Tom Ford is hitting us hard and fast this year… it is still February the last I checked, and already pre-orders for the Summer 2017 collection have started! Yet here in Singapore, we are still patiently waiting for Spring to launch. I was not expecting to see another Soleil Eye & Cheek Palette so soon, barely 2 months after the sell out Cool and Warm palettes [see here], so I must really applaud the Tom Ford team for listening to their fans and giving us the perfect neutral palette – Solar Exposure!
Tom Ford Solar Exposure is the 3rd clutch-sized Soleil Eye & Cheek Palette, and comes in the beautiful white enamel casing with golden trims. I was recently reminded of the older square-ish palettes that Tom Ford used to release for their summer collections [this and this], and am so eternally grateful that they had switched over to this more compact design that is easier to hold in the hands, and much more convenient to travel with. I spent 2 weeks in Europe last month, and found myself reaching for the Warm palette most of the time because it was just so easy to use!
However, much as I enjoyed the Warm palette and was able to make it work without too much effort, I did find the shades to be much too warm for my cooler skin tone. In contrast, I personally preferred the Cool palette as the shades were more flattering. The reason it did not sell out as quickly as the Warm palette was the high amount of shimmers contained in 3 out of the 4 eyeshadow shades. Also, there was a huge bifurcation between the darkest and lighter shades that made it a little hard to dial back on the drama for everyday wear.
In contrast, many saw Solar Exposure as the perfect marriage of its 2 predecessors, with less shimmer shades and a easier-to-wear range of neutral shades. Here are some swatches for you to decide for yourself:
From left to right, the shades are:
In general, I found the textures of Solar Exposure to be slightly drier and less buttery than what I’ve grown accustomed to at Tom Ford. That did not affect the performance of the shades, nor the pigmentation, with the exception of the dark brown eyeshadow shade. The overall effect is softer, more suited for day wear yet still capable of dialling up the drama as needed.
I think Solar Exposure is sufficiently different from both the Warm and Cool palettes to be distinct on its own. However, I thought it resembled Nude Dip [reviewed here] in terms of the hues and resultant look on the eye, so I did a side-by-side swatch comparison:
There are some subtle differences in tone and depth of color, with Solar Exposure pulling even cooler than Nude Dip. And of course Solar Exposure has 1 glitter shade that is slightly sheer whereas Nude Dip does not have any stand-alone glitter shade at all. Regardless, there is enough similarity between the two that if you have one I don’t think you necessarily need the other.
For this eye look, I started with the taupe all over my lid, followed by the dark brown on the outer corner blending inwards and upwards towards the crease. Next I dabbed some of the glitter on the center of my lid, and popped the pale gold on the inner corner. Finished with a bit of black liner [I used Noir Petrole] on the outer half of my upper and lower lash line for a bit more definition, and blended out the lower lash line with the dark brown shade from the palette.
I think the eyeshadow quad within Solar Exposure is very pretty and perfectly suited for those with a cooler skin tone. It is so easy to use, the shade selection and range of finishes make the entire eye look really intuitive. However, what makes Solar Exposure truly unique in my opinion is the combination of those eyeshadows with the gorgeous blush and highlighter. The blush is slightly warmer toned but it works out to be a lovely natural flush that still manages to be brightening and pretty for spring. The highlighter perfectly complements the blush and leaves a soft luminous effect on the skin and brings out my cheek bones in a soft and natural way.
Tom Ford Solar Exposure Eye & Cheek Palette is out in counters now. Have you already checked it out?
This post featured a product that was generously provided for my consideration. Regardless, all opinions expressed here are my own honest, unbiased views.