Whoa whoa whoa, I thought as I frowned at phone, does Morphe actually have an Australian website now? If you follow me on Instagram you might have seen a couple of weeks ago on my Stories that I discovered Morphe has completely upped its game. Morphe’s always been this brand I’ve shrugged off. Their international shipping costs used to be double whatever product you were buying, their 35 shade palettes were overwhelming to look at, and every YouTube beauty guru and their mums has a commission discount code, making me question the authenticity of reviews. So I never thought I’d be a #MorpheBabe – until James Charles came into the picture. Waltzing in head-to-toe in his Sisters Apparel, James and his new rainbow themed palette had me for once genuinely wanting a slice of the Morphe pie. FREE AUSTRALIAN SHIPPING OVER $60 sealed the damn deal, and now we’re here. After selling out internationally within hours, the palette will be restocked Thursday December 6th at 8am PST (I think that translates into 2am Australian time – cue gentle weeping). Since it’s coming back, I thought I’d get my review up to help you decided whether to buy it or not, but let’s be real, I love it and am just going to gush over it. If you enjoy this review please give it a “like” so I know, and lets get into the palette!
The Morphe x James Charles palette is $59 AUD and you can buy it here from Morphe’s new Australian site. “Don’t forget to use code JAMES at checkout for 10% off your order!” But seriously, use the code to save $$. The annoying thing is, Morphe has free shipping when you buy $60 worth of products, so of course the JC palette is coincidentally $1 off. To hit the threshold I chucked a 70 DOLLAR (!?) 15 piece Babe Faves Eye Brush Set into my cart. I feel like I just helped James buy his Tesla.
Onto the topic of the packaging, this palette is gorgeous. It’s super sturdy matte black cardboard, thin and has his signature on the front in that swanky glossy finish. Inside the palette it has its motto ‘Unleash Your Inner Artist’. But my god, we need to talk about its SIZE.
She’s big. I don’t normally have a ‘size’ category in my reviews, but I feel like since Morphe palettes are huge, it’s good to talk about how big they are. Sometimes a palette that is too big can not work for makeup artists, sometimes they’re tricky to travel with, a lot of people have a certain way they like to display their makeup and they take size into account, etc. I grabbed two popular palettes (I don’t have ABH’s Modern Renaissance or the original Too Faced Chocolate Bar but you get the picture) just to give you first a size comparison, but also in insight into how much product you get.
I bought this palette for a lot of different reasons; *clears throat*
- I’ve always been curious about Morphe.
- I could deal with the price.
- I have so much faith in James and that he would pick not just good shades but shades that work well with each other.
- It looks versatile AF and for once isn’t a Morphe palette that looks like 35 different kind of oranges (apologises to their 35O palette.)
And ma boy delivered! This shade range is perfect. If you haven’t seen his reveal video here, James explained that the first top two rows are for your warm toned sisters who love to produce those more popular, everyday ready, tried and trusted looks. He knows that warm colour palette looks amazing on a lot of people and knows it’s well loved, so he covered his bases there. The bottom two rows are his rainbow shades where you can #UnleashYourInnerArtist. The middle row though, that middle row. The middle row has 7 shades in large pans. These are what James considers to be your most used shades when creating looks with his palette. When you use something a lot, you run out, hence why he made them bigger. We love a forward thinking sister.
What I also love about this palette is how versatile it is. Yes, you’re able to create so many eyeshadow looks with it, but his big champagne shade Face is an incredible highlighter. His big brown shade Code James could be my bronzer. The metallic pink shade Literally is a wonderful blush. Fill in your brows with his cool toned shade Punch Me. Use the big banana shade Tune to cover your dark circles. There is a lot to unpack here. James did a ‘Full Face Using Only My Palette‘ video, and it’s so good.
Last note about shades – I adore the fact that this palette isn’t just one, two, three different colourful shades and is passed off as ‘rainbow’. It has COLOURFUL TRANSITION SHADES. Palettes that are completely one toned with a random pop of colour make me never want to use the pop of colour, it just doesn’t work out well. But having a gradient of colours means it’s so easy to create a beautiful blended eye, making it suitable for basically any skill level.
Now to the formula! I can’t speak for all Morphe palettes, just this one, but it was definitely what I expected when I got this palette. Morphe shadows are not super duper creamy and soft and almost buttery like Anastacia Beverly Hills or NARS shadows are. They’re definitely packed more firmly, and I’ve realised recently that that’s a good thing. For a while I felt like the more soft a shadow is, the better, but that’s not always the case.
I was watching a Samantha Ravndahl video recently when she said soft shadows like ABH, which are impossibility pigmented when you swatch them, sometimes don’t work as well when you’re trying to work with colour and precision. Sugarpill is a brand that’s known for their incredibly colourful eyeshadows, and they’re packed firmly because you need to work with them differently. James’ palette is the same, and it’s so good.
All the shades that you want to be super pigmented are, like the true matte red You’re Kidding (which is actually a pressed pigment, not an eyeshadow), the hot matte pink Skip, the vibrant matte yellow Bee and so many more. A lot of the more light, fainter shades are not as pigmented, but that’s kind of the point, you’re meant to gradually build them up.
I love every single colour except one, and it was something I was most excited for. The purple metallic shade Artistry isn’t super powerful on its own, however this was something James did mention. I followed his advice and used it on top of of a matte purple look as a sort of ‘topper’, and it ended up working out really well. It’s worth playing around and experimenting with this palette as there is so much to take in and work with.
I do want to mention that these shades might stain your eyes. A lot of red and pink shades from a multitude of brands have this issue, it’s just a part of makeup and a price you pay for getting such pigmented formulas. If you know you have super sensitive skin and the thought of that annoys you to hell and back, you might not like this. However, everyone is different, and it’s nothing a little concealer just fix for a day.
Last thing I need to mention – absolutely NO fall out. I’m not kidding, nothing appears on my cheeks when I use this palette. You know what gives me fall out? Super creamy formulas like the ones from ABH and NARS.
Would I recommend this palette? Yes! Obviously take it as it is. If you never wear colour and aren’t going to anytime soon, you might not get heaps of use out of this palette. If you’re looking for something small with only the bare essentials in it, perhaps this isn’t the one. But if you’re looking for a colourful palette that has literally everything inside it, I know you’ll love it. It’s super easy to use, it’s inspiring to look at, I think the price is great, and it arrived at my door within like four days? So they’re super speedy!
If you enjoyed this review please give it a “like” so I know! What are your thoughts on the James Charles x Morphe palette? Leave me a comment below, I’d love to know!