Greetings from a classic tale of adventure, fellow rogues!
It was a dark and stormy night. Rain drove down in sheets from the booming sky, and the wind wailed and moaned through the ancient, ruined temple. Tucked into the lee of a crumbling column, the rogue ran deft fingers over the well-weathered stone, searching. Just as the jagged lightning illuminated the panel she sought, a large, soggy leaf slapped directly into her face.
‘$%*#!’ said the rogue (quietly).
Why had they gotten themselves in for this, anyway? It’s not like you usually believe everything that half-orcs tell you after a few meads too many in the tavern. This one had sounded so convincing, though… a rare and beautiful treasure, he said. Sparkling gems, he said. A perilous adventure through the Temple of Storms, he said. Of course, the paladin was all for it. You could see that righteous gleam in his eyes as he contemplated braving the elements to recover a lost relic. Susie the Rockbard strummed her electric lute and strove to look cool and disinterested, even thought you could hear her breathe faster at the words ‘sparkling gems’. Even the wizard, who usually avoided situations that were likely to make smoking his pipe difficult, looked intrigued. And so as usual, it was all down to the rogue. All faces turned to her.
‘Why not? Seems legit’…
Well, that lackadasical attitude was coming back to bite her, now, wasn’t it? Still you can’t have a good adventure without a bit of discomfort, and at least they’d made it to the temple in one piece. The rest of them were huddled a short distance away, trying not to sink into the mud while they waited for her to perform her rogueish, door-opening magic. If she listened carefully, she could hear a faint, damp murmur of voices. Most of the conversation seemed to revolve around who had and who hadn’t managed to oil their cloaks properly before they set out. With a smile, she scraped the leaf out of her eyes and turned back to the carvings. Another handy flash of lightning and the correct combination later, and the dark, imposing doors of the temple rumbled open.
The inner area of the temple was built of a sleek, smooth dark stone – not as shiny as obsidian glass; more like a matte, polished basalt. For some reason, the ceiling of the entry chamber seemed to consist of an impressively extensive mirror – sometimes, she wondered what went on in these places… 😉 Sigryn the warrior lit a torch and stepped boldly forward (the paladin was still emprying water out of his pauldrons), only to be met with a cobweb thin curtain. While she thrashed her way out of it, swearing as only a dwarf can, they observed that it seemed to be some sort of map to the temple, suggesting a layout allowing the faithful to worship different kinds of storms. There was no sign of any of these worshippers now though – the temple seemd pristine, almost as new, as though the faithful (having probably decided to shift their allegiance to the God of Tropical Islands and Fruity Cocktails) had tidied up before they left.
Once everyone had composed themselves a little bit, the rogue led the way down a narrow, dark corridor. It was flanked on either side with spindly columns, the capitals of which looked like spades made of…sponge? Sigryn was unimpressed with the workmanship, and a deft tap of her axe hilt revealed them to be more cosmetic than functional. ‘Hmph. Crappicolumns.’ she sniffed, her dwarven ancestry offended (but not really surprised) at the mediocre workmanship.
After a couple of minutes of aimless wandering (despite what anyone in the tavern tells you, adventuring entails a *lot* of aimless wandering), the party emerged into the first of what would turn out to be several low rooms. Three altars decorated the space before them, each with a torch that burst into flickering, eldritch flame as they approached. The rogue edged up to the first one, waggling her eyebrows at the wizard to request an arcana check, but the room seemed free of traps. As she peeked over into the smooth, shiny obsidian basin set into the altar, her eyes widened… it was full of gimmering, glittering, shimmering powder. This must be the treasure the half-orc spoke of! Still unable to sense any traps, the rogue dipped her finger into the first basin…
Sand Storm is a shimmering, orangey-peach ‘base sheen’ type of colour. It’s soft, smooth and buttery, with solid pigmentation. The warm undertone is evened out by the healthy shimmer. I rather like the name, as the peachy undertone reminds me of the lovely pink colour that the sands of the Giza plateau have under the saturated cobalt blue sky of Egypt.
Snow Storm is your bread-and-butter shimmery champagne colour. Brownbones, inner corners, that sort of thing. Good payoff, smooth and soft. Very faint warm peach to it. This is not a thrilling shade, but it’s a workhorse for the palette (especially for blending edges if you’re on the paler end of the spectrum). I have never seen snow like this, to be honest. The only snow storm I’ve ever been in was a whiteout halfway up a mountain, and the only pink involved was my face as all the little stab wounds caused by wind-driven ice shards started to bleed once I got warm again (true story). Fun times! 😀
Calm Before The Storm is… a bit of a fail, to be honest. It’s a pale, warm matte bown shade, very soft and smooth to the touch but absolutely lacking in pigment compared to the other shades. It’s not the end of the world (let’s be honest – you’re not buying this palette for the matte brown, are you?), but it’s kind of frustrating when most of the rest of the palette is excellent.
‘What happened to this last altar?’ asked the cleric, running his fingers through the dull, pale brown sand. ‘It sort of looks like its God has abandoned it…’. Susie the Rockbard shrugged, tucking bags of glittering dust into her pack as she breezed past on the way to the next chamber. ‘Maybe it belings to the God of storms that they promise are coming but never actually do, and then you go to a lot of trouble securing your house and cancelling all your gigs and it was a total waste of time!’ was her sole offering, her voice receding into echoes as she marched onward. The cleric sighed. It did look nice next to the other two, but they had come here with the promise of shinies, after all…
Thunder Storm is a clean, classic gold. Yellow in undertone, but pale and shimmery enough in finish that it reads more neutral. Good stuff. For some reason (probably my rogue blood) I can never get enough of smooth, pigmented gold shadows, no matter what their undertone…
Perfect Storm Hands down, this is my favourite shade from the palette! 😀 It’s a medium rose pink shade, with warm undertones and a pale golden shimmer to it. I kid you not – when I first cracked open the palette and saw it in person, this was the shade my eye was immediately drawn to, and it caused me to make that ‘ooooo’ sound that promises a good relationship with an eyeshadow. Is medium pink the easiest colour to wear on pale lids? Maybe not. Is it a refreshingly solid change to a colour that many brands tend to cop out and go with some ashy baby pink rubbish on? Yes! Was that last sentence kind of convoluted? Indeed!
Firestorm This is the perfect partner for Perfect Storm; as intended, presumably. It’s just the right warm shade of plummy browny reddy autumnalness (as you can see, we’re getting highly technical here, folks) that makes me want to wheel out some forest greens and chocolate browns and make an awesome ‘forest nymph’ eye. The shade is a touch less intensely pigmented than the previous two, but as you can see in the swatch it more than holds its own, and was soft and smooth in texture.
Sigryn edged over to the paladin, murmuring out of the corner of her mouth ‘I think you might need to pick our rogue friend up and carry her on to the next room…she’s been running her hands through that pink altar for the last ten minutes! I think she’s going to try and climb in soon!’ The paladin rolled his eyes disdainfully (while surreptitiously tucking his own lovingly gathered bag of pink sparkles into his belt pouch). Rogues these days, honestly. They lead the party through treacherous ground, find paths where others lose hope, unlock any and all doors, open the way to untold treasure…you think they could hold it together for just a *leetle* longer, wouldn’t you? They just don’t make them like they used to…
Dust Storm is a strong copper rust colour. This is going to look amazing with any and all blues and greens you may have stashed about the place, and that inlcudes teals and turquoises. In fact, it makes me want to do an Aztec/Chalchiuhtlicue (post-classical Aztec goddess of – among other things – storms) look. Ordinarily, this shade is something I’d probably think of as ‘too warm’ for me personally. I probably still won’t wear it on a daily basis, but I can think of a lot of places it will look great! As you can see the pigmentation is top notch, and the texture is smooth and buttery.
Gathering Storm is like the tallish shortish man with lightish darkish hair and bluish browninsh eyes. It’s one of those shades that isn’t expressly ‘duochrome’ or ‘multichrome’ but contrives to have a few different overtones in different lights. Fundamentally, it’s grey, but on top of that it can look gunmetally or bluish or greenish dpending on the light. This is quite appropriate, I feel, for the wierd, shifting colours you can get in the clouds before a storm. Fantastic pigmentation, smooth and silky to apply.
Storm Cloud is a dark green grey shimmer. A really lovely shade, and one (as mentioned) that I think will go really well with Perfect Storm (plus any browns, golds and coppers/rusts that you may have to hand). A really nice, versatile shade for the palette, actually! As usual, excellent pigmentation and smooth application are the order of the day.
The adventurers gazed with satisfaction upon the little pile of glittering loot baggies that sat in a heap on the stone floor. Seems the half-orc had been telling the truth after all, and they hadn’t even encountered any resistance in the form of irritable storm elementals or overtired, hungry druids. And there was still one room to go! Quite successful, really. What were they going to do with the sparkling dust? Each had their own ideas, most of which involved either staring at it (adventurers love the shinies!) using it in a potion (the wizard) or selling it to add to the double-ended dragonbone halberd fund (Sigryn). Who knew what secrets they might uncover?
Electric Storm is probably the most perfect ‘storm’ themed colour in this ‘storm’ themed palette! It’s a smoky grey base with a ton of perfectly visible electric-petrol blue shimmer on top. It’s gorgeous, and another shade I can’t wait to try out with Perfect Storm, and maybe Thunder Storm! This sentence full of the words ‘perfect’ and ‘storm’ has been brought to you by a confused rogue. Don’t mind her, she’ll leave soon. 😉 Anyway: pigmentation was less intense than some of the other shades, but I didn’t find that it was actually a problem with this shadow in terms of the end effect. Texture was smooth and buttery as usual.
Eye of the Storm is … *sigh*. So, it’s more like the cocoa/cooler chocolate brown matte that would be really useful for making looks with several of these shades (notably the pinks) if it weren’t so hopelessly patchy and underpigmented. Like Calm Before The Storm, it was nice and soft to the touch, but it just doesn’t pull its weight. I suppose the name is incredibly appropriate then, in the sense that it is the most boring part of an otherwise pretty exciting palette…
Blackout is a pigmented, smooth black eyeshadow. There is…not a lot to say about it! It’s totally functional, although there was a little more mess than I would have liked from it (as you can see from the slightly murky swatch). Er… it’s unquestionably the best matte in the palette! That’s not saying much really, but it is genuinely decent. I’m not actually sure the palette needed a matte black, to be honest. I think a stormy matte grey might have been more interesting and useful, but a solidly performing black eyeshadow is always a decent thing to have, I guess!
‘Another one of these dry brown messes?’ grumbled the paladin, petulantly. The wizard patted him on the shoulder ‘There, there – just look at the pretty blue-grey one! And that black is rather intense. I wonder if it has any magical properties- I heard that, young lady!’ He whipped around to glare at Susie, who was trying to pretend that she hadn’t just muttered ‘Yeah, the power of being totally boring’ under her breath. She grinned at him and juggled three glittering bags as the rogue stepped over to examine the inky black dust in the last altar’s bowl. This altar was a little different from the others – it had no statue, no alcove for offerings and no names carved over it. All there was was blackness. Hm, no traps it seemed… she reached out, wondering. As her fingertips brushed the surface, the blackness boiled up suddenly into the air, annihilating every speck of light in the room and casting the adventuring party into the deepest and most profound darkness they had ever known…
‘#$&%!’ said the rogue (quietly).
Extras! Here are some comparison swatches I made with some UD shades and the Arabian Nights palette. It’s by no means comprehensive, but I had limited arm space at this point!
Phew! Thanks for sticking with me through that long review, and I hope you enjoyed my little storytime diversion! To sum up: this is another really solid palette from Sleek, and I’m very pleased with it. There are two totally lame matte browns in it, but as I said, matte browns aren’t really the reason you purchase a palette like this. You’re after the jewel tones, and it does a fantastic job at those, at an excellent price point. It’s a great palette all by itself, and it will work well with any other shades you have rolling about the place. It’s also a particularly autumnal selection, which is topical for my northern hemisphere friends! This palette is part of the permanent collection, so there’s no rush on it, but for the excellent price and the high quality of all the relevant shades, it’s definitely something that you could treat yourself to without regret.
What do you think, fellow adventurers? Have you tried any of Sleek’s makeup? What’s your favourite not-baby-not-fuchsia pink eyeshadow? Would you stick your hands into a bowl of black dust in the bowels of the temple of the storm gods?
The practicalities: The Sleek Storm i-Divine Eyeshadow Palette costs US$11.99 for 12 x 1.1 g (i.e. 12.12g, i.e. 0.43 oz) of total stuff, is permanent, and may be acquired from www.sleekmakeup.com (This link isn’t affiliate, just here for your convenience!). If you are a Rogue of Middle Earth, the shipping is insanely reasonable direct from the website!
Until next time, fellow adventurers, don’t forget to check for traps!
I am an adventuring rogue, not a mercenary for hire, and as such, all opinions expressed here are my own, based on a genuine fondness for/interest in this product. If you have any queries or suggestions, please do not hesitate to pin your parchment to the board (contact me) at thepaintedrogue [at] gmail [dot] com., or use the contact form provided! All images and text on this blog are the property of The Painted Rogue unless otherwise stated. If you nick off with any of it, be prepared to find that your morning hot beverage tastes a little…different than usual. Didn’t the rogue say something the other day about that new poison that makes your innear ear itch maddeningly for the rest of your life? I think she did…