Tarte x Grav3yardgirl Swap Queen Palette & New Sephora Opening

Happy Friday everyone! Yesterday I went to the opening of the new Sephora store at Yonge & Eglinton (in Toronto). I live in the area and I also grew up in the area so the fact there is now a Sephora steps away from my couch is incredibly exciting (and dangerous for my bank account).

Shortly after walking into the new and fully stocked store, the Tarte x Grav3yardgirl Swap Queen Eye & Cheek Palette ($59) caught my eye. I saw how quickly this sold out on the Tarte and Sephora websites, and the limited stock meant that I was overcome with this uncontrollable feeling that I just couldn’t go home without this palette. Keep in mind that I haven’t had the chance to give this the most thorough testing (this is more of a first impression review) but since it launches in Sephora stores today, I wanted to give my thoughts.

I know some Grav3yardgirl fans/beauty lovers don’t love the packaging but I actually like it. The light brown, wood-like palette has a vintage vibe, mixed with some Texas charm, and brings me back to a swamp tour a did in the US a few years ago – basically, just very Bunny-esque. It also has a fairly strong vanilla scent – something to keep in mind if you’re sensitive to fragrance.

Left to right: #SFS, Natural Peaches, Dogman

Left to right: Bid Baby, Sassy Bun, Sippy Sipy

Left to right: Haunting, Uncommon, Mancat

The palette comes with nine eyeshadows: #SFS (a shimmery rose); Natural Peaches (a light, matte peach); Dogman (a copper with light glitter); Big Baby (a matte cream colour); Sassy Bun (a shimmery golden peach); Sippy Sippy (a brown with gold glitter); Haunting (a light purple with a soft sheen); Uncommon (a shimmery taupe/purple); Mancat (a deep matte purple).

The second I started to swatch the eyeshadows I was very impressed with how pigmented they are. I only need a light pat in the pans to get great colour payoff that really clings to my eyelids. The composition of the collection of shadows is great, they compliment each other really well for daytime and/or nighttime looks.  Each shadow blends very well without any creasing and I find that shimmer shades apply just as evenly as the mattes. Sippy Sippy is a unique shadow. It is very glittery in the palette but depending on how you apply it, (sweeping over the eye or patting it onto the eyelid) you get a varied amount of glitter – the more you blend the less glitter you have. One thing to keep in mind is that these shadows do kick off some excess powder (particularly #SFS) so if you like a pristine, clean palette you’ll probably be wiping this off quite a bit.

The cheek shades in the palette are equally as pigmented and smooth but they kick off more powder, particularly the highlight. Gator Wings is a golden highlighter that is more of a glitter than sheen/iridescence. I do find that the glitter moves a bit when applied, which is not ideal, but looks awesome very lightly patted onto the eyes. Sweet Tea is a strong bronzer shade with a light shimmer but I find it a bit too warm toned for my complesion; it works better as an eyeshadow for me. The blush shade, Does This Thing Really Work?, is a gorgeous plumy pink with a gold sparkle. I don’t find that the glitter is overly noticeable on my cheeks but I actually prefer that because I have some hyperpigmentation on my right cheek, so for me that's actually a plus.

I think this is a very well composed palette. The eyeshadows are more suited to my personal taste but if you’re not afraid of a little glitter, the cheek products are very solid. I already know I’m going to be reaching for this quite a bit, so if you’re in the market for a new palette and you can get your hands on it, give this palette a swatch. Just be aware of the powder lifting off the palette a bit when you first try it. Congrats Bunny!

In addition to this limited edition Grav3yardgirl palette, I picked up the Anastasia Liquid Lipstick in Kathryn, ($26) a berry colour with a brown undertone – I have been trying to buy this for months but it was always sold out online and in stores! I also bought the Kate Somerville EradiKate To-Go Swabs ($27 – 12 application/$50 – 30 applications), a product I’ve been eyeing for months to hopefully ween myself off my prescription blemish cream. I also got a bag full of free goodies from The Estee Edit, Kate Somerville, Nest, Bite Beauty and NUDESTIX with my purchase (gotta love free beauty products).

Lastly, I want to mention how lovely everyone who works at the new Sephora is. Everyone was very helpful and I had some great conversations about beauty with the fantastic sales associates on the floor. I highly recommend going to the new Sephora at Yonge & Eglinton for all your beauty needs!