If you're like me and love watching your favorite YouTubers execute their killer makeup looks, than you know it can get expensive trying to keep up with all of the new products and palettes we see in those makeup videos. I thought I'd take a chance to insert myself into the conversation, and share with you the five eye shadow palettes that every girl should have in their collection. From mattes and shimmers to neutral hues and pops of color, these palettes can help you accomplish the looks the pros use without feeling the need to purchase every brand new launch product. If you've got these five palettes, you're set for life! Check out below for my why-buys and some details that will help you in your purchasing decisions.
This eye shadow palette is a no-brainer. It offers so many benefits it's hard to decide which to talk about first! Well, let's start with the fact that you're getting 35 eye shadows for $22.99. That's pretty much unheard of! Next up, the quality of the eye shadows for the cost is absolutely awesome, the mattes are super buttery and blend out easily while still giving a great color payoff. The shimmer shades are probably what puts this palette over the top in my book - their pigmentation is phenomenal and they have some serious staying power. With plenty of rich browns, coppers and gold hues to choose from, the Morphe 35O is obviously for those who love warmer tones. But if this color palette doesn't work for your skin tone, no worries! Morphe has plenty of other color iterations of this 35-shadow palette - there's one for everyone! I have created countless unique looks using just this palette, from warm, rich matte smokey eyes, to a simple shimmer dusting on the lid. The Morphe 35O has a great color range that allows for a smooth transition from day to night, without ever needing to dip into another palette for the one shade you feel is missing. Because of it's popularity, Morphe even created an all-matte and all-shimmer version of the 35O, so if you're a matte gal or a sparkly chick you can choose to go that route as well!
Why-Buy: You get the best of everything here - color pigmentation, a good mix of mattes and shimmers, easily blendable and buildable shadows, all for a price point that is shockingly affordable.
Let's be real, this is the best all-matte eye shadow palette I've ever owned. The Kat Von D Shade + Light Eye Contour Palette gives you 12 shades for $46. That might seem a little pricey, but what's unique about this palette is that it gives you three quads - a neutral, cool, and warm toned pairing of shadows. The quads are a big help for beginners who struggle with deciding how to pair and layer eye shadows for that maximum contouring effect. Obviously there are no rules to makeup, so you can mix and match across the quads as you see fit. If you're a little intimidated, the quads take a lot of the guesswork out for you, making them a helpful starting place when pairing a color palette to your desired look. I find the biggest benefit to Kat Von D's palette to be the extremely pigmented shadows, giving you a perfect range of light-to-dark options. You've got a brow bone highlight/lid shade in each quad, a few transition shades, and a deep crease shade for added definition. I always reach for this palette when I'm doing a smokey eye that needs some black in the crease, because the black in this eye shadow palette is seriously the blackest I've ever seen!
Why-Buy: The best all-matte eye-shadow palette on the market. You've got easy quads to reach for depending on the coloration of your look, and these blend like a dream.
This eye shadow palette is definitely a winner in the packaging and presentation department! From the heart-shaped eye shadow pans to the smell of chocolate that emanates from each shadow as you dip your brush in, this is truly an experiential palette that has great functionality as well. And come on, the tin candy bar packaging is durable AND adorable all in one! The Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons Palette gives you so many options to work with, offering both matte and shimmer to create endless looks for those who are more daring with their makeup. This eye shadow palette retails for $49 and you receive 16 shadows. There are tons of great matte shades to build up in your crease for differing levels of definition. This palette has plenty of everyday neutral shades, but it also adds some great pops of color with the pinks and the teal blue for those days when you're feeling a little more adventurous. If you're not sure what to do with them, try smoking out your lash line for a pop of color, or if you're ready to go all in, dust them on your lid for a bolder smokey eye!
Why-Buy: The smell alone is great, but you're truly getting loads of options with wearable shades and enough color pops to help expand your portfolio of looks. This is a perfect travel palette you can take with you for any and all occasions.
The Lorac Pro 2 Palette is a staple to have in your arsenal, and features super streamlined packaging that doesn't take up a ton of space in your makeup collection. This eye shadow palette features 16 shadows, 8 shimmers and 8 mattes at a $44 price tag. The palette is nicely organized; you can use the top row of mattes to blend into a simple daytime look, and the bottom row offers a full spectrum of light, dark, and pops of color in the form of shimmer shadows. The Lorac Pro 2 features extremely pigmented shadows across the board. These pigments are so buttery in texture and blend easily without much effort or the need for a lot of technique. That's a big win! Another huge plus is the range of colors offered - from neutrals to pops of color, both warm and cool-toned, you've got a palette for the everyday look or a special occasion. One last perk - the shimmers are super sparkly and look great as a wash over the lid, and can be intensified when layered over a glitter glue or a base cream shadow for even more longevity. Keep in mind, there will be some fallout with shadows this pigmented so tap off your brush after dipping into the pan and prior to applying to the lid. Just a minor thing to be aware of when experimenting with such deep shadows.
Why-Buy: These shadows are the easily some of the most blendable and buttery of any shadows I've ever purchased, either in a palette or alone. The Lorac Pro 2 offers something for everyone: mattes, shimmers, neutrals and pops of color.
Rounding out the Top Five is this eye shadow palette by Tarte - the Tartelette in Bloom. This palette offers you twelve shadows for 45 bucks, and it's worth every penny! It is more compact in design, which is great for travel and yet it boasts one of the biggest, best and most useful mirrors of all the palettes I've shown you. Rather than a really skinny, wide mirror that's hard to use when on the go, this one fills the entire lid, giving you more real estate to work with when touching up. With this palette you have options galore for coordinating looks and shadows together. Tartelette in Bloom offers nine mattes - great for creating a variety of depth in the crease or a simpler daytime all-matte look (which is super on-trend lately!). Take advantage of the three expertly crafted shimmer shades that run from a light daytime option to a few darker shimmers for a moodier, smokey look. Working across each of the three rows, you've got four shadows that can coordinate to create either a cool, neutral, or warm toned eye shadow look. The plethora of options are certainly helpful if you're a newbie to makeup and unsure which shades work best together. However, don't feel tied to using the organization of the palette in any certain way. Some of my favorite looks are ones I've mixed and matched with multiple shades. My #1 rule in make up: rules are made to be broken!
Why-Buy: This palette is the most travel-friendly of the bunch, and offers a wide offering of neutral shadows to create pretty much any look imaginable with easy application for all makeup levels.
I hope this post was helpful! I tried to find at least one affordable option, but try to look at these purchases as investment pieces. Palettes like this last a really long time, and if they're colors that you're naturally drawn to, then they will be ones you'll reach for again and again for everyday and special occasion use.
What are your favorite eye shadow palettes that you own or are on your wish list? Let me know in the comments below!