We put the best to the test, so you don't have to
Buying eyeshadow needn’t be a chore these days; there are hundreds of the best eyeshadow palettes lining every drugstore and department store beauty hall.
As well as the best liquid eyeliner to make the whole look truly pop, a sweep of shadow adds colour and depth to your overall look. And of course, the whole thing is only completed by fanning out the lashes with your best mascara.
When it comes to SS18, green is having a major moment. We know what you’re thinking – green eye make-up? It’s not exactly sexy. Except when it’s in the hands of Tom Pecheux; at Elie Saab, he mixed bright green with brown for an earthy take on the shade, before spreading it along the lash line and lids.
Get the look by smudging out Sisley Phyto-Kohl Star Waterproof in Mystic Green, £36 at John Lewis, or use your fingers to sweep Chanel Les 9 Ombres Exclusive Creation in Affresco, £67 at House of Fraser.
Whether you want a compact quad à la Charlotte Tilbury, Tom Ford or SUQQU, or a mega-range of shades sprawling a giant palette from the likes of Huda Beauty, one of the best eyeshadow palettes will get you your colour fix.
The best eyeshadow primer
But, as with any blank canvas, there’s one essential first step: prep the area. No smokey eye can go the distance without a little help from the best eyeshadow primer on the block (because who wants to re-do the whole look a few hours later?).
While Bobbi Brown and Clinique both offer solid options, none holds a candle to Urban Decay’s Original Primer Potion, £17.50, Fabled. Smoothing the whole surface of your lid out, it grips onto shadow for smudge-free wear all day (or all night) long.
Without further ado, allow us to give you a quick tour of the best eyeshadow palettes in the beauty biz.
Keep scrolling for the best, Marie Claire approved buys on the market right now.
Can you really count yourself a beauty junkie if you’ve never owned a Naked palette? First released back in 2000 (seriously), Urban Decay’s Naked palettes have rightly earned their place as worldwide bestsellers with every new release. All the more reason to grab yourself their newest, the Heat palette, featuring 12 hot, bronzed-up shades that’ll heat up any make-up look. Grab ’em fast, cos they’ll sell out…
Marc Jacobs Eye-Conic palettes get the perfect balance of neutral and bold shades for the girl who likes a bit of everything when it comes to make-up. Don’t know about you, but we’ve got our eyes on that bold blue shade…
SUQQU’s eye quads are some of the best in the beauty world. The colour payoff is excellent, and the shade range covers just about every shade you could ask for to make your eyes truly pop. 05 is a particular favourite on the MC beauty desks.
It’s no surprise that Charlotte Tilbury’s eyeshadow quads, promising a different “look” in each palette, are insanely popular among beauty lovers. Colour rich and velvety, these shades are everything you want from an eyeshadow and more – and the glitter adds the perfect finishing touch at the end.
Want a lot of shades to play with? How does 35 sound? Morphe’s palettes are well known for the incredible variety offered in each set, and are held up by beauty bloggers as one of the best (with good reason). You’re spoilt for colour choice with one of these.
Make-up bag sized eyeshadow quads are probably one of the best beauty inventions to date; so much colour choice taking up such little space. We love the shades in the Silvered Topaz quad by Tom Ford Beauty – dab a little of the lighter shades on the eyelid for an understated daytime look, or go all out with a bold smokey eye.
Huda Kattans are so popular that there’s a ‘three palettes per customer’ policy on Desert Dusk purchases. From bold packs of colour to glittery washes, there’s everything you need to create mega eye looks with pinks, mauves and taupes, and everything in between.
If you don’t the hassle of putting your own MAC palette together yourself, have no fear, because there’s a handful of specially put together nine-pan palettes available. For a smokey combination of greys, navy and black, choose the Navy Times Nine palette.