A Bounty of Beauty Awaits in theBalm Balmsai Eyeshadow and Brow Palette

Published in: Eyes, Makeup, Palettes, Product Reviews, theBalm

thebalm Balmsai

I’d fully intended to channel the spirt of the bikini babe on the front of theBalm’s new Balmsai Eyeshadow and Brow Palette ($39.50) this morning by doing a light, colorful, tropical surfer babe eye makeup look, but then I started listening to The Smiths and this dark smokey eye happened…


thebalm Balmsai


thebalm Balmsai in hand

Oh, well. I am human and I need to be loved! πŸ™‚

Oh, Morrissey… How I love your emo warbling. I think you really get my pain, the pain all the way down in the marrow of my bones (my lower back still hurts after the half marathon).

Speaking of things that really “get it,” theBalm always seems to know what I want/need in an eyeshadow palette. Their Balmsai palette has a great combination of neutral matte and shimmer finishes fabulous for classic looks, as well as some fun teal, blue and purple shades for spice.

thebalm Balmsai palette

thebalm Balmsai eye closeup

On my lips: Illamasqua Glamore Lipstick in Naked and MAC Cremesheen Glass in Stately Shimmer

On my lips: Illamasqua Glamore Lipstick in Naked and MAC Cremesheen Glass in Stately Shimmer

thebalm Balmsai

The palette’s 18 silky smooooove powder shadows blend easily and with minimal fallout. Even when I work with the darkest shades, like matte black Righteous and matte brown Ripper, which I’m wearing here, I barely have any cleaning up to do.

The deep matte tones also double as brow fillers and liners (points for awesome versatility), which makes this a totally legit palette to take on trips.


Like on a mid-winter vacay to the tropics, hmm…

The only things I wish I could change about the palette are the highlighting colors. The beige and gold shades have a frosty finish and an appetite for my fine lines. I feel like one or two beige mattes would’ve taken the palette into A+ territory.

PRICE: $39.50
AVAILABILITY: A permanent collection product, available now at theBalm counters and online

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


P.S. Have a brilliant day! πŸ™‚


Like this post? Tell your friends!

So far, 57 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Forget about the products, how STUNNING do you look, Karen?! :-O Loving this dark smokey look on you, gorgeous!

    • Karen says:

      Aww, thanks my friend. Some days you just NEED to do a smokey eye, ya know? Well for me that’s like every day, haha.

      So what’s the plan for Halloween? Tabs has several costume changes lined up, by the way. He wore an alligator one this morning, as a matter of fact!

  2. Jae says:

    Love this smokey look! And the palette looks diverse enough to pull a lot of different looks. Will definitely have to look into it! πŸ™‚ BTW, what are you wearing on your cheeks?!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jae!

      I’m wearing a mix of different things. MAC Sclupt Powder in Sculpt to contour, and a new Guerlain blush and a highlighter from the holiday collection (working on the review!).

      Happy Thursday, by the way! Got any plans for the weekend?

      • Jae says:

        Ooooh, can’t wait for the review on the Guerlain holiday! I’m loving the color on you! πŸ™‚

        Only plans for the weekend to get the nursery in order. I deliver on Nov 4th (3rd and last baby) so I’m in super organizational mode! lol!! I’ve been putting together some items for my hospital bag and am still deciding on what make up to bring. lol! I looked so tore up with my first two and now that this is my last and a girl AND is scheduled, I plan on looking cute. I think I deserve to! lol

        What’s on your agenda? Hope you’re feeling less achy today!

        • Angela says:

          Jae, best of luck to you. I have three as well – two boys and a little baby girl who is now 16 months old. Wishing you plenty of long sleep-filled nights πŸ™‚

  3. Agata says:

    Yup, this look suits you so well!!! And I love the glowy finish to our skin! Did you use Becca highlighters for that?
    Agata recently posted … A Fall Makeup Look

    • Karen says:

      Hello Agata!

      Thank you for noticing. I’m wearing a Guerlain highlighter from the holiday collection. I’ll be reviewing it soon!

      How are you feeling? Hope that you managed to not get sick!

      • Agata says:

        Oh, can’t wait for that review then! I am trying to gather some ideas for doing my makeup for my friends’ wedding. It’s only 3 weeks away. And I still need to decide how to wear my hair and what jewelry to wear. So many decisions….I need help!

        I am doing ok. Went to a Zumba class yesterday and it was so much fun- it was a Glow in the Dark party but, needless to say, my foot is killing me today and I regret going πŸ™
        Agata recently posted … A Fall Makeup Look

  4. Alison M says:

    I have been waiting (and waiting and waiting and waiting!) to see this palette reviewed πŸ™‚ theBalm and I go way back to the beginning of my blogging days and it is always fun to see their annual palette release. I agree with you on the highlight shades though. Too over the top for my liking. All though Meet Matt(e) has the best matte beige ever. I wish they would combine the frost and the matte for a happy medium. Haha, get it? Medium? πŸ˜‰
    Alison M recently posted … NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation in Stromboli Review and Swatches

    • Karen says:

      LOL, Alison!

      Honestly, I never thought I’d ever get excited about matte beige eyeshadow, but it’s such a workhorse. I almost can’t function without one.

      Gosh, remember back in the day when (GASP) the only thing to do was a frosty brown bone highlight?!

  5. Trisha says:

    Boy howdy, that eye shadow is KILLER. I’m also loving your new lighting setup, Karen. Jealous!
    Trisha recently posted … ChapStick Hydration Lock Review: Dual-Ended Lip Balm, Yo

  6. Leticia says:

    So gorgeous!! AND your skin is flaw-less!!

  7. Tulipthecat says:

    Love the smokey eye look! I have one pallet from theBalm but at the moment I can’t remember which one… Have a good day! Perhaps going to the spa for a massage will help with your back. After I ran the Las Vegas Rock n Roll half 2 years ago I went to the spa the day after the race and I wasn’t as sore.

    • Karen says:

      Is it their nudes palette? That one is very popular. I have it around here somewhere, LOL!

      How was the Rock n Roll half? It will be a while before I do another race but I think I will eventually do another half.

      You have a good day, too, and tell Tulip hello.

      • Tulipthecat says:

        I think it is the nudes palette. It was the very first palette I ever bought and now I have a whole drawer full not including my z-palette that is half full.

        The rock n roll half in las vegas was great. If you are looking to do another race that would be a great one. It’s fun running at night on the vegas strip plus they have a lot of activities that weekend. When I did it there was a stiletto dash at the Venetian. I would definite do it again and then I would go to the spa at the Mandarin Oriental again.

        The year I did that race I did 2 half marathons and then my knee started to hurt so I haven’t done a half since πŸ™

        Tell Tabs I said “hi” and Tulip said “I feel your pain with all the Halloween costumes your assistant keeps putting on you”.

        • Karen says:

          That’s a good palette. It’s cute (always a plus) and there’s tons of wearable stuff.

          That race sounds like a lot of fun! Was it crowded? One thing I liked about the Nike Women’s Half was that I didn’t have to constantly weave my way through the pack. It was nice to be surrounded by people but not feel like a sardine in a can, ya know?

          Also, I hope that your knee is doing better and that you can get back to racing soon!

          By the way, I just put up some pics of Tabs in his halloween costume in a post with a giveaway for kitty treats. Be sure to enter for Tulip!

  8. Metta says:

    OMG I love your smoky eye! Once again you hit it out of the park. I so wish I could pull off that look, everytime I try a dark smoky eye I end up looking like I got into a fight and I lost! If you have any tips please share, I’d like to look fab and sultry, not like I lack sleep.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Metta,

      Thank you! I think a lot of it is just layering, and going slowly. I’m wearing a few browns from the palette here along with the black shade; it just helps the transition from dark to light seem smoother. Also you might want to play with high up you take the shadow. If you want to keep it more wearable then don’t go so high up into the crease. Does that make sense?

  9. hanna says:

    I realy love this look on you!
    you look amazing and beautiful.

    Xoxo http://fashionistaorbreakfast.blogspot.com

  10. You really rock that smokey eye!
    I am totally not a palette girl, somehow I always end up using my singe eyeshadows. They just look more appealing…

    • Karen says:

      Hi LindaLibraLoca,

      Ya know, there was a time when I wasn’t either, but there’s something to be said about having everything in one place. Have you considered depotting your singles? I keep meaning to but I just never get around to it. I’ve literally been trying to get them all consolidated for FIVE YEARS. Haha!

      • Hi Karen,

        Actually I did, just in late june. We have been traveling quite a lot, either the three of us or me and the Little Bean to visit the grandparents, so I finally got around to depotting them (mostly MAC, as I am a fan-girl) and customize my own palette for the trip, using a MAC quad for the shorter trips or a bigger Z-Palette for anything extending three days. A girls got to have options, you know…

        • Karen says:

          GOOD FOR YOU! Honestly one of the reasons why I keep putting it off is that I feel like it would take weeks. Possibly months!

          So curious to know what’s in your MAC quad! Here’s what I’d put in mine:

          Soft Brown

  11. Stefi says:

    This palette really looks beautiful but Karen, this smokey eye looks stunning on you! I have still to find a makeup look on you which will make you not look gorgeous!
    I loooove a good ol’ smokey eye!


    • Karen says:

      Hi Stefi,

      I look pretty scary in pastels, not gonna lie, LOL!

      What makeup are you wearing today?

      • Stefi says:

        Haha, LOL πŸ™‚
        Funny, it’s 11pm here in Austria so I’m not wearing anything anymore and today I was only at home working on the blog so only a light foundation and a pink lipstick and that was enough for today. Tomorrow I’m gonna take your pic as an inspiration and I’m gonna rock a smokey eye. Oh and on saturday at work, too. If I get to take a pic I’m going to tag you on Instagram to show you how it turned out πŸ˜‰
        How was your day so far?

        • Karen says:

          I would love to see this look on you! Definitely tag me so I can take a look.

          It’s 2 in the afternoon here right now and so far it’s been a good day. I just got a package with a part of my halloween costume in it so I’m excited to work on it!

          Other than that I’m counting the minutes to the weekend. I really need to sleep. πŸ™‚

          • Stefi says:

            Wow, that’s exciting. What are you doing to be for Halloween? Will you do a post on our outfit/makeup?
            I know what you mean, I’m excited for work on Saturday but I’ll have a rather difficult client to do her makeup so that will be exciting because it’s my first time doing that look so tomorrow I’ll practice on my mom to see how I’ll manage πŸ™‚
            But I’m also counting the minutes to sunday where I can sleep a bit longer, yay for sleep! πŸ™‚
            Love, Stefi

  12. Erin says:

    I haven’t done a full on smokey eye in a while, I think I need to do it!
    Erin recently posted … Hogwash 2013 RosΓ© Review

  13. Majick says:

    “but then I started listening to The Smiths and this dark smokey eye happened…” and this girl laughed her @$$ off. You are too funny sometimes and I so “get it”. Love it!

    I think this look is fantastic and I’m particularly enamored with that nude lip on you.

  14. Talia says:

    I am head over heels in love with vintage packaging and looks so good! Also Karen, the black smokey eyes are definitely your style!
    Talia recently posted … Sampling Monday: Estee Lauder “Sumptuous Extreme” mascara

  15. Kim says:

    That is definitely a radical departure from the beach babe look but it’s terrific! So dramatic but also really wearable. Putting on the Smiths was definitely a great choice. πŸ™‚

    I thought of you earlier today (font fan) while searching through a vast array of block fonts. Most of them were so bad that I literally started to itch and get agitated. Funny how fonts can have such an effect!

    • Karen says:

      Let me guess. Papyrus. Scriptina. COMIC SANS.


      Which one did you end up going with?

      • Kim says:

        HAHA! I absolutely thought of Comic Sans as I shuddered my way through! I didn’t even look at any of the names because the fonts were so horrific, I couldn’t scroll fast enough. It wasn’t for anything terribly important so I just went with a free font available for PC called Evogria. I save the big stuff for our real designers with macs and unlimited font access. πŸ™‚

        • Karen says:

          That’s a good one. It’s kind of blocky and bold — means business. It will take you down if it has too, and it won’t hesitate!

          Seriously, though, look up Scriptina. There is nothing worse than Scriptina abuse!

          • Kim says:

            HAHA! I thought the same thing. OMG, yes, I looked up Scriptina and Papyrus and was like “OH! Karen! Why??”. What is seen can never be unseen. πŸ™‚ Though, in moderation I think I could mix a *little* Scriptina if I needed to. πŸ™‚

  16. denise S says:

    Sexy smokey eye! Wish I could do that look. I don’t own any Balm products, but have heard great things about them.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Denise,

      You can *totally* do this. All it takes is some layering, blending and patience. A creamy base also helps, too!

      Happy Thursday, by the way. Got plans for the weekend yet?

  17. Christina says:

    Dang, you look fierce! Love it when you do the smoky eyes (because I look like a panda when I do it!).

    • Karen says:

      Hi Christina,

      That happens to me too sometimes, LOL! I figure might as well just roll with it. πŸ™‚ How do you usually do yours? I start with 2-3 layers of brown, then work my way into the black shadow.

      Happy Thursday!

  18. Kick *ss smoky eyes, Karen!!!
    Marina(Makeup4all) recently posted … Too Faced Makeup Collection for Holiday 2014

  19. Marisa says:

    Ahh yes the Smiths I listened to there is a light that never goes out
    This inning and ended up with a smokey eye using Indigo from the new Lorac Mega Pro!
    What can I say it as a rare cloudy day day here in Austin Texas and I was feeling the MOZ vibes.
    Do you plan on reviewing any other pieces from the Guerlain holiday collection I hope you get the Meterorites because I did not buy them and I plan to live vicariously through you!

  20. Angela says:

    Karen, WHAT are you using as a base?!?! Your skin looks AHMAZING, I’m just obsessed with how beautiful it looks!! Of course, that’s not to say it didn’t look fabulous before but MAN whatever you’re using is knocking it outta the park and I’m keen on finding out if it’s black magic or a product mere mortals can apply, LOL. And the smoky eye…it just suits you so well – and expertly applied, of course – I have super pale skin and any time I’ve tried a dark smoky eye, I look like a raccoon. Not a good look for me, LOL! Hope you have a great weekend!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge