We have already established that I am a sucker for limited edition makeup collections; what you may not know is that I am a huge fan of No Doubt, and that in my formative teenage years Gwen Stefani was my style icon. I have been waiting with baited breath for the UDXGwen collection to be released. As always the U.S. got their hands in this release before us Brits (booo); I bought the palette when it was released in November but wanted to try out the lipsticks as well before posting my review.
So let’s get on with it!
Packaging: Apparently Gwen was involved in the whole process for this collection right down to the packaging, which was inspired by her love of Art Deco. The packaging is very pretty, and looks good on your dressing table. I am considering buying the remaining 3 lipsticks purely so that they fill the top of my rotating lipstick tower (they’d look so beyootiful!). The eyeshadow palette has a magnetic closing mechanism, with the usual large size mirror and seems to be up to the usual Urban Decay standards, except that there’s no brush! I was rather disappointed by this. The lipsticks don’t feel as hefty as usual, and seem to be made of quite flimsy plastic compared to the usual tubes, but they are more substantial than the Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks so I’m not complaining. The only issue I have with the lipstick packaging us that the actual bullet rubs against the side of the tube when you twist it up to use. It’s a tad annoying.
Colour: In the eyeshadow palette there are 12 shadows which are mostly neutral with a few pops of colour. This is actually a really great palette for everyday use, or travelling when you want to go with mostly neutral looks but might want to spice things up a bit. I always have a dilemma deciding which palettes to take with me when travelling, and I’m usually torn between a sensible neutral palette like Naked or Tartelette and one of my Vice palettes. This palette is a nice compromise. The shades in the palette are:
- Blonde – a pale beige with pink iridescent shift.
- Bathwater – a pale beige with gold pearl.
- Skimp – a pale nude satin.
- Steady – a medium rose with metallic gold shift.
- Punk – a reddish brown matte.
- Baby – a cool metallic rose.
- Anaheim – a light taupe-brown matte.
- Stark – a nude-pink matte.
- Zone – a medium brown matte.
- Serious – a smoky gray with iridescent floating pearl.
- Pop – a pale coral with iridescent sparkle.
- Harajuku – a metallic blue-pink with iridescent micro-shimmer.
- Danger – a deep metallic royal blue with blue micro-sparkle.
- 1987 – a bright metallic yellow-gold.
- Blackout – a blackest black matte.
The lighter shades all seem to be quite similar and don’t swatch particularly well in comparison, but on the lids you can tell the difference between them. It would have been nice to have a bit more variety in the shades. I really loved the three accent shades – my favourite being Danger, it’s such a beautiful metallic blue.
The lipstick shades I purchased are:
- Phonecall -a sheer bright pink.
- Firebird -a deep Fuschia cream.
- 714 – a bright red mega matte.
- Spiderweb – a satin red cream.
- Rocksteady – a deep wine red cream.
Phonecall is a great everyday shade for spring and summer. Firebird looks more purple in pictures, but is actually a vibrant pinky-purple and my favourite shade from the collection. 714 is a classic bright red matte shade. Spiderweb is slightly darker than 714 and Rocksteady is a beautiful burgundy.
Texture/ Finish: The eyeshadows are a nice mixture of mattes, satins and metallics. As you would expect from Urban Decay the eyeshadows are very pigmented and creamy.
The lipsticks all have different textures and finished: Phonecall is sheer and quite moisturising; Firebird is described as a cream but it has a pearl almost metallic finish; 714 is matte, really really matte. Love it. Spiderweb is really glossy, and Rocksteady is the traditional revolution formula.
Application: All of the Gwen Stefani lipsticks have a pointed bullet, instead of the usual rounded lipsticks (which I hate!!). Massive improvement, and so much easier to apply.
Longevity: The eyeshadows last all day, especially if you use a primer, but without they last at least 6-8 hours without creasing. The lipsticks all have different wear; 714 lasts the longest at 4-5 hours and has very little transfer; Firebird and Rocksteady both wear quite well at around 3-4 hours, but have a bit more transfer, Spiderweb lasts about 3 hours, Phonecall needed to be reapplied every couple of hours.
Removal: The eyeshadows can be removed using normal makeup remover, the lipsticks need an oil based remover, and most do stain your lips, particularly firebird.
Price: The eyeshadow palette is £40 and the lipsticks are £16 which is slightly more than usual, but about standard for high end makeup.
Overall: I really like this collection, and am tempted to buy the blush palette and remaining lipsticks.