I've been thinking long and hard whether to publish this review because this palette is not easy to find! I had a hard time myself trying to track this thing down and it was just pure luck that my local Sephora still had it in stock! I have had this kit to play with for over a month now and I finally decided to write a review so that you know what you'll be getting your money's worth in case they choose to restock, which I'm quite positive they will. With a high demand like this, it's silly not to.
Anastasia Contour Kit is a palette full of highlighting and contouring powders. The palette itself is a sturdy, magnetic cardboard. Compact size, lightweight, it is all around perfect to travel with. Though one thing I'm not happy about is the lack of mirror when there is a place for it inside.
What's really cool about these powders is they come in a removable, magnetic pan! Meaning, you can pop them out and place them in a different palette, or you can buy a refill for the color you run out, or swap them to customize your own palette (I hear they are coming out with more shades in refillable pans!). The magnet underneath each pan is pretty strong but good thing there is an indentation that allows you to easily lift the pan off the palette if needed.
Top row: highlight
- Vanilla – a pale peachy pink; matte
It has really sheer pigmentation. The texture is slightly dry and I feel that you skin has to be properly moisturized or it can emphasize the skin texture. Since this shade barely shows up on me, I mainly use it to set my under eye concealer.
- Banana – a light yellow; matte
The texture is much better than Vanilla; creamy, blendable, and very forgiving on dry skin. It also has fairly good color payoff. This is a good shade to cover up redness and neutralize facial veins.
- Sand – a pale champagne; shimmer
Such a beautiful shimmery shade. The shimmer is so subtle and looks really natural once applied on the skin. The texture is rather dry, though, and can go on slightly patchy on dry skin. I like to apply this on the top of my cheeks, down the nose, and on the Cupid's Bow.
Bottom row: contour
- Java – a warm medium brown with yellow undertones; matte
It has a nice and smooth texture that applies and blends beautifully. The color matches my yellow-toned skin really well so I like to dust it on the frame of my face to add warmth.
- Fawn – a cool medium taupe brown; matte
Another shade with stellar texture — silky and highly blendable. I like how cool and neutral this shade is so I use it to contour under the cheekbones and down the sides of my nose to add subtle definition to the face.
- Havana – a warm medium brown with red undertones; matte
This is the darkest contouring shade that I don't get to use much as it comes out a little too red for my preference. If you are looking to achieve a “tan” look, this is probably the best option. Similar to the other two contouring shades, Havana is smooth and creamy to the touch and feels like silk going on the skin.
Overall, I am much more impressed with the contouring than the highlighting shades. They are creamier and apply much better. They are not overly pigmented which I find a good thing. It is better to build the intensity than take away when it comes to contouring/bronzing. The highlighting shades, on the other hand, are a little tricky to use as they are sheer, dry, and tend to accentuate textured skin.
I also get a longer wear from the contouring shades. They last approximately 6-7 hours on my combination-oily skin and from there start to fade ever so slightly. The wear time of the highlighting shades is a bit shorter at 4-5 hours before fading.
Last thing I noticed is if you are pale, the contouring shades may be too dark, then if you are dark, they might not be dark enough to show up at all. So my advice for those whose skin tone isn't in the “medium” range is to wait until they release more shades and then build your own customized palette from there.
I do think that for the price, this is a great buy. The performance of the lighter shades could use some improvement but besides that, there's really nothing not to like about it. It is a convenient palette full of 6 cheek colors that allows you to mix and match to suit your skin tone. It is also a great option for those who are just starting with contour and highlight as well as those looking to build their collection.
As I said, this item is hard to obtain at the moment. It is constantly out of stock on Sephora and even on Anastasia's own website. The funny thing is, there are plenty of them on online auction/marketplaces like Amazon and Ebay but I do not recommend paying crazy money for it. Alternatively, you can call up your local Sephora to ask if they still have them in stock. I found mine in store after all, so you never know unless you try! :)
Edit 11/28/14: The palette is now available at most retailers. See links below.
Do you think you'll be picking up this palette once it becomes available again? Do you highlight/contour on a daily basis?