Behold the beauty of Too Faced's Spring 2017 offering, the oddly named Natural Love palette has thirty shades that claim to embody romance. It's the first thing I've been vaguely excited about from Too Faced in a long time (since that cute lil' peanut butter one), because I feel they're steering down a murky road of repetition and novelty-ness. Too many 'exclusives' and limited editions to make people panic buy, and the same old shades turning up in everything, some having very questionable quality. Natural Love looks a bit different, whilst still embracing Too Faced's fun names (but thankfully not the silly scented eyeshadows) and feels like a breath of fresh air for a brand that's going a bit coco-loco. Some of the shades have featured in previous palettes, and some are exclusives. I have to say, in terms of quality, they're all over the shop; some are buttery soft to swatch, and others are chalky beyond belief. But let's take a closer look.
The Natural Love palette is housed in sturdy cardboard with a nice, large mirror inside, and textured faux-suede material on the outside. It's okay packaging, I don't love it, but it's a non-offensive beige colour that's more appealing than some of the jarring multicoloured atrocities they put out last year. The actual eyeshadows are an even mix of mattes, shimmers, metallics, chunky glitters, and duo-chromes. I found the glittery ones to be the worst quality, especially Fairy Tale which feels horrible and scratchy to swatch and had fallout straight away. Maybe it will be better on the eyelids, and same with Fingers Crossed (brown with gold glitter) and Undercover (brown with blue glitter) – both were quite chalky and made me think they'd not work all that well on the eye. All the mattes are incredibly soft and pigmented, and I love the colours, especially Honey Butter, Makeup & Chill, and Nudie – though they reminded me of this palette I already own, and this one, and this one too. Some of the shimmers are also buttery goodness, and I think will work great as part of a smokey eye, or just on their own as one-and-done lid colours, especially Love Bug, Moonbeam, Smokin, and Don't Settle. Prize for the absolute worst shadow goes to Stiletto, what even is this shade? Both pigment and texture are naff.
I'll be honest (as always), I've seen better palettes, I own better palettes. I think this is just too inconsistent in quality to be outstanding, and it sucks somewhat – the illusion of getting a good deal with thirty shadows when some of them are unwearable. The ones that are fab are very similar to shades I already own, so I don't feel like I'm getting anything special or unique with Natural Love. I'm sure I'll be reaching for it a lot, especially for everyday eye looks, and it's incredibly lightweight so it's good for travelling. I wish Too Faced would pull their socks up, they used to be a fun, innovative brand, and now they've been bought by Estee Lauder they seem to be cutting corners when it comes to product quality, and a bit lazy when it comes to designing unique shades (their palettes have become so samey). Don't get me started on their customer service, which is probably the worst of any US brand – they do not reply to customer service emails or tweets. But anyhoo, if you don't own any of the better shades, this is a decent enough buy, though not an essential collector's piece by any means. Love schmove.