Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Instant Eye Palette review: how does the iconic range hold up in palette form?

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk has had our hearts from the start, and this offering is among the best eyeshadow palettes we’ve come across...

Charlotte Tilbury pillow talk eyeshadow palette
(Image credit: Charlotte Tilbury)
My Imperfect Life Verdict

All the wonder of the famous Pillow Talk range in a versatile palette that takes you from working to whimsical

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Pretty shades that suit all eye colors

  • +

    Gorgeous packaging

  • +

    Good pigment

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Gathers in eyelid crease a little by end of day

  • -

    Smoky shades not very impactful on darker skin tones

There are certain industry greats that come to mind when it comes to great eyeshadow, and Charlotte Tilbury seems to have fought its way through the crowd to join the best of them.

From its handy and, quite frankly, gorgeous quad palettes to its extensive and easy-to-use Instant Eye palettes, the brand has become a go-to for the best eyeshadow palettes. But there’s one limited edition palette that has left us seemingly unable to dip our brushes into anything else in our make-up bag…

Charlotte Tilbury won fans the world over with its cult Pillow Talk Original lipstick shade that sells one every two minutes globally—and for good reason. The iconic universally flattering shade gave us all that coveted nude pink mix that we’d all been trying to create ever since Kylie Jenner got her lips done.

The shade was such a success that it spawned not only two spin-off lipsticks but a whole range inspired by the soft, pinky nude. And the queen of lippie has done it again with the Pillow Talk-inspired Instant Eye Palette that is all about the famous color. Complete with four different versatile looks that suit a range of skin tones and eye colors, all enclosed in the brand’s signature rose gold packaging, this is one eyeshadow palette not to be missed.


  • No of shades: 12
  • Mirror inside? Yes
  • Brush included? No


Charlotte Tilbury pillow talk eyeshadow palette

(Image credit: Charlotte Tilbury)

It’s rare for a beauty fan to come across a Charlotte Tilbury product without it catching their attention. For one, each product boasts the brand’s signature rose gold packaging, encompassing the ever-popular millennial craze that is showing no signs of slowing down. And then comes the presentation of the product inside that never lets down its exterior counterpart by being anything less than utterly dazzling.

With a reflective shine that demands attention even among the most iconic of make-up products, the Instant Eye Palette is definitely the Serena van der Woodsen of the make-up bag. It’s effortlessly alluring, oozes glamour and won’t accept anything other than being the biggest personality in the room. And we even get slight Gatsby vibes from the art deco logo on the lid—how Upper East Side, darlings...

Shades in the Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Instant Eye Palette

For anyone who is still as obsessed with the blush hue as a certain Harvard Law student (guilty), a sharp intake of breath and starry-eyed reverie await you upon opening the Pillow Talk Instant Eye Palette.

Made up of romantic pink and nude shades, this dreamy collection will allow you to create a number of softly flattering looks that somehow suit a wide range of skin tones and eye colors. With a balanced combination of mattes and shimmers to take you from day to night and everything in between, four different trios offer looks for Day, Desk, Date and—for the truly whimsical—Dream.

Charlotte Tilbury pillow talk eyeshadow palette

(Image credit: Charlotte Tilbury)

Day provides two soft shimmers—one gold and one rose—alongside a matte blush to add a touch of smoke to the look, which is especially impactful when working with cooler toned eye colors. Desk offers a delve into terracotta territory with its subtle matte trio that will make you look just polished enough for any work meetings. Date is all about understated smoke with its spectrum of matte browns that create a humbly sultry look, while Dream is packed with colour thanks to its dark matte pink  that complements the rosy rouge shimmers it sits with.

However, the smoky options didn’t quite pack the punch that we were looking for with darker skin tones, so perhaps one offering from the deeper end of the colour cycle could be a helpful addition to the palette. Check our guide on the best eyeshadows for dark skin if you're looking something that stands out a bit more.

Ease of application

If there’s one eyeshadow palette that beginners should be flocking towards, it’s this one. Each of the four looks guides you through a three-step application so that anyone can create a quick and easy expert-looking eye—even the biggest of make-up novices out there.

We also love the texture of the powder that allows for the perfect amount of product to be collected on the brush for an impactful hit of pigment without going overboard. And the velvety formula of the matte shades encourages seamless blending, while the shimmers dab onto the eyelid without leaving pesky residue under the eye. What more could you want?

Results and staying power

The versatility of this palette’s colors and the velvety but pigmented quality of the formula mean that most skin tones will see impactful results with this one. It also blends into the skin without any excess residue, making it an accommodating canvas for a stellar liquid eyeliner if you want an extra hit of impact—we’d suggest the Sephora Colorful Wink-It Felt Liner that ticks all the boxes for us, but UK dwellers may want to opt for one of the other best liquid eyeliners among our repertoire.

We did find that the product slightly collected in the eyelid crease after a long day of wear– even with a primer underneath. However, it did manage to last the majority of the day without fading, so maybe a spritz of setting spray over the top might be the fix you need.

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Instant Eye Palette: should you buy it?

Just like its lip-loving inspiration, the Pillow Talk Instant Eye Palette has unquestionably edged its way straight into our daily make-up routine. And how could it not? With its ethereal lineup of pink and nude hues, Home Edit-worthy shade organization, and addictively silky formulas, we definitely don’t have to work hard to find a space for it in our hearts (or our make-up bags).

It would be advantageous to be offered at least one slightly darker shade among the rose color scheme, however, we remedied this by pairing the palette with one of our best eyeliners to add a touch of smoke.

Of course, we were drawn in just from the grammable packaging that looks uncannily at home on our dressing table, but this is one book we’re glad we judged by its cover...

Aleesha Badkar
Former Deputy Editor at My Imperfect Life

Aleesha was Deputy Editor and Beauty & Fashion Editor for My Imperfect Life, where she headed up the beauty, fashion and eCommerce pages. Previously she was Shopping Writer at woman&home and gained an AOP awards nomination after working on their news team. She earned an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London in 2017 and has since worked with a number of brands including, Women's Health, Stylist and Goodto. When she’s not testing all the new beauty & lifestyle products on the market, Aleesha spends her time soaking up the newest bestsellers and Netflix releases, watching everything Marvel, learning about different wines, attempting new languages and traveling as much as she can.