TBT: Sephora’s Jem and the Holograms Collection

So there’s a Jem and the Holograms movie that’s come out recently. Apparently it has more-or-less bombed in the theatres, but old fans riding the nostalgia wave are still sure to appreciate all the tie-ins it has generated.

Truth be told, Jem is before my time. So I won’t wax faux-fangirl with you – I’m pretty sure I never saw so much as an episode in my childhood.

That said, Sephora has come out with a Jem and the Holograms Collection. Before I restate it on EACH item in the collection, if you’re buying these for a Jem fan, it will likely go over well, regardless of any other factors, even if for the novelty/nostalgia factor.

First up, the Truly Outrageous Palette:

Sephora Jem and the Holograms Collection - Truly Outrageous Eyeshadow Palette
Sephora Jem and the Holograms Collection – Truly Outrageous Eyeshadow Palette

Housed in glittery black cardboard-style packaging with very 80s-feeling lightning bolt motifs inside, the Jem and the Holograms Truly Outrageous shadow palette features 24 shades with a variety of finishes. Looking at it, it’s pretty loud – which falls in line with the show and, arguably, the decade, with a few neutral shades thrown in. To me, it feels very much like a Vice palette from Urban Decay – but I’m fine with this (after all, UD did not release it). As it turns out, though, it is much smaller – the pans are roughly the size of the pans you’d find in a Lorac PRO or Lorac PRO2.

What I am wholly skeptical of, though, is the quality of the shadows. Some Sephora shadows are great, but others lackluster (a challenge many house-brands have). Couple that with the fact that this is a limited edition promotional tie-in, and… well, I’m doubting these shades, pretty though they are, are knocking it out of the park with pigmentation and performance. Reviews on Sephora’s site are mixed. Unless you’re a die-hard fan, memorabilia collector, or gifting this to someone, I would personally pass.

Jem and the Holograms Collection at Sephora - Mirror Compact

Next up, the compact. Aside from the gold trim and logo, there isn’t anything special about it as far as I’ve been able to see. The $18 mirror, again, would make a good gift for a fan, but there are better products out there for the price, and better values, too.Jem and the Holograms Collection at Sephora - Truly Outrageous Lipstick

The Truly Outrageously lipstick, $16, is a bright, blue-based pink with a subtle blue-ish-purple shift. It swatches well, not needing to be built significantly. I’m hearing this second hand from a friend, but it evidently wears down pretty evenly, which was surprising to both my friend and I. Once it wears away, it leaves a bit of a stain behind (depending on your preferences, this could be good or bad, but I choose to interpret it as good). For me, the lipstick probably wouldn’t be flattering – but if blue-based pinks suit you, this might be one to pick up regardless of the whole Jem thing.Jem and the Holograms Collection at Sephora - Liquid Lip SetFinally, the liquid lipstick set, priced $25, has received mixed reviews – so it’s hard to say whether it’s worth giving a shot. It is worth knowing that one of the five shades is sheer, and far more like a gloss than a lipstick. On top of that, two of the shades look fairly similar. Overall, if you like liquid lipsticks and are up for dealing with the hassle that comes with them, go for it. If you’re iffy on like I am, skip it. Between this and the previous lipstick, I think the previous one is a better bet.

The Bottom Line

The MVP of Sephora’s Jem and the Holograms Collection is, by far, the Truly Outrageous Lipstick (the bullet). The palette could be fun, but it’s important to have realistic expectations for the performance of the shadows. As for the others? if I’m spending $18 on a compact mirror, it’s going to be something a bit more classic. And… I don’t know, I just can’t make myself interested in the liquid lipsticks. (But as always, this is an opinion piece – and it’s fine if you disagree.)