Nabla is an Italian indie brand that I have been loving in recent years. Especially their eyeshadows have been some of my favorites. I bought a bunch of their singles to put into my custom Blue/ Green/ Purple palette and loved them. However, their palettes are also great as I already stated in my review of the Nabla Soul Blooming eyeshadow palette. So I am a fan of Nabla shadows. However, it took a while for the brand to release another palette that sparked my interest. Curious to know how I got on with the Secret palette? Then please click on through.
Nabla Secret Eyeshadow Palette // Review, Swatch, Makeup Look
The Nabla brand is one I first encountered in a shop in my previous home town which has since been closed down. But they had the singles in store and that’s how I found out about the brand. If you’re based in Europe it is quite easy to get a hold of. If you are in another place in the world it may be harder to find. I believe that Ulta is an official stockist in the US. In The Netherlands you can get the brand from their official website, Beauty Bay or Boozyshop. I bought my palette from the latter for €39.90.
Why did I buy this palette?
My main reason for purchasing the Nabla Secret palette was the fact that I loved the Soul Blooming. After trying that and loving it, I knew I wanted to try another Nabla palette. The Dreamy was definitely a contender, but then Nabla starting posting that they would be releasing this and I knew I wanted to get it. The packaging of Nabla palette is stunning, but still easy to use and you also get a good mirror. So I knew that this palette would be good one.
What does the palette look like?
Because when I buy eyeshadow palettes I am all about the color story. And it was the color story that pulled me into this one. Sadly, I felt that the promotional pictures made this look much more interesting than it actually is. If you really break down this palette you can see roughly three rows of different shades: a berry row, a green row and a neutral brown row with some golds. What pulled me in were the greens and purple in the middle of the palette and those are definitely the stand out shades here. The rest? I probably could have done without. To me, this could have been a 5 pan palette and I would have been quite happy.
How does this palette work?
When looking at a palette we cannot only consider the color story of course. We also need to have a look at the amount of mattes and shimmers and which of these shades is actually usable in the way you would want to. This palette contains 8 shimmers and 7 mattes out of 15 total shades. I feel that the mattes you get are the staples you need to build up a look as well as a few fun pops of color.
The shimmers are great too and come in different textures. From the super flaky Play Hard, to the more satin shimmer in Aesthetic: there is a good range of texture in here and I feel that overall the shades are well spread out between shimmers and mattes. What I feel is missing from this palette is a matte mint green. If it had that, instead of the black or the dark brown, I think this palette would have had a bit more interest to it.
What about swatches?
Nabla eyeshadow quality is stunning, but there is a difference between the singles and also between palettes. In the Soul Blooming, the mattes were the main standouts of the palette, but here it is mainly the shimmers. They really improved on their shimmer quality even though that still means that a flaky shade like Play Hard still needs a bit of finger action to really make it go on well. I don’t think there is a single shade here that doesn’t blend well, or creases or disappears throughout the day. In general, all of these shadows have great quality. The only disappointment to me was the black which just doesn’t swatch that intensely for a black shade.
Let’s have a look at 3 different makeup looks
As is my usual jam when reviewing a palette for you, I have included a few looks. Between these three looks I have used every single shade in this palette. Since I did these looks a few months ago, I started using this palette again when I planned in the review for this week. So I definitely did a few more look to remind myself of how these shades work. To keep things simple, for these looks I mainly stayed in the different rows that we see in the palette.
Look 1: Neutral
Whenever you buy a palette like this it is great to see if we can get some versatility from it. When a palette is versatile I want to be able to take it from day to night and from everyday neutral to a full on glam look. This look shows you that if you are into golds and bronzes combined with browns for that classic neutral glam look, this palette has got your back.
Look 2: Berries & Purple
For the second look I decided to play with the berry shades. The pinks in here are super nice but I feel I can create a very similar look with many other palettes I already own. So while pretty, these are not super unique. I do have to say that I like that you get a matte soft pink shade which is great for blending things out. I used the purple here on the lower lash line as I felt it went well with the berries. I also used the black as a liner, but I feel it is a bit soft to create a great effect.
Look 3: Greens
But we are ending this review on a high note and the reason I bought the palette: the greens. For this look I focused mainly on the three greens, but earlier this week I created a more wearable version by using a neutral brown in the crease and the purple on the lower lash line and that was super pretty too. Rosemary, Addiction and Play Hard are the three standout shades in the palette and something I don’t have much of, but something I do really like. It works really well with my brown eyes and I will mainly keep this palette around just for those three shades.
What are my final thoughts?
I really enjoy the quality of this palette. The shades blend easily, the color pigmentation is on point and it wears pretty all day over an eyeshadow primer. Not all of the shades are super special and I feel I could have gone without some of the neutral and berry shades in the palette. Altogether the shades play together nicely also across the different rows. For instance, the greens and golds will go nicely together as do the berries and the golds and so there are many more options here.
Would I recommend the Nabla Secret eyeshadow palette?
I would only recommend this palette if you are a beginner in makeup and you are building up your collection. It is a very versatile palette that is easy to use and that has enough depth and dimension and the greens and berries give you some wearable color options. If you are not a makeup novice and have plenty of neutrals and berries, I would like to advise you to consider whether paying nearly 40 euros for 3 shades is worth it to you. I am glad I own this, but I did feel a bit misled by the marketing pictures that were released when this came out. In short, yes it is a great palette, but it is not a must have for the makeup enthusiast.