It took such a long time for me to receive my YSL Chinese New Year Palette after ordering weeks ago that I didn’t think I would end up featuring it on the Blog. Surely it would be sold out by now. However, as of this posts’ date of publication, the palette is still available online at Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales and Selfridges, among other retailers. Knowing that it can still be found at some locations makes me feel better about talking about it. 🙂
The Limited Edition YSL Chinese New Year Palette is not a compilation of new eyeshadows but rather, it is the permanent neutral palette in No. 4 Saharienne repackaged. Before continuing with the review, I should note that there seems to be conflicting information out there regarding this fact. According to Selfridges online as well as some U.K./international duty-free sites, the YSL Chinese New Year Palette is the YSL Couture eyeshadow palette in No.3 Afrique. The U.S. retailers, that I have seen, don’t name the palette’s permanent counterpart in the online description, simply stating that it contains “warm coral, taupe and rose gold shades”.
However, the palette that I received clearly indicates on the packaging that the “Chinese New Year” or “Heartbeats Edition” palette is, indeed, the Saharienne palette. I cannot be sure if the U.K. reference is a typographical error or whether different palettes were released in the U.K. and U.S. The latter seems unlikely, though, given that press photos look the same across the board. These discrepancies aside, having compared them in person, I can say with certainty that the palette I have is No. 4 Saharienne. If someone knows more about YSL and can shed some light, please do so in the comment section. Thanks!
Moving on to the actual review. From what I’ve read, the YSL Chinese New Year Palette’s red and gold heart design was inspired by “Yves Saint Laurent’s limitless passion for Love”. Hearts have been a recurring theme in YSL design for many years and while they are not something one would typical associate with Chinese New Year, it does make for an exquisite piece. The packaging is lighter in weight that I would have thought but not a big deal and probably better for travelling.
As stated, this is a neutral palette. The eyeshadows themselves are a mix of cool and warm tones, with finishes varying from shadow to shadow although they are all are characterized by shimmer. Starting from the top left hand corner, shadow #1 is warm peachy beige with a frost finish, #2 is a cream with hints of gold and is the most shimmery/metallic, #3 (centre), is a dark, neutral-ish brown with satin finish, #4 is warm golden brown with a satin/shimmer finish and #5 is a cool, grayish taupe with a sheen finish.
Texture-wise, the shadows are extremely soft and creamy. This being my first experience with YSL eyeshadows, I was extremely pleased by how smoothly and easily they blended onto the lid.
YSL promises that its’ couture eyeshadows offer “intense-colour” payoff and while most of the shadows in this palette did offer great pigmentation, I was disappointed by shadow #1 (warm peachy beige). Not only did it lack the pigment I hoped for but, generally, did not perform as well as the others. I just couldn’t get the color to “stick”. The best performing shadows were #2 (cream), #3 (dark brown), and #5 (taupe), with the dark brown being my absolutely favorite. In the photo below, I’m wearing all five shades.
I really enjoyed the overall effect of the eyeshadows in the Chinese New Year palette which, though shimmery, because of the smooth formulation do not highlight imperfections. While I wouldn’t say it’s absolutely necessary to run out and get this, it is definitely worth considering if you’re a fan of YSL. Especially if you’ve been wanting to try the Saharienne palette as this is your chance to get it in some seriously pretty packaging. It retails for $60.00 USD/£48.00.
Are you a fan of YSL eyeshadows? Which are your favorite palettes/formulations?
The product(s) mentioned were purchased with the author’s own money. The thoughts and opinions expressed are the author’s alone. No affiliate links. For more information see Disclaimer here.