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The Panic BuyI didn’t think the Jardin de Camelia collection would be out so early here in the Philippines so this purchase is more of a panic-slash-surprise kind of buy. To further break it down, Jardin Zen was most probably fueled by 70% excitement, 10% limited-edition status, 10% beautiful embossing and 10% actual palette desire. As I previously mentioned as well, my mother actually enabled this purchase. If there’s one thing we both get excited about and actually agree on… it’s Chanel quads. I called her up frantically after seeing around 8 missed calls on my phone, only to find out it was about this “limited edition” palette she saw in Duty Free and asked if I wanted one. Oh, Mother, how I love thee.
Zen GardenChanel Jardin Zen is an Asia-exclusive quad consisting of a soft baby pink, lilac violet gray, pale golden beige and jet black. The textures are not at all frosty or pearly, but more of a silky satin finish. Hands down, this is the best baked eyeshadow quad formula I’ve ever come across. It’s so smooth and creamy, I couldn’t believe it was the (le suck) baked version that I was swatching and not the US pressed one. I’m not sure if the Makeup Gods answered my previous entry on the le suck baked quads, but I’m hoping this is a permanent reformulation of the original baked quads (someone please feel free to step up and enlighten all of us aka give us hope that it is indeed permanent). It could also just be that this quad and for this quad only, the Chanel chemists felt like experimenting with the formulation. Well Chanel, I will be starting a petition to make all your baked quads as smooth and silky and creamy as this one if I have to.
PigmentationOne swipe produced quite an opaque swatch but nothing bold or striking. The US pressed version is more strongly pigmented than this one. But then again, the shades are so soft and pastel-like so my expectation of bold, saturated pigments isn’t in the level it should be. On the lids, they need to be built up to two layers to completely show and still need to be added to when I do some blending because they sheer out quite a lot easily. That said, blending is as easy as breathing with these as compared to the original baked formula. I can even use just my fingers and I’d have no problems whatsoever.
LongevityI think the downfall of this palette is its longevity. For some reason, the shades seem to fade so easily, like in an hour’s time. I’ve worn it for seven hours straight and while the eyeshadows didn’t crease nor smudge, they’ve faded significantly on me. I only used MAC Paint Pot in Soft Ochre for an all-over base with no primer underneath. I haven’t yet tried with the NARS Smudgeproof primer so I’ll report back if I notice increased wear-time wearing it or none.
The LookWhat resulted was a very soft, feminine look that I think I could have created with my Laura Mercier Artist’s Palette. I’m not so used to wearing pink on my eyes but with the purple shade, they’ve come together beautifully thus becoming a pairing I’ve warmed up to the idea of actually wearing more in the days to come.
Final ThoughtsOverall, like but not love. I could have easily skipped on this palette with the onslaught of purples I’ve been attracted to lately. Admittedly, the shades aren’t at all unique. I’m sure if you’re into purples, you already have similar shades in your stash as of speaking. I do appreciate the pale gold and black shades for ease of highlighting and contouring in just one palette (which are really musts for me when I do my eyes, I like contouring especially) but I would have appreciated if they’d replace it with more unique shades instead. However, the non-uniqueness is made up for by the inexplicably divine texture (oh the silky, creamy smoothness) of this doesnt-feel-like-baked baked quad (this is of course in comparison to the old baked edition). If you’d ask me now if I’ll still get the palette after I’ve tried it on my eyes and not really finding it unique, I’d be in limbo. I like the texture a lot for a Chanel quad, but the longevity and non-uniqueness of shades are kinda holding me back. That said, I don’t think at all this is a must-have, just a nice-to-have one which in general all Chanel products fall under. Except Quadrille. I think everyone needs to have Quadrille. That’s it, ladies. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!
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