E.L.F. Cosmetics Little Black Beauty Book Volume 1 Review, Swatches, Photos

Sometimes E.L.F. Cosmetics is a hit.

E.L.F. Cosmetics Little Black Beauty Book Volume 1?

Total hit people so listen up Back to Schoolers!


I’ve indulged in some of E.L.F.’s bigger palettes before and wasn’t too impressed since the palette was inconsistent with the formula. It was a mix of chalky versus velvety awesomeness….I can’t stand a palette that has some ho-hum formulas and some awesome ones, ugh, irritating.

Little Black Beauty Book? No issues here!

This tiny palette is a padded, faux patent leather design shaped, literally, like a little black book. Inside you’ll find a mirror and 48 shades of eyeshadows. The shadows are pretty small and this is one of the quirks of the palettes as I can’t fit a brush or a sponge applicator comfortably into the wells but outside of this, I likey!

I think the main appeal for me here is the palette is made up of 99.9% natural, nude shades of warmer colors. You’ll get a slew of various browns, golds, beiges, corals, peaches, and some greens thrown in and one with aqua, a single blue, and a few select shades of pink. The warmth of the palette definitely appeals to my boring makeup standards lately plus for Fall, who doesn’t love a nice natural eye look?

Formula through the entire palette is very, very consistent. The shades are decently pigmented, the shadows have a smooth, velvety formula that blend easily alone or together, and the finish has a soft sparkle without looking over done. They wear well under primer but show minor fading without within three to four hours of wear so I suggest a primer prior to application to keep them in place all day. When worn under Urban Decay Primer Potion I can get constant wear straight through the day and into the evening without creasing or fading.

Granted, they aren’t MAC, they aren’t Urban Decay….but they are decently formulated shades of shadow in a small, compact, travel friendly palette that won’t cost you a ton of cash. I think the palette’s size and the amount of shades inside is fabulous for travel plus you won’t be too scared to pack it with you and worry about it breaking and even if it does, no loss tears over it for $5!

It’s probably one of the nicest palettes I’ve seen offered from E.L.F. and if they release another volume I’d be game to haul it.

It is made in China so that’s one thing you might want to consider prior to purchase.

Overall, the E.L.F. Cosmetics Little Black Beauty Book was a nice beauty budget purchase and I imagine I’ll pull it out for a variety of looks come the Fall. I generally, really like this one and suggest grabbing one up.

Of course, if you’re a makeup snob (totally understand I am too) you might want to avoid this one but those on a budget or college and high school students heading back to school, this is one you can’t beat!

This one is available exclusively at Target and Target.com for $5.

P.S. They have this available with lipcreams and eyeshadows but I don’t recommend it as having powder and lippies in place is messy plus the lipsticks are probably awful but that’s just my opinion based on prior experience with such palettes.

Note: I only swatched a few of the shades because I simply didn’t have time to sit and swatch 48 shades of shadow, apologies! Also these shades came across very light because I had a hard time getting into the wells for better color pay off but rest assured the colors build up very nicely for more pop!


This product was purchased by the Muse for review purposes.
Read my full disclosure statement here.

  • 8/25/11 12:33 coco:

    I swear I saw this at Walgreens and CVS last week. Now I want it.


    • 8/25/11 12:34 the Muse:

      it’s possible coco! they started out life as exclusive to target and suddenly they popped up everywhere ;-D!


      • 8/25/11 12:37 Tammie:

        Maybe because Target is a butt and doesn’t stock them? So ELF decided to just open up distribution… No Target that I’ve been to since you announced this collection have carried ANY of them x_x.


        • 8/25/11 13:32 the Muse:

          jeepers sorry to hear tam let’s go get a drink at the tardis bar to drown your sorrows ;D


          • 8/25/11 14:13 Tammie:

            Hahaha I WISH. Just fly me out to NYC and I’ll be more than happy to accompany you 😀

          • 8/25/11 15:01 the Muse:

            ;-D Come on down!

  • 8/25/11 12:35 Tammie:

    Hmn, if I ever see this I may pick it up…why not right? I am not a big eyeshadow fan but you never know, I may want to wear some color in this thing :) ….$5 aint bad either.


  • 8/25/11 13:24 SusanT:

    I’ve been noticing a lot of E.L.F. stuff at TJ Maxx lately. Actually, TJ Maxx and Marshall’s are carrying a lot more beauty products lately.


    • 8/25/11 13:26 the Muse:

      yeahhhhhhh they sure are susan, the balm SCORE!


    • 8/25/11 14:16 Tammie:

      I saw that too! I got my Meet Matt(e) palette there, so happy x). I do recall seeing some ELF things, maybe I can find this there :D. Also keeping my eyes opened for a untouched Frat Boy blush…


  • 8/25/11 14:14 Musebeliever:

    This is quite nice ! And cheeeeeeap ! *o*
    liking this !


  • 8/25/11 15:15 Sarah S.:

    I do need to get me to a TJ Maxx for theBalm, but I don’t know where one is anymore 😛 I love E.L.F. because they’re pretty great for being dirt cheap! Those pink, orange, and yellow swatches are really pretty!


  • 8/25/11 17:32 Mina:

    I personally dislike made in China for health/safety reasons, but if you’re going to wear primer underneath, who cares, right? There’s some sort of barrier between it and my skin!!! :)


    • 8/26/11 9:54 the Muse:

      lol logical mina ;D!


  • 8/26/11 19:12 Charmaine:

    I love this one! I have many of ELF’s palettes and other stuffs, and I totally agree with you on the fabu-meh thing. But like you already said, no need to get upset if something doesn’t work cuz it’s so pocketbook friendly;-)


    • 8/29/11 16:38 the Muse:

      amen Charm ;-D


  • 8/28/11 14:58 Autumn Rush:

    I bought this yesterday because I saw your post about it. It was on clearence for $3.50!!!!! I LOVE it so much! The colors are beautiful and the size is great for travel. However, the palette stinks(literally, the smell is just no good!) Also, my palette won’t close properly, so I kept the round sticky tape to keep the palette closed for travel. Kind of annoying, but love this palette so much!


    • 8/29/11 16:50 the Muse:

      yay autumn happy to hear it. thankfully mind shut proper but same thing happened to a friend of mine, was kinda crappy closing it…! yeah, smells gross :-/ cheap makeup like!


  • 9/3/11 23:48 Brooke T.:

    I absolutely love this palette! I got it on clearance for $3.50 as well! The colors are lovely, and perfect for the fall.

    While I agree it smells, it’s not from the makeup, it’s from the faux patent leather!


  • 10/4/11 22:29 Alina:

    First off, I like your blog. And secondly, I was wondering if you had any products for a beginning makeup kit? It can be high end but not too high priced. If it helps, I have pretty light skin (fairly light in bare minerals foundation) dark, dark brown hair, hazel-gray-green eyes and sorta thin lips. This would really help.


  • 4/26/12 17:35 sheila vieira:

    I want by this make up please and receave all information about it…?
    thanks you


  • 1/28/14 15:23 Michaela:

    Nice review,
    I have the little black beauty book glam holiday I love it :)


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