Swatches // Lorac Refined Romance (+ Nordstrom’s Customer Service Experience)

When I first heard about the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale and found out that all members to their rewards program would be getting a $10 gift card for it, I about fell out of my seat. I figured this would be the perfect time to get something higher-end that I otherwise wouldn’t bother to get. It’s not that I don’t like mid to high-end items; I just find them unnecessarily expensive (especially now that I’m trying to be more cautious about my budget).

When the sale opened up for card-holders, I started to look through, and I saw that Lorac had a couple limited edition cheek-and-eye palettes that looked so beautiful! At only $18 for one, they were affordable enough already, but with the $10 off, they were a total steal. I managed to talk myself out of buying both, and I opted for just one, the Refined Romance.

It took a while to get to me, and I was hoping that I would have it before going to my sister’s wedding. It did come the day before I was scheduled to leave, but when I opened it up…

Yes, that color was totally broken up! I was so upset. It’s not that it was unusable exactly, but the powder had gotten everywhere. I definitely wanted to return it. I called customer service, which is something I never do*, because I wanted the issue resolved quickly. I was on hold for about 15 minutes, which was fine as I was also packing at the time, and when I finally reached a rep, he had to transfer me to somebody from the beauty department. I wasn’t irritated by this; I had the time and this was much faster than an email anyway.

The lady who I spoke to from the beauty department was so nice. She issued a new palette to come to me instantly, and told me I could keep the old, damaged one until the new one arrived. We were chatting while she was waiting to make sure the palette was still in stock, and it turned out she was also from Montana. She was so kind and she actually thanked me for being kind to her- I suppose with the anniversary sale, loads of people had called in with rude complaints. After the issue was resolved, I went on feeling great- and then she called me back to let me know that I didn’t actually need to send the broken palette back (“You know, it’s really not necessary, and I don’t want you to have to deal with all that work”). It was such a phenomenal experience.

*Note: I just really hate phone calls. I still haven’t made an appointment to see a new doctor because I don’t like them. I usually contact customer service via email.

Finally, less than a week after I called, my new palette reached my door and it is so pretty! 

The packaging reminds me a little bit of China- perhaps because it has a certain “dragon”esque feel to it. It’s still soft and feminine, though. Inside, there are 6 eyeshadows, two highlighters, and a blush. The shadows are more nude, with 3 shimmer shades (on the top row) that are slightly warm and two mattes and a shimmer on the bottom (that are a little on the plummier side). Each shadow shade is super buttery and soft and well pigmented. Despite being LE, I was impressed with the quality and didn’t find them glaringly different from my other Lorac palettes, but perhaps just a touch chalkier.

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The highlighters and blush are also soft and pigmented. The highlighters, including the middle shade (that light pink), are very shimmery. When I first looked at that middle highlight, I thought it was a shimmery blush, but it is quite doable as a highlight or even a blush topper. The blush is pretty pigmented, but it’s actually more muted than it appears and I don’t think it’s over pigmented at all.

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Each shadow is not labelled or named- just “1” through “6.” Same goes for the highlighters and blush. While I understand that there isn’t really a need to name shades in a LE palette, it’s kind of sad to not know if these will be easy to find in Lorac’s permanent collection if I do fall in love with it, and honestly I think I will be using this palette a lot, so when a shade finally “goes,” I will be sad! But I digress- because there is no shade name on any of the colors, I’m not sure how to label my swatches!

It might be a bit hard to see, but the first picture is of the shadows. I swatched the top row, left to right, and the the bottom row, left to right. The second picture has the bottom right shadow (which we’ll call “6”), and then below that the blush, then the pink highlight, and them the pearl highlight.

Pictures really don’t do this palette justice; my phone’s camera just could NOT capture the radiance and shimmer. I think the color selections work super well together and have a soft, feminine, and yes, truly romantic vibe to them.

This is truly a beautiful palette. For $18, you get 6 beautiful neutral shadows, two gorgeous highlights, and a blush. It’s not 100% up to Lorac’s quality, but it is still great, especially for the price. I definitely would re-purchase this palette based on my first impressions, and if it’s still available from Nordstrom, I would honestly recommend it, especially if you are looking for an “all in one” type palette that is nicely portable

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