Want an easy eye look? We got you.
You know, sometimes a simple makeup look is where it’s at. Although there’s a time and place for super glam, bold eye looks, daily wear doesn’t have to be complicated. We put a focus on single eyeshadows that can be used for a no-fuss, one & done eye look. And though these may not be the simplest (re: subtle), they’re all the best for a simple swipe on the lid and go kind of day. Whether you want cream or liquid, glitter or matte – we got you. Keep scrolling for our picks of the best individual eyeshadow, spanning the drugstore, pro-grade, and luxury categories.
Best Glitter Eyeshadow: Hourglass Scattered Light Glitter Eyeshadow
Why We Love It: Holy glitter! These little babies pack a punch and are absolutely stunning. Hourglass calls Scattered Light a “weightless refined glitter eyeshadow,” and they’re right. The glitter isn’t chunky, yet the sparkle is intense. Scattered Light has a unique hybrid cream formula that feels similar to a powder, but doesn’t have the fallout of a loose pigment. These have a long wear that resists creasing and fading for up to 8 hours. For best wear, pair with your favorite eyeshadow primer to give the formula something to hold onto. Use one shade for a simple, all over look, mix shades for a fun glitter eye, or use as an eye topper! We promise you’ll love these glimmer pots.
Best Matte: about-face Matte Fluid Eye Paint
Why We Love It: Halsey’s about-face Matte Fluid Eye Paint is an Allure Best of Beauty winner for a reason. In just one swipe, these deliver bold, buildable pigment. Its matte finish has a smooth finish that layers easily over itself or other eyeshadows. These last all day on the eyes without budging, smudging, or creasing – no need an eye primer because once they’re set, they don’t move. With 26 shades to choose from, you’ll find a color for any eye look you’re going for.
Honorable Mention: While we don’t recommend the glitter version of r.e.m. beauty’s liquid eyeshadows, the matte formula is pretty great. Midnight Shadows Liquid Eyeshadow comes in a range of 10 matte nude tones. The gel formula is crease resistant and waterproof for an all day stay in place wear. These liquid shadows are versatile, too, They can be used all over the lids, as an eyeshadow base, or as an eyeliner. We like these to neutralize our eyelids on minimal days when we don’t want any sparkle.
Best Multi Purpose: Danessa Myricks Colorfix
Why We Love It: Danessa Myricks just knows what she’s doing it, especially when it comes to versatile, multi purpose products. Colorfix can be used safely on the lips, eyes, or any part of the face. They come in a variety of shades and finishes (mattes, glazes, foils, metallics) and can be mixed for customized colors. The pigmented formulas are smudge proof, waterproof, and resistant to high temperatures. Now, these aren’t the most user-friendly because they dry fast and can be hard to blend. Practice definitely makes perfect with Colorfix!
Honorable Mention: We’ve got our eyes on Lady Gaga’s Haus Labs Hy-Power Pigment Paints. These tubes may be newer to the beauty community, but we see them being a favorite among many. Hy-Power pigment comes in both satin and matte finishes for use on the eyes, lips, cheeks, and body (note: a handful of shades are not suitable for eye use). The hydrating, waterproof pigments promise 12 hours of comfortable wear with no transferring. And they wear with minimal creasing, fading, or flaking, too. To keep skin nourished, the formula has “HausTech Powdered™” Innovation, to include squalane, hyaluronic acid, and maracuja extract.
Most Finger Friendly: Charlotte Tilbury Eyes To Mesmerize
Why We Love It: Charlotte Tilbury Eyes To Mesmerize is that perfect one and done finger-friendly eyeshadow. Even Charlotte herself boasts this product as the “ultimate foolproof product” that is “no-mirror makeup.” The water-infused formula has a cooling effect, while vitamin E hydrates and provides antioxidant protection. Eyes To Mesmerize is more of a shimmer than glitter, making it perfect for everyday, minimalistic looks. But don’t worry, your lids will still glisten and sparkle with every blink!
Honorable Mention: Oldies, but goodies, MAC Paint Pots are a classic to have in your collection. These little cream pots can be used as an eye primer or worn as eyeshadow alone. MAC promises 24 hours of non-caking, non-faking, non-creasing, water resistant wear. They build and layer well to create any eye look, subtle to dramatic.
Most Long Wearing: rms Eyelights Cream Eyeshadow
Why We Love It: rms Eyelights are a recent rebrand from the brand’s previous ‘Eye Polish.’ The new and improved cream eyeshadows provide a longer wear that resists creasing and fading. With 6 metallic shades to choose from, these are perfect for a simple daytime eye or a dramatic nighttime look. The creamy texture is buildable in pigment and nourishing thanks to organic green tea and natural peptide quinoa extracts. But, where these cream eyeshadows shine is the long wear. RMS isn’t lying when they promise a creaseproof, long wear. While these don’t claim waterproof, they withstand heat, humidity, and sweat for an all-day, virtually life proof wear.
Eyelights do only come in a metallic finish, but we think they are suitable for anyone. The luminous, light-reflective finish is perfect for any look.
Honorable Mention: Smashbox Always On Cream Eyeshadow is infused with primer for a 24 hour wear that is transfer, crease, cake, smudge, and settle proof. Always On withstands sweat and humidity and can be worn as an all-over eye color or eyeliner. The high-pigment mousse-like formula is mistake proof, gliding on easily with the fingers or a brush. There’s 12 matte shades to choose from for many different eye looks, as subtle or bold as you want.
Best Value: Colourpop Super Shock Eyeshadows
Why We Love It: Who doesn’t love an affordable eye shadow that comes in a rainbow of colors? Well, you’re in luck, because Colourpop Super Shock Shadow is just that! With over 55 shades of matte and shimmer finishes to choose from and at only $6 a pop, your eyeshadow collection is about to be poppin’. Super Shock is Colourpop’s revolutionary creme-powder formula with a unique bouncy texture. It has bold color and finely-milled glitter with minimal fallout, fading, or creasing. In just one swipe, you’ll have a simple eye look, or mix and match shades for a bold look.
Honorable Mention: At $5, e.l.f. No Budge Shadow Stick is another great value option. These cream eyeshadow stick are available in 12 metallic shades and deliver high-pigment color with amazing staying powder. The formula is creamy and easy to blend with the fingers or a brush for an easy eye look. The lighter shades are perfect for daytime wear, while the darker shades are perfect for a sultry eye look. And, there’s a built-in sharpener to keep the tip sharp, making them able to be used for eyeliner as well!
Best Cream Stick: Laura Mercier Caviar Stick
Why We Love It: Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks are one of the most iconic eyeshadow sticks on the market. With matte, shimmer, chrome, and intense shades to choose from, there’s no shortage of eye looks you can create. These eyeshadow sticks glide on smoothly, starting out as a cream, but blending out to a powder finish. Couple the effortless application with a 12 hour wear promise and you have an eye pencil for any day and any look. The formula sets on its own for crease prof, transfer resistant wear that layers over or under other powder and liquid eyeshadows. Pro tip: you can use multiple shades to create fun, glam eye looks.
Best Splurge Powder Eyeshadow: Victoria Beckham Lid Lustre
Why We Love It: This eyeshadow. One of our favorite luxury products for the eyes, Victoria Beckham Beauty Lid Lustre is a crystal infused eyeshadow that gives a wet, pearly finish on the eyes. The unique formula contains over 60% pearlescent pigment for “aura-amplifying energy” and multidimensional eyes in just one swipe. Its creamy formula is easy to apply with fingers or a brush for the prettiest glimmering eyes. The formula also contains skin-loving ingredients, such as squalane and guava leaf extract to support healthy looking skin. Wear these alone for a subtle pop or layer on top of other shadows for extra shine.
Best Splurge Liquid Eyeshadow: Armani Eye Tint Liquid Eyeshadow
Why We Love It: Armani Eye Tint Liquid Eyeshadow is a luxury liquid eyeshadow that comes in a variety of 11 shades with matte, metallic, and shimmer finishes. These liquid eyeshadows are sheer in pigment and are perfect for a no-makeup makeup look. You can build these up, but they don’t get super intense. These are very-finger friendly for a one and done look. We’re impressed with the longevity, too. They wear pretty well with minimal creasing.
Best Clean Eyeshadow: ILIA Liquid Powder Eye Tint
Why We Love It: ILIA is one of our go-to brands for clean beauty. Most all the products are high performing, including their Liquid Powder Eye Tint. The formula is cream-to-power and finger friendly for an easy eye look. They do dry down fast, so it’s best to work one eye at a time. But, this means they are smudge-resistant and don’t budge or fade for an entire 8+ hours of wear. They can be applied for a subtle wash of color or built for a bolder eye. Liquid Power Eye Tints come in a variety of 16 matte and chromatic shades to suit any eye look.
Best Eyeshadow With SPF: Supergoop! Shimmershade SPF 30
Why We Love It: An eyeshadow with SPF? Well, that’s intriguing! Of course, Supergoop is home to the first one ever. Shimmershade is a cream eyeshadow with SPF 30 to keep eyes pretty and protected. The four shimmery shades suit most skin tones and can be worn alone or as a base for any eye look. Simply swipe your finger into the jar and pat in place on the eyelids. You can build off this look, or wear it on pool and beach days for a bit of shine and protection. These are my favorite for a ‘pool party look’ when you want a bit of glam, but want to protect the delicate skin on your eyelids.
Best Wet/Dry Eyeshadow: Revlon So Fierce! Prismatic Eyeshadow Palette
Why We Love It: It’s a palette, but it contains one and done shadows that can be worn multiple ways, either wet or dry. And, the ‘So Fierce’ Revlon Eyeshadow Palette is just that. These pressed powder eyeshadows can be applied as is, or with a damp brush for a foiled eyeshadow look. So Fierce! comes in 6 color stories, with colors ranging from neutral to bold. What makes this eyeshadow special is the unique bouncy gel texture that applies with high pigment, minimal fallout. Revlon promises a crease-proof and smudge-proof wear, whether applied wet or dry. These eyeshadows are versatile, and can be applied with the fingers, a brush, or wet for a multitude of eyeshadow looks. See Eyeshadow in Action ▶️
Best Glitter Topper: Urban Decay 24/7 Moondust Eyeshadow
Why We Love It: Say hello to the perfect glitter eyeshadow topper! Urban Decay Moondust has been around for a while, but has recently gone viral thanks to TikTok. These eyeshadows have a slight base pigment and provide the ultimate sparkle for wearing alone or topping off any eyeshadow look. The pressed powder pigment is packed with microfine, intense glitter that can be built up for all the sparkle or dusted on for a light shimmer. Urban Decay promises up to 16 hours of wear and color payoff for all day glitz.
Honorable Mention: Makeup By Mario Master Crystal Reflector is another great eyeshadow topper. These have even less of a base pigment that Urban Decay Moondust and come in three shades: bronze, opal, and gold. The Master Crystal Reflector can be used on the eyes, cheeks, or décolletage to add a pop of sparkle wherever you wish. Worn alone, they give a very sheer wash of color with just some glitter – even less pigment than Moondust. But, they add the perfect sparkle to any eye look or cheek highlight.
Best Value Glitter Eyeshadow: e.l.f. Liquid Glitter
Why We Love It: An Allure Best of Beauty alum, e.l.f. Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow is one loved by many. These liquid glitters are a quick drying, long lasting gel formula that can be layered over top of shadows or worn on their own. e.l.f. promises a formula with minimal fallout and comfortable wear. Achieve a stunning opaque, multi-dimensional look in just one swipe. We’d challenge you to find a better liquid glitter eyeshadow at the drugstore, but there’s not many that come close to this one! At $6, you can pick up all 8 shades to create a variety of eye looks.
Best Drugstore Cream Stick: NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils
Why We Love It: If you ever watched 2008 Beauty YouTube, you’ll probably remember NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils. These babies have been around for a while and have many different uses, from an inner corner highlight, to eyeliner, to eyeshadow. With 16 shades ranging from lime green to hot pink, neutral browns and everything in between, you can create natural and fun eye looks. The creamy pigment is formulated for all day, creaseproof wear. It blends easily for a near foolproof application. Wear alone, or layer with other eyeshadows to create limitless looks.
- Best Glitter Eyeshadow: Hourglass Scattered Light ($30.00)
- Best Matte: about-face Matte Fluid Eye Paint ($16.00)
- Best Multi Purpose: Danessa Myricks Colorfix ($18.00)
- Most Finger Friendly: Charlotte Tilbury Eyes to Mesmerize ($34.00)
- Most Long Wearing: rms Eyelights Cream Eyeshadow ($26.00)
- Best Value: Colourpop Super Shock ($6.00)
- Best Cream Stick: Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color ($32.00)
- Best Splurge Powder Eyeshadow: Victoria Beckham Lid Lustre ($36.00)
- Best Splurge Liquid Eyeshadow: Armani Eye Tint ($30.00)
- Best Clean: ILIA Liquid Powder Eye Shadow Tint ($28.00)
- Best Eyeshadow With SPF: Supergoop! Shimmershade SPF 30 ($24.00)
- Best Wet/Dry Eyeshadow: Revlon So Fierce! Prismatic Eyeshadow Palette ($12.89)
- Best Glitter Topper: Urban Decay 24/7 Moondust ($22.00)
- Best Value Glitter Eyeshadow: elf Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow ($6.00)
- Best Drugstore Cream Stick: NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils ($5.50)
What Are Milabu Picks?
Edited by Maddie