The NYX Champagne & Caviar palette from the Runway Collection is a beautiful collection of neutral browns of surprisingly high quality, retailing for $8.50 to $11.95. The keyword for this palette is “subtle”, but you can also get some dramatic looks from it, or go from day to evening.
The colors in this palette are uniformly pigmented, opaque and easy to blend. I get twelve hours’ wear without primer. Once in a while, NYX has a shadow that’s a miss (the same is true of Mac, Urban Decay, WNW…), but none of them are in this palette. These are 10 very good shadows.
Matte and satiny shimmer – the finishes on these are all matte or a very low shimmer that’s close to a satin finish. This makes it a great choice if you don’t like high shimmer – you get a lovely light catching effect without looking overdone or having heavy shimmer call attention to wrinkles.
Three crucial mattes – this palette has a matte white, matte deep brown and matte black, and they’re all opaque and pigmented. These are great colors to have on hand in your collection, and I sometimes reach for this palette to use them when I’m using shadows from other brands for my look. Matte white can lighten a color, decrease shimmer or act as a highlighter. Matte deep brown is a great corner color that goes with almost any other colors. Matte black is great for lining, for deepening colors, as a base to darken colors, or for general drama. In my opinion, this palette is worth the cost for these three shadows alone. NYX does mattes very well.
The pink – the shimmery light pink color on the bottom row is very special. It goes well with all the browns in this palette, but can seem very colorful next to them. That makes the palette more versatile than it it was all brown shades.
Because the colors are so consistently good, I’m not going to have a lot to say about each individual one. There’s no color that’s less pigmented or harder to work with. They’re all very good.
Color 1 is a warm shimmery gold champagne color. It’s great as a lid color but could also be used as a highlight on darker skin tones or with a darker look. It reminds me of Stila’s Kitten, if it was less shimmery.
Color 2 is a cool light taupe in a satin finish. It’s a very understated color, excellent for a no-makeup look.
Color 3 is a warm beige in a satin finish – kind of the warm version of Color 2. It’s got a nice golden sheen, but no shimmer.
Color 4 is like a cooler version of Color 1. It’s a gold champagne with more of a white base. It’s another great lid color or highlight.
Color 5 is a deep golden beige with a satin finish. It looks pale in the swatch, but it’s actually dark enough to be a very natural crease color – about the same tone as Mac’s Wedge.
Color 6 is a matte white. It’s actually much better than NYX’s single “Matte White”, which I find dry and hard to work with. This one has just enough translucence to blend with skin tone, but it’s opaque and pigmented enough to contrast with other colors or lighten them when mixed with them.
Color 7 is a warm golden light brown, a shade lighter than Color 5. It’s another satin finish, with warm undertones.
Color 8 is a matte deep brown. It goes on a little sheer at first, but has enough pigment to build up to whatever level you want. It looks darker in the pan, but on the skin it reminds me of Mac’s Espresso.
Color 9 is a drop dead gorgeous shimmery light pink with golden pearl. It adds a terrific pop of color which seems very colorful next to these other shades, but is still neutral enough to fit in well.
Color 10 is a matte black. It’s very opaque and pigmented – perfect for lining or deepening other shades. This color also makes it possible to get some dramatic looks out of this palette.