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There are a lot of benefits when buying an an eyeshadow palette. On a very basic level, they provide you with a bunch of different-coloured shadows in one convenient place. If it's a good palette, it gives you the ability to create a wide variety of eye makeup looks, and since the shadows inside were to complement one another, you can easily layer them, blend them together, and mix and match them without worrying if the shades clash. Sometimes, the colours will even be arranged in order of how you should apply them, whilst a few select brands even provide helpful diagrams on the back.
Unfortunately, there are also a few downsides to purchasing an eyeshadow palette. For one, they can be quite expensive. Leave the the high street and you'll be hard pressed to find a palette that's under £25. Second, you can end up with a bunch of colours you never use, which feels like a waste of money and a waste of resources when you have to throw it out with not all of the pans fully empty. We've all been there, even makeup artists and beauty editors, which is why we decided to get to work and create a list of the best eyeshadow palettes on the market, all of which are full of beautiful shades and textures that you won't be able to get enough of.
Before you break out your purse, however, the first thing you want to do is pinpoint what you want to use an eyeshadow palette for. Do you want something that provides you with shadows that you can use to create both daytime looks, nighttime looks, or both? Do you want a selection of shimmery jewel tones that you can choose from for weddings and big events? Do you want a palette that will make executing smoky eyes less of a faff? Do you prefer warm-toned colours like golds, coppers, and bronzes, or cool-toned hues such as blues, grays, and purples? Once you've narrowed down exactly why you want to buy an eyeshadow palette, we promise you it will help narrow your search slightly.
We chose the palettes on this list expressly because of the high quality of their formulas and the fact they work a very wide variety of skin tones. However, if you're ever out shopping and your complexion is in the dark to deep range, makeup artist and beauty influencer Jonet Williamson shared some tips with POPSUGAR to keep in mind. "When selecting metallic or colourful shadows for deeper or darker skin tones, your best bet will be pure pigments — pressed or loose — and mattes that look and feel rich," she explained. "If it passes the swatch test where it [feels] buttery and not powdery to the touch, then it's good in my book."
Keep reading to see our list of the best eyeshadow palettes — from brands like Makeup by Mario, Pat McGrath Labs, Charlotte Tilbury, Tarte, and more — that are truly worth the investment.
— Additional reporting by Danielle Jackson and Tori Crowther