If you’re based in the UK, then you may have seen MUA Cosmetics at your local Superdrug store. The brand has been around for a number of years – in fact, I’m pretty sure they were around when I first started beauty blogging back in 2012.
Known for their super cheap cosmetics, MUA or Makeup Academy Cosmetics have a vast range of makeup, from foundation to eyeshadow. I recently purchased two of MUA 5 shade eyeshadow palette which you’ll find a review of below.
In the Makeup Academy Cosmetics reviews of the Desert Bloom 5 shade eyeshadow palette and Wilderness 5 shadow eyeshadow palette, I include product swatches, price and stockists.
These super affordable eyeshadow palettes are perfect for those new to makeup, or anyone who is looking for a cheap palette that they can take on the go. Despite the affordable price, these shadows are smooth, and pigmented, with great color payoff.
MUA eyeshadow palette price
£3.75 per 5 pan palette (around $5 dollars).
MUA eyeshadow palette where to buy:
Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shade Eyeshadow Palette: Desert Bloom and Wilderness Review
In this MUA makeup eyeshadow palette review, I’ll share an overview of both palettes, including the shades in each and swatches.
MUA Desert Bloom review overview
The MUA 5 shade eyeshadow palette Desert Bloom contains 5 highly pigmented pink/brown toned mattes and shimmer-foil shadows.
The shadows are super creamy to touch, even the mattes, and they’re large enough to use either with your fingers or with a shadow brush.
The individual colors all have names – these are from left to right, Bloom (a matte pale pink/ivory), XO (a shimmering taupe), Peony (a warm matte tan), Silk (shimmering chocolate brown), and Truffles (a matte brown).
These palettes are very reminiscent of the Natasha Denona mini eyeshadow palettes so if you’ve had your eye on those but they’re out of your budget, then these may be a good choice for you.
MUA Wilderness review overview
Wilderness is a green toned, jungle-esque palette with five gorgeous shades. Again, each shade is named. From left to right, Organic (matte cream), Petrichor (shimmering peach), Moss (matte khaki green), Canopy (shimmering emerald green), and Root (matte chocolate brown).
Formulation and shades
The shades within each palette are buttery soft, especially the shimmer foil shadows. They feel very creamy to touch and are highly pigmented shadows.
Both palettes have wearable shades which can be worn from day to night.
The formulation is comparable to those of expensive makeup brands. Honestly, I’m extremely impressed with the pigmentation, wear, and color story of each.
The plastic 5 pan compact is made from recycled plastic. It feels sturdy and you can see the shadow shades through the clear plastic lid.
The palette name is printed in bold gold lettering on the plastic lid.
The palette packaging doesn’t feel luxe, but considering the price point, it does a decent job of keeping the shadows protected.
These compacts are the perfect size for keeping in your makeup bag or traveling with.
The price of the Makeup Academy MUA 5 shade eyeshadow palette is £3.75.
For this affordable price, you receive 5 wearable shades which you can easily mix and match for a range of looks.
Longevity and wearability
These shadows are pretty long-lasting. I always wear over a primer (thanks oily eyelids) and these wear for around 10 hours before starting to fade slightly.
They’re also highly versatile. You can wear the shimmers as a ‘one and done’ type of eyeshadow, swept over the lid. Alternatively, you can wear them together for a wearable neutral or smokey look.
The shadows blend well with both a brush and fingers. When applying, you have time to work with them so they’re ideal for beginners. And despite their softness, they don’t kick up a lot of powder in the pan.
Suitability for different skin types and ages
Both the MUA 5 shade eyeshadow palette in Desert Bloom and Wilderness are great for all ages, especially as the tones are so wearable.
If you have oily eyelids, I recommend using an eyeshadow primer with these for optimal wear. That way, you don’t have to worry about your shadow wearing off quickly.
If you have normal to dry skin, you may not need a primer with these as they’re highly pigmentated.
Below are the ingredients for Desert Bloom and Wilderness palettes
MUA Eyeshadow Palette Swatches
MUA Desert Bloom swatches:
From left to right, Bloom, XO, Peony, Silk, Truffles.
MUA Wilderness swatches:
From left to right, Organic, Petrichor, Moss, Canopy, and Root.
Benefits of Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shade Eyeshadow Palette
If you’re still on the fence about these eyeshadow palettes, here are some benefits of using them.
- Feel high quality
- Extremely affordable
- Easy to apply and blend
- Shimmers can be worn on their own
- Fits into your makeup bag
- Study packaging
- Long wear time
The Cons of Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shadow Eyeshadow Palette
For an unbiased review, I always like to note any disadvantages with this product.
- May be difficult to purchase if you’re not in the UK
How to Use The Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shadow Eyeshadow Palette
Here are some top tips for eyeshadow application that will help you to get the most out of the Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shade Eyeshadow Palette.
- Prep your eyelids. Start by applying an eyeshadow primer or a concealer on your eyelids to create a smooth canvas and help the eyeshadow last longer.
- Use the right brushes. Invest in a good set of eyeshadow brushes. A fluffy blending brush is a good choice for seamless color blending, while a smaller, more precise brush can be used for detailed work, such as applying color to the crease or lower lash line.
- Apply transition shade. Begin by applying a transition shade that is slightly deeper than your skin tone into the crease area. This will create depth and make it easier to blend other shades.
- Build colors gradually. Layer your eyeshadow colors gradually, starting with lighter shades and gradually building up to darker shades. This technique allows for better control and prevents the colors from becoming too intense too quickly.
- Blend, blend, blend. Blending is the key to achieving seamless eyeshadow application. Use a clean blending brush to softly blend the edges of different colors together, creating a smooth transition between shades.
- Use tapping motions. When applying the shimmery shades, use a tapping motion with your finger or a flat eyeshadow brush to pack the color onto the lid. This technique maximizes the color payoff and minimizes fallout.
- Highlight the inner corner. Apply the lighter color eyeshadow to the inner corner of your eyes to brighten.
- Define the lower lash line. For added dimension, apply eyeshadow or eyeliner to the lower lash line. Use a smudge brush to softly blend the color for a more diffused look.
- Clean up any fallout. If you experience fallout from the eyeshadow during application, use a clean brush or a makeup wipe to gently remove any excess product without disturbing the rest of your makeup.
- Practice and experiment. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different color combinations and techniques. Practice makes perfect, and the more you explore different looks, the better you’ll become at applying eyeshadow.
Is Makeup Academy vegan?
Yes, Makeup Academy is 100% vegan and cruelty-free.
Where are MUA products made?
The MUA products I own (5 shade eyeshadow palettes) are made in China (PRC).
Makeup Academy MUA 5 Shadow Eyeshadow Palette: Final Thoughts
The MUA 5 Shadow Eyeshadow Palette is an amazing product for the price. I haven’t used an affordable shadow palette this good in a long time.
As they’re extremely affordable, I suggest investing in more than one palette if you can as that’ll give you the opportunity to experiment with more looks.
Whether you’re new to makeup, or an avid collector, you’ll enjoy using these palettes, both for the price and the excellent quality.