Review & Swatches: Blackbird Cosmetics Pressed Luxury Eyeshadows in Fire Pledge, Ruca, Beau, and Atlas

Blackbird Cosmetics is an indie company based in the US that mostly deals with matte shadows. They're also one of the few indie brands that sell pressed products. I personally struggle with loose products since I drop everything. The colors I bought are Fire Pledge (vibrant burnt orange), Ruca (blackened red), Beau (reddened dark brown), and Atlas (dark, slightly blackened chocolate brown). All of them are described as having a "matte but glowy finish" and are vegan and cruelty free. Each shadow retails for $8 and contain 2 grams of product.

This post is actually from two separate orders (and I have another order on the way from Black Friday!) but I couldn't figure out lighting. Fire Pledge kept showing up as a bright orange and I think I finally got the colors pretty close to reality now! I usually take pictures before using my products, but I had to redo all of my pictures for these to make the colors more accurate. Please excuse the slightly messy appearance!

While reading this review, here's an overview of how I swatched these -

Arm swatches - Two layers with my fingers and only swirled my finger once around the pan for each layer. No primer

Eye swatches - Use a tapered blending brush from It Cosmetics to build up the base and a flat "packing" brush from Sonia Kashuk to add a bit more to the lash line. The blending brush wouldn't go that close to my lash line without slightly poking my eye. I did use a layer of translucent powder as a base since the makeup remover I used made my lids tacky.

Fire Pledge is a matte burnt orange shade that has a hint of red. It was hard to photograph this shade because it kept showing up as a neon orange color. I was originally drawn into Blackbird Cosmetics because of this color. I was completely lusting over NARS Persia but couldn't justify spending $25 on a color I didn't know I would use a lot. I ended up ordering this first and was able to swatch Persia in stores. They were actually pretty close!

The color isn't too vibrant, but it does add quite a pop compared to normal neutral browns. Surprisingly, I do wear this shade a lot to add warm to my crease or more cool toned shades.

You can see that the color blended out really nicely. It is still a vibrant orange like how Blackbird Cosmetics describes it as, but you just need to add a bit of brown to make it completely wearable! It's definitely my favorite color to use for fall/autumn.

Ruca is a red based eyeshadow with brown tones to it. The more I blend this color out, the more the red tones comes through.

This is also a great fall color because of the red tones to it. It's not quite burgundy and so it won't make your eyes look as tired. 

I would say this is a nice beginner shade for those who want to start wearing burgundies or reds. 

Beau is kind of the opposite of Ruca - a brown based eyeshadow with some red tones to it

When swatched, it definitely looks more brown compared to Ruca and so I would get this instead of eyeshadows tend to show up more red on you.

On the eyes, Beau and Ruca look so similar that I had a hard time remembering which ones I took pictures of first. You definitely don't need both Ruca and Beau, but I don't regret either since they'll help me shift my eyeshadow to look more red (to warm it up) or brown (to neutralize it).

Atlas is a cool toned dark brown shade. I was actually expecting this color to be more warm due to the website and pan, but I'm not complaining! I hear that a lot of Blackbird Cosmetics shadows pull more grey/cool on people though.

Luckily, Atlas really helps me cool down the rest of the shadows I bought. Because Atlas is so dark, you can also use it to line your lids.

It took a little big longer to blend out this shade than the other three, but it was mostly due to this shade being darker. It was a lot more obvious to see where I messed up compared to the others. 

& here's a comparison of all the shades!

Overall, all of these shadows do have that matte but glowy quality. I don't have a lot of dark mattes besides basic transition shades, dark browns, or blacks. These were a nice addition to my collection and I like them a lot more than the shades from the original Tartelette Palette. I feel like all of those shades would pull cool on me and wouldn't blend as easily. 

The Blackbird Cosmetics Pressed Luxury Shadows don't get muddy either. I usually still like to add a shimmery/metallic shade into any look I use with these matte shades to add more definition, but they're totally wearable on their own. 

The texture of these shadows are slightly different from high end brands though. I can feel some slight bumps when I run my finger over the shadow and so they're not as smooth/fine as Urban Decay or Lorac shadows. I believe Blackbird Cosmetics is run by one person and so I'm personally not too bothered by this slight imperfection in texture.

All of the pressed eyeshadows come in pans though and so you'll need to buy a magnetic palette (like Z Palettes) to hold them. I personally like this so that I can create my own palettes to fit my mood.

Final thoughts: The quality of these matte shades are incredibly impressive and they're only $8! My favorites are probably Fire Pledge and Beau but they're all great. I saw fading and creasing after 15 hours... but what shadows don't crease after 15 hours. The initial creasing started around 8 hours though. If the shadows were improved to be a bit finer, I would say that they're on par with mid-range brands. They're slightly more expensive than drugstore brands but I would still go with these since drugstore brands usually don't have good mattes anyway.

Have you tried Blackbird Cosmetics? Do you prefer pressed or loose eyeshadows?


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