With those expectations in mind, I hoped that the Lorac Pro 2 would prove a worthy follow-up. And it does.
The packaging is the same as the first Pro, with a slim, eminently travel-friendly profile, a convenient mirror and clearly named eyeshadows arranged with the mattes in the top row and the shimmers in the bottom row, 16 in all. This one also splits the lighter, more neutral, "everyday" shades onto the left side, with the smokier and more jewel-toned shades on the right side. (The box also contains a deluxe sample of the Behind The Scenes Eye Primer.)
In terms of pigmentation, the Pro 2 stacks up with the best of the Lorac palettes. Both the shimmers and the mattes have fantastic payoff, with the shimmers in particular having the sort of densely buttery and soft texture where you barely need to tap a brush into them to get more than enough product. The mattes are silky, smooth and soft - I was particularly wowed by Navy, which is an incredibly difficult colour to get even just half-right (Nars Outremer, anyone?).
Like the first Pro, I do find that the softness can pose a challenge. Where the shimmers have a nicely dense texture that makes their ease of blending an asset, the matte shades have a thinner consistency. Combined with their strong immediate pigmentation, that ease in sheering out can make some of them them appear patchy or "dirty" upon blending. I noticed that occurring when I loaded up my brush, blobbed the product on and then attempted to buff it out - it really didn't work, whereas the shimmers had no issue with this "technique". For the darker matte shades especially, the controlled-dab-blend-repeat process was best, and really took advantage of their inherent qualities.
As much as I like this palette, I would hesitate to recommend it to eye makeup beginners, or even more practiced makeup lovers who just happen to prefer going in with a stronger hand. I think the latter will like the pigmentation, but won't love the change in application method needed to make the most of the palette.
This is the lighter, more everyday/neutral side.
Buff: Has the thinnest, most flyaway texture. It's a too powdery to build up very well without looking chalky, so for me it works best as a base for the darker colours to helps blend them out, or as a matte browbone highlighter.
Light Brown: Very smooth, almost creamy texture, with fantastic pigmentation, not prone to sheering out. This is the perfect all-around shade.
Cool Gray: Similar texture to Light Brown, this is an excellent crease or outer corner colour. The name is weird, because I would consider this a warm gray, as it almost seems to have a brown undertone.
Nectar: Also similar to the two previous shades, this beige-toned peach is perfect for all over the lid or as a transition shade, depending on your skin tone.
Beige: A beautiful champagne shimmer, with a creamy, soft, dense texture and lovely payoff. Great highlighter.
Rosé: A metallic rose gold, with that same superlative texture. This barely needs to be dabbed for excellent payoff.
Mocha: Incredibly beautiful pale brown metallic shade, with a mauve undertone. Same texture as Rosé, and pairs perfectly with it.
Plum: Smooth, silky, every so slightly drier texture. Intense payoff, with some fall-out and that sheering out upon blending.
Navy: Has the driest consistency out of these four mattes, but that doesn't affect the crazy rich pigmentation. I mean, LOOK AT THAT. It's also quite prone to fall-out and that dirty, overly sheered look, so definitely one to apply carefully.
Charcoal: Similar texture and payoff to Plum.
Black: Similar to Plum and Charcoal. It's a soft black, so while the payoff is lovely, it doesn't look too intense.
Chrome: Insanely gorgeous taupe with gray and plum undertones. This is an almost metallic shimmer, with a fantastic creamy dense texture.
Silver: A straight on metallic silver, slightly sheerer than the other shimmers here, but still a lovely smooth texture.
Jade: This has a rich texture, but feels slightly crumbly as well, which I suspect is due to the golden micro glitter in the dark jade shimmer base. Not problem blending it out or applying, however,
Cocoa: Same texture as Jade, with golden micro glitter in a dark brown shimmer, which also has a faint burgundy undertone.
With a fluffy brush I worked Light Brown through my crease as a transition shade, then Chrome on the lid and up to my crease.
I then used a pencil brush to lay down Navy in the outer third of my lid and through the outer crease, and blended out the edges with a smaller crease brush. (That controlled dabbing/blending technique I mentioned above.)I also applied and blended Navy similarly on the outer two-thirds of my lower eyelid.
I used Plum to blend Navy into Light Brown just above the crease, and a tiny bit at the bottom edge of my lower lid.
A bit of Silver in the inner corner and a quick brush of Buff over the brow bone finished the eyeshadow portion of the look.
(I added a wing using the Make Up For Ever liquid liner and Aqua liner in 0L in the waterline. Mascara was Estée Lauder Sumptuous Infinite in Black. I left eyebrows bare because I'm tragically lazy.)
And Instagram filtered versions, because they're just neat.
Availability: This is the sucky part - Lorac is not distributed in Canada, at least not in any accessible retail locations. Naimie's and Nordstrom do both carry the brand and will ship to Canada, though that can be close to 20$. However, Nordstrom has told me that when their stores open in Canada (first one in a few weeks) they will offer free shipping for orders placed with their Canadian stores! I think the first location will be in Chinook, so I would recommend giving them a call once they open and checking if they stock Lorac. :) Price is 42$ USD, not sure what the Canadian price would be.
(I purchased this item. All opinions are my own. This post is not sponsored or compensated.)