Brand Focus: Urban Decay

~ BRAND OVERVIEW ~

Urban Decay is primarily known for their infamous and well-loved "Naked" range. An American brand, Urban Decay recently celebrated their 20th anniversary in style, originally founded in the mid-1990's by Wende Zomnir the company has made their fame by offering a refreshing and original take on beauty; Beauty With An Edge. In the companies early days, they challenged the 90's pink and beige status quo and launched revolutionary and groundbreaking shades like Smog, Rust, Oil Slick and Acid Rain. What I love about Urban Decay is they never settled, even to this day they continue to experiment with the boundaries of the beauty industry and through that have created some absolute staples, especially in the blogosphere. 

~ BEST SELLERS ~

As stated above, Urban Decay made their fame through experimental colour and bold decisions, however, within recent years they've really made a name for themselves via the launch of their extensive Naked Line. The Naked Effect prides itself on being neutral with an edge; classic beauty, but with an extra little something-something. I'm a huge fan of the collection and own a rather large percentage of it. When I first started shopping with the brand many moons ago now the company had just launched their Urban Decay Naked Skin Foundation, a product I have since repurchased, recommended to everyone and their mother and continue to love to this day. As a pale skin gal I really struggled to find options that complimented my complexion, call me stubborn but I wasn't about to give in and allow myself to resemble an Umpa-Lumpa. I stumbled into the Urban Decay counter and was instantly greeted by their warm and welcoming staff, and well, never looked back. I find the foundation to be a good, reliable medium coverage; one that you can easily sheer out our build up depending on your day to day preferences. As a demi-matte finish this honesty is the dictionary definition of "naked skin", it goes virtually untraceable on the skin and doesn't enhance any dry patches or imperfections. On the back of this, UD recently launched their Naked Skin Concealer, and I honestly don't think that anyone anticipated just how successful this would do amongst beauty lovers. They 100% nailed the formula and consistency of this little gem and it's now become a staple in most people's stash, I'm honestly yet to find anything quite like it, and trust me, I've tried. On a similar note, their Naked Skin Colour Correctors have done exceptionally well. I personally love their lavender hue for brightening up my complexion and under eye area. With 6 "shades" to choose from you're guaranteed to find something to help improve the look of your skin without it looking like you've caked on 5 layers of foundations, 3 different concealers, and a foundation powder.

I probably don't even need to mention the Urban Decay Naked Palettes... if you don't know how exceptionally good they are, well... I can only presume you've been living under a rock. Since the launch of their original Naked Palette Urban Decay have dropped 4 new palettes (excluding their miniature Naked Basics) and are about to launch their latest addition: Naked Heat. The Original is aimed to be a warm toned palette while Naked 2 is a cooler selection of taupe shades. Naked 3 is one for the pink and blush lovers and Naked Smoky is perfect for making a statement. The Naked Ultimate Basics is every girl's best friend, a selection of matte hues perfect for any makeup look. Naked Heat looks like it's going to be a super hyped up warm toned palette which makes even more of a statement. 

I am thinking of putting together a more detailed comparison about the Urban Decay Naked palettes, so if this is something you feel like you'd be interested in, definitely let me know! 

The Urban Decay Primer Potion, I'll admit, was the first product I'd really heard about that was targetted at keeping your eyeshadow in place for longer, I'm now pretty clued up on eye primers, but UD was really the first brand to do it well in my opinion, and they're still the brand I trust and go to every single time I need a restock. I personally own the original and then "sin" which is a stunning champagne shimmery primer, I love that you can wear this on its own or under your eyeshadows - they're basically just the best thing since sliced bread in my opinion and I'd 100% recommend them to anyone. On a similar note, the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray* is an absolute classic; after it's recent "makeover" I feel like everyone and their mother is going on about how good this setting spray is at the moment. I love applying it before my makeup application, after and even during to really ensure that everything just "melts" together and stays in place all day long. I also find it's really refreshing throughout the day, I often carry a mini in my handbag for extra sweaty days! It's a great alternative to powder, I often find (especially if you have dry skin) powder can look a little heavy, however a quick spritz of this and you're good to go, your makeup stays in place all day.

~ HIDDEN GEMS ~

I wouldn't exactly say they're hidden gems exactly but I thought I'd chat through a few of my other product recommendations and favourites. I feel like Urban Decay is primarily known in the blogosphere for their Naked Edit, but I didn't want this post to just include the products you already know about. While I love their Naked Collection, it's definitely not the reason I visit the brand, or why I fell in love with them in the first place. I'll always love Urban Decay for their bold shades, so I especially love the Urban Decay Eyeshadows, a few personal favourites of mine are Lounge, Tonic, Backfire* and DiveBar*. I love how buttery and pigmented the eyeshadows are, they blend out flawlessly whether you're going for a neutral and subtle look or a full smokey eye. I find the formulas to be extremely long lasting, with or without a primer and they're basically one of my favourite eyeshadows... and trust me, I've tried a lot of eyeshadow in my time! On a similar note, I absolutely adore the Moondust Eyeshadows; Solstice and Ether are two of the best shades in my opinion and I'm honestly yet to find anything quite like them. I love the iridescent shimmer and how they never irritate my sensitive eyes; the colour payoff is incredible considering they're basically a glitter. I love busting these out for special occasions but I find that they're actually really easy to work with on a day to day basis too, I love pairing Solstice with Beware and a small cat eye and nude lip for a day to day basis. If liquid eyeshadow is more your thing, UD has recently launched the Moondust Liquid Eyeshadows which are just as magical. Again, I love Solstice, Zap and Recharged and would definitely recommend swatching them next time you're in a store. 

A little FYI, if you like the sound of these beauties, Urban Decay also have a Moondust eyeshadow palette, while I've not personally tried this, I do have my eye on it and have to stop myself from buying it every single time I'm at the counter. I have quite a few of their Moondust eyeshadows now and I just can not justify buying the palette too... but damn I want it so much. So let's be honest, it basically looks like I'm going to finally be picking this up on my next shopping trip now, and honestly who can blame me, it looks absolutely stunning! 

I recently picked up their new primer, Optical Illusion and I'm basically smitten. I really struggle to find a primer that works for my skin, the majority either feel heavy on or end up breaking me out. I find that Optical Illusion smooths out my skin leaving a soft and flawlessly smooth complexion, I really notice a difference with the application of my foundations which is a first. I don't wear primer every single day, however, I do tend to wear it a couple of times a week, and it's an essential if I know I've got a long day ahead. It's one of the only primers I've tried and have been able to hand on heart say it's made a drastic difference to my application process. I just don't feel like many people talk about their primers?

Another product that just doesn't get the recognition it deserves is the Urban Decay Optical Blurring Buffing Brush; I'm a huge fan of my Zoeva offering, but this is definitely a very close second and I have recommended this countless times to friends and family. I just find that it buffs my foundation in flawlessly and effortlessly, I never seem to have a bad skin day when I've used this brush, and let's be honest, that's exactly what we want out of our makeup brushes and tools isn't it?! In fact, I'd definitely rate all of the Urban Decay brushes, they unfortunately just don't get people talking as much as they probably should! 

Urban Decay will always be my go-to for eyeliners, especially their 24/7 Pencil Liners; I love the wide colour selection and how buttery and yet long lasting they are. I have a fair few shades now, and if I'm being honest, they're probably the only brand I shop at for pencil liners now. I'm yet to find anything that really competes with them... They're exceptional along the lashline for a more traditional look, however, I love using them in the crease of my eyelid and blending them out to create a cut crease - they're just so versatile and easy to work with. I definitely have my eye on a few more shades too! 

As a brand they're just absolutely killing it with the lip products at the moment, I love their traditional lipsticks, but especially their Liquid Lipsticks. They're all so incredibly pigmented and long lasting, I find that they're super easy to work with and the shade selection is just something else. You're guaranteed to find a shade that you fall head over heels for (or two)... I have quite a few of their normal lipsticks too, especially their comfort mattes. I just find them to be one of the best lipsticks on the market, and for the pricetag you honestly can't really complain! 

~ SHOPPING LIST ~

  • I definitely have my eye on a few more products from the brand, obviously, I mentioned above that I've been lusting over the Urban Decay Moondust Eyeshadow Palette for a while now. I love the selection of shades and feel like this could actually be an extremely versatile palette.
  • I also love the look of the Naked Skin Shape Shifter palette which is basically just like contour dreams; with creamy goodness on one side and finely milled pigment on the other; I definitely think I'll be picking this beauty up on my next shopping trip. The small and sturdy packaging means that this would be absolutely perfect for traveling too. I'm basically just obsessed with the look of this face palette and definitely need it in my life asap. 
  • Another product that recently caught my eye is the Afterglow Highlighting Palette. I'm a huge fan of the Afterglow products so I know that this will be totally up my street, and while it's sold as a highlighting palette, I think this would also look stunning as an eyeshadow...
  • Of course, this wouldn't be a shopping list without also including a little mention to the Urban Decay Naked Heat palette. I'm basically sat waiting for this to be officially launched now as it looks absolutely stunning. If the other eyeshadow palettes are anything to go by then I'll absolutely love the new launch! 

 

Overall, Urban Decay are a fantastic brand. I think you'll be able to tell from the above information that I've tried and sampled a lot of products from them, and I'm very rarely disappointed. If I'm being completely honest the only product I haven't actually liked is the Naked Skin One And Done Tinted Moisturiser and that was only because I found it a little too dry on my skin type. I've been a long time and loyal fan of the brand and will continue to support them for years to come. I hope you found this brand focus overview helpful - if this is something you'd like to see me continue with other brands then definitely let me know. I'm hoping to create a mixture of both high end and drugstore brands so let me know if there are any brands, in particular, you'd like to see me chat about! 

What's your favourite Urban Decay product you've tried, and of course what's on your shopping list?

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