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Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette

Phyrra brings you the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette. She shares swatches, thoughts and recommendations.

Today I’ve got the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette to share with you. This is a palette that Urban Decay created with musician Gwen Stefani. Urban Decay says that Gwen had a hard time narrowing down what shades she wanted for the palette, so it’s got 15 colors, 12 new and 3 repromotes. This is a palette of neutrals with a few pops of color in it, which will allow you to achieve Gwen’s signature looks. Gwen is mostly known for her pin up girl makeup with minimal eyeshadow, thick liner, and bright lips. You can see in an interview here, Gwen says ‘go look at my makeup’, she doesn’t wear a lot of eyeshadow. She doesn’t feel a lot of people can pull off ‘crazy’ colors. I obviously disagree with this since I love crazy colors.

Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette

This is a picture heavy post. Urban Decay sent me this palette.

Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and swatches


Where to Buy
Sephora, Ulta, Macys,, Launches Nov. 22, 2015.

What Urban Decay has to say about this collaboration
This is a true partnership with Gwen Stefani, who worked closely with UD, guiding every detail of the collection, from the shades to the packaging. CCO and founding partner Wende spent countless hours at Gwen’s house, talking makeup and working with her on EVERY detail of this launch – from the packaging to the formulation to the shades. She carefully crafted each product with Gwen, creating the exact shades that Gwen always wished she had in her collection. Gwen had her hand in the packaging, inspired by her love of black and white graphic prints and antique gold accents. There’s a nod to the No Doubt song ‘Magic’s in the Makeup’ on the palette’s mirror.

Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and swatches Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and swatches Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and swatches Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and swatchesUrban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Urban Decay Gwen Stefani PaletteUrban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and Swatches Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and Swatches Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and Swatches

A note about the swatching
I swatched the left side of the swatch on Kat Von D eyeshadow primer, the middle is on bare skin, and the right is on Too Faced Shadow Insurance. I had a friend tell me that I just HAD to try KVD primer, and I do not like it, so it will be going back to Sephora. On me, it changes the color of the eyeshadow when you apply on top of it. You can see a difference it makes in how the eyeshadow looks between the KVD and the TFSI. I applied the eyeshadow with a sponge tip makeup applicator.

Seriously, the KVD primer makes everything have strong yellow tones on me. From where I use tape to create lines, it makes it so the shadow doesn’t want to stick to the skin. The TFSI primer intensifies the color.

Urban Decay Blonde swatch
(because Gwen is blonde) pale beige with pink iridescent shift
Creamy white with pink shift. You can see how the KVD primer turned it more of a yellow beige. I would use this to highlight at the inner corner.

Urban Decay Bathwater swatch

(named for a No Doubt song) pale beige with gold pearl
Light beige with golden pearl. Again, the KVD primer turned it really yellow beige. I would use this as a highlighter or inner lid shade. It would layer on top of Stark or Skimp nicely.

Urban Decay Skimp swatch

(one of Gwen’s favorite UD eyeshadows) pale nude satin
Pale peach satin. I would use this as a lid or inner shade.

Urban Decay Stark swatch

(one of Gwen’s favorite UD eyeshadows) nude-pink matte
Light nude with pink tone matte. This eyeshadow had the weakest pigmentation in the entire palette. It barely showed up on my skin. On primer, it’s just fine, but on my arm it barely tinted me. This is a color that I would use to soften the edges of other shades or as a crease / hood shade.

Urban Decay Pop swatch

(like Gwen’s current music) pale coral with iridescent sparkle
Pinky champagne with silver sparkle. Reminds me a bit of Sellout or Midnight Cowboy. This shade had some fallout for me.

Urban Decay Steady swatch

(after the No Doubt song Rock Steady) medium rose with metallic gold shift
Light metallic rosy beige satin. I read in an interview somewhere that Gwen will use this as a base shade and then layer Pop on top, sometimes adding even more glitter on top of that. I think this is a gorgeous neutral.

Urban Decay Baby swatch

(an homage to Gwen’s fashion line L.A.M.B.) cool metallic rose
Light metallic rose gold. This is another lovely neutral.

Urban Decay Anaheim swatch

(where Gwen grew up) light taupe brown matte
Light cool brown matte. It had less pigmentation than I liked on bare skin, but was fine on primer.

Urban Decay Zone swatch

(after the song Danger Zone) medium brown matte
Midtone brown matte. The pigmentation was pretty good in this shade.

Urban Decay Punk swatch

(the music genre Gwen started in) reddish brown matte
Brown with burgundy tones matte. I actually like this one a lot! It would be perfect for a 90s smoky eye.

Urban Decay Serious swatch

(one of Gwen’s songs) smoky grey with iridescent floating pearl
Deep charcoal grey, LOVE this! It’s perfect for my eye color.

Urban Decay Harajuku swatch

(one of Gwen’s style influences) metallic blue-pink with iridescent micro shimmer
Cool-toned midtone pink shimmer. I like this as a lid shade.

Urban Decay Danger swatch

(because we all like a little danger) deep metallic royal blue with blue micro sparkle
Deep, vivid royal blue with subtle micro sparkle. So amazing on primer. It would make a great smoked out cat eye liner.

Urban Decay 1987 swatch

(the year No Doubt formed) bright metallic yellow gold
Metallic yellow gold. Really gorgeous on primer.

Urban Decay Blackout swatch

(Gwen’s favorite black) blackest black matte
Black matte. Super pigmented on primer. This is great for shading, lining, darkening lashes, whatever you’d like.

The top part of the swatches below are the yellow-toned Kat Von D primer, the middle is bare skin, and the bottom is Too Faced Shadow Insurance primer. You can see how primer makes all of the shadows look great.

Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Baby – Steady – Pop – Stark – Skimp – Bathwater – Blonde

You can see how these shades all look very similar, just with different finishes.

Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Zone – Anaheim – Baby – Steady – Pop
Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Serious – Punk – Zone – Anaheim – Baby – Steady
Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Blackout – 1987 – Danger – Harajuku – Serious – Punk
Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Blackout – 1987 – Danger – Harajuku – Serious – Punk
Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Zone – Anaheim – Baby – Steady – Pop – Stark – Skimp – Bathwater – Blonde
Urban Decay Gwen Palette Swatches
L to R – Blackout – 1987 – Danger – Harajuku – Serious – Punk – Zone – Anaheim – Baby – Steady – Pop – Stark – Skimp – Bathwater – Blonde
Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette Review and Swatches
Kat Von D primer at the bottom, Too Faced Shadow Insurance on the top next to the palette

The packaging is really cool. I like the sleek design. The ‘Magic’s in the Makeup’ on the mirror is a nice touch.

Blackout, Skimp and Stark are the 3 UD shades we’ve seen before. This palette, as I mentioned above, was made by Urban Decay and Gwen Stefani for Gwen Stefani. Gwen chose all of the colors and textures of the shadows. These colors look like they’d be most flattering for pale skintones, subtle eyeshadow looks or people who like pin up style makeup. With the way this palette is designed, I think the shades are meant for layering. So you can layer similar shades on top of each other to intensify the shadows. You can also easily create gradients with these colors because of their similarities.

One thing I really love about the palette is all the mattes. For someone like me who has hooded eyes, it’s really helpful to have so many mattes in a palette. To my count, 6 of the 15 shades are matte – Blackout, Punk, Zone, Anaheim, Stark and Serious. Serious is mostly matte. Harajuku and Danger are shimmer. Steady, Baby and 1987 are metallics. Pop is the only ultra glittery shade. Skimp is a satin. Blonde and Bathwater are pearls. Pop, Steady and Baby are perfect office neutrals with shimmer, good for brightening or enhancing the eyes. Blonde is an absolutely gorgeous highlighter. I adore Punk and Serious. To me, the only non-neutral shades in the palette are Danger and Harajuku.

This palette is not for everyone. If you are a fan of Gwen Stefani and her signature looks, if you’re looking for an everyday work-safe palette for a conservative environment, or you prefer subtle eyeshadow, you may love this palette. If you’re a fan of brighter palettes, you’ll probably want to skip this palette and pick up the Vice 4 or Electric palette.

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What do you think of the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Palette?



  • hrm, the only colors that really peek my interest are punk and danger….:( thank you for a good close up review of this!

  • I’m almost as pale as you, and I agree about the KvD primer with lighter shades. It gave me a terribly, sickly looking yellow cast and deepened under my brow bone so I couldn’t create depth with my highlight. That being said, its essentially bullet proof and seems to last longer than many primers I’ve tried. It’s too late for me to return it, so I will wear it only on my lid and crease and only with darker, warmer shades or shades that are already yellow/orange and then put a white or clear primer underneath the brow. Also, I’ve had it for a really long time and it hasn’t separated on me like some other primers, probably due to the packaging that lets no air in. I think the formula is excellent and I wish Kat would make a white version! How badass would that be?

  • I’ve been curious about this palette and I think I need it cause it’s Gwen and I always use my neutrals, so it will still get a lot of love!

  • Very nice review Phyrra! I grew up watching Gwen and I have been really excited for this palette and then I got a little unexcited when I read Temptalia’s review because I went away with the feeling that the sea of mid neutrals may disappear on my medium skin tone. I love neutrals. My eyes are pretty hooded too. I love a mostly neutral look with a small pop of color and I love Gwen’s signature look. My biggest concern Is as I stated ,most of the shades may disappear in a way. What do you think?

    • Hi Nicole! Because you have medium skin I would strongly suggest swatching it in person. I think this is a palette that’s suited to pale skintones that look good in neutral and warm shades. I’m not sure if some of those shades would disappear on your skintone or not. You can see how some of them look so very similar (just different finishes) on my pale skintone. For reference, I’m an N0.

  • I love Gwen and have seen her in concert many times. I was a bit thrown off by this collaboration because I would have expected a little more from the palette… at least a great liner and a lippy would have been good. Would have loved to see something like the Naked On the Run palette for this collab. Nonetheless, I know this is a palette I would get lots of use out of and i think it’s gorgeous.

  • What the heck, those primers create SUCH different results, how strange!! I agree with Elizabeth below me, this just does NOT scream Gwen Stefani to me… and I *have* known her to do at least gold on the eyes and some bolder looks but this is very tame for a woman I consider to be a powerhouse!

    • Yeah, KVD’s primer turns everything yellow-toned on me. TFSI is definitely my Holy Grail primer for a good reason ;). The gold eyeshadow that’s in there is because she wore gold for some of her tours. All the interviews I’ve read with Gwen about this palette, she’s talked about how minimal she is with her makeup and color choices and how she thinks most people can’t wear ‘crazy colors’ (like I said at the beginning).

  • I was super excited to see this experiment with UD, but left super confused by the result.

    I don’t understand why this product wasn’t designed to be a kit of some sort. Something like naked on the run. You mention several times that Gwen doesn’t use much eyeshadow and the hallmarks of her signature look are really the liner and the lips, so why not have something that focuses on creating the look? Taken out of the context of Gwen this is a boring Naked pallet in an inconvenient design.

    Was anyone else surprised by the results of this collaboration?

    • UD has stated they’ll be releasing lipsticks as part of their collaboration with Gwen in 2016. Since I’m familiar with the minimal makeup looks that I’ve seen Gwen wear, I wasn’t too surprised by the palette.

  • Nope – like you Phyrra, I am a fan of bright or smoky eyeshadows. So this palette is not for me. Too many similar colours that would look like nothing on my fair skin. I guess with black eye liner, bold lips and her bright blond hair – that is enough.
    I can really tell in the pictures how different the Kat Von D primer is to the Too Faced Shadow Insurance one. The Kat Von D certainly turns the colours in a strange way. I like the TFSI one the best too.
    By the way, have you seen the new bareMinerals Ready Soft and Smoky eye shadow palette? Very smoky colours. Just beautiful.

    • I will go look for that bareMinerals palette, I haven’t seen it! Yes, the KVD primer turns everything yellow-toned on my skintone! TFSI is such a better primer for me.

  • This doesn’t seem like your style of palette although I know how you mix and match to use the best colors. I expected it to be brighter. I’m glad I saw the KVD so that I’ll keep away from it.

    • Definitely check out the interview with Gwen that I linked above, she talks about her makeup choices. Yeah the KVD is just not flattering on me at all!

  • I really just don’t know what to do with so many light cream colors. They all look the same to me. I like that there’s a matte brown transition and a matte black to smoke and darken colors, and I really like that burgundy matte and the sparkly blue.

  • Gwen Stefani is by far one of the greatest beauties of our time. I can definitely see her influence in this collection and love that she incorporated so many natural shades in it with some pops of color.

  • You did a great job with this review: I love how you explained why Gwen chose the shades she did, and how she — and you — would use some of them. The swatches are great, and I like that you showed them over two primers.

    I love “crazy” eye colors for sure, but as far as a good basic neutral palette for very fair skin, I’m loving the looks of this. I am also a big fan of the pinup look and do it quite often. I don’t own a lot of mattes compared to most of my collection, so it would be nice to have ones that work with my skin tone. The packaging is gorgeous and I can’t wait to see it in person.

    • Thank you! This totally made my day 🙂 <3
      And yes, this has a lot of good basic neutrals for fair skin. It even has a gorgeous dark grey. The only thing it's missing, to me, is a lighter grey shade. This palette is neutral / warm, in my opinion.

      • You’re very welcome. I agree this runs neutral/warm. I’m neutral undertoned, but I get slightly warmer in the summer, so this is pretty ideal for me. I was so happy to finally see this swatched on paler skin. So many people are saying all the colors will look the same on the eye, but that’s not true for all of us! Now I have an even better idea of how this palette will work for me.

        I’ll be stalking the UD website this weekend, for sure!

  • Great, thorough review! I think the palette is so good looking, but I think the lighter neutrals are a little wan. I appreciate that this palette makes sense coming from Gwen Stefani but even though I’m a fan of neutrals and matte shadows, I’ll pass. So interesting about the KVD primer.

  • I love it! I don’t need it but I NEED it! Haha! I wish the lipsticks were released at the same time though!

  • UWAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is…so beautiful…damn! I watched the video for this palette in my email this morning and thought, I have enough neutral palettes yay I won’t have to deal with what will probably be the most insanely sought after palette of the holidays! >.<

    But seeing these shadows swatched and reviewed…wow…this palette is really beautiful. The more I look at it the more I'm thinking, "This is what I've been looking for!" because I'm in the market for:
    – a palette/s with predominantly LIGHT to light-medium shades
    – it has to have some solid mattes
    – it has to have colors I'd love to wear (obviously!)

    This definitely has a neutral vibe but I know that those peachy shades are going to pop in a colorful way on me. Rose gold shades are pretty vibrant on me as well. I love how Punk swatched – that strong red tone, YES! I'm happy to see that Danger swatched BLUE (not black soot w blue sparkles). It's gorgeous. Harajuku is my favorite of course! LOVE!!!

    Many thanks for your amazing swatches and descriptions – always super helpful! Love your reviews so much! .< I hope most people aren't looking for a palette of predominantly light/light-medium shades…but that isn't what is going to drive it to selling out. *sigh* The gorgeous packaging the hype the Gwen the holidays the "wearable shades"/naked vibe the UD formula and the price is great too. UD: You better have made enough of these for all of us!

    While I'm groaning: KvD. Seriously. That primer. Kindly do something about it asap.

    At least the Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons Palette will be there for me…right? I felt some serious love at first sight. I am hopeful that TF will make Bon Bons a permanent addition to the Chocolate Bar family!

  • I love it! I was picturing more bright colors for some reason, but I’m glad to see there are a lot of neutrals. I’m a little surprised that an eyeshadow palette was the first thing they released from the Gwen collaboration, I thought for sure it would be her signature red lipstick! Gwen was my style icon back in the mid-90’s, so my inner 15 year old jumped for joy when I heard she was teaming up with one of my fave makeup brands!

    • Gwen always wore bright lipstick or dyed her hair but I don’t ever really remember seeing her wear bright eyeshadow, so I think this palette really works with her style. There will be a lipstick collaboration in 2016 that will probably have her signature shades 🙂

  • Thank you for your honest review and showing us swatches with different primers too. I really like this palette, even though it’s safe. I love Gwen and the packaging is absolutely stunning.

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