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Smoke it Up: Quo Double Decker Beauty Palette

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Never thought I'd fall for a palette called Piccadilly Punk. But I have and I don't care who knows. (Well okay, I care that you know.)

The rich purple shade is certainly the most eye-catching, and a terrific boost to brown, green or hazel eyes, but the shimmery grey above it is also a surprise. Shot through with gold rather than silver, on skin it has a smokey navy hue. Applied with a fluffy brush, such as the Estée Lauder 11E Eyeshadow Blending Brush, as a wash over the lid it's a sheer neutral with edge. The palest shade of shadow, a pretty silver, is also lovely as a light wash that fades out just short of the brow. Because the textures are silky sheer, a light-handed application delivers a subtle finish.

The darkest grey is a shimmery silvered gunmetal with a healthy dose of sparkle. I'm a little more careful with that one so I don't end up with sparkles all over my cheeks. Layering it sparingly over a line of black pencil (am still enjoying Lise Watier Waterproof Eyeliner in Noir Intense) or cream shadow does the trick. (Black eye pencil layered under a line of the purple is a good idea as well, if you find the purple alone makes you look like you have a touch of pink eye. Or add a touch of either of the darker grey shadows.)

The lip colours and blush in the lower level of the palette are equally pleasing and co-ordinate beautifully with the shadows. They're sheer, too -- the lip colours leave a soft sheen rather than heavy gloss or lipstick finish -- so they're easy to wear without overdoing it.

Who knew Punk could be so pretty?

quick smoky-eye tips

  • start with a touch of concealer to minimize dark circles/discolouration, and layer of powder on your lids as a base
  • dust a generous amount of powder under your lower lashes to catch any dark-shadow fallout
  • use a black or charcoal pencil liner along upper inner rim and lashline, then the lower inner rim and lashline (you can skip this for a softer look if you have long, thick lashes -- don't tell me if you do, cuz I'll be jealous)
  • sweep the lightest shade of shadow along the brow bone and dab a bit in the inner corners of your eyes
  • apply either grey shade on the lid and blend into the crease; use the same shade along the lower lashes, blending it into the pencil
  • OR apply either gray on the lid to the crease, and smudge the purple into the liner along the lower lashes (to keep the look sultry, apply in a wider line than you think -- too thin a line of shadow will look severe)
  • use a fluffy brush to sweep away the face powder under your eyes, then lash up with black mascara on your upper eyelashes

The Double Decker Beauty Palette ($20 CAN) also comes in Trafalgar Square Bare, a nudie quad of wheat golds, soft beige and deep golden brown for the colour-shy (and folks with blue eyes), plus a peachy blush and pinky neutrals for lips. Quo cosmetics are available across Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart. Estée Lauder is available at select department stores; and Image courtesy of Quo Cosmetics.