April 9, 2018

Neutrogena Essential Eye Palette x Kerry Washington & Essential Cheek Palette Not Quite Ideal for Darker Skin Tones?

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Neutrogena Essential Eye Palette x Kerry Washington & Essential Cheek Palette have been revealed and are now available at Ulta.com. As you may already know Kerry Washington has been Neutrogena’s brand ambassador and face but this is the first time she has released a collection in collaboration with the brand.

Come to think about it I don’t think any of Neutrogena’s brand ambassadors have ever had their own collection so this is a first. At the moment the makeup world is finally realizing that foundation and concealer shades are not one size fits all and many, many brands have taken the initiative to expend their color selections. I was thinking since Neutrogena doesn’t exactly have a selection of shades to suit woman of color that maybe Kerry’s Collection would be geared towards a tan or darker skin tone. Sadly, this doesn’t appear the case.

I’m not expert on darker skin tones but the Neutrogena Essential Cheek Palette x Kerry Washington ($9.99) appears more suitable for a lighter skin tone. If you look quick enough it seems to have the exact same shades that have appeared in the It Cosmetics Radiance Palette or even the It Cosmetics Je Ne Sais Quoi Complexion Perfection Palette (both seen below). I wouldn’t call a paler pink an ideal shade for darker skin tone.


It Cosmetics CC+ Radiance Palette5

But we have to wait and see what this palette looks like up close and personal as promo images are sometimes grossly inaccurate.

The Neutrogena Essential Eye Palette x Kerry Washington ($12.99) is the second item in this launch and was curated by Kerry. The palette contains some softer beige nudes that again look like they would be most suitable on a lighter skin tone. I have hopes they’ll do some sort of video or promotional image with Kerry wearing these shades as they just don’t look like they would be suitable for her. There are five shades here which are called:

I should stress yet again that perhaps the promo images are off. I sure hope that is the case because both palettes just don’t appear all that flattering or ideal for anyone but the lightest of skin tones.

I’m surprised there isn’t more buzz about this at the moment! I guess we’ll have to wait and see how the beauty world reacts to the Neutrogena Essential Eye Palette x Kerry Washington & Essential Cheek Palette.

What do you think of the collection?

Available now at ulta.com.

I receive a small commission if you shop through my link.

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Dee

    I was considering picking up the eye palette, then I remembered that I really didn’t like the quality of their long wearing eye quads. Maybe I’ll wait on other peoples’ reviews first. Are you thinking of picking this up to review Muse?

    • Isabella Muse

      I think I’m going to skip until I see it in stores maybe it’ll be amazing in store but right now promo images aren’t convincing me I need it!

  • Jane

    The eye palette is very pretty, but no I don’t think that would be a really beneficial set of colors for people of color. I’m not a person of color, so maybe I’m wrong.

    I don’t know Neutrogena’s business model, and I know there are a lot of easily triggered racists out there, but as a very pale person, I’m okay – nay, happy even, given the historical lack of coverage – for some mainstream items not to be meant for me. Did Ms. Washington choose these? I will await further info, but this doesn’t look great on the surface.

    • Isabella Muse

      I felt the same but I’m not an expert at WOC shades. It just doesn’t look like it would be flattering on darker skin tones but I may be wrong. She apparently curated them so I imagine that means she had choices of shades and went with these. I do think both drugstore, higher-end, and mid-range products don’t always have a good selection of shades for everyone and that is thankfully changing!

  • kjh

    Total boring Cauc here, but let me tell you I had a big awakening, when I watched the Scandal/HTGAWM crossover episode. Kerry and Viola are radically different in skin tone. Massively. Kerry is quite light, very warm. Viola is much cooler and darker. My takeaway from this and checking out the variety of skin tones at my day job sites and my customers at night is that there is far more variety of tones in the population of persons of color than there is in us boring Caucasians. Which makes the the product shade ranges patently ridiculous and the entire inclusive movement extremely, even more mandatory. From what I have seen, brands really need to be even more varied and heavy on the dark end of the spectrum than they are on the light end. Kerry is gorgeous, and what I see in the product is what you noted/showed us. A lighter version of the Nars xmas Man Ray palette. Everyone has done one. Jamie’s is the closest. I think the eye palette might show up on Kerry, as a very light natural look; presumably it does. But Kerry might be only ~ NC 45-50. To me, she is warm medium tan. And I feel like a total idiot for talking about this. But, she is drop dead beautiful, a great face for the brand, but possibly only a baby step for women/men of color in being represented as mainstream in the beauty community.

    • Kish

      Interestingly enough, I worked with an African-American makeup artist and he said it was much easier for him to work with WOC because the colors are more forgiving and he said it was easier to match. He said white women have more variations and it’s harder to match them. In his opinion, he agreed with the fact that their are always more shade choices at the lighter end of the spectrum. Now that was just for foundation shades. I do plan on checking in with him and seeing what he thinks of this color collection. I feel like the colors are really generic and probably weren’t hand picked by Kerry herself.

      • kjh

        Yeah, not really sure I believe the PR. And another warm neutral palette is hardly groundbreaking. Easier to match for a WOC? He’s got to be blending shades. Not that I don’t believe him, but what I see in the stores does not correspond to what I see in real life. Since he has a pro kit….