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Eye makeup can be the biggest hassle. With having to clean eyeshadow brushes, falling glitter, and other hazards of the powder eyeshadow, it’s no wonder so many people are turning to eyeshadow sticks instead. It should be no surprise, though, that these can be expensive, and many makeup lovers are loathe to throw out their old powder eyeshadows, even once they’re broken up or never used. Luckily, it’s actually incredibly easy to create your own powder stick out of whatever eyeshadow you like, creating the perfect eyeshadows for your eye color by your own means. This not only gives you an eyeshadow that stays on better and is easier to apply, it also gives you the opportunity to perfect your color preferences, and to make a product that’s easy to use on the go—something that eyeshadow powder in its compact form is definitely not.
Step 1: Gather your ingredients.
To make a powdered eyeshadow stick at home, you actually don’t need too many things. The absolute must-haves are: beeswax and shea butter for the base, and a (preferably dark or bright) eyeshadow or mix of eyeshadows. One of the best things about being able to make a powdered eyeshadow stick at home is that it allows you to make use of old powdered eyeshadows, or to combine colors you don’t use into one you will. These ingredients, however, are just for the most basic formulation. For the best results, you’ll also want to gather some vitamin E oil and glycerin. Furthermore, you can make a cream shadow or color your eyeshadow stick with mica powder, if you’re not just trying to convert crème to powder eyeshadows.
Step 2: Build your base.
Before you add your color to make a powdered eyeshadow stick complete, you need a cream base that will enable your color to stick to your eyelids, without causing adverse reactions. The crucial base for this is beeswax. You can use any kind, but beeswax pastilles are a particularly easy way to melt and mix your base with the rest of your ingredients, and to easily adjust the ratios to your preferences. If you go the block o’ wax route, however, just grate or shave your beeswax to make it easier. Whichever route you go, you’ll want to have about two teaspoons of beeswax. Just make sure it’s white, as much as beeswax is actually yellow, it may inhibit the bright color payoff at the end.
In addition to the beeswax, you’ll want a roughly equal amount of Shea butter. You can use a double boiler, or just melt it gently over a candle. Melt the beeswax first, then add in the Shea butter and mix thoroughly. Then, add a couple of drops of vitamin E to keep your eyelids healthy and moisturized, and just a dab of glycerin, which will give you the consistency you need. Many people forego the glycerin, but feel free to try it both ways and decide which texture is easiest for you. You can also use castor oil in addition to, or instead of, the vitamin E. If you do this, use just about two teaspoons as well. This will give your eyeshadow a shinier, brighter look, and might help lighter colors shine through a bit more as well.
Step 3: Add your color.
Once everything is melted and stirred together, you can let it cool. Now it’s time to add your color.
There are a few different ways you can make a powdered eyeshadow stick the perfect color. The first way, and the most DIY-friendly, is just to recycle old eyeshadows. Maybe you have a particular color in a set that you never use, or just some old, cracked powders lying around. You can use a few small eyeshadows of a similar color, or you can mix together different colors and shades to find your perfect look. I often find mixing too-dark with too-light colors allows you to use up eyeshadows you would otherwise rarely or never use. Regardless, a few small eyeshadows of whatever color(s) you like should do the trick. Just add them to the substance base and mix thoroughly. You can then pack it into old (thoroughly washed out!) makeup sticks, or purchase empty chubby sticks wholesale (check out sites like Alibaba for this).
Alternatively, you can make a powdered eyeshadow stick out of mica powder and/or glitter, in addition to your base. In this case, it’s a simple matter of selecting the right shade of mica powder and a glitter to go with it—either a colored glitter, a simple white or silver glitter, or a glitter eyeshadow powder. In this recipe, your color dries and sets much more permanently and securely than glitter or powder shadow alone, so it’s a great way to repurpose a messy makeup tool that you might be hesitant to use, into something useful and simple to apply.
Step 4: Let it sit.
Whichever color choice you go with, once you’re done, you’ll want to let it sit in its container for at least 24 hours, just to make sure the color dries and sets properly, and that the mixture is completely set and cooled before you apply it. Just leave it in a room temperature area for this time, so it can cool and set naturally.
Step 5: Apply your eyeshadow.
Finally, you’re ready to apply the eyeshadows. This is the easy, and fun part—just like any other eyeshadow stick, you can pretty much fly blind, just swiping your new color over your eyelids and dabbing the edges. No hassle or translucent setting powders involved.
If you make a powdered eyeshadow stick in neutral or pink tones, or without glitter, this recipe is also perfectly conducive to doubling as a lipstick, blush, or even concealer. As you play around with your recipe, you can develop your perfect, all-in-one makeup tool, as the ingredients are natural and safe for your skin, as well as non-toxic enough for your lips as it is for your eyes.