What are your deal-breakers when it comes to eyeshadows?

I really do not like when brands throw sparkle into an otherwise matte eyeshadow. I really find it pointless as the sparkles do not bind with the base color, so there’s unnecessary fallout…
it’s like it’s there just to be pretty in the pan and that’s a pass for me. I think an eyeshadow should perform decently without primer, since primer will just enhance anyway, why not get something that’s pretty good and can be A+++++ over primer?!

— Christine
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Probably the biggest one is uncontrollable fallout – the sort that I get with Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Rides Forever (I think that’s the name) or Maui Wowie (even the reformulated one) – this sounds pretty much like what you were talking about, Christine. MCRA and Maui Wowie are both such beautiful colours but I find both to be totally unwearable, even with a primer and I personally find glitter primers make it harder to blend the other shadows I might be using. Next would be patchy application. I always use eyeshadow primer, so wear time is not usually a problem.

Quality is first measure — anything less than a B is a no go. Then personal taste — glitter, super shimmery, and cool- or dark-toned don’t suit me. Application: I prefer applying by brush, not finger.

Shimmer shadows where the shimmer sucks the colour out of the shadow. Nars dual intensity formula comes to mind. For me, the shadows pull too reflective and therefore flat.. no dimension. Not good on my hooded eyes.

I noticed that too! Never thought of it like that before – that shadows can be a little too reflective and then all you see is the shimmer and there’s no real color there, despite what is showing in the pan. It’s that way for frosted and metallic lipsticks for me, too – even though it is a lovely shimmer in the tube, it just looks like a solid shimmer on my lips and none of the color really shows on me.

I had to play around with my two Nars DI shadows. They are definitely a pain to work with, because they are so reflective and will highlight any and all texture on my lid that I didn’t even know I had if worn alone. I always pack them onto a cream shadow base and blot off the excess (so much fallout and transfer otherwise). And, then I apply a satin over them. I only use them on my lids. I’m a little hooded myself. A nice satin on top calms them down a lot and makes the satin shade prettier, imo. I used to use one of them in the inner corner for night, but it’s such a pain to get it right w/no fallout, I had to give up.

Good to know. MAC EDES is my favorite formula and I have been going back and forth about trying out NARS DI formula (I WANT ALL THE GELEE THINGS). I think I can finally take it off of my list as it doesn’t sound like it’s worth it and I can just stick with a tried and true favorite.

Dejavoodoo.. I just used a Mac ED shadow (not as reflective as NARS, but still can be too much for me because they travel on my ‘hoods as they wear even with primer) today on lid and then used an ABH satin on top. I know what you mean about the shimmer layer adding more oomph… but the satin grounds the shimmer too.

That’s funny! I find that the Nars DI shadows are one of the only shimmer shadows I can wear up into the crease. I get the shimmer without a lot of the crepeiness as with other shimmers. I’m 58, fair skin, with mostly hooded eyes. I have Phoebe and Subra. I sometimes use only Phoebe as a one-shadow look. I guess everybody is different!

I agree with Christine about sparkles in otherwise matte shadows. I’m not a fan of glitter shadows on myself. Eyeshadow should go on smoothly without fallout, and blend easily without getting muddy or patchy.

I would have to say shadows that have significant fall out is my biggest issue. I also cannot deal with shadows that blend away to nothingness. I can work with most other factors and make the shadow work. I do use e/s primer daily so some concerns are mitigated by that practice.

Allergic reactions are the biggest dealbreaker, although modern formulas seem to be much more hypo-allergenic. I’m not having this problem nearly as often as I used to. Other dealbreakers: Creams (they crease on me, even over primer, except ColourPop and Maybelline Color Tattoo); any powders that crease, even over primer; poor pigmentation; patchiness; bad formula; tons of fallout; too much chunky glitter.

Thank you for the reminder about allergy inducing formulas, Rachel! How could I have forgotten about that considering my ordeal with those TF flavored eyeshadows? 💔

Because I have always had very hooded, oily lids, the no primer vs. primer application doesn’t apply to me at all. Basically, I have always needed primer!
So, my deal breakers are a bit different:
1.) Fallout!!! Not just the initial fallout one may get during application, but even worse, crap raining down during the day kills it for me.
2.) Splotchiness, patchiness are a big no-no!
3.) Powdery looking, like a powdered donut is so not my thing!
4.) And while I do love me a glitter halo eye look, if it doesn’t stay put with Nyx Glitter Primer or a dampened brush, it’s utter garbage that I cannot get behind.

A lack of pigmentation, excessive fallout, shadows that dissolve/ disappear on the eyelids not long after application, the need for an adhesive to bring out the vibrancy a shade and duo chrome/special effects visible in the pan buy not on the eyes.

An eyeshadow should not look in the pan and/or description (-ie, duochromes) differently than it looks on skin. It must not be patchy or blend into mud. It should please Goldilocks; not too firm or too soft, be too sheer or pure pigment.

The deal breakers for eyeshadows for me are:
1. It has to be shades that I would use – so no reds, oranges, pinks or caramel browns. I prefer greens, some darker blues, greys, golds and cool toned neutrals
2. An excellent rating from you Christine – I generally want B+ and above
3. A variety of finishes in shimmer, satins and a couple of mattes. No glitter! And I am not interested in using my fingers to apply eyeshadow either.
4. Affordable and accessble so I can see the shades for myself.

I’ll pass on glitter bombs. Love shimmer, but no glitter. I can handle a little fallout. I’d like decent pigmentation, that can be blended out, with at least 8 hours of wear without the assistance of a primer before starting to fade. I won’t buy anything that can’t be applied with a brush. I don’t want to use my fingers to make a shadow stick to my lid. I prefer powder shadows, but have used the CP Super Shock shadows and liked them. I’m just normally not drawn to cream shadows. Please keep the heavy scents away from me. I don’t need my eyeshadow to smell like chocolate, peaches or a rose garden. Subtle scents I can deal with. Finally it comes down to colors and cost. If it’s a color I like or want, i don’t mind paying for great shadows. Also, I do like the shadows to be housed in a nice compact or palette. Even if its a cardboard palette I like it to look nice, feel sturdy and do a great job of protecting the shadows.

1. Blendability. I don’t have time to sit there and blend shadows until my fingers fall off – mama has things to do and places to be!
2. Pigmentation. Please don’t make me go back to the pan 5-10 times just to get a wash of color. But also don’t let me dip my brush in once and come away having kicked up half the pan and put the other half all over my face a la Subculture.
3. Not enough binder. This is mostly a problem with shimmers/metallics/glitters/etc. I don’t like shadows with a TON of kickup (so wasteful), especially because that normally translates to color on my face.
4. Workable over primer. Ya girl has ALWAYS used primer. Always have, always will. If it looks like crap with primer, it’s dead to me.
5. Price. I cannot get behind $20+ single shadows and $100+ eyeshadow palettes with 12 shades. No matter how good they are, there are things equal to it or better that don’t cost me my left kidney.
6. Base pigment. This is really only true with dark shades that aren’t black, and it’s a little thing that JKissa made me take notice of. Dark colors that blend out to black or gray are no-nos. If I put a forest green on my eye, I expect to blend out a forest green.
7. Format. I pretty much do not use eyeshadow palettes anymore. That being said, if I can depot them, I will. Ex: the Kylie 9-pan palettes. Other than that, I’m really not drawn to palettes anymore.
8. Mattes with glitter. You’ve said it all, Christine.

My only dealbreaker is bad packaging. Everything else can absolutely be worked with.

I’m over here like, I’ve never used an eyeshadow that had fallout. 😛

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