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Alternatives and First Impressions for ABH Norvina

Where’s the purple? It barely exists.

Disclaimer: If you’re a die hard fan of ABH or Norvina, please feel free to leave. If I had to choose one brand per product or even everything, it would be ABH. I legit have more stuff from them than anyone else. I love the quality, but I do not like the road they are going down. It is my opinion and I solely speak as a customer who is simply looking at the palette from a conscious buyer’s perspective.

In other words, I vacillate a lot when it comes to buying makeup simply based on the fact that it expires (pollution) before we can reasonably use it up. I do not see the point in collecting makeup for the sake of collecting anymore. For me the point of collecting makeup now is having variety. No two things should be similar let alone the same in my collection. I know it’s difficult but I am trying. That’s my speed and that’s how I roll. Playing the devil’s advocate is my passion.

It has taken me a long time to work on this post because finding alternatives was extremely time consuming. And so was editing the palette into looking like my true whimsical purple palette. 


This post is basically my thought process/first impression since the Norvina palette dropped online. And why I think it’s not worth it for me, and to an extent the general populace as well. Except those two or three purple shades in Norvina, everything else is dupe-abale and already exists in my collection, and most likely yours as well. Sadly, I like Norvina as a standalone (despite the velvet), but glancing at its predecessors, meh. 

The Key Issue(S) with ABH Eyeshadow Palettes for Me Are:

  1. They are still riding on Modern Renaissance’s success—the word I’m looking for is coattails. But we are on the fifth velvet now, I honestly don’t understand it. I hear the younger people saying that they like how ABH keeps it the same because it feels like a collection of its own. Trust me, sisters (and brothers), soon enough it’s going to bore you to death and you’re going to think: "why did I do this to myself?"
  2. The marketing and advertising of Subculture on ABH’s end was dishonest, hands down. And the sad part is that everyone was excited with the unique colour story, but hence they messed up the formula. (Alleged conspiracy, they did this purposely so they didn’t have to make anymore innovative palettes.)
  3. No one cared about the Prism palette because of the Subculture fiasco. Okay, that’s one thing. But this limited edition 2017 holiday palette is still available. Why are there two more palettes released despite this? An overall shame because I do think this was the best designed velvet they did, ever.
  4. Soft Glam should have been the first palette in the series. It has three exact shades as MR (name and all), and many are similar across the board. As I say, no one is going to look deep into your eyelid to figure out how dark or light that brown really is.
  5. And here we are with Norvina, the namesake of the daughter of the owner of the brand. Confused? Well, that’s besides the point anyways. She wanted to make her child palette whimsical yet versatile. And I am thinking to myself that NR is geared towards people who are either her fans or people who like purple. This is actually a collector’s piece rather than an everyday item to begin with. Therefore, it should’ve been both more purple (if not all) and a limited edition. I would’ve bought it if that were the case. 


Now let's start with listing the alternatives. Bear in mind that these are NOT dupes. Some are purple-themed palettes which stay more true to the colour story of the purple shade range compared to the Norvina palette. They do not necessarily have the same purple shades, but they do have more than 2.5 purple shades.

And then there are some that are not purple-themed palettes in the market and yet they have at least two-three purple shades, which I think is even more ironic. I’ve tried my best to steer away from this (ex- NYX Ultimate Brights).

At two-three out of fourteen shades, Norvina only has 21 percent approximate purple shadows in a purple-themed (advertised/incentivized) palette. If you’re looking for a purple eyeshadow palette, these I believe might satisfy you more. This is not about quality (which is subjective anyways)—simply about the quantity of purple itself. I found about 20+ palettes with purple in them. I chose eleven because it’s my favourite number but because not every palette was better purple, than NR by ABH. The ones I have mentioned do have a better grasp of purple, or at least I think so.

  1. The Kyshadow Purple Palette by Kylie Cosmetics 
  2. Colourpop Feel A Way
  3. Morphe Colour Plum Eyeshadow Palette
  4. Sephora Collection Colourful 5 Eyeshadow Palette
  5. Makeup Revolution Mermaids Forever
  6. Violet Voss Hashtag Pro Eyeshadow Palette
  7. Essence I’m With The Band
  8. Smashbox Prism Covershot
  9. Clinique Neutral Pink All About Shadow
  10. Rose Slush Palette *
  11. Brands that provide customizable palettes: Buxom, MAC, The Body Shop, Colourpop (You get the drift.)

Honorable Mentions: MAC’s Classic Cutie and Zoeva’s Sweet Glamour


If you’re buying Norvina because you are a fan, that’s not a problem whatsoever. But if you’re buying it because you think it’s the most unique thing on the market or the only purple palette, then above are some worthwhile alternatives you may want to look into. You may skip over the next two paragraphs—it’s simply verbal vomit.

I honestly feel that if someone is going to brave a purple eye look, then they already possibly have an everyday neutral palette in their collection. Norvina eyeshadow palette lacks creativity or does not find it necessary to be innovative because of the neutral rage at the moment. But as a shopaholic and a sociologist who’s studied capitalism and consumerism, stuff like this keep us from that dream vacation or wedding. Sixty dollars is a nice chunk for my iPhone upgrade. I wear my phone out in two-three years, sue me. I legit have had only four cellphones in ten years, two of which I bought myself, and two my amazing father did.

Dishonest advertisement makes us buy things we don’t really need. You may want it, and you even have the right to buy whatever you want. But I also have the right to point out why it is impractical to buy the same thing essentially in a different packaging both economically and environmentally. It is not about affordability, it is about accountability. About saying no to gimmick.

Au revoir, mon ami.


PS: Please follow me (bio) and share (possibly) with a cherry on top!

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