this thing's incredible

The Makeup Palette That Half My Sophomore Dorm Now Owns

The author and her dormmates with their palettes. Photo: Isabella Goodman

The product that’s singlehandedly gotten me through my sophomore year at American University is not a backpack or a mini-fridge or even a computer. It’s my Sephora + Moschino laptop palette.

I’ve never been great at doing my own makeup, but now you’d never know it. Before I bought this palette on a total whim, I mostly stuck to warm tones and shimmery highlights, like Stila Shimmer and Glow Liquid Eyeshadow in Gold Goddess and the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette. I would spend hours blending neutral shadows with tiny brushes, trying and often failing to perfect my look. But this palette isn’t about looking perfect. It’s best if you just smudge it on and go. I usually pick a glittery shade and smear it messily over my eyelids, or turn a pigmented tone into an imprecise eyeliner. I used to be too intimidated to experiment with color, but no longer. I never imagined that fuchsia or lime green or neon purple could be so wearable. And because there are 30 different shades, it’s still exciting to use even after six months of heavy use.

The palette hasn’t just changed the way I do my makeup — it’s changed my friends’ routines, too. We’ve always done our makeup together, sharing lipgloss and applying each other’s eye makeup. It’s a fun way to get ready for a night out, and it’s also just really easy to bond over bronzers and contouring brushes. But nothing has brought us together quite like this palette. This thing is huge, so the mirror comfortably fits a whole crowd of people trying to do touch-ups. And because there are so many shades — some glittery, some neutral, and some neon — everyone can find a shadow they’re excited to use. At least four friends have bought it after using mine.

I’m obsessed with Euphoria, like many of my peers, so my roommates and I decided to throw a Euphoria-themed housewarming party. People filtered in and out of my dorm room to get their makeup done by my aspiring makeup artist roommate and my palette never left her hand. Then they’d slap a few gemstones on their face and be on their way. My roommate proved to have a real talent for turning out Euphoria-inspired looks, but the palette stole the show (kind of like Barbie Ferreira’s character).

This palette isn’t reserved for nights out with my friends; I can’t count the number of times I’ve shown up to my morning statistics class last semester, half-asleep, with one of the glittery shades rubbed all over my eyelids, just to feel better about the prospect of sampling distributions and confidence intervals.

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The Makeup Palette That Half My Sophomore Dorm Now Owns