Monday, 19 October 2015

Illamasqua Earth Collection - Nomadic Eyeshadow Palette, Ara Pure Pigment & Element Nail Varnish

Nomadic Eyeshadow Palette

Ara Pigment

Top: Ara Pigment; bottom: Nomadic Eyeshadow Palette

Element Nail Varnish
So, in the time it's taken me to write about Illamasqua's Earth collection for autumn 2015, they've gone and released a new one, Equinox.  And Alex Box has announced her departure from the brand. Oh well.

Earth is themed around, obviously, earth - the imagery is of mysterious eyed, veiled and turbaned ladies in a distinctly desert-like environment.  Since I've been reading the Martian recently, I've been imagining them on Mars, which is a little off piste, but fits in with the colour theme - warm, rich brick reds and oranges tempered with cool rock greys and beiges.

The Nomadic palette, £34, is the centre of the collection, and it's an interesting one - it boasts three matte shadows in shades of taupe grey (Solitude), green (Loam) and warm orange (Terra), and one shimmering pewter, Gravity.  As always, the eyeshadows are well pigmented and blend smoothly, with the mattes boasting not one jot of chalkiness.  Solitude, Loam and Gravity are much easier to wear, and I've had to take myself out of my comfort zone to find a good use for Terra - I suspect many others will feel the same.

My favourite part of the collection is the understated, shimmering taupe silver of the Pure Pigment in Ara, £17.  It's got such a beautiful rich shimmer, blends easily, and doesn't fall out too much if you pat rather than swipe it onto the lid.  It's also a perfect pairing for the more rich reds and pinks I wear on my lips during the autumn.  Element Nail Varnish (which has mysteriously disappeared from the Illamasqua website), £14.50, is also lovely, but I can't help but think I've seen this kind of low level metallic pewter polish somewhere before - it's not particularly unique.

All in all, there are some interesting elements in the Earth collection (see what I did there?) and my picks are the pigment and the palette in that order.  But there's something off here, and I can't quite put my finger on what it is - the quality of the products is high, as usual, but I think the overall tone is just a bit meh for a brand like Illamasqua.  Granted, it's less "safe" than some of their previous nude based collections, but it's not setting the world on fire.

And with Alex Box having now departed, I'm left wondering whether Illamasqua can survive as a mid-priced, game changing brand.  I guess we'll see what happens with the collections to come...

Disclosure:  PR samples

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.


  1. Funnily enough, it was Terra that drew me to this palette! I find Solitude the hardest to wear, just because taupey shades do me no favours, but pairing it with Terra solves that.

    It's weird to think of Illamasqua without Alex Box. She's been such a driving creative force.

    1. Different strokes for different folks I guess! :)

      I think Alex Box was also behind a lot of the unusual nature of the brand - it'll be interesting to see whether it continues to be a bit unusual without her!


Related Posts with Thumbnails