Bring on the holiday cocktails (Angry Orchard + Fireball, please) because it’s party season! Even if my snowy evening was actually spent in a faded sweatshirt watching Vampire Diaries, my eye makeup is on point. Because I spent the other half of the evening testing sparkly shadows for sticking power and glitter payoff. Here are my lab results.
Maybelline Color Tattoos
Let’s start off with a drugstore purchase. Color Tattoos quickly became a staple of mine, and they are a great inexpensive shadow base. These get the “party perfect” stamp because they are indispensable for adhering shimmery eyeshadows to your lids AND keep your shadow crease-free for hours. It’s the one product that keeps my eye makeup in place through the workday and a three hour roller derby practice. Go for the newer “metals” for extra glam, or the originals for a smoky eye.
Stila Jewel Eye Shadow in Black Diamond
A sparkly shadow for adults. Black Diamond has the same hue and sheen of graphite pencil with intense color payoff. The shadow itself has a pearl finish, and is also loaded with glitter for a multi-dimensional shine. These shadows are very highly pigmented and worth the money. I’d recommend using a shadow base or a little setting spray to prevent glitter fallout.
Urban Decay Moondust shadow in Space Cowboy
Smokey eyes are not actually my best look, so I purchased a neutral bronzy peach. This particular shade is not particularly pigmented, but the glitter payoff is dramatic. Try the pewter Moonspoon or blue-green Zodiac for more intensity. If you are the type of girl to wear light shadow and winged liner, these glittery washes of color are the perfect holiday pick for you.
NYX Ultra Pearl Mania in LP17 Yellow Gold
Very messy, but you can get so many looks with these loose pigments and they come in a wide range of colors, from neutral metallics to theme party candy colors. Apply with a brush for a shimmery wash of color, or sweep them over cream shadow for an intense, wet look finish.
Pro tip: dust a generous amount of translucent powder under your eyes before applying pigment to the lid. When you’re finished, brush away the excess translucent powder, sweeping any colored pigment along with it.
CK One Eye Quad in Disco
I do not normally fall for department store sales pitches, but the new Calvin Klein range really is delicious. Aside from the mod, bright white packaging, these shadows are super finely milled and the color payoff is exactly the shade you see in the pan. Each compact has a mix of matte, satin, and pearl colors so you can layer up from “respectable dinner” to “warehouse party”. The iridescent shades would be especially stunning on darker skin.
Fair warning: the velvety-soft texture makes these compacts fragile and prone to crumbling. Do not carry them to the club unless you are comfortable stuffing your purse with bubble wrap.
Bonus points go to Maybelline Clean Express Ultra Gentle makeup remover. There is something oddly satisfying about the gel formula, which also breaks down long-wearing shadow without tugging or making a mess. Sensitive skin approved.
Party on, Wayne!