I Spent a Week Using the Infamous Subculuture Palette
I call the Subculture palette infamous because the drama that unfolded after it launched was so big that it caused me to actually pay attention to it.
Being what other people have described as a "very chill person" I generally don't follow up on drama or even know it exists mostly because I don't really care. So the fact that I watched a few review videos on this palette to see what everyone was talking about means that literally everyone was talking about it.
The reviews on this palette mostly talked about how dry and soft the formula was and how much fallout it produced in the pans and on your eyes. My curiosity sated I didn't encounter the Subculture palette again until many months later when it was promoted in a Sephora sale as being 50% off.
I bought the Subculture palette during that sale. Not because of the drama but because I had always wanted to own an Anastasia Beverly Hills eyeshadow palette. The reason for this desire is due to my preference in eyeshadow, which is: the more unique the shade the better.
In my eyes, Anastasia Beverly Hills is one of the few high price point brands that produces truly unique eyeshadow palettes. I mean they make palettes with duo chrome colours and neon's and their colour schemes always inspire me and challenge my imagination to pair unusual shades together.
I know there are other brands that make unusual palettes, however when I was first getting into makeup and only brave enough to walk into Sephora, the only option I had for really colourful, special eyeshadow was ABH. Nowadays I can go online and find hundreds of colourful eyeshadow palettes however ABH will always have this memory associated to them with being an eyeshadow brand that would allow me to set myself apart from the neutral workplace shades and show people that I was not afraid of colour.
So when the Sephora sale happened and I was able to buy the ABH Subculture palette for $38 I was very pleased with my purchase. When it arrived in the mail I immediately opened it up and started to put different colours on my eyes. It then became apparent that I was not nearly experienced enough with eyeshadow to know how to properly apply these shadows. What I know now is that these shadows truly are a different formula to a traditional eyeshadow palette.
The shades in Subculture are very pigmented, the mattes especially. This means that the colour payoff is amazing however it also means that they can and will stick in place where you first put them down and barely blend out from there. For me to use the matte shadows I have learnt to pick up only a small amount on my brush and then begin blending from the place on my eyelid where I want the most pigment to be because it will always stick a little where I first apply it. From then on I build up the matte shadow little by little until I have the desired eyeshadow effect.
The shimmers fortunately are much easier to apply, I will use a brush or my finger and swipe them wherever I want. I don't need to use a glitter base however if I want the maximum amount of shimmer possible then I will and they look amazing.
The other way to apply these shadows, as I saw online, is to pick up a lot of shadow and press in onto your eyelid to apply a lot of pigment at once and then blend out from there. This, however, isn't how I like to apply eyeshadow so it wasn't for me but it is another option.
There is fallout from these shades both in the pan and on my face so if I want to use this palette I will often do my eyeshadow first and wipe under my eyes before then applying foundation. This bothers me a little bit because that's not how I normally do my makeup so if I'm not thinking about it I'll apply my foundation first on autopilot and then have to very carefully do my eyeshadow so as to not stain my undereye area.
Aside from the performance of the shadows I do really like the range of colours in the Subculture palette. It brought me out of my comfort zone when I was using it for many days straight as I don't normally lean towards dark shades of eyeshadow and this palette has a few of them. However I really liked every eyeshadow look I came up with so I'm glad that I didn't avoid the dark shades.
As for the packaging the palette is weighty to hold and the velvet exterior makes the whole thing feel a step above my drugstore palettes. The brush that is included is double ended with a fluffy end and a flat end. The fluffier end is horrendous and feels as though the bristles are made of plastic, it sheds easily and everywhere, I never use it. The flat end is decent which means I keep the brush around because the flat end is good to use when all my other brushes are dirty and I'm being too lazy to wash them. Basically, if you're buying the palette thinking it's a good deal to get the brush included, don't get your hopes up.
What I learned from a week using the Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture eyeshadow palette is that it's good to switch things up.
Now that I've been properly wearing makeup for a few years it turns out that I've gotten quite settled into my routines of the style of eyeshadow I wear and the way I apply it and this palette forced me to change many of those ways to suit it. I discovered that dark and dramatic eyes are fun to do and that thinking ahead a little before I start slapping on whatever makeup is in front of me will lead to less of drama when I realise that nothing I've just put on actually goes together. So thank you, Subculture palette, hopefully I will actually listen to my own advice and not just settle back into my same routines, so here's to that.