wears It, V-amped, Saint, Savage
Devil Wears It is a bright crimson red shimmer. It’s got nice coverage and applies pretty well, though like most of the shimmers in this palette it needs a little building with a dry brush and can get sort of chunky. I would suggest a tacky base, or using glitter glue or setting spray to allow it to spread and apply more easily. V-Amped is a matte bright red with nice, vivid color and it’s applies pretty well with good blendability. Saint is a pale silvery blue shimmer. This one is creamy and easy to work with, but it does have a tendency to sheer out a bit when blended. Savage is a bright cyan matte that had some issues with the base, which is odd considering how dry the ABH base is. This one is definitely a persnickety shade.
L to R: Ravishing, Dazed, Poison
Ravishing is a pretty deep blue matte with a lot of glittery sparkle. This was probably my favorite shimmer in the palette, I was able to apply it with a brush without any real hassle, and while it was definitely a bit thick in places it didn’t have the same chunkiness of the other brush swatches. Dazed is a bright orchid matte that is a little powdery and dry, and it tends to blend out with some sheerness that’s not entirely helpful. Poison is a pretty navy matte, though the brush swatch didn’t have the same vividness of the finger swatch (and who fingerbangs matte shadows onto their lids?!).
L to R: Stunner, Alarming, Outrageous, Shrill
Stunner is a very soft and easily breakable chunky silver shimmer. This shade is a disaster and is currently all over the palette and on every surface in my office. It wasn’t so much cracked or broken when it came, it’s just so soft that if you look at it too harshly, glitter specks explode out into the universe. And it’s not even that great of silver to justify all the mess. You can build up an ok, kinda chunky, coverage with a brush, but it’s definitely more trouble than it’s worth. Alarming is a powdery bright yellow, very sheer and a bit chalky when applied. Outrageous in a bright fuchsia pink, fairly opaque but the color isn’t entirely consistent throughout and it can be a little powdery around the edges. Shrill is a medium peachy tan matte, not terrible but it does tend to go on unevenly and it’s a boring af color, so is it worth much trouble to get it to work? This particular part of the palette was the most disappointing to me.
L to R: Dramatic, Sweet As Sin, Black Magic
Dramatic is a troublesome periwinkle matte that is super powdery and while it does build up a certain amount of opacity, it’s not easy to get it consistent and it can really easily leave bald patches. Sweet As Sin is a pale pink satin matte. This one is chalky as hell, and while you can get it to smooth out there is so little color to it that it’s not worth bothering with. It just sort of looks off white. Black Magic is a black matte, and while I hate it because I am a picky drag queen who wants a matte black that is as dark and bottomless as my soul, I recognize that this is actually a really good black for someone who is intimidated by mattes. You can use it really softly and get more of a deep charcoal effect, or you can go heavy and get a satin black finish. It’s nice, it’s just not drag nice. You know what I mean?
The smaller palette is half repeats from the bigger palette, but there are 4 new shades included.
L to R: Devil Wears It, V-amped, Sinner, Black Magic
The only new shade in this row is Sinner It’s a soft deep berry pink with some brownish tones. It’s a pretty good shade overall, and I like the way that it builds up. It’s not as chunky as some of the other shades.
L to R: White Lies, Showy, Knockout, Alarming
White Lies is deeply offensive to me on a spiritual level: this is one of the worst matte “whites” I have ever seen. I really hate it. It’s chalky, it has almost no pigment, and what’s there does not go on evenly. Please make it go away where it can’t hurt anyone again. On the brighter side, Showy is a bright silvery pink shimmer that has good coverage, and while it takes a little building it doesn’t have the same chunkiness that most of the other shimmers have. Knockout is a brick red matte that is a little soft around the edges, but can be blended out beautifully. And if you’re going to repeat shades in more than one palette, why would you pick this awful yellow?!
The blood is just red glitter in a gel base, but if you squeeze it out in a line you can make a fantasy blood look effect.
This collection really let me down. I mean, it’s not absolutely terrible, and yes BH Cosmetics is a low price brand, but this just isn’t worth it. I might be taking this a little personally because of my love for the holiday, but for me it’s more the fact that with the Sweet Shoppe palettes they showed that they can do really amazing products! Why would you follow up a great collection like that with these flimsy cardboard palettes with chalky, inconsistent shadows. I know that the phrase “cash grab” gets overused, and most of the time I think people just use it to describe things they don’t like or understand (especially considering that businesses like this exist specifically to make and sell products, effectively “grabbing your cash!”), but this feels like a cash grab: they know that people who love Halloween will buy it to try and capture the spirit of the season. The products are subpar, and the prices are not reflective of the quality you receive. The Sweet Shoppe palettes were a more expensive departure for BH at $18 for 8 large pans of shadow, but the Drop Dead Gorgeous Collection palettes are on par with those prices: the large palette is $19 (yes, there are 14 pans, but the pans are much smaller) and the 8-pan palette is $14. For that price, I would expect the quality of both the product and the packaging to be at least close to what we got with the Sweet Shoppe palettes, but that’s just not the case. These cardboard palettes are similar in quality (if not even flimsier) to the typical eyeshadow palettes you get at Hot Topic.
What I’m saying, BH Cosmetics, is that I’m not mad – I’m just disappointed. Halloween is a big deal, especially to those of us who are freaks and outsiders, and I love shopping Halloween collections each year and seeing what kinds of spooky themes and products brands come up with. But nothing excuses quality like this, especially when we know they can do better. It’s all trick, no treat.