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I started incorporating eyeshadow into my makeup regimen in early 2015, and let me tell you, I was horrible at first. I've never been one to ease into something... no, I go head-on. So when I started doing eyeshadow, I didn't start with a subtle or easy look, I tried a purple smokey eye about an hour before I had to leave for church on a Sunday morning. To date, this was one of my biggest makeup mistakes! I was determined though, and before long, and after numerous YouTube videos, I could do a very not-bruise-looking purple smokey eye, as well as many other eyeshadow looks. I did my sister's makeup for her wedding, and then the next year my friend's sister's wedding makeup as well! Over the years, I've had lots of fun trying out various eyeshadow palettes, some high-end, some drugstore, budget friendly palettes, and a few in between. I'd love to share with you my favorites today, as well as tips and tricks!
Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture Palette $42
This was my very first high-end palette, and when it came out in summer 2017, it was rather controversial, with it's velvety softness and the darker shades' tendency to blend awkwardly. However, I fell in love with it! If you're using the darker shades, you just need to be patient with the blending, and only pack on a little shadow at a time. With every shade in this grungy, 90s inspired palette, a little product goes a long way, so pick up less with your brush than you think you need! And blend, blend, blend! Anastasia Beverly Hills is (so far) my very favorite eyeshadow brand, closely followed by another high-end brand...
Huda Beauty Desert Dusk Palette $65
Another high-end favorite! The mattes in this palette are a little dry and dusty (like the name!), but so very pigmented! With many of these colors, if you want to pack a punch with the color, I definitely recommend using an eyeshadow primer to get the most bang for your buck (I recommend Urban Decay Eden Primer Potion or the Anastasia Beverly Hills Eye Primer). There's not much fallout in this palette, and the little there is easily brushes away due to it's dry nature.
Wet n Wild Beauty palettes (various prices between $2 and $8)
Wet n Wild Beauty is a FANTASTIC, budget friendly, drugstore makeup brand. They're carried at various dollar stores, Walmart, and even Ulta. Talk about versatile! The quality is sometimes hit or miss, but even with their less high quality products, usually something can be done to make them better, either with a primer, or just a general understanding that sometimes the color doesn't look the same on the skin as it does in the package.
NYX Beauty palettes (Also various prices between $2 and $35)
NYX is also a wonderful budget friendly brand. You can find them in Target and Ulta, and I love their variety of products and prices. The shadows are pigmented and good quality, and bright as can be!
Tips for eyeshadow application
- This is very cliche, I know, but in most cases, a little goes a long way! You can always add more shadow if you didn't pick up enough the first time you dipped into the pan.
- Never underestimate the power of a fluffy, soft blending brush. It's super important when avoiding harsh lines as you transition from one color or shade to the next, and well as even color application of the same color. In general, blending will improve your eyeshadow looks by 100%!
- Swatch on your hand, arm, or cheek before applying to your eyes! Why? Sometimes colors look like different shades in the eyeshadow pan than they will on skin—this is especially and unfortunately true and common in lower-end or more budget friendly products and brands. They might be great quality shadows, but just a little inaccurate in the color department.
So there you have it! My favorite eyeshadow palettes and a few tips and tricks to up your eyeshadow game! Keep an eye out for more beauty-related articles, coming soon!