Urban Decay Ultimate Basics Naked palette: Review and Swatches (Darker Skin)

Drum roll please. Ladies and gentlehomies I present to you, the Urban Decay Ultimate Basics Naked palette! I picked this up during the Mecca Beauty Loop Level 3 Holiday pre-release but it will be available from Mecca on November 8th to everyone.


If you like makeup even just a little you would know what a Naked palette is. There are currently 3 Naked palettes: 1,2,3 and smoky and Naked Basics 1 and 2 and now there is this 12 pan palette of perfection (in theory).

The Packaging

The packaging is damn beautiful. It’s rose gold with raised lines on the front and made of hard, sturdy plastic. Its a square shape with 2 rows instead of the usual one long line of shadows we’re used to from the Naked range. This makes it a bit easier to use as I can visually pair shadows together and also makes it easier to hold and work with.
The inside cover has a square mirror which is nice and big! Because the palette is light, it’s not awkward to hold and use which is always a plus!


The Brush
The palette comes with a double ended brush which is quite small (so that it can fit in the palette). One side is small and dense for applying the shadow and the other side is fluffy for blending. Whilst they get the job somewhat done, I prefer to use my Zoeva brushes. The dense side kicks up quite a bit of powder. The fluffy side is too dense for me to blend flawlessly (#flawless #beyonce).

The Shadows
This palette has 12 shadows (1 shimmer and 11 matte).


  Colour Selection
Please keep in mind that I am writing this from the perspective of a brown (NC44-45) girl who hence, has darker eyelids. This is why I’m not so keen on the colour selection. I knew this when I was buying the palette but I wanted to try out the pigmentation and textures.
As a basic matte palette, it has quite a decent range of colours for those with lighter skin. For me, Nudie does not show up, Tempted and Instinct look the same as does Faith and Lockout.
I appreciate the inclusion of a shimmer highlight shade – Blow – so I don’t have to reach for another palette or compact. On my skin tone, it appears as a subtle sheen – I quite like it!

Whilst I absolutely love Urban Decay’s bright colour palettes and their shimmers, their neutral/nude mattes have always been a hit or a miss. They have some beautiful velvety, soft shadows that apply smoothly and pigmented. Whilst a couple of shades in this palette do the same (e.g Blow and Pre-Game), some are really muddy and dry-ish (e.g Instinct and Magnet). The general gist of the palette was that they blended out to be good (not great, but good). I definitely have other brand neutral mattes I prefer (namely Anastasia Beverly Hills)

Top Row (L-R): Blow, Nudie, Commando, Tempted, Instinct & Lethal

Bottom Row (L-R): Pre-Game, Extra Bitter, Faith, Lockout, Magnet & Blackjack

Cost Breakdown

This palette will sell for $90 at Mecca Maxima and online. with 12 shades, this breaks it down to $7.50 per shade. Each shade weighs 1.2g (0.04oz). For reference sake, a MakeUp Geek shadow weighs 1.8g (0.064oz), a MAC shadow 1.3g (0.04oz) and Anastasia Beverly Hills 1.67g (0.059oz)

Would I repurchase?
If I ever had to buy a matte palette, I’d probably make my own using Anastasia Beverly Hills singles or MakeUp Geek shadows. A lot of these shadows aren’t very nice on my darker skin. In fact, I’ve pretty much been using the bottom row exclusively. This was not worth it for me as the palette was $90!

6 thoughts on “Urban Decay Ultimate Basics Naked palette: Review and Swatches (Darker Skin)

  1. Love this review Meneka!!!! I totally feel you when it comes to palettes not being universally flattering for all skin tones! I was questioning whether to buy this palette and I think I’m going to pass unless I go and swatch it in store. Love your idea of making your own matte palette instead ❤️

    • Thanks Neesha! A majority of palettes are catered towards fair-tan skin which is a shame! The best neutral palette for my skin tone is the Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette! Thanks for reading!

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