Urban Decay Friends & Family Mini Haul

Pros: Quality packaging, good value, eyeshadow shades good for those with medium skintones
Cons: Too much fallout, some colours not true to life, not the most versatile colour selections, Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers are messy with a much too too small brush

Urban Decay recently blessed us with a Friends & Family sale in the beginning of July. Everything on the website, excluding the much sought after Naked Palette, was 25% off. I had believed it to be an exclusive sale for those on the mailing list, but later saw an ad on a fashion site, so I guess not.

I broke down and bought the Vegan Palette. It was the one item I planned to buy during the sale. I also considered getting the Baked Bronzer for Face and Body in Naked, but I was hesitant to plop so much down right after stocking up on the new e.l.f. products at Target. I’m confident the bronzer will stay around for the inevitable Christmastime sale. On the other hand, I’m not sure how much longer the Vegan Palette will be stocked. It’s been almost a year since the palette was released and I’m guessing its days are numbered. I’m crossing my fingers for a Vegan Palette Vol. II.

I did contemplate picking up an eyeshadow in either Maui Wowie or Midnight Cowgirl Rides Again. The MakeupAlley reviews for both shades mentioned a lot of fall out, so I decided to stick with the palette for a test ride before plopping down nearly twenty dollars on a single shadow.

While I also considered picking up lipstick or gloss, I had, erm, just bought a load of lip products from e.l.f.’s online summer sale and couldn’t justify the expenditure.

I snagged five items for ~$45 dollars, including shipping!

My Urban Decay order arrives.

The Breakdown:

  • Vegan Palette
  • Loose Pigment Eye Shimmer
    • Baked
    • Shag
    • Graffiti
    • Protest


The Vegan Palette:

The Vegan Palette is a set of six eyeshadow shades, a 24/7 Eye Pencil in Zero and a trial size of the Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Sin. Fellow vegans, please note that Urban Decay has disclosed that their primers are not vegan. It is included with the palette because it was not known the primers weren’t vegan at the time of its creation due to an oversight. I don’t plan on reviewing the primer because it’s not a vegan product and will swap it at MakeupAlley for something I will use.

Front of the Urban Decay Vegan Palette packaging

I was worried the eyeshadows would crack during shipping but everything arrived intact. I planned to buy the Vegan Palette through Ulta to alleviate my worries, but it was discontinued before I had the chance. For once my procrastinating paid off.

Back of the Urban Decay Vegan Palette packaging

The packaging for Urban Decay shadows are always awesome. This time the palette is a sturdy cardboard case with lots of swirly designs and various animal motifs over a neutral background. You know, the stuff non-vegans typically associate with vegans. 😀 Personally, I’d rather have either an edgier and/or sleeker design. On the inside there is a large mirror, spots for the six shadows and a recessed slot for the 24/7 Eye Pencil. The Eyeshadow Primer Potion does not fit inside the palette.

Urban Decay Vegan Palette

After reading reviews for UD shadows, I expected much more fallout than what I found. Or maybe I’m too used to mineral makeup and e.l.f. shadows.

Back of the Urban Decay Vegan Palette

All of the shades are shimmer. I’m not thrilled with most of the shades. They are bold or colours I wouldn’t usually use and too varied to use exclusively. Or maybe the shadows are aimed at medium skin tones and I’m too fair, lol.

Swatches of the Urban Decay Vegan Palette


A nice and sparkly teal blue shade. I’m glad I didn’t get the Loose Pigment Eye Shmmer in Shattered like I planned, because this looks very similar. While it’s definitely a teal blue, it is by no means overpowering.

The downside to this shade is the occasional chunky glitter flake that inevitably falls to the face. There’s already enough shimmer in Minx, there’s no need for the additional glitter.


While I’m constantly on the lookout for green eyeshadows, I would have panned Urb under normal circumstances. Fortunately, I was surprised that Urb is very faint once applied to the eyelid. It’s much greener in the pan than on the skin. Due to this, Urb is more wearable on a daily basis. The downside is that it’s not very green.

For some reason there was a surprising amount of fallout with Urb. I was forced to use a makeup remover cloth to pluck up the stray glitter chunks all over my face. And there was still glitter all over the place.


The name says it all. A dark silver shade. I used to wear a lot of grey eyeshadow back in the day when I was a teen, but I find myself wearing them less and less as I get older. Sheesh, that makes me sound much older than I am. I

I prefer the two dark silvers, Magnum and Blue Steel, from Silk Naturals UD Naked Palette Clone Set over Gunmetal.

Twice Baked

This is a warm and sparkly dark brown. Twice Baked is a very dark shade. I probably won’t use it too much as it’s much too dark to wear on a regular basis.


This ended up being much darker on my eyelid than I expected. Normally I would wear this sort of shade as a crease shadow. The first time I used Smog, I used it all over my lid, but quickly realized it was much too dark for that.

I find Smog barely lighter than Twice Baked, though it is a slightly warmer brown than the latter. A chocolate brown.

Half Baked

The Urban Decay site describes this shade as a “subtle, lustrous, bronze”. I strongly disagreed. It’s unapologetically gold. I hadn’t expected it to be so yellow…and gold. I expected more of a neutral brown shade from the online images.

This is what I thought Baked would look like. Indeed, Half Baked and Baked seem to be very similar, judging by the Loose Pigment Eye Shimmer.

24/7 Eye Pencil

The eyeliner is a trial sized pencil in Zero. Given the eyeshadow shades in the Vegan Palette, I think it would have been better to include a nice dark coffee shade instead of black.

Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Pencil in Zero

While I was not so enamored of the eyeliner after I first tried it, I was pleasantly surprised later. After my swatching photo session ended, I used a makeup remover wipe as usual. The shadows came off with no problems, but the eye liner didn’t budge. I thought to myself, now there’s a good eyeliner.

Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers:

While on the Urban Decay site, I checked the clearanced products and found the Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers on sale for $5. Turns out the Friends & Family discount also applied to clearanced items. I ordered four shades.

Urban Decay Loose Pigment Eye Shimmer

The first thing I noticed after the shadows arrived in the mail was that the colour label on the bottom is nearly identical to the colour in the tube. That’s quite the feat; don’t see that too often. Even the palette shades on the back of the Vegan Palette package are not so accurate.

The Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers are basically the same as mineral eye shadows–and just as messy. I read online reviews mentioning the messy side of the loose shadows, but wow, I was not expecting them to be this bad. The shadows are packaged in a tube with a small brush attached to the lid. The packaging has a distinctive look, but is not very practical. The brush is too narrow and short to be useful. I think if the brush was larger it would reduce the amount of fallout.

And speaking of fall out. Way Too much. I’m honestly not surprised Urban Decay clearanced the Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers.

I considered picking up Shattered but decided to go with Protest instead. I know I won’t wear blue eyeshadows and there already was a similar shade in the Vegan Palette.

Urban Decay Loose Pigment Eye Shimmer Swatches


Two words describe this shade: green and shimmery. While I imagine it’s way too vibrant to wear everyday, I’m really enamored of this shadows. I think it’s one of the closest shades to my ideal green I’ve come across. Many vegan greens have blue undertones—something I’m trying to avoid—or have too much yellow, but Graffiti feels like a “true” green. The swatch photo is bluer than in person.


I wasn’t sure what to expect when I ordered Protest. It looked more black than green online. When I thought about the name and looked at the colour, in my head I envisioned the WTO protests in Seattle. (@_@)

It’s darker than I would normally wear, but I ended up liking it a lot It is suitable for a smoky eye look.. Reminds me of a slightly lighter, more easier to use version of elf’s Mineral Eyeshadow in Outdoorsy. At the very least, it’s a crease colour and can be paired with the aforementioned Graffiti.


A salmon shade and the most neutral of the bunch. I like Smog in the tube and as a swatch, but I’m not thrilled with it as eyeshadow. I think there may be too much orange for my skintone. I’m not sure why, but it looks off.


I figured I should get all of the “Baked” shadows. It looked bronze on the website, but this is also an unabashed gold with tons of shimmer and glitter. Not the huge glitter flakes like those that plague Urb, but much larger than a pearl glitter. Definitely not suitable for work—that is, unless you work someplace like Hot Topic.

This past year I’ve gotten into metallic eyeshadows, so I feel a fondness towards Baked though I have no idea where I’d wear it. I think I would have fun wearing it while at the beach. If I lived near the ocean. Which I don’t.

Final Thoughts:

While I’m happy I finally broke down and ordered some UD products, I’m not exactly thrilled with my purchases. However, I had already seen the Vegan Palette in person and knew beforehand what I was buying. Normally, I wouldn’t have bought the Loose Pigment Eye Shimmer, but figured it was a low risk purchase at $3.75 a tube (with the Friends & Family discount applied).

It’s a long shot, but I’m really hoping for a second Vegan Palette. Part of my decision to buy it was to send a message to UD that such palettes are desired and accepted by the vegan community, or at least mainstream enough for anyone, regardless of their vegan status. The packaging for the Vegan Palette mentions that it is to commemorate the 30th anniversary of PETA (no, really!), so I don’t know how likely a follow up palette is.

My ideal palette would include Baked, Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, Roach, Flipside (I know, I know; it’s blue but I can’t resist), and Mildew. Or something like that. There’s a lot of shades I’d love to try.

Bottom Line:
Under normal situations, I am hesitant to recommend the Loose Pigment Eye Shimmers. Way too messy and the brush is undersized. Not worth the price or hassle; stick with pressed eyeshadows. For $5? Now that’s a different story. If there’s a colour you’re interested in, go for it while they’re still available.

The Vegan Palette is a good way to try a bunch of UD shadows without paying a premium. As much as I don’t love the shades, there is a good selection of browns with a few other colours thrown in for fun. Would I recommend the Vegan Palette? Of course. In fact, I’m thinking of picking up a palette or two as Christmas gifts for family members if/when it’s clearanced.