Chanel Spring & Fall 2011: Ombres Perleés de Chanel versus Illusion d’Ombre

June 22, 2011
Thanks to Becca for the question: How do the Spring Ombres Perleés de Chanel compare to the new Illusion d’Ombres for Fall?
Price: The Spring Ombres Perleés de Chanel retailed for $65 (see my review here) and was packaged in a black mirrored compact. I searched online and it appears to no longer be available for sale anywhere. If you’re still looking for this I highly recommend searching instore to see if they still have stock. (Do it now before they are gone forever!) The Fall Illusion d’Ombres retail for $36 each and come with a capped angled brush.
Texture: The Spring Palette is softer and smoother in texture with a slightly powder feel. The Fall shadows are stickier in texture, mainly because of the jelly-gel like consistency. They are not sticky upon application though.

From what I see (might not translate to what you see on the computer screen):
Spring White is a pearly white, cool-toned
Fall 81 is a brighter white, even more cool, with glitter flecks/chunks
Spring Pink/Peach is a pearly frosted pink with a slight hint of peach
Fall 82 is a straight peach, but on my skin looks strikingly similar to Spring
Spring Purple is a complex fusion of purple, red, blue shimmers
Fall 83 is a straight purpley-grey shimmer, almost lilac, no red
Spring Green is a multichromatic green that flashes pink, dark green, light green (no silver)
Fall 84 is a khaki silver, no pink tones, more metallic, more silvery
Spring Blue-Grey is a blue-grey smokey shimmer, also complex
Fall 85 is a black with blueish tones and big silver chunks

Pigment and Shimmer: I found the Spring Palette to be high-shimmer, but is more finely milled and luminous. The Fall shadows are high-shimmer and highly metallic with visible flecks of sparkle. They are more chunky. Pigment of both are layerable and blendable for either a sheer or pigmented look. I would say the Fall Shadows have the ability to be layered for a more intense look though (emphasis on intense).

Lasting Power: As mentioned in my previous post, I have not yet had a chance to test lasting power of the fall shades. I found the lasting power of the Spring Palette to be medium-wear. It did not last the full day from 6 am to 8 pm, but it did last well into the afternoon.

Application: I used fingers for the spring palette. For the fall shadows, I prefer the brush since it helps pick up more color and allows for more control.

Swatches in different lighting/angles/etc.

The colors: Are the colors the same? I would say no. They have similar undertones. The shimmer blinded my camera and when you add the cloudy lighting, it was hard to get an exact photo. The Spring Palette shimmers are multi-colored. The Fall shadows are metallic with different intensity of flecks and sparkles but not quite as multi-colored as Spring.

Overall: I personally prefer the Spring palette by far. While it might look untouched, I’ve actually used this palette on a regular basis with my fingers. (Finger application seems to smooth out the surface.) I had ordered everything from Fall sight unseen so I didn’t really know what to expect. I know these won’t make me look like the models on the Chanel runway, but I couldn’t help being completely blown away by the gorgeous looks Peter Philips created for the metallic smokey eyes. How could I resist trying these?

I will need to experiment more with the new Illusion d’Ombres to find an application technique that is wearable for me (as in not-too-metallic). I think they are definitely worth checking out. Even if they don’t seem to be “you” (they aren’t very “me”) it’s always nice to try something different once in a while, even if it’s just for fun.

Availability: I bought mine from Bergdorfs. The whole collection is on Chanel.com. I haven’t seen it anywhere in-store on the West Coast although I suspect any day now. Last year Fall hit stores on June 27th. (No, my memory isn’t that good, I just looked at my archives.) From what I heard last time I checked my local Nordstroms and Macys – all sales associates said “sometime in July.”

And to answer 1 more question: what camera do I use? See this post here.

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  • Thank you so much for this comparison!!! I have been wondering the same thing ever since I heard about these shadows. I love the Spring palette and plan to use it all fall. I think I can skip these new shadows after seeing your review, I prefer the less glittery look of the Spring colors.

  • Thank you for the comparison swatches. Colour wise, the two products look extremely similar. I'm still going to pick up most of the Illusion d'Ombre, the shimmer and metallic finish is gorgeous.

  • What a great observation, I didn't even notice how similar the two sets of colors were!

  • I am guilty of not using my Ombres Perlees de Chanel at all.. I feel like I got it so long ago. Was it really for spring?? Wow.. lol. I really should start using it!

    I'm a little disappointed in the fall cream shadows. Judging from your swatches they look a little.. too sparkly (reminds me of Jill Stuart Eye Jellies). The spring looks much smoother in comparison. Ooh this is possibly a good thing! I can skip the Illusion d'Ombre entirely (wellll.. maybe except the black one.. hrm)! Thanks for writing this up! For once, you're a wallet saver!

  • Now that I see them together they do look somewhat similar, although I'd say the spring colors are pearly (kind of a softer shiner) than these new super sparkly ones. I cannot get over how gorgeous #84 is, I put it on and it makes me want to go out all night! lol

  • I absolutely love the spring palette. The colors are beautiful and smooth. From the photos, the color scheme seems similar. I'm excited by the new cream shadows but I think I might just pick up one, if any at all? That steel dark blue looks quite gorgeous in the pot.

  • Anonymous

    Wow, hats off to Miss Becca for asking such a good question. Great post, Lina.


  • Hey Sabrina! Lovely comparison pictures, I think that the Black cream shadow from Fall was the only thing I was not completely thrilled about because of the large sparkle/glitter particles that are bound to migrate. Otherwise my faves are the purple cream shadow and the peach. The rust/ burgundy is also nice to have. Ultimately I feel the look and feel of the Ombre Perlees and the fall shadows are different enough to justify owning both.
    @Renee I have one Jill Stuart eye jelly and the Chanel fall shadows with the exception of the Black (#85) are NOT that glittery. The Black one packs a lot of pigment but the sparkle is just suspended in it unlike the others where the shimmer is more "integrated" Lol! Do you know what I mean?
    And Sabrina, LOVE the new layout/ picture size. Have been feasting my eyes on the Chanel fall beauties here!

  • I will have someone purchase these for me from USA as I cannot wait for them to arrive to Europe 😉 – and she said her Chanel counters excpected them the first week in July. I think I need all colours now!! Thank you for such great reviews!

  • Thank you so much for this great post. At first look, they do look some what similar, I was thinking "should I even be getting any Illusion d'Ombres?" but as I read along, my views changes and the swatches totally blew me off. I know I will be getting some of these new shadow =)

  • Glittery gorgeous!!!

  • Anonymous

    love all your Fall reviews and can't wait for your lippy reviews 🙂 i'm loving the lips chanel did for fashion week <3

  • This is such a great comparison post. I'll need to try them out when they hit the counter. I am a big fan of sparkles and glitters, and the idea of getting all six pots of $36 each vs $65 for all the colours, I'd be happy w/ my Spring palette.
    Doing metallic colours on Asian skin is tricky, ick. I find pearl sheen the easiest texture to work with.
    Thanks! x

  • I didn't even consider how close these collections were. Thanks for the post. The swatches are excellent!

  • Bridget S.

    If you are still looking for the Spring Palette, Saks Fifth Ave in Boston still has it!

  • I've got the Spring eye shadow palette and LOVE the colours and textures, much more so that the standard quads.

  • Z

    Thanks so much for this comparison. I, too, was wondering how they compared. I got the Ombres Perleés palette when it first came out and I'm so glad I did. I haven't decided on any of the Illusion d'Ombres yet.

  • Sabrina, first off I would like you to know that you and your weekly roundup entourage are the best!!! I know when your posts that they will be meticulous in description and well written. Second I agree with you, I think from your photos I would have to agree that I prefer the Spring palette. Can't wait for your next post!!! Have a fabulous day!<3

  • Anonymous

    the pictures looked washed out. the earlier light settings were better.

  • Sabrina, these comparisons are great, this is very helpful! I'm so glad I got the Spring palette! The Fall collection has been available at Bloomingdale's (in store) for about a week now.

  • WOW! Thank you SO MUCH for doing all of this hard work!!! I am soooo glad I asked!!! Those last two shades are calling me!!! As always, gorgeous photos.

  • Eileen

    Sabrina, your great post answered the million dollar question: Just how similar are the spring and autumn eyeshadow collections? Since I have Ombres Perlées, I could easily see from the promo pictures that the new shadows were based on the same color palette, but I was very curious about the finish and over-all color effect. Your comparison pictures made it quite clear that the difference is significant. Whereas Ombres Perlées creates a luminous, multidimensional glow; Illusion d'Ombre creates an edgy, one-dimensional metallic finish. Given my age and the difficulty you're having figuring out ways to use the new shadows, I think I'll content myself with my spring palette.

  • Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for these comparisons. Ironically I was wondering the same thing right after you posted your swatch/review post because I am in love with Ombre Perlees and was scrambling because I didn't get a backup of it.

    I agree with you in that this doesn't look like an exact dupe of Ombre Perlees, but I think this is probably the closest you can get with Chanel. It looks fantastic!

  • Oops as a follow up to my previous comment (I also tweeted you, but I don't know if you'll see it because my Twitter is being wonky these days): can you do a comparison between the Illusion d'Ombres and the Armani Eyes to Kill in terms of texture, application and wear? I'm in need of a peach shade to replace the peach one in my Ombre Perlees palette and I don't know whether to get Emerveille or Rock Sand from Armani…

    Also I've bookmarked this in my browser and look back to it every once in a while to feed my love for Chanel. Thank you!

  • Ladies, I'm glad this helped. Huge thank you to Becca for asking this question!

    To address the questions: Sheila, your question has been addressed in the original Illusion d'Ombres post (the writeup). Please refer one post back for the comparison, hth!

  • Thanks for the swatches as always! Is Mirifique similar to Stila Black Cat at all?

  • Sabrina, thank you so much for such a great comparison! I was wondering how these compared as soon as I saw Fall teasers! I have no Chanel counter anywhere near me, so you've saved the day, yet again! Thanks for all your hard work 🙂

  • tatiana0

    Thank you Bridget S. for the SFA tip. They did have some left – 4 -so I ordered one.

  • I bought my Fall collection items last Saturday (6/18) at the Soho boutique, for anyone who is in NY!

    Those shadows look really pretty, and now I am tempted . . . so far I have only picked up the nail polish.

  • I remember the first comment I made here was to ask if ETK Red Lust was at all similar to the purple shade in Ombres Perlees – so happy that there is finally one that's close enough! Love the shade.

    Great swatches, comparison & post as always!

  • Excellent post. Thanks so much for the comparison and the photos!

    I'm glad I splurged on the spring palette. I think I'll pass on the fall version. It'll free up more funds for the quad and lip colors I want. 🙂