e.l.f. Studio 22 Piece On-the-Go Palette {Review}

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Rating: 3/5 stars ★★★☆☆
Price Tag: $12 USD
Palettes Available: 1 palette
Weight: 0.66 oz
Where to Buy: eyeslipsface.com

Not to be confused with the short-lived, interchangeable, long palettes of the similar name, Beauty-on-the-Go Palettes.

This product was initially released around the same time—Winter 2013—as the similar (discontinued) Urban Decay Shattered Face Palette. That one had two layers while this one has three.


The On-the-Go Palette is a black, three layer palette with a large mirror included under the first lid. Each layer has a general theme. From top to bottom: eyes, lips, face (and mascara). Oho, did you see what e.l.f. did there?

The e.l.f. Studio On-the-Go Palette

The palette reminds me of the original—and discontinued—Studio Mini Makeup Collection, both in design and eyeshadow colours. Both are also not well constructed.

The On-the-Go Palette looks much sleeker on the website than in person. While roughly the size of my iPod Touch 3G, it has a lot of height that makes it boxy. In reality, it’s not that tall, but when you see it and pick it up, the palette feels off balanced.

Size comparison between the Studio On-the-Go Palette and the Samsung Galaxy SIII

There are some serious design flaws to the layered system. You have to remember to close the palette before selecting another level. You can’t just lift the level to access the next. Otherwise stuff is constantly falling out.

You might as well not keep any of the little brushes in the palette. Not only are they woefully inadequate and contain natural bristles, they always fall out.

The palette also smudges easily.

My biggest complaint is the front latch. I do not feel comfortable tossing the palette in my purse because I’m afraid it will pop open during travel. It is not a secure latch and opens far too easily. A far cry from the Beauty-on-the-Go Palettes that I literally could not pry open. I always needed my husband to open them.

Sticker on the bottom of the palette. Does the shade name indicate there will be more versions in the future?

Fortunately, the quality of the plastic is a step up from the Mini Makeup Collection. I don’t see any leftover plastic tabs like I did with the Mini Makeup Collection. Unfortunately, there still is a cheap quality to the plastic case.


There’s nothing really amazing or exceptional here. The products range from being adequate to not good.

That’s too bad because e.l.f.had been doing a lot better with their palettes of late. I feel like the company has taken a step back in terms of quality with the On-the-Go Palette.


Altogether there are 18 color products in the palette. The double-ended sponge applicator, lip brush, face blush, and mascara bump up the number to 22.

Eyeshadow Level

There are ten shadows included. Most of them are cool toned, the colors dominated with greens, pinks and purples. Even the browns are on the cool side, with purple undertones.

The colors remind me of the original (now discontinued) version of the Studio Mini Makeup Collection, another product I didn’t like from e.l.f. I can’t wear shades like purple and green, so the palette doesn’t work for me. Maybe if you have cool undertones, the eyeshadows might work better and not be as disappointing.

The eye level

However, the lack of pigmentation is still an issue, even if you do like to wear purples and greens. The shades with the best pigmentation and consistency are the light brown (2nd from the left, top row), mint green (2nd from the left, bottom row), white (middle shade, bottom row), and the pinkish lilac shade (2nd from the right, bottom row).

The light blue on the top right (2nd from the right) has the worst pigmentation. It barely shows up on me.

Comparison of the On-the-Go Palette with the Studio Mini Makeup Collection

All of the eyeshadows—with the exception of the pink at the bottom right that appears to be matte—range from pearl to light shimmer. None of the shades have chunky glitter like we’ve seen from e.l.f. in the past.

Closeup of the eye level

There is a well at the front of the palette to hold the double-ended sponge applicator. I tried to replace it with the ecoTOOLS Mini Brushes. However, I couldn’t find any spares (and I can never find them locally; the ones I bought were purchased in Wisconsin). I have instead settled for the ecoTOOLS Cosmetic Applicators.

Swatches of the eyeshadows

But really, you should just use a separate eyeshadow brush. Although that feels like it defeats the all-in-one concept for the palette. Like you shouldn’t need additional products for it to work.

Lip Level

The next level contains five lip colors. I’m on the fence with these potted lip glosses. I think they are convenient, but I don’t like having to carry around a lip brush. I also feel that keeping a travel lip brush in your bag is not the most sanitary.

The lip level

So you have your lip glosses and your lip blush, but how are you going to apply them? The mirror is on the level above. You can’t simply pull down the top level to expose the mirror because the eyeshadow applicator is going to fall out. Not to mention you have your hands full with the palette in one hand and the lip brush in the other. That’s another design issue with the palette.

Closeup of the lip level

The level is a partial one as it shares the space with the mascara from the bottom-most level. There is also a well at the front for the lip brush. I ended up replacing the original brush with a spare, small synthetic brush from another palette.

Swatches of the lip level

There’s a decent selection of colors. From left to right we have a bright pink/coral (my favorite), a light lilac pink (tends to emphasize the lines in your lips), a brown (not as weird looking once applied, though best suited for those with warm undertones), an odd purple (very purple, and it does stain a little), and a brick rose (a universally flattering neutral).

The consistency for all shades is creamy and pigmented. All have creme finishes.

Face/Mascara Level

This level contains three face colors, a well for the most comically awful brush ever made, and the Mini Mascara.

The face/mascara level

There is a light peach shade, a coral rose, and a darker peach color. You can try using them as a highlighter, blush, bronzer combo, though it probably won’t work for everyone. If you have cool undertones, you might have some trouble wearing these shades.

The face products are set deeply into the wells, making it difficult to dip a brush into them. The pans should either be raised within the wells or have the walls of the wells lowered. As it is right now, the face products are awkward to use.

Closeup of the face/mascara level

The blush brush is the saddest little brush I’ve ever seen. I’m not positive if it does contain natural fibers, but it’s so bad you shouldn’t use it even if it is vegan.

The Mini Mascara is the basic Essential mascara in black. It’s not an amazing product, but it’s also not terrible. It’s just your basic mascara. It does the job it’s intended for, but nothing more.

Swatches of the face products

You can also choose to swap out the mascara for an Essential Eyelid Primer, if you happen to have a travel version lying around. Some of the holiday kits (and Disney Villains Palettes) include a travel eyelid primer that is the same size as the mascara.

You are arguably better off with the primer instead of the mascara because you’re going to need all the help you can muster getting some decent color payoff with the eyeshadows.


Final Thoughts

Pros: Small size, large mirror, lip & face products are super pigmented
Cons: Brushes are made with natural fibers, eyeshadows have poor pigmentation, face products are awkward to access, lip products are difficult to use, latch doesn’t stay firmly closed, items are always falling out, only one palette available

I think the set should have either included a pencil eyeliner or a darker eyeshadow shade for lining. This would have helped round out the palette. I tried, but couldn’t get any of my small eyeliners to fit, unless I swapped out the mascara completely. But then the eyeliner rattles around.

The On-the-Go Palette is a good concept that was executed poorly. I also felt that way with the Studio Mini Makeup Collection and that one has been expanded with nicer colors, though I haven’t tried any of the new ones yet. I’m hoping e.l.f. will expand the On-the-Go Palette with shades that will suit me better.

My main complaints with this product are the included natural fiber brushes and the insufficient latch. I do, however, like the concept of having an all-in-one palette. It’s an ambitious goal trying to stuff all of these different products into a little rectangle.