Dear Essence Quattro Eyeshadow: I’ve Got Nothing But XOXO’s for You

Published in: Drugstore Beauty Finds, Makeup, Product Reviews

The Essence Quattro Eyeshadow palette in XOXO reminds me of Mariah Carey’s performance in Precious.


Why? Because it’s also shockingly good.

Let’s be honest — after Glitter, for which Mimi won a Razzie Award for Worst Actress despite basically playing herself in the film, I didn’t really expect much from her return to the big screen, but as a die-hard fan (I still have the Vision of Love single floating around here somewhere…on tape), I had to give her a second chance.

Yes, that IS Padma from Top Chef.

And I’m very glad I did. 🙂

I thought Mimi’s performance as a social worker in Precious, like the $2.99 Essence Quattro Eyeshadow palette in XOXO I tried today, was actually, well, pretty darn good!

Where Mariah nailed nuanced emotion, Essence nailed long-wearing eyeshadow, and both of them deserve a round of applause.

My track record with Essence’s other eyeshadows hasn’t always been great. I find many of their singles to be quite pretty, but I’ve experienced mediocre wear time and some fallout from them beneath my eyes.

The colors in the XOXO quad, however, seem to be cut from a different (and better) cloth.

Do I think it’s perfect? No, not perfect, but surprisingly good, especially for a penny shy of $3.

The shadows do feel a touch grainy/gritty to me, and I still detect some minor fallout, but no big deal. They’re so easy to blend, last a surprisingly long time and adhere to my skin much better than the Essence singles I’ve tried. Applied atop a layer of NARS Pro-Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base, they stay put on my lids all day long, without fading or creasing at all.

I like XOXO so much now that I’m very curious about the five other palettes in the Quattro line. There’s even one called Vamp It Up – hello, right? 🙂 It has a mix of yellow, blue, gray and purple that looks like a lot of fun.

On top of everything else, for $2.99 the price is also right. I can’t wait to try more!

PRICE: $2.99 each
AVAILABILITY: Available now at Ulta stores, Fred Meyer, HEB stores and also online

Hair today…

Gone tomorrow! I’ve let my hair go too long, and now I can barely stand it. I feel like I’ve been walking around with an overweight hedgehog on my head, but I finally got my crap together long enough to book an appointment at the salon for a cut and color tomorrow. Good thing, too, because last weekend I came THIS CLOSE to chopping it all off with a pair of kitchen scissors.


That probably would have gone…poorly.

I’d like to try something different, something other than the long layers, bangs and highlights I’ve been sporting for a while, but I’m not sure what else to do… If you have any ideas or suggestions, please swing them my way.

Hope you’re having a good one so far. What have you been up to today?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 25 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Vijaya says:

    The colors aren’t shouting to me. xP Glad they’re good quality, though. =D
    Vijaya recently posted … Wet N’ Wild Color Icon Trio: Knock on Wood

  2. Lisa s says:

    Xoxo looks great! I might try “to die for” or “chick-ify”.

  3. Marjolein says:

    Wow I guess they’ve improved a lot then, they used to be just really… awful lol. Love the look you made with it, very fresh and girly!

  4. Jenn says:

    I feel like chopping off my locks too, but I’m afraid I’ll regret it afterwards. VB’s bob looks tempting, but I’m not a very high maintenance hair person 🙂

  5. Darcee says:

    What are you wearing on your cheeks?!

  6. Hah, I’m not the one to ask hair advice from, I frequently like to go from shoulder length to boy-cut short! But I’ve gotten loads of compliments lately, so I guess it works for me. 😉 Good luck on the hair choices.

  7. Jessi says:

    For the price especially, Essence’s awesome products definitely outweigh their few bombs. I mean, EVERY brand has some duds. I’m really glad they brought this brand to the US.

    And yay for new hair! I’ve had the same hair since I’ve been like 5 years old, minus a brief misguided period in my early teens when I chopped it off, and I’m too afraid to do anything different to it! So I have no ideas for you, but I know whatever you’ll do it will be awesome! Oooh, one idea- blue streaks the color of NARS Outremer! 🙂
    Jessi recently posted … Holo Makes Everything Better!

  8. Appu says:

    I love Essence. They have great quality inexpensive stuff 🙂
    Appu recently posted … Boots No7 High Lights Illuminating Lotion – A $12.99 Benefit High Beam Dupe!

  9. this entire look is so fresh, i love it! =)
    dani@callitbeauty recently posted … Eyeko Pretty London: More Than Just Cute Packaging

  10. Chris25 says:

    To Die For looks like it was made for me!

  11. Jillian says:

    I know what you mean my hair almost touches my backside! If I were you in your situation, I would recommend lightening you hair just a touch or to angle it up baby!

  12. lorrie says:

    my hair has not gone past my shoulders in years. I would hurt someone for long hair!!!!!

  13. Raven says:

    Ahh long hair summer syndrome. I feel ya! What always works for me is gettin my thick hair thinned out a bit, to keep it light without taking too much off.
    HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT FEATHER EXTENTIONS?!! I work in a hair salon, and it’s the biggest trend, they take long, colored rooster feathers and clip em into your hair for a little shot of fun color. They last for about 6 weeks and then you can just get em redone since the feathers are guarenteed for life. You can wash your hair, dry it, curl it, straighten it, style it, WHATEVER! with them in! I haven’t got mine yet, but I’m ghinkin about gettin some reds, pinks an purples in to highlight my brownish black hair 🙂

    • Elaine says:

      I just got feather extensions yesterday and i LOVE them! Just the change I was looking for 🙂

      And when I’m bored I always play around with colour rather than cut, because you can change the colour to something else in a heartbeat, but you can’t make it grow abck to long in a heartbeat!

    • Adrienne says:

      I’ve been seeing feather extensions around, an when done right, they can look really cool and unique! But I’ve been wondering, and maybe you’ll know he answer… Are they generally cruelty free?

  14. Samantha says:

    I say keep it long! I love long hair, but that’s just me:)

  15. gio says:

    The shades look lovely and I love the look you did with them! 🙂
    gio recently posted … QOTW: Do You Prefer Big Or Small Mascara Wands?

  16. Karo says:

    Sorry but I don´t like Essence…
    But I like your look!
    Karo recently posted … MAC Haul / Fotos & Swatches

  17. Sarah says:

    I guess it depends in how short your willing to go, and I’m not saying this to blow smoke up your a$$ but you’re so gorgeous, I mean GORGEOUS (its just a crush, it’ll pass 😉 and I would put that perfect skin and awesome makeup skills front and center. How about getting the bangs blended so they’ll be more like face framing layers and bringing the rest up to about 2 inches past your collar bone. Its a great length and opens up your face. As far as color, have you thought of ombre highlights? They’re really fun, low maintenance and grow out quick.

  18. Nina says:

    oh yay. im glad these little babies are good. i am going to HEB at lunch today to grab some cute little sweet treats for a tea party we are having at my sister’s place tomorrow. you know im checking out the essence display! i got those gel liners a few wks ago and id have to say – they are even better (or way better) than the maybelline ones that i have been loving on for a while now!

    no suggestions hair-wise, since im kinda in a hair rut myself. its gotten almost past my shoulders, i dont have layers and its all one color (almost) … can we spell boring? 😀

  19. Kim says:

    I love the overlapping circles and how they cleverly made the largest pan for the color that will presumably get the most use. I know, packaging sucker. 🙂

    It must be summertime because I was thinking about chopping mine off, too. The Hubs gave me the eye. He thinks I look like the Little Dutchboy when it’s a short bob. He probably has a point. 🙂 I went with shoulder length and long, angled bangs instead. I think yours would be really cute in a shoulder length bob. Will it get pouffy without the layers? I know triangle head is not a look most people strive for. 🙂

  20. Jill says:

    ooh more essence goodies to check out! i bought 2 of the long-last eye pencils on a whim, and they held up great! ( i was a little nervous after reading your review of their other pencils lol)

  21. bianca says:

    I think u should do a shoulder length long bob with shorter layers in the front that frame your face 🙂 maybe get honey blonde highlights in certain parts of the crown,bangs & layers. I got the same highlights & I love it b/c its low maintenance. Love your blush what is it?

  22. Sheena says:

    So pretty and Frosty, I like!

  23. Susan says:

    I love, love, love the essence multi-colour blush. Gives a great sun kissed look.

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