Palette Spotlight: Nude ‘Tude by TheBalm

Oh HAAII…. [waves awkwardly and pretends to not have been AWOL from blog for over six months…]

Yeah…real life, man. What can you do? Getting back into the swing of things and thinking about writing for this blog regularly again, I really wanted to “shop my stash” and get super familiar with what I already have, versus buying any pretty new thing on a whim.

Which is tough, because I have to say, I am OBSESSED with palettes. Specifically, eyeshadow palettes. I want all the palettes. ALL. OF. THEM. With Urban Decay promoting the July release of their Naked Smoky Palette, and Laura Mercier re-releasing the Artist’s Palette with all those gorgeous purple shades, my head is spinning. Problem is, I already have a pretty good stash of palettes, and deep down in my heart, I know that I don’t need more. So here’s the deal – every week, I’m going to pick one of the palettes from my stash, and use only that palette for an entire week of looks (well, M-F, because let’s be honest, I don’t hardly change out of sweats on the weekends, much less put on makeup).

And now, without further interruption, let’s shine the spotlight on Nude ‘Tude by TheBalm.

Nude Tude front

Nude ‘Tude features 12 shades of eyeshadow. The palette comes in two versions – Naughty or Nice – although both versions contain the exact same shades (the only difference is the packaging). As far as I can tell, you don’t get to pick which version you want when you order online. I bought my palette from Birchbox, forever and a day ago, and received the Nice version. It was $36 (I do believe I purchased it using Birchbox points though) and came with a dual-ended eyeshadow brush. I’m pretty apathetic about the brush – I neither love nor hate it. Side note, I do think the pin-up (Naughty) version of the palette is super cute, and wish I had received that version.

Here is TheBalm’s official description of the palette from their website:
This amazing palette consists of 12 beautiful shadows that make wearing nudes sexy! These satiny smooth colors can be applied naturally, i.e. “let me slip into something more comfortable” or beautifully layered. The wide range gives you light highlighters as well as brazen bold shades that work to add definition and emphasis to your lids. Nude`tude allows you to dramatically dress up your eyes—if nothing else!

The shade line-up (descriptions by moi):

Nude Tude open
Sassy: Bright white. Like, ridiculously blinding white, the mid 90’s called and they want their white eyeshadow back white. BUT, once applied, it is a lovely highlighting shade.
Stubborn: Satin medium pink. Great for base color.
Selfish: Shimmery sand shade. Lovely on the eyelid and on its own.
Sophisticated: Darker shimmery brown. I gravitate towards this one as a brow shade (mixed with others to give dimension) and also as a liner.
Sexy: Matte burgundy that leans brown when applied. Absolutely stunning and very pigmented to boot. Not nearly as scary as it looks in the pan.
Serious: Matte true black. A great liner shade and is a very deep and true vivid black.
Snobby: Bright yellow-gold. Great for base color all over the lid.
Stand-Offish: Shimmery beige-pink. One of my absolutely favorite shades and great as a browbone highlighter and a wash of color all over the lid.
Sultry: Matte medium brown. A very basic and versatile shade.
Seductive: Warm medium brown shimmer. Gorgeous!
Silly: Deep brown with burgundy and gold glitter. Really pretty in the pan but disappointing to use… it just doesn’t translate well to skin, gets muddy easily, and the glitter pieces are way too large.
Sleek: Dark brown matte. Great for liner purposes.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t also link to Temptalia’s review here – she always has such great swatches, and whenever I begin to obsessively research a potential new buy (or take a close look at what I already have in my stash), I start with her blog. I also fell down the rabbit hole of watching YouTube tutorials for this palette. I especially liked EssieButton’s take on a shimmery eye look.

Nude Tude quads

It helped me to think of this palette in terms of “quads” (see pic above). You’ve got your lighter, lid/highlighter colors (SassyStubbornSnobbyStand-Offish), your mid-tone browns that are great for lids and/or creases (SelfishSophisticatedSultrySeductive), and your darker colors that are good for liner or smoky looks, if you’re talented like that (SexySeriousSillySleek).

Some looks I did this week with Nude ‘Tude…
– Monday: Just messing around with different shades (the entire point of these palette spotlights) and ended up with a work appropriate smoky eye. Swept Sassy all over the lid and brow – from eyelashes all the way up to my brows. Used Silly in my crease, blending it right into the top of my eye socket. Way too dark and instantly regretted that choice. Used a smudge brush and pushed Sleek in between my lashes on both top and bottom. Grabbed some Sultry and used it as my base brow shade, topping it off with a tinted brow gel to give it more dimension. Decided everything was a little too dark for work and used a fluffy brush and Stand-Offish to blend the heck out of everything.
– Tuesday: EssieButton’s version of a bright, shimmery eye – blend Stand-Offish all over the lid, smudge some Selfish into the crease and blend well, tap some Sassy into inner corners of eye and also under brow bone for a highlight.
– Wednesday: Easy every day eye. Swept Stubborn all over the lid and brow – from eyelashes all the way up to my brows. Did a thin line of Sophisticated on my lower and upper lash lines. Very easy and bright.
-Thursday: Patted Seductive all over the lid. Used Stand-Offish to blend it up into the crease, and a dab of Sassy in the outer corners. Used a blend of Sophisticated and Seductive to fill out brows, and set with a clear brow gel.
– Friday: Used a fluffy brush to swirl Snobby all over my lids. With a small liner brush, pushed Sexy into both my upper and lower lash line. A nice bright look with definition at the lash lines.

Nude ‘Tude by TheBalm is a versatile palette for everyday and/or work-appropriate looks. It has a number of shades that look great on their own, and also paired with other shades for more complex looks (none of which I’ve been yet to master, but good luck!). There is a large diversity of shades, especially when compared to other palettes that do closer variations on a single shade (ie, browns in Naked1; taupes in Naked2). My favorite shades are Stand-Offish and Seductive.


xx – birdie

MOTW: Pink Pong

Sometimes, after crazy colors and finishes and whatnot, I just feel like my nails need a breather. A palate cleanser of sorts. And Pink Pong by Sally Hansen (part of the Complete Salon Manicure line, which is amazing) is my go-to for a nice, quiet mani…

motw sh pink pong

Nothing outlandish or exciting to see around here – just the most perfect pinky-nude shade for my skin tone. This is only one coat, so there is some definite VNL, but I actually like it sheer like this.

How about you? What are you wearing on your nails this week?


MOTW: Birthday Suit

This is the first – and definitely will not be the last – polish that I bought from the new(ish) Sally Hansen Miracle Gel collection:

motw sh birthday suit

It’s a milky pinky nude that manages to be both basic and chic. The perfect color for giving nails a “breather” or for occasions when you just need a nice simple clean looking nail. The formula is definitely to-notch, although I haven’t been able to get to the 14 day mark that Miracle Gel claims it can last. But to be honest, I haven’t really tried too hard – it would be a little boring to have the same color on my nails for two whole weeks!

How about you? What are you wearing on your nails this week?


MOTW: Hodgepodge

Now, that’s not the name of the nail polish, although it would be a great name! I was even more indecisive than usual this week, so I grabbed a bunch of bottles that were calling out to me, and came up with a little bit of a hodgepodge.

motw crelly multi
For being a random assortment of different colors, I really liked the way this ended up.

On my pointer and middle fingers, I did a crelly sandwich with a pale white polish from CoverGirl (NAME) and Color Show Jewels by Maybelline in Gleaming Graphite (super unusual – highly recommend seeing if you can find it).

That’s the gorgeous, summery Turquoise & Caicos by Essie on my ring finger, and the gorgeous Paulette by Julep on my pinky.

My thumb was just a (relatively) boring white shimmer by Sally Hansen.

What do you think? A little wild for a conservative work place, I suppose, but it ended up bring really fun to incorporate so many different colors and types of polish in one look.

How about you? What are you wearing on your nails this week?


MOTW: We In Luck Here

I thought this bright coral would be the perfect mani to fondly remember the dog days of summer…

motw ariel sephora
Isn’t it a gorgeous color? This is “We In Luck Here” from the Ariel collection that Sephora/Disney put out last year. Of the three Princess collections (Cinderella, Jasmine, Ariel), these were the only nail polishes to come out under the Sephora Formula X polish brand. I find the brushes to be a little difficult to work with, but the colors are stunning.

I really wish that Sephora/Disney would continue with these Princess collections, but unfortunately that doesn’t appear to be the case, as there has not been a new collection announced and some of the press around the Ariel collection referred to it as the “final chapter” in the collaboration. These are high-end, sophisticated and gorgeous products – not your run-of-the-mill collaboration by any means, so it really is a shame to see it come to an end. A lot of thought and creativity went into these products. Personally, I would *love* to see a Belle collection. Hello? Mickey? Are you listening??

We reviewed the Jasmine collection here, and I’ve featured another polish from the Ariel collection for MOTW before. Check out The PolishAholic for gorgeous swatches of the whole Ariel nail collection, too.

How about you? What are you wearing on your nails this week?