Estee Lauder Bronze Sands Pure Color 5 Color Gelee Powder Eye Shadow Palette

The  Estée Lauder Pure Color Five Color Gelée Powder EyeShadow Palette in Bronze Sands ($45) is a limited edition offering from  the Bronze Goddess Capri Collection for Summer 2012.  When it launched, I  felt that the palette was the same ‘ol summer palette we see every year from every brand–some bronze-ish shades along with the quintessential turquoise ‘water’ shade and I overlooked it.  It wasn’t until I was browsing at a dreadfully small Macy’s and swatched it that I began to channel my inner Bronze Goddess.

Turn up the heat with a sexy, hyper-natural eye look for summer. This versatile palette offers ease and flexibility to highlight, define and dramatize your eyes from a shimmering, natural look by day to a truly vivid, sultry look by night. A true innovation with new Prisma-Shine technology, the formula is a tribrid of a liquid, powder, and gel all in one, allowing for high-definition color impact that won’t crease, fade, or flake. Apply the shades dry, or wet if you want to intensify your look.

What differentiates this palette from others is the  ‘gelée powder’ formulation also used in the best-selling highlighters. The texture is absolutely fabulous–so soft and smooth it seriously feels more like a cream. These shadows are pigment rich, blend easily, are super long lasting (even without a primer) with no fallout and the finish is a lovely metallic sheen. Eyes take center stage and gleam with this stunning palette.

The palette consists of  five metallic powder eye shadows – clockwise from lower bottom left:

  • pale white gold (this has become my go-to for highlighting)
  • coppery orange bronze
  • yellow gold (similar to L’Oreal Infallible Eternal Sunshine)
  • deep brown with gold sparkles
  • a gorgeous dusty teal

For this look, I did a slight twist on the expected. I applied the white gold on the brow bone, the yellow gold on the lid, the coppery bronze in the crease, the brown as a liner and surprise! the teal on the inner corner. The teal isn’t an in-your-face color, it’s more of a dusky shade that can be worn sheer or applied wet for more intensity. I’ve worn the teal shade in the crease, as a liner and in the outer V; it works beautifully however you use it. All the shadows can be used wet for a shiny more glossy effect.

Packaging is a gold compact with EL emblazoned on the lid, a full size mirror and two sponge applicators, one having a small brush on one end. The embossed pattern is reminiscent of waves in the ocean–sorry my palette is so well used you can no longer see the pattern 🙁

Bottom Line:  Estée Lauder has really stepped up their game with Tom Pecheaux in the lead.  This is a gorgeous palette you should not pass up (like I did). All of the shadows are winners, there’s not a bad one in the bunch. The finish is metallic yes, but there is no glitter just a pretty sheen.

Prime Beauty Grade: A


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  1. I didn’t pick up the palette, for the same reasons you initially mentioned (this collection always appears the same) – but I am super happy with the gelee face products.. fantastic formulal!

  2. Katie McAllaster says

    I just recently decided that I wanted to buy this little beauty but unfortunately it looks as though I decided too late 🙁 Seems as though it is sold out everywhere I have looked… I never learn my lesson with Limited Edition items. 🙂

  3. I have eyeballed this palette but kept walking for the same reasons you mentioned. I love what you did with it!!! Fresh and unexpected!! I’ll have to dip my fingers in a tester next time and see what happens.

  4. Very helpful post–now I have to check out this gelee formula EL has. The look you did is very pretty and summery! I love the way the coppery color contrasts with the turquoise, too. Inspiring!



  5. I love this formula. I bought several that were part of the winter collection.

  6. I just can’t make my minf up about this palette.. It looks gorgeous, gets rave reviews, but I just miss a matte shade.. 🙁 It looks lovely on you though! Thanks for the review x


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