Wednesday, April 18, 2018

CHANEL LES 9 OMBRES Multi-Effects Eyeshadow Palette Spring-Summer 2018- Swatches & Review

This one was a gamble. It was an online exclusive when I first saw and bought the Chanel Les 9 Ombres Multi-Effects Eyeshadow Palette from the spring/summer 2018 collection (since then it's been distributed to all the usual suspects- Bloomingdale's, Saks, Nordstrom, etc.  and is available at the counters), so I had to get over my bias against Chanel's larger palettes that for the most part are inferior to their quads, in my opinion. The colors, however, sang an irresistible siren song, and the many combination they offered made me want to get creative and dip my brushes into them asap. I won the gamble big time.

There are nine eye shadows in the Les 9 Ombres Multi-Effects palette (duh. Thank you, Captain Obvious), arranged in trios that suggest three distinct looks: neutral warm (left), neutral cool (right), and a tropical vacation (middle). They can also be used in any combination, as a single wash of color, and everything in between. The finishes go from matte to satin, the formula is the classic pressed one (unlike the season's eye quad, Premier Eclosion, which I'll show you soon and is the baked formula. Chanel powder eye shadows are often on the sheer side, designed to allow for building up the color if desired. This isn't the case here. The swatches above (done with my trusty old Paula Dorf paddle shaped Eye Glimmer brush) show 1-2 brush strokes, unblended. The texture is very very soft, though, and you can over-blend easily, so my suggestion is to use flat brushes of various widths to pat down the colors and only blend the edges. You don't need more than that. Wear time (over various eye primers) exceeds 8-10 hours and has withheld through a short walk in the rain. The colors remain vibrant, especially the bright blue and green.

Here's what you get in this palette other than the two silly little sponge applicators: 
matte peach (opaque and creamy)
matte warm tobacco/medium brown (very opaque, blends perfectly)
matte espresso brown with a hint of gray khaki (dryer texture,  requires a small dense precision brush)
satin peacock teal that can lean a bit green, depending on the primer underneath (opaque and rich in texture, requires a heavy-duty eye cleanser for complete removal)
satin medium green with a hint of gold (almost opaque, very soft)
shimmer yellow gold (opaque, a bit crumbly)
satin glimmery warm beige (semi-sheer, barely shows on my arm but makes a perfect luminous lid color and layers beautifully)
satin warm cocoa brown (opaque, creamy with a glimmer finish)
satin complex cool toned gray/green/brown (dryish but buildable from the one gray swipe you see above to a very dark brown)

My personal preference is to use the eyeshadows in pairs, but I've also done three and four at a time. The most fun ones were the peach+green and the teal+gold. Layering the Chanel shadows over cream bases can give them extra vibrancy and a twelve hour hold. But the greatness of the palette is in the way you can use it for the most chic tonal Parisian looks just as quickly and easily as a hot party look, a one color intense smoky eye, a bright beachy summer eye or a an autumnal rust and gold one. It's an exquisite palette that encourages creativity in a way we usually get from indie brands, without compromising on the delicate touch and finish Chanel fans expect. Those who don't like this style might not fully convert but would probably be surprised by the green/blue/rust/gold options, so I encourage you to at least swatch them at the counter.

Bottom Line: Every day brings a new look.

CHANEL LES 9 OMBRES Multi-Effects Eyeshadow Palette Spring-Summer 2018 (limited edition, $70, made in Italy) is available from most department stores and on


  1. I was a little hesitant when I saw this one of the Chanel website. Luckily it showed up at my local counter soon enough, where I was able to swatch it. Some of the colors remind me of a four pan, drugstore shadow palette I owned way back in high school, so I decided to take a chance. Not to mention I knew I could return it if I absolutely hated it. Turns out, this is one of the Chanel palettes I actually use and love.

  2. I wish for $70, they'd put a nice quality brush in it! Pretty shades though!

  3. My preciousssss. That Peacock teal is stunning! I bet if I paired it with my Laura Mercier Peacock caviar stick it would really pop!


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