For a good decade of my life, I've worn exclusively glitter pigments. I love sparkles—obviously. But my reasoning is a bit more nuanced. There is absolutely no eyeshadow easier and more foolproof to apply than one of the best glitter eyeshadows. No brushes necessary; it’s just a little finger application and, so long as you pick the right product, there’s no fallout in sight. As I’ve become more skilled in the makeup department, I’ve tried my hand at shimmery shadows with finer flecks and even experimented with liquid, sparkly formulas. One way or another, I have glitter on my lids every damn day.
So with my very vast knowledge of glitter application and an overflowing pile of shadows, I’ve decided to compile the crème de la crème of glitter eyeshadows for your shopping pleasure. From finger-friendly, densely packed cream eyeshadow pots that create a statement-making eye in an instant to sheerer liquids that allow you to swipe on a chunky, albeit translucent wash, here are the best glitter eyeshadows in the game.
What to Look For in a Glitter Eyeshadow
There’s nothing wrong with a metallic shadow—they have their time and place. But let me make this abundantly clear: Metallics and glitters are simply not the same. “You want your product to be super pigmented and super chunky,” says makeup artist Jonet Williamson. “You should be able to see individual specks.” It’s the differentiation between glitter flecks that allows the shadow to catch the light.
With powder, cream, and liquid glitter eyeshadow to choose from, the world is really your oyster. You can’t go wrong with any texture, just know that the medium will alter the finish. “Liquid glitters space out a lot once you actually put it on your lid, so you have to do a lot of work to pack it on and actually get good coverage,” says Williamson. “But I do really like liquids when you’re using them as an eyeliner.” Liquids are also the way to go if you just want a sparkly topper.
Powders and creams on the other hand are best suited for a solid wash of color. “You can pick them up with a brush or your finger and it gives full coverage right away,” she adds.
When using glitter shadows, you’re going to want something that gives you a little time to work. Fast-drying formulas aren’t your friend. “I personally like something that has a little more give,” says Williamson. “You don't want something that's going to lock in place. Then, the next thing you know, your eye makeup is messed up and you have to get micellar water.”
How to Apply Glitter Eyeshadow
The key to fallout-free application is to start with a clean, no-fuss base. “Your lid naturally has a little bit of oil on it, so that's going to add to the grip of the glitter,” explains Williamson. “If you put down a powder first, you might get some fallout because it's not really sticking to your eyelid. You would have to pick it up with a wet brush and just hope for the best.”
Where you place your glitter eyeshadow, however, is totally your call. You can layer different shades for a full glitter eye, place a little in the center of your lid, or dab some at the inner corner. “If you’re new to wearing glitter, I recommend picking it up on a really thin brush and apply it on top of your eyeliner,” advises Williamson. “It’s a fun way to add a little hint without being too intense."
The Best Glitter Eyeshadows
- The Best Glitter Eyeshadow Overall: Bodyography Glitter Pigment (opens in new tab)
- The Best Cream Glitter Eyeshadow: Valentino Dream Dust Glitter Eyeshadow (opens in new tab)
- The Best Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow: Stila Glitter & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow (opens in new tab)
- The Best Powder Glitter Eyeshadow: Victoria Beckham Beauty Lid Lustre Crystal Infused Eyeshadow (opens in new tab)
- The Best Multi-Purpose Glitter Eyeshadow: Iconic London Glaze Dual Ended Eyeshadow Crayon (opens in new tab)
The Best Glitter Eyeshadow Overall
“First of all, there are so many colors to choose from—options galore,” says Williamson. “They’re very fine so you can really build them up or wear them lightly dusted across the lid. They’re super easy to work with too because even though it’s a loose pigment, you can pick it up nicely with your finger or a brush and won’t experience a lot of fallout.” This product also happens to be my personal favorite, particularly because the blendability is unmatched. I start with a thin layer that gets diffused to my brow bone and then pack on the intensity in the center of the lid. I’m partial to shades Off the Hook, Stellar, and Mood, but you really can’t go wrong with any of ‘em.
Pros: Makeup artist-approved; No fallout; No creasing; Large shade selection
The Best Reflective Glitter Eyeshadow
While I’m highlighting this particular limited-edition pot, the following praises are applicable to all of Pat’s glitter shadows that find their way into a palette. “She just makes this reflective glitter that’s really gorgeous,” says Williamson. “And if you put black eyeshadow underneath, you’re going to get a color that’s completely different than if you were to wear it with a bare lid.” The pigment is extremely buildable, works just as well with a brush as it does with your fingers, and has a metallic sheen that can be amped up with a setting spray.
Pros: Makeup artist-approved; Buildable; Color changing
The Best Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow
“I really like this OG formula,” says Williamson. “It’s not the best to get a full glitter lid, but if you want to start out applying glitter as a liner or do a little, sheer wash in the inner corner, it’s a beautiful formula.” The doe-foot applicator is relatively thin, and when used on its side, creates a really thin line. If you do decide to go for more of a high impact look, fear not. You can get fuller coverage, it might just take a few layers of product.
Pros: Makeup artist-approved; Great for liner and accents; Large color selection
Cons: Need a lot of product to build up to full coverage
The Best Cream Glitter Eyeshadow
If you’re a swipe-and-go kind of girl that can’t be bothered with brushes, a cream texture, like this Valentino formula, is the way to go. The flecks are going to stick right to your finger and one swipe will give you an intense color payoff—all without fallout. The densely packed particles also make this a great eyeliner option. Go bold with the green or blue shade, or keep things subtle with the gold and silver.
Pros: No fallout, Intense color payoff
Cons: Small shade selection
The Best Shimmer Glitter Eyeshadow
This was the first glitter eyeshadow I ever got my hands on and it’s left a lasting impression. It’s beginner friendly (I’m the perfect case study) and has the ability to transform from a barely-there wash of color to a high impact shadow in about three layers. It plays middle ground all the while, looking like a glitter or a shimmer depending on the lighting. Burnish is one of the prettiest everyday colors out there and Vivid made me a green shadow convert.
Pros: Buildable; Great shade selection; Iridescent
Cons: Color fades throughout the day
The Best Glitter Eyeshadow for Liner
Created by Donni Davy, the makeup artist behind the many memorable beauty moments on Euphoria, this little liquid is a must-have for any intricate or detail-oriented glitter masterpiece. It has one of the thinnest applicators in the game, which makes it ideal for graphic wing or to add some emphasis to your lower lash line. The shades are on the bolder side, so your look will be sure to attract attention.
Pros: Thin applicator; Great for wings
Cons: Only bold colors
The Best Long-Wearing Glitter Eyeshadow
While most glitter shadows are inherently less prone to creasing because of their chunky composition, a few will require a midday pat down. This Urban Decay option however isn’t going to budge one bit. It’ll look just the same in the morning as it will at nine o’clock at night—it has a fierce grip. Another reason to love it? The finishes are plentiful. Brush application will give you a more diffused wash, a finger application provides more intense color payoff, and, if you add a little setting spray to the product beforehand, you’ll be met with a foiled, metallic moment.
Pros: Multiple finishes; Lasting power
Cons: Color really needs to be built up
The Best Loose Glitter Eyeshadow
This glitter isn’t for the faint of heart and it comes with its challenges. But if a chunky glitter finish is what you’re going for, there’s no better product for the job. Grab the brand’s Duo Adhesive to create a sticky base and gently pat the flecks onto your lid. How much you use is up to you, but I recommend erring on the lighter side or using it as an accent on the outer corner of the eye. Because the glitter is pretty chunky, you don’t want your lid to feel stiff.
Pros: Large glitter chunks; Tons of color options
Cons: Difficult to apply
The Best Gilded Glitter Eyeshadow
Straddling the line between a shimmery cream and true glitter pigment, Victoria Beckham Beauty’s pots are some of the most hydrating, pearlescent shades I’ve ever seen. Said finish is achieved by a very carefully curated formula. Real crystals and multi-dimensional pearls have been infused into each of the 10 shades, which gives it a gilded finish. There’s also hydrating squalane and guava leaf extract in the mix, which makes this shadow perfect for dry, winter eyelids.
Pros: Great shade selection; Pearlescent finish
Cons: Lacks chunky glitter
The Best Dual-Ended Glitter Eyeshadow
Multi-finish glitters are hard to come by, but this Iconic London product serves dimension up on a silver platter. The dual-ended stick, which is available in 10 shades, pairs a cream glitter crayon with the accompanying glitter liquid. You can switch between soft washes of color and wet-looking, shimmery finishes with just one product. Pop the liquid on the center of your lid, use it in your inner corner, or drag it along your lower lash line to create a pearlescent illusion.
Pros: Two-in-one; Large shade selection
Cons: Requires touch ups throughout the day
The Best Neutral Glitter Eyeshadow
Natasha Denona’s eyeshadow palettes are some of the best in existence, and her glitter pigment follows suit. Available in four neutral shades, Nude, Bronze, Grey-Brown, and Peach, these crystal and pearl pigments are perfect for amping up your everyday (or night) look. The shadow's pigment has a great grip, so you shouldn’t experience fallout when applying it to a bare lid or over other shadow. If you do? Just tap off the excess with a piece of tape.
Pros: Lasts on top of powder shadow; Glitzy finish
Cons: Small shade selection
The Best Luxury Glitter Eyeshadow
If a statement eye is what you want, a statement eye is what you’ll get with this YSL pot. There are very few shadows, let alone glitter shadows, that pack as much pigment into a singular swipe. I’m partial to creating a monochromatic look with these babies, but they were designed to be layered on top of one another, so go forth and build dimension. You’ll want the Confident Nude shade on standby—it’s the ultimate highlighter.
Pros: Highly pigmented; Intense shimmer
Meet the Expert
Jonet Williamson is a New York-based Pro Makeup Artist and Content Creator specializing in relatable beauty from a pro perspective. Her work has been featured in commercial campaigns for Dolce & Gabanna, Levis, L'Oreal, Shea Moisture, and more. If you follow her online you can expect to see lots of fresh skin, a vibrant use of color, striking graphic liner shapes, and soft glam looks fit for a red carpet.
Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar, Makeup.com, Skincare.com, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.
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