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Back To Basics With Urban Decay’s Naked Basics Eyeshadow Palette

Chances are, if you peek inside any makeup artist or beauty aficionado’s stash of goodies, you’ll find the Urban Decay Naked or Naked 2 eye shadow palettes. I myself consider these the most impressive, nuanced, exciting neutral eye shadow palettes on the market (just check out this blog post in which I rave about the Naked 2 palette).

But, even though these palettes are about as close to perfection as you can get, they do have some slight shortcomings. For one, each incorporates only a couple of matte shades. Why would this be a drawback? Well, for one, matte eye shadows are essential as bases since they function as a canvas of sorts, allowing you to more easily layer other more dynamic shades and to blend them more seamlessly. Similarly, matte eye shadows are ideal when you want to buff and blend shades ever so lightly, diffusing the color for a more seamless finish. Another asset: matte eye shadows  are remarkably understated, making them ideal for women who want to add just a hint of color to their lids without having too much of that eye-catching sparkle we associate with satin and frost eye shadows. But here’s the real reason why I, personally, was secretly begging for a matte version of the UD Naked palette: as some of you know, I’ve been doing more and more on-air segments on television, discussing various style and beauty trends. And, of course, I always try to look as polished as possible before going before the camera. Now, as many in the entertainment industry know, the way you’d ordinarily do your makeup won’t suffice for television appearances since the harsh overhead studio lights (not to mention the camera lights) require different application techniques  and, accordingly, a specific assortment of TV-ready cosmetics. When it comes to eye shadows, for instance, one has to use shimmering products sparingly in order to avoid having lids look like strings of tinsel that reflect light every which way (which, in turn, will make your entire face appear greasy and sweaty).

Needless to say, I was ready to break out into the butterfly, then do a salsa step or two, when I learned that Urban Decay was releasing its  Urban Decay Naked Basics ($27 at UrbanDecay.com) eye shadow palette, featuring all-matte eye shadows. As with the previous Naked palettes, the Naked Basics palette focuses on neutral shades ranging from a sandy eggshell to a richly pigmented, near-black dark chocolate shade. But, again, all six shades in this palette have a matte finish while boasting the rich pigmentation and color saturation for which Urban Decay has earned so much acclaim. 

Since the palette is considerably smaller than its predecessors, it’s also much more convenient to tote around inside your makeup bag (chances are the Naked and Naked 2 palettes didn’t quite fit into an ordinary makeup bag!). And, since Urban Decay pays attention to each and every single detail, the eye shadows are packaged inside a  rectangular, bronze-toned case that resembles that of the prior two Naked palettes but, of course, features a matte finish as opposed to the traditional metallic sheen.

The shades includes in the Naked Basics palette are:

VENUS : an off-white, creme brûlée color with a hint of a satin finish (this is billed as a demi-matte since it does have a bit of sheen as opposed to the other shades in the palette)

FOXY : a matte beige hue with a yellowish tint

W.O.S. (which stands for “WALK OF SHAME”): a light, pinky nude with a matte finish

NAKED2: a matte, velvety light, mocha latte color with camel-like undertones

FAINT : a matte dusty brown reminiscent of a grizzly bear’s fur

CRAVE: a very deep blackened brown reminiscent of Keemun  (English breakfast) tea leaves but with a sooty, matte finish

All the shades feel velvety soft on the skin, and they’re easy to smooth onto lids, to layer and blend, and to diffuse and buff as needed. Check out swatches of all six shades below:

Next, I’ve incorporated a couple of shots of me wearing shades from the Urban Decay Naked Basics eyeshadow palette. This is actually a look created for a Telemundo “Mujer de Hoy” segment I recently taped. I remembered to take photos of my eye makeup after we’d wrapped filming and I’d taken my earrings off and put my hair back, so pardon the slightly disheveled appearance!

To start the look, I applied the Urban Decay Primer Potion in Sin, which has a hint of shimmer. I then swept the W.O.S. shade all over my lower lids and worked it into the crease, extending the color all the way to the brow bone. Once I’d attained the desired coverage, I proceeded to apply the Naked2 shadow all along my lower lids. And, to add some dimension, I brushed the Faint eye shadow along the outer corners of my eyes and worked the color into the crease, stopping along the center of the eyes, right above my iris. I then reached for the Venus shade and used this color to buff the shades together and blend them nicely. I finished the look by applying the Urban Decay 24/7  Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion, a deep black hue, along my lash line and applying two coats of Givenchy Phenomen’Eyes mascara.

Bottom line: the Urban Decay Basics palette is a basic makeup need!

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