I’m here today to do some reviewing and some rambling over the palette that has become subject to a LOT of drama. It, of course, is the newly released Subculture palette by Anastasia Beverly Hills. This palette was developed as the sister palette to the widely popular Modern Renaissance (MR) palette which has become a huge cult favorite. That palette is described as the day palette (with it’s warm neutrals and berry tones) while Subculture is described as the night palette (with it's cool tones and bolder shades). This palette was hyped up ever since it was first leaked, and it was SO stressful trying to get it the day it released. As: A. Anastasia does not release a time that the products will launch, and B. their site crashed. So getting this palette was pretty difficult but I was SO excited to get my hands on it.
As for the packaging you will see that it is extremely similar to the MR palette. It includes fourteen shades, seven in each row, and comes with a double sided brush ( a fluffy blending brush on one side and a small packing brush on the other). The outer packaging is the same “velvet” material as the MR palette but is in a dark blue shade instead of light pink. I didn’t purchase the MR palette as I bought the Kylie Burgundy palette before I became interested in the MR palette, and I just thought it wasn’t worth buying both as the shades seemed so similar.
As for my opinion on the product…. I don’t hate it. I also don’t head over heels love it, but I’ve used eyeshadows that have been way way worse. Overall the real problem with this palette that a lot of youtubers have been talking about is that the formula is too powdery. I would say that the formula is quiet powdery and does give a good amount of kick up, BUT, it’s so pigmented that there is no reason to be swirling your brush very hard in it. In those reviews I have seen a few youtubers really digging their brushes in their and then being surprised that there was so much kick up. When really all you have to do is barely tap your brush into the shadows to get a huge amount of pigmentation on your brush. I want to mention that I don’t think that the Youtubers are wrong! I think that the real issue was that Anastasia didn’t provide enough information about how this platte should (and should not be used). So a lot of people, including myself, found this hard to use as it’s a very unique formula that we aren't used to working with.
Another thing that I have heard a lot of people talking about is that there is a general inconsistency within the batches. So, this is obviously what I've just heard in youtube comments and is not confirmed to be true. I have read that batches one to six were not good while batch seven was good. I would only believe this as my palette is from batch seven, and honestly it’s not at all as bad as other peoples. So before I get into this review I just wanted to mention the drama, my take on it, and the possible batch “conspiracy” before I talked about the quality of my the palette.
As I mentioned the formula for this palette is VERY different. They are very soft and powdery shades, and have not been pressed down very hard at all. Which allows a lot of powder kick up to occur. As I first started to play with this palette I tried to use it the way I might use a Too Faced palette, or a Tarte one. So, swirling my brush in the shades and apply it without tapping off the excess. When really these shadows work best when you lightly tap your brush in the shadow. Tap off the excess powder, and then apply lightly (to build up the color while keeping it blended). I think that if you get a lot of product on your brush and apply it (without tapping off the excess) the color is very intense, hard to blend, and because it is powdery can spread so it looks messy on the eye. So, I think the way you pick up the product is very important.
There are three formulas: duo-chrome (Cube/ Electric), metallic (Adorn), and lastly ultra- matte (remaining shades).
(from top to bottom)
Cube- a duo chrome pink pearl
Dawn- a sandy light brown
Destiny-a sage green
Adorn- a very metallic gold bronze
All Star- a burgundy red
Mercury- a slate grey
Axis- a peacock blue green
(from top to bottom)
Roxy-a tan coral
Electric-a duo chrome yellow/lime green
Fudge-a deep chocolate brown
New Wave-a citron orange
Untamed- an army/ forest green
Edge- a mustard yellow
Rowdy- a plum brown
My ABSOLUTE favorite shade is Adorn as it gives the most intense metallic gold-bronze look. This shade is very creamy and does not give off a lot of powder kick back.
The duo-chrome shades are good but I wish that they had been in the metallic formula instead of the duochrome one. As they are really pretty colors but I would have liked to see them pop a little more. This can’t really be a complaint on the palette as the creators behind it chose to use a duo-chrome formula instead of a metallic one, so this is just my personal opinion. I would say that the shade Cube is my least favorite shade in the palette as it’s too stiff. I feel like I've had to really dig my brush into that one to get pigment on my brush and it doesn't apply very well.
The ultra matte shades are the ones with a lot of powder kick up and are in some of the boldest colors. I found Mercury and Axis to be the hardest to blend out, but they were workable. The rest I really didn’t find too difficult as long as I didn’t apply too much product right away. Less is more with this palette (in terms of building up color slowly). Overall I'm good with the mattes. I think that if you are patient with them and put your brush in gently, they can work.
Overall, I’m am excited to keep using this palette! I bought this palette as I have hazel eyes and really LOVE using green (and green blues) to emphasize the green in my eyes. I also really like using burgundy shades for this as well as they make my green eyes look so intense! As for the quality of mine, I think it’s good. It isn’t the best eyeshadow quality, but for me it’s far from the worse. I really love the metallic finish and I find the mattes to be workable if you are patient and gentle with the shadows. If I was just reviewing my palette, I would recommend it. As the shades are unique, the colors are pretty and are very much what I will wear in winter, and I don’t find the formula to be insanely bad (but I would call it a more difficult formula to work with). With that said, I do believe I got a better batch of this palette and I’m really not sure if I could totally recommend this to you with all the different opinions that are going around. I would just recommend reading a bunch of different reviews and if you are going to buy it in store look for a P7 number sequence on the box, as that means batch seven and those seem to be the best.
Have you guys tried this palette out? What are you thinking with it and all this drama? Do you think you would still purchase it if you haven’t already?