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Cargo Shanghai Nights Palette

Monday, 21 March 2016
cargo cosmetics, shanghai nights palette, high-end beauty, eyeshadow palette, review, swatches

Hi! Today's post is yet another review - I'm trying to space them out as much as I can, but I have so many new products I wanna tell you guys about! This little gem is one I'm really excited to talk about because it's gorgeous. So, here's the scoop... 

cargo cosmetics, shanghai night palette, high-end beauty, eyeshadow palette, review, swatchesWHAT IT IS:

The Shanghai Nights palette by Cargo Cosmetics is a powder eyeshadow palette containing twelve shades and a double-ended brush. In its layout it is identical to the Suited to a Tea palette - both have twelve shades in square pans, have beautifully illustrated boxes, include a double ended brush and close with a magnetic edge. It comes in at around £20 on eBay, but I picked mine up in TK Maxx for £5. It had been reduced drastically from it's £12 price tag (and its RRP of £30), and I believe this was because 1) the brush was missing, 2) some of the shades had been swatched and 3) the product had no outer packaging (my Suited to a Tea palette came in a clear plastic sleeve). But that was ok with me. I gave it a little clean when I got in from shopping, and I won't miss the brush as I hardly use the one from my other palette anyway, and it's the same brush. When I bought my Suited to a Tea palette, I did notice this one lurking about but decided against buying both at the same time. It's a good thing I waited as I got a fantastic deal! 

Inside the palette, the shades range from muted taupes and warm browns, to shimmery highlights and smoky jewel tones. Pigmentation is, for the most part, consistent, but a few shades do let the others down - read on to find out which ones!

cargo cosmetics, shanghai night palette, high-end beauty, eyeshadow palette, review, swatches
L-R: Wai Tai / Skyline / Bund / Lychee / Hu | Top-Bottom: Street Syle / Ginger


I'm really pleased with the texture of these eyeshadows, they are very buttery and smooth so it doesn't take much to get bold colour onto the lids for the most part, just a few swipes with your brush. Thus far I have mainly dabbled with the highlight and neutral shades, and haven't gravitated as much towards the brighter and the smokier tones other than swatching. The three brown tones make a beautiful smoky eye, and I'm also fond of Ginger for a pretty day-time look, particularly when paired with a slightly darker lip, say, NYX Liquid Suede in Softly Spoken. I'm also dying to use Street Style and Jade in a look, as they are both quite interesting and unique colours. Street Style appears to be your standard grey sparkly shade, but in certain lights it has a gorgeous brownish greenish undertone to it. It's very subtle, but it makes it much more unique than your average smoky shade. Jade is a gorgeous olive green shade that I think will be really effective packed onto a dark base - I love the flecks of goldish/greenish glitter in it. Another noteable shade is Neon, what looks to be a strange yellowish off-white colour but is in fact, when swatched, a duo-chrome looking yellowish gold. I don't know how to describe it but you can see for yourself in the swatches how different it can look! 

On the disappointing notes, Skyline and Bar Rouge, the two boldest shades in the palette, don't seem to pack much of a punch at all, with Skyline fairing slightly better than its purple counterpart. I've tried these over primer and adding several layers at a time but the result is still a watered down version of how it looks in the palette! Bar Rouge has an interesting duo-chrome effect too, with a blueish tint to it, while Skyline would have made a fantastic cobalt had it not been for its less than mediocre pigmentation. I'm pretty gutted as these are two really interesting and stand-out shades, but they really don't transfer well onto the face. Hu also is a little lacking in pigmentation, but looking at it in the pan, I don't think it really makes much of a difference as this to me is just a simple highlight or base shade.

I have no complaints about the wear time of these shadows - as long as you pack a good primer or base onto your lids, you shouldn't have any trouble keeping them around for a working day. That said, and it's probably obvious, Bar Rouge when I wore it did pale considerably from when I put it on to how it looked about six hours later at the end of the day when I got home from my shopping trip. I was upset with this, as I had primed my lower lash line, but alas, it wasn't to be! Thumbs up for the highlighter shades and the neutrals, and I imagine the smokier shades of Jade, Street Style and Night Life, none of which I've yet worn on the eyes, won't have any trouble staying. 

cargo cosmetics, shanghai night palette, high-end beauty, eyeshadow palette, review, swatches
L-R: Lychee / Jin Mao / Neon / Jade | Top-Bottom: Bar Rouge / Night Life


Absolutely! Over the past few months I've been getting a lot of use out of this palette, particularly for a day time look when I feel like keeping things toned down rather than going all out. That said, this is a versatile palette and you could make some beautiful smoky eyes from this. While I'm disappointed in the blue and purple shades, that's not going to stop me from enjoying the other ten colours! I don't tend to hit pan quickly on palettes as I'm always changing them up, but if I ever do then I won't grudge paying the £20 to replace it. I don't think I'd pay any more than that though, that's just me. I find it hard to part with my money when it comes to high end brands. 

That's about a wrap for this post, if you've any questions I haven't covered then please let me know and I'll answer them as best as I can! 

4 comments on "Cargo Shanghai Nights Palette"
  1. This is such a gorgeous palette! That shade 'ginger' is absolutely incredible and definitely stands out from the rest!

    Grace xx

    1. Completely agree! Ginger is defo one of my most used from this palette! x

  2. Gorgeous looking tones! Great warming colours!

    Laura xo

    1. Totally agree, thank you for reading! x


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