Subculture’s Level up?? ABH PRISM Palette. Review and wear test

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I feel like Anastasia Beverly Hills dropped the Subculture palette like it was hot. And they dropped this palette…. like it was a secret.

Disclaimer: I have only swatched and used the Prism palette, and none of the other ABH palette’s mentioned in this post. Also, this post is very long so if you’re more interested in the swatches than the history please search for (Ctrl + F) ” Swatches of Prism “ to skip the discussion of the drama.


History behind the drama

For those of you who are not familiar, Anatasia Beverly Hills released their best selling Modern Renaissance palette last summer (2016) and it looked something like this:

Modern renaissance.jpg

It became popular staple in the everyday make up routines of many bloggers, and youtubers. The shadows were known for being ULTRA pigment, and slightly powdery… but 95% of the review of this palette were absolutely positive.

Almost a year later, ABH releases a “sister palette” in the Summer of 2017 and internet went insane with hype for an eyeshadow formula that was well known and beloved.

The Subculture palette… the color range in all it’s glory.

This palette is known as the infamous Subculture palette. The Subculture was a palette meant to be edgy, away from mainstream…. and it was a GORGEOUS array of unique shades. If you were sick of every company coming out with a warm, neutral colored palette this was revolutionary. I wanted a camo green like destiny fluffed into my crease, a deep naxy like axis, in the outer edge….. and a mustard yellow like edge, to make a bumble bee cut crease. Looking at this palette made me feel creative… and I was about to treat myself until the HUNDREDS of negative reviews surfaced on the formula.

Long story short it was criticized for being too powdery, some people claiming they can hit the pan if you swirl your brush in…. other’s saying that the powderiness would be bareable, but the shades blended poorly. The maker’s went from investigating if there was a pressing issue in the lab, to quickly saying that it was a pro palette that was being used incorrectly. 

I was still considering getting the palette, but there were rumors and hopes of a reformulation, so I decided to wait…. But a few MONTHS later…. this baby was born.


This is my new baby, the Prism Palette. And I know what you’re thinking… the colors are very similar to the Subculture Palette, and that’s why I got it.


So the timeline goes… 

Modern Renaissance Palette
(with awesome reviews)


…. 1 year later ….


Subculture Palette
(TERRIBLE reviews, owners claiming that issues are due to user error)


…. 3 months later ….


Prism Palette
(A palette with similar shades, with different finishes than the subculture)

I mean… I’m not a marketing major but it seems like this is either an apology palette (because ABH never apologized for the apparently terrible formula of the Subculture palette… also I never purchased it so who knows) or the whole idea was some kind of marketing ploy… which kinda worked on me because I ended up buying it. The latter seems less likely because #1, this was not a highly hyped up or marketed palette, and #2, ABH lost a lot of money in returns of the subculture palette.

ANYWAYS. Let’s just straight into this review. If you want arm swatches, eye swatches, and a review of these shades…. stay tuned… Let’s play!



Swatches of Prism


Without flash, even indoor lighting. I used light pressure and 1 swirl in the pain for the finger swatches. These swatches from Left to Right display the finger swatch first, followed by a brush swatch (The compact end of the brush that comes in the kit)
flash swatches
With flash, I feel that you can see the lighter shades better on my skin tone, and the shades are much more true to color. Example: Sphere in real life is a very light yellow, and not as bumble bee yellow as the picture without flash might make it appear.

Let’s get into how the individual shadows look on the brush, and on the eyes.

(For all of the shimmer shades I used my finger all over the lid, and under the brow bone I placed the shade with a brush. )

Lucid. Grade: C+


1. lucid

Lucid is a beautiful diamond shimmer shade. Classic inner corner highlight shade. You’ll notice that a lot of these shimmer don’t pick up well on a brush, but that’s fairly typical for me.  Lucid was a little harder to pick up on the brush even for a shimmer… so I give it a C+.


Eden. Grade: B+

2. Eden
Eden is a matte shade, ideal as a transition. It blended excellently, but had some powder kick up (but nothing significant). On my light-medium skin tone, the color did need to be built up to see it… so I feel like this shade won’t work for everyone, therefore I give it a solid B+

Unity. Grade: B+

3. unity
Very similar in formula to Eden, a lighter matte shade with some fall out. On my skin tone it can be built up to show up on the skin, but in general I think this is just a skin toned color to set eye shadow primer.

Sphinx. Grade: B

4. sphinx
This shade shows up better with a brush than lucid, but still had a little bit of an issue being pigmented without a glitter glue. I get the feeling that this is the theme of the shimmers in this palette. (As you can see I tried to use a brush on my brow bone and you can barely see it!) Sphinx is a bronzey shade with glitter, it’s similar to “Eternal” in the bottom row in color. I did not notice any fall out, unlike the next shade…

Osiris. Grade: C+

5. Osiris
Osiris looks beautiful in the pan, but it takes a lot to build this color up even with your fingers. And when you blend it out with a brush it drops fall out everywhere. It is a purple, but it looks like a black/grey base purple so it doesn’t end up looking very vibrant. Along with the silver chunky glitter, this shade didn’t do much for me. You can see the brush swatch I tried on my brow bone… it just looks like I dirt.

Sphere. Grade: B

6. Sphere
Sphere is a light neon yellow. I wish it was a little deeper so that it would show up more on my skin tone, but I can see it looking good as an accent shade in an otherwise smokey look, or a cut crease. It’s very pigmented and blends out well… But would this show up if you had a deeper skin tone? Would it look like jaundice on some skin tones?? Maybe… so that’s why it gets a B.

Obsidian. Grade: D+

7. obsidian
So the only reason this shade does not get an F is because I understand it’s purpose. If you JUST want to stamp it on the outer V to darken up your look, or run it on the lash line like a liner it works great. It’s not the MOST pigmented black but you can get it there. The reason it scores so low is because it took FOREVER to blend and it still looked choppy on the outer corner. There was no fall out which I guess is the only other positive I have to say about it… But don’t try to smoke out a cream liner or anything with this color guys… just… no.

Dimension. Grade: B+

8. Dimension
This is a gorgeous silvery-liliacy shade with silver glitter. Unlike some of the other shimmers we have encountered so far it feels like buttery goodness to the touch and picks up a LOT of pigment with your fingers. Again, slightly brush swatch challenged, but it’s gorgeous and blends without dusting fallout so I forgive it.

Parallel. Grade:  B+

9. parallel
Parallel is lovely color in that it turns this warm toned shade when blended out, and stays a cool toned brown where built up. It’s an everyday for my crease color, and it’s VERY pigmented so tap lightly with a brush. If you go heavy handed it can be hard to blend like the black color “obsidian”. Due to a SLIGHT issue with blending this darker shade, I give it a B+

Pyramid. Grade: C+

10. pyramid
This is the gold version of the lucid. It’s not super pigmented with a brush of your fingers. It does look nice worn all over the lid like pictured above… but I cant see it being useful for much else. It does look a LITTLE more pigmented built up on a wet base or glitter glue. If you’re looking for an everyday or “natural gold shimmer” this might be nice for you.

Throne. Grade: B+

11. throne
Throne is a peacock, teal-green. This is how the shimmer “obsidian” SHOULD have been. It’s creamy and has a true green base that translates well on the eyes (The eye swatch is actually an eye look I did). It does fall out like crazy on a brush (but picks up fairly well on a brush) which is why it doesn’t get an A.

Saturn. Grade: A

12. saturn
Do you see that pigmentation?? And with the brush??? Saturn is a matte orange shade with a little hint of burnt sienna. It will definitely show up on all skin tones, and though it kicks up some powder, didn’t have fall out under the eyes as I was applying it.

Eternal. Grade: A-

13. eternal
Eternal and Throne have similar formulas. They are both buttery and smooth. Eternal is a coppery shimmer, that is similar to the color Sphinx in the first row… but Sphinx is like a dirty penny and Eternal is like a shiny new penny. The formula is definitely better on Eternal as well. The only reason it gets an A- is because I noticed it had some MILD fall out with my up close picture. It doesn’t stain and stick to the skin like Throne does, so it get a slightly higher score.

Lure. Grade: A-

14. lure
Lure was one of the reasons I bought this palette…. it swatches beautifully but I think it’s just my skin tone that it doesn’t show up AS pinky-mauve as I imagined. It gets a small score mark down because honestly if you had any skin deeper than mine, this might be a do-nothing shade for you. It does however build up well so at the very least you would have a pinky brightening shade if you have a richer complexion. 


Wear test

I decided to use the shades Throne and Pyramind on my lids, with parallel and Unity in my crease. You can see that the colors still look in place at the end of the day… but there are little pieces of glitter all around my eyes… I honestly think you can’t tell, but I wouldn’t wear contacts with some of these glitter shades. Some of the other shades did have some creasing, so I would use a good primer if you have oilier lids.

I give the overall wear of the shadows…
Grade:  B

Wear test

Final Thoughts


Final grades.jpg
The overall grades that I gave the Prism palette

If the Prism Palette was a student in school it would have a 3.00 GPA. That’s not too bad. Like the average “B” student there are certain topics that are mastered (like most matte shades), and certain topics that need work (like lighter shimmer shades). But Prism has a much higher GPA than Subculture. Subculture is the kid that got terrible grades, but the rich parents tried really hard to keep him in school. Though there are some hits and misses… keep in mind there are no “F”s! I use every color and this color scheme inspires me to try new things with my make up. If you have light-medium skin tone I think this would be a great palette for you! Unfortunately if you have medium-rich skin tone I’m not 100% sure if some of these shades will show up…

What do you think of the ABH Prism Palette?



PSTTT interested in all things eyes? Check out my other posts!

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Colourpop pressed shadows vs Too Faced Chocolate Bar


******FULL DISCLOSURE: This are my personal experiences and thoughts. I am not being paid by the brand or the company to review this product or talk about any claims. This product was not sent to me. I have no affiliationor monetary gain at stake for rating this product highly or poorly.*******


3 Comments Add yours

  1. MJ says:

    I love this analysis of ABH in general and the style of the blog (e.g., history, writing, sense of humor, funny connections to real life). Very good! A+ for you!


    1. ricaishungry says:

      Aww thanks MJ! Hope the review was helpful!


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