Eyeshadow can be difficult to master, particularly for budget makeup brands. However, in recent years, the amount of high quality, lower priced eyeshadow palettes has increased significantly!
The best ways to tell quality with eyeshadow are pigment, longevity, and blendability. All of these palettes perform well in those categories!
elf Cosmetics Bite Sized Palettes
These tiny 4 pan palettes from elf are just packed with pigment, shimmer, and blendability. Most of them have really nice color stories- either a single color family (Acai You/purple, Berry Bad/berry pinks, Mint to Be/mint green) or a well rounded mix (Cream and Sugar/neutrals, Rose Water/pink/purple). They have 2 mattes and 2 shimmer shades each. Usually, the shades all go together to create a dimensional look, or can be worn in any combination.
I’ve used Rose Water and Mint to Be, with Mint to Be as a favorite palette across the board.
Wet N Wild Color Icon Palettes
After elf debuted the bite sized palettes mentioned above, Wet N Wild put together both a 5 and 10 pan alternative. The 5 pan palettes are 1-3 looks in a palette, while the 10 pan palettes are a more general selection. Like the elf palettes, these are high pigment and easy to blend, with the shimmers really smooth and nice. There are different types of shimmer shades in these palettes from satin to straight glitter. The only thing is that these perform best with an eyelid primer of some kind.
I loved the 5 pan palettes so much that I bought three. Walking on Eggshells is a neutral brown palette, Sundaze is all varied shades of bright orange, and Petalette, which is pink and purple shades.
Colourpop Cosmetics Palettes
While you can’t get Colourpop in a store other than Ulta, it’s drugstore prices with exremely high quality. The matte shades are high pigment and blend beautifully. The shimmers are buttery (some are even the super shock formula) and come in a variety of great shades. They have everything from little 5-9 pan palettes all the way to 30+ shade palettes. Whatever you’re looking for, they probably have. They also have a great selection of collaboration products from Disney Princesses, Star Wars, Sailor Moon, Animal Crossing, and more.
I have three ColourPop palettes at this point. Truly Madly Deeply is a 25-pan palette of mauvy pinks from a pale pinky nude to deep violets. There are even pressed glitters in that one! Garden Variety is a selection of neutrals with pops of pink, purple, and green. The Child is a Star Wars themed 9-pan palette that leans olive green.
Makeup Revolution Forever Flawless Palettes
While not all Makeup Revolution palettes are created equal, the Forever Flawless line is absolutely amazing. These are 18 pan palettes with a range of color stories, as well as beautifully decorated tin packaging. There are quite a few of these, and you can even get most of them at Target now.
I only have one, the Constellation one. It’s an assortment of bright, cool shades from neon pink to steel grey shimmer. The quality is out of this world and I would absolutely buy more.
These are some of the most high quality eyeshadow palettes that I’ve tried! Now I’ve heard great things about Profusion as well, but since I haven’t tried their palettes I decided not to add them to this list.
What are your favorite drugstore eyeshadow palettes? Let me know in the comments!