How do you arrange your eyeshadow singles?

By brand, then by color (rainbow-order). If the brand has a lot of singles, then I’ll do by brand, finish (matte vs. shimmer), and then by color. That’s in a perfect world; for brands that continuously release singles, that system ends up having new shades in the end or in a separate palette until I have time to redo the arrangement altogether. 🙃

— Christine
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I only have about 30, and I keep them in a couple of magnetic palettes, of which one is my go-to collection of the moment and the others are for storage. My only rule besides what I happen to like and pull from is that I absolutely want to keep same size and shape pans in the same palette! E.g. Nabla singles come in larger pans than (old) MUG singles.

I like to keep similar colors grouped together… my base colors and brow highlights in one row, transition colors from cool to neutral to warm in another row. Then I’ll branch out from rows and kind of make little quads of my more related colors so anything in the pink family gets grouped by mattes, shimmers, and metallics, then next to that the rosey, then the plum, and then I just keep making groupings in a gradient of colors. I don’t group by brand because my singles are pretty much all CP and then anything from subscription boxes or that I popped out of other palettes… which I don’t intend on repurchasing. I only have one single shadow that I’ve ended up repurchasing – but I also make sure there is a sticker on the bottom of everything in case I do end up deciding I like a color (I just use thin garage sale stickers and sharpie in the name).

By brand first, which takes care of all my UD in one palette. Then by where the shadow is to applied, which applies to all my SG shadows. My SG shadows have one palette for toppers or inner-corner shades; one for middle-lid only shades; and one for crease and outer-V shades.

I have mattes in a separate palette. Otherwise it is brand, then by color. I don’t have the brands in order, it’s just what I could make fit in the minimum amount of palettes. Two exceptions to this: if it’s sold as a bundle, like Danny’s Dream, I put them in their own palette. I also have a palette just of inner corner shades.

I use a Darice bead organizer box that I got at a craft store. Each slot is an exact fit for a MAC, Urban Decay, or CP Super Shock single, and they sit flat so I can see the tops. I also made a “map,” which I affixed to the inside lid so I know exactly where every shade is. I organize them first by brand, and then by shade in rainbow-ish order (most of my singles are neutrals).

That is so interesting that I’m going to go to Michael’s this weekend. I just saw it online and can’t quite visualize how it would work. I gotta go see this.

If you google image search “single eyeshadow bead organizer storage,” you’ll see examples of this. Bring a single with you to make sure it fits. There are two slots in the front that are too small, but the rest of the slots are perfect. I got mine at Joann Fabrics.

I’m planning on building my own palette using singles . I want a workhorse neutral palette with a few darker jewel toned colours. I want to do them from light to dark irrespective of the finish. I just love seeing that gradient in the palette.That way each row would be shades of the similar tones in different finishes. I would love to see a review on the new Makep geek shadows after the rebrand.

Currently, I have:
– Z-Palette of inner corner highlights and most-used matte neutrals (26 mm round)
– Z-Palette of more matte neutrals (26 mm round)
– Adept palette of colorful mattes (26 mm round)
– Adept palette of warm shimmers/metallics (26 mm round)
– MUFE palette of blue and green shimmers/metallics
– Z-Palette of most-used singles in odd sizes (mostly Nabla and MUFE)
– Adept palette of odd-sized singles that aren’t blue/green (old Rouge Bunny Rouge, MUFE, Inglot, depotted palettes that didn’t hold 26 mm rounds, etc.)
– Two empty Colour Pop and Z-Palettes, which I use for making seasonal palettes or for shades I pick out when I travel somewhere (usually I’ll take those two palettes of most-used singles plus a palette or two of shades I pick out for the trip)

All of my MAC singles are stored in either empty Elf or MAC quads. My ColourPop singles plus 2 Devinah e/s’s are stored in a large ColourPop palette in a rainbow configuration. This reminds me that I need to make better use of them instead of reaching solely for premade palettes as I have been doing as of late!

I have 3 custom palettes.
One is all round pans, standard size, for mostly neutrals, almost all warm since that’s what I wear, arranged light to dark, regardless of brand/finish. Plus a few colors that didn’t fit anywhere else. Majority are SG and CP w/ a few ABH.
One is for warm colors, mostly my older shadows, arranged light to dark, within color groups. Includes neutrals. Motley assortment of shapes, sizes, brands, textures.
One is for cool colors. Same as above.
Last two palettes (the containers) are from Tarte, super sturdy, beautiful covers, with mirrors. Highly recc’d!

I have three double sided adept palettes. Two for mattes and one for shimmers. One of the matte palettes is all colourpop depottted palettes. The other matte palette is colourpop singles, mac singles, and makeup geek singles all organized by color. Then a random section in that palette that is organized by shape (depotted too faced palettes) so i guess then it’s by brand too. My shimmer palette is the same style: all depotted colourpop palettes in one section then larger singles, then by shape/brand again.

I try to keep it organized by function and finish.
My first section is mattes, from light/highlights (Blanc Type), to transition (Omega – Haux), to color lightest to darkest somewhat grouped by color similarity (Rule – Print – Blackberry, Ground Brown – Shadowy Lady).
Than I get my shimmers / satins from lighter to darkest somewhat grouped by color similarity (Naked Lunch – Pink Venus – Satin Taupe, Star Violet – Humid – In The Shadows, Antiqued).

The layout in my 15 eyeshadows custom palette is actually.
Blanc Type – Omega – Haux
Rule – Print – Blackberry
Ground Brown – Shadowy Lady – Antiqued (cringy to have two finishes on the same row, but otherwise wouldn’t fit 😆 )
Naked Lunch – Pink Venus – Satin Taupe
Star Violet -Humid – In The Shadows

There are Adepts for SG, CP, and Viseart. Old Zs are depotted shades by color family, and at times by brand. I have found that the ‘brand eye‘ can be useful, so have reorganized the CP good sport/hello, and UD troublemaker, etc back into their original configurations. The others kicking around are difficult to depot, or should-declutters. They live by shape, vertically, in a multi drawer tool chest.

I have 4 palettes: cool neutrals, warm tones, jewel tones, and rainbow. Then they are sorted by finish or use, top to bottom in rows: transition/matte, shimmer, metallic, and corner/depth. Columns are sorted by rainbow order left to right. Each palette has a few out-of-place shades to balance it out. For example, a cool neutrals palette will have a few warm shades.

I just sort of know where they are. The “old” MUFE shadows are in MUFE palettes (3-pans, mostly); a few dozen MAC singles are in 2 mid-sized MAC palettes with the inserts removed so I can fit more of them. I’ve got maybe a dozen Inglot shadows – 3 round ones in a 3-pan Inglot palette (the first Inglot purchases I ever made) and the others in the square ones that hold 4 shadows each. I’ve got an Z palette with a bunch of other random MUFE and other singles. And I’ve quite a few MAC singles in the MAC small 4-pan palettes. Can anyone explain exactly WHY other shadows won’t stay in MAC palettes and MAC singles won’t stay in Z palettes? I’m guessing it’s because the MAC palettes don’t have magnets buried inside them – they’re attached to the bottoms of the pans – but all the other empties DO have magnetic bottoms so that they repel the MAC singles that come with the magnets. I just wish MAC would go the way of the other companies so they were all interchangeable.

I have yet to arrange mine in any cohesive manner. Mostly they live in a makeup bag, but I will have to get a magnetic empty palette to hold my new SG ones, as they come without a container….annoying.

I pretty much just group them by brand. I always have intentions to do something different but the reality is even if I do get them arranged the way I like, it is wrong the next time I buy one so I have given up. I do keep those that I use regularly in the front of the drawer or in a magnetic palette.

I buy singles in pans only if possible. I depot any packaged singles that I can safely remove. If I have a lot from a single brand, I put them together in a magnetic palette and arrange by color. Random singles are arranged by color in like-colored Z Palettes. Singles I can’t depot are put together in in boxes by brand.

I don’t store them permanently in any particular fashion. I don’t depot everything. I have several types of storage palettes and am reorganizing them fairly often. (Playtime, what can I say? I can come up with new combos and topper looks by swatching and rearranging.) Awhile back, I made a tiny swatch of every single of every formula I own on heavy white bonded papers. I sealed them in plastic pockets and keep them in my wallet. I can pull them out in a store at any time. May sound super organized (just did it once and by color/brand, teeny tiny labeling), but I find it more practical than anything. They really come in handy. I don’t need 9 of the same color. I’m looking for the different. Something special that will fit right in with the current fam.

“I don’t need 9 of the same color.” — I know this is true, but it doesn’t stop me when it comes to cool-toned neutrals and plummy taupes. I should print out that sentence and put it in my wallet!

I keep a few palettes (favorites, neutrals, brights, duds). I arrange by color, then finish. So I’ll have a matte white, shimmery white, matte ivory, shimmery champagne, shimmery gold, etc. I don’t arrange by brand, unless it’s necessary to squeeze a few more in.

All of my singles are organised by colour as I don’t care about the brands (I keep only the ones that I really like and that perform well for me, no matter if they are drugstore, high end or luxury brands). When one of my Z palettes is full, it means that I can’t afford to bring another home. If I do, then I have to declutter a shadow to make space for a new one; 1 in = 1 out!

• The reds are stored in a large lipstick red Z palette;
• Orange shadows are in a large orange Z palette;
• Yellows are in a large yellow Z palette;
• Greens are split between a large ivory (called ballet slipper, I think?) and a large camo Z palette;
• Teals are in a large turquoise Z palette;
• Deep blues are in a large royal blue Z palette;
• Light blues are in a large light blue cherry blossoms Z palette;
• Light pinks are in a large light pink Z palette;
• Deeper pinks are in a large Ulta Z palette (pink);
• Burgundy shadows are in a large burgundy/wine Z palette;
• All of my purples are split between 2 large lilac Z palettes;
• My brow bone colours, as well as my palest metallic shadows for lids, are stored together in a large black Z palette;
• My very glittery shadows (UD Moondust, MAC Dazzleshadows, etc) party together in a large pink glitter Z palette;
• Cooler browns are in a large realistic cheetah Z palette;
• Warmer browns are in a large cheetah print Z palette;
• Gold and metallic peachy shadows live in a large faux leather gold Z palette;
• All my depotted Lime Crime shadows are in an extra large blueberry z palette;
• My duochrome and multichrome shadows (Clionadh, MUG, etc) are housed in a no-name holographic blue-green snakeskin palette
• And then I have double-sided Z palettes for all of my depotted palettes, whether MAC quads or bigger ones from various brands, plus a variety of small and medium Z palettes for the palettes that I put together myself and/or for travel.

Every morning I am waking up to a rainbow. Needless to say, I am living the dream 🙂

I wish I could upload a pic!
It changed my routine because it became so easy to find what I am looking for – when I open my single shadows’ drawer, I can find what I need in a second.
I also love the fact that it allowed me to use the shadows for what they are, as opposed to what brand they are from. If I need a blue, I’m looking for a blue (not MAC, not MUG, not UD, not Too Faced – just a blue shadow!). I feel that it shuts up all the marketing noise around brands and releases to get to the essential: Do I like this blue shadow or not?

Yes! I organize by color instead of brand too (at least with my standard-sized pans), but the color-coded palettes are so smart! I have palettes in a bunch of different sizes and sort of keep switching up where things are. Strongly tempted to do what you did–that sounds great!

If you do, I suggest that you start slowly, buying one empty palette at a time, and see how you like it! I personally bought at least half of them used, waiting patiently for the discontinued colours that I needed to become available. I wish that Z palette would offer Kelly green palettes!

I will definitely take my time! Thank you! I wonder if covering the borders and back of a black Z-palette with kelly green washi tape would look nice enough? My daughters are good at doing that sort of thing.

I arrange my shadows by tone/use (so I have a pan of highlight shades, crease shades, outer corner shades, light foils/metallic, medium foils/metallic, and dark foils and metallics. All fits in a jewelry organizer!

I really don’t have that many single eyeshadows. Mostly they’re Colour Pop, and they’re here, there and everywhere. Some of them are all in together in a pretty heart shaped container I found at Hobby Lobby, and others are in various drawers & such.

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