The Natasha Denona Xenon Palette is a greyscale themed palette with whites, greys, and blacks in multiple finishes. Some of the midtone and deeper shades have a blue tint or blue shimmer that skews the entire palette extra cool-toned and frosty.
In case you’re wondering, my palette arrived broken and I didn’t want to wait to return and have a new one sent. I just cleaned it up and repressed the broken shades as best I could.
Rime – Metallic. Shimmery white with all fine particles.
Cygnus – Sparkling Foiled. Deep grey with larger silver sparkles.
Stellar – Sparkling Wet Effect. Sparkling white, more reflective than Rime.
Blizzard – Powder Matte. Very pale grey with a slight blue tint.
Greu – Sparkling Metallic. Medium silver with a mixture of fine shimmer and larger sparkle.
Ebb – Metallic. Deep muted navy blue with a satin finish.
Superionic – Sparkling Foiled. Silvery shimmer with lots of larger multicolored sparkles. Silver in direct light and gives off a light lavender reflect at an angle.
Sposh – Creamy Powder. Deep grey, almost black.
Snowbow – Crystal Sparkling. Pale pinky lavender that shifts to a light nude with larger blue-green sparkles.
Night Sky – Metallic. Soft black base with a subtle blue satin sheen.
Contrail – Powder Matte. Matte white.
Snirt – Powder Matte. Medium blue grey.
Névé – Sparkling Metallic. Warm white shimmer with larger gold and blue sparkles.
Flurry – Powder Matte. Pale, warmer-leaning, greyish nude.
Skift – Sparkling Foiled. Warmer pinky-nude with lots of silver sparkle.
After doing a bunch of looks with the Xenon palette, I am surprised I ended up liking it more than I thought. I feel like the quality of the shadows is good and is on par with other Natasha Denona palettes I’ve tried. Color payoff/blending/fallout are all good with some variation between shades. I have nothing to knock it for as far as quality goes. The more tricky thing to consider is the shade selection.
For me personally, this is definitely not a palette I would reach for when doing my everyday makeup or to go to work or run errands. I could make it work for that, for sure, but I have other stuff that’s much better suited for that. This palette, for me, is mainly just for fun and to challenge myself to be creative with a limited set of shades.
Because it is so greyscale, it’s easy to look at this shade selection the same way you might look at a wall of text. It’s a little overwhelming. What do you do with it all? So much white. So much black/grey.
There are lots of similar shades in here but no actual repeats within the palette. For example Rime, Stellar, and Névé are all shimmery whites and could have technically been reduced to a single shade. From afar, from a glance, in passing, they all sort of look similar. BUT, they aren’t all exactly the same. One is sparklier/blingier, another is soft/diffused/ethereal, and the other has hints of purple and pink with bits of blue-green sparkle. Consider whether those small differences matter to you.
I think for this to be worth it, you have to be someone that appreciates subtle difference in texture and color and find those things useful and/or fun. Those differences are easier to notice in person than they are to capture on camera. In person I find it pretty easy to quickly move around to different lighting situations and look at things up close. I find capturing those things on camera much more tricky. Maybe a pro phographer/videographer may be able to pick them up but just taking a few quick snaps with your phone, for example, you’re more likely to just see a white-ish reflection from many of the lighter shimmers in here. The deeper shades stand apart from each better.
Pros and Cons
Things I like:
- No issue blending out the deeper shades. Cool grey tones, especially deeper ones, are often difficult to use. These are very user friendly.
- Fallout varies but even the most fallout-heavy shades were reasonable.
- Good color payoff overall.
- The shadows adhered well with or without primer and were not too easy to dust away.
Drawbacks to consider:
- Contrail is not as bright of a white as I’d like, but does have good color payoff.
- Contrast between a few of the shades (especially Contrail, Flurry, and Blizzard) was not high enough for my liking. If I used them together in a look, it was not that easy to tell them apart.
Do I Recommend It?
Having gone into this skeptical, I’m now glad that I have this palette. I have some shades like these scattered across many other palettes but I probably would never have thought to gather them all and focus on greyscale looks. For me it was worth it. If it fits into your budget, you like to be creative and appreciate nuance, then I do recommend it.
- Contrail – Inner corner, brow bone
- Blizzard – Inner lower lashline
- Snirt – All over lid
- Flurry – Crease/transition
- Sposh – Liner, outer lower lashline
I wanted to use all the powder mattes that are in the palette in a single look. Sposh is the only outlier, being a creamy powder.
- Sposh – Thin layer all over lid, outer lower lashline
- Cygnus – Layered heavily over Sposh all over the lid and taken up into the crease. This was difficult to get to the look even and I spent some extra time packing it in certain spots.
- Superionic – Inner corner, applied with a dry brush.
- Stellar – Outer part of brow bone, far outer corner of the eye.
I used the creamy powder as a sort of creamy base and then applied the sparklier shade, Cygnus, over it thinking the sparkle would adhere well. For as much shimmer as I used in this look, fallout was not terrible.
- Make Up For Ever Artist Color Pencil in Whatever Black – Lower waterline, smudged below lower lashline
- Night Sky – Layered over the black liner, also use for detail lining near inner corner and below lower lashline
- Snirt – Outer crease
- Greu – Outer half of lid
- Blizzard – Inner half of lid
- Snowbow – Inner corner
- Skift – Detail line below lower lashline (used a wet brush)
- Contrail – Mostly on the center part of the brow bone
- Sydney Grace Snow Queen single eyeshadow – Brow bone, inner corner
- Flurry – Crease/transition
- Stellar – All over lid, lower lashline
Just wanted to try this brighter combo of shades. Sydney Grace Snow Queen is definitely brighter than the white inside the palette. Flurry is a nice all over lid shade for evening out the skin tone but is not quite dark enough to be used as a crease/transition shade. Stellar has a good amount of reflect and shine but doesn’t have a “wet looking” effect to me. Fallout from this shade was mild/moderate and not too hard to dust away. I applied it mainly with my finger and then smoothed it out with a brush.
- Snirt – Crease
- Flurry – Lid, Transition
- Greu – Inner lower lashline
- Névé – Outer lower lashline
- Night Sky – Eyeliner
Snirt Blends out quite smoothly for being so cool toned. Most of the time I have trouble getting mid-to-deeper cool tones to not look patchy as I sheer them out in the crease. Night Sky took me some time to apply but I felt it had plenty of pigmentation to be able to use as liner. Fallout in general was not bad.
- Ebb – All over lid/crease
- Cygnus – Lower lashline (applied wet)
- Snowbow – Inner corner (applied wet)
Ebb blended out really well all by itself without the help of a transition shade. Fallout was minimal and very reasonable. Good color payoff all around.
- Night Sky – All over lid, crease
- Greu – Inner corner
- Skift – Outer lower lashline
I mainly wanted to see how different Night Sky looks once used on the lid compared to Ebb. Both are pretty deep and both have blue shimmer in them. Night Sky, I’m pretty sure is supposed to be a metallic black. To me it’s a satin soft black with subtle deep navy shimmer. It didn’t apply quite as evenly or easily as Ebb but still ended up looking nice once I got it all done.
- Blizzard – All over lid, crease, lower lashline
- Contrail – Inner corner, brow bone
- Ebb – Outer wings, inner lashline
- Stellar – Center of lid (dry brush)
Mostly everything I used here worked well. I got a bit of sparkle fallout from Stellar (maybe try using this with a wet brush if you recreate it to minimize that fallout). Would’ve liked for Contrail to be a bit brighter to add more contrast between it and Blizzard. Ebb took me some time to wing it out slowly using a small angled brush but had very little fallout and blended out with ease.