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The Best Eyeshadow Compact - 2022

Last updated on October 3, 2022

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Our Picks For The Top Eyeshadow Compacts

Show Contents
Our Take
  Top Pick

LORAC PRO Matte Cruelty-Free Eyeshadow Compact

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

LORAC

PRO Matte Cruelty-Free Eyeshadow Compact

Overall Take

Little Goes Long WayYou only need a little bit of these nude matte eyeshadows to accent lids and eyebrows.

  Runner Up

stila Natural Shimmer Eyeshadow Compact

stila

Natural Shimmer Eyeshadow Compact

Overall Take

A Soft, Shimmering ChampagneThis compact with a shimmery shade will quickly earn a top spot in your makeup bag.

  We Also Like

Mary Kay Magnetic Refill System Eyeshadow Compact

Mary Kay

Magnetic Refill System Eyeshadow Compact

Overall Take

Holds All Your EssentialsLoad this compact with your favorite Mary Kay makeup and easily refill it as needed.

  Strong Contender

Urban Decay Sulfate & Phthalate-Free Eyeshadow Compact

Urban Decay

Sulfate & Phthalate-Free Eyeshadow Compact

Overall Take

It Shimmers and GlimmersYou can look and feel amazing when wearing this glittery, refined and sexy eye makeup!

  Also Great

NARS Duo Crease Resistant Formula Eyeshadow Compact

NARS

Duo Crease Resistant Formula Eyeshadow Compact

Overall Take

A High Color PayoffTry one of these eyeshadow duos and make a memorable fashion statement!

Guide written by Danielle Smyth
Last updated on October 3, 2022

Eyeshadows are designed to enhance and bring attention to the shape and color of your eyes. They often come in compacts, which can hold single hues or palettes of colors for creating different effects and adding depth and dimension to makeup looks.

Eyeshadow products are made from base fillers like mica or talc and are bound together with things like magnesium and zinc. Creamier formulas will have oils and wax, like shea butter and beeswax, but most eyeshadows also have preservatives like glycol. Colored mica pigments give the shadow its different tones; as you likely know, the variety is endless.

Eyeshadow compacts can be fun to experiment with, so you may wish to get a bigger palette with a good mix of textures (like matte, shiny, and shimmery) and shades (think light, dark, smoky and neutral). If you find a color that you think will be your go-to, you can always buy a supply of just that one.

Nude eyeshadow compacts should have a range of champagne, beige, taupe, brown and black tones, while smoky palettes need gray, black, other darker tones and a shimmery highlighter. Although one size doesn’t fit all, certain shades will bring out the colors of your eyes. You can deepen eyeshadows by adding a bit of water, and feel free to mix colors and blend to your heart’s content.

If you have sensitive skin, you can get eyeshadows made without potentially irritating ingredients. However, just because an eyeshadow compact says it’s clean or hypoallergenic, that doesn’t make it safe for you. If you have an allergic reaction to a makeup product like eyeshadow, stop using it immediately. 

The Best Eyeshadow Compacts

1
  Top Pick

LORAC PRO Matte Cruelty-Free Eyeshadow Compact

This set of eight highly-pigmented nude matte eyeshadows is made with soothing botanicals; you can use them dry or wet. They are easy to blend and buff out too, so you can create various looks that you will love.

Features


Specifications

Brand
LORAC
Model
2
  Runner Up

stila Natural Shimmer Eyeshadow Compact

Stila's best-selling 0.09-ounce "Kitten" eye shadow is a perfect, shimmery warm color that goes on quickly, with a creamy formula that stays put. You can also shop for other Stila shades in pressed compacts.

Features


Specifications

Brand
stila
Model
3
  We Also Like

Mary Kay Magnetic Refill System Eyeshadow Compact

Mary Kay's refillable compact has a convenient magnetic refill system that holds their eyeshadows, blushes, pressed powders, lip color, brushes and applicators. Keep your makeup well organized and prevent breakage.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Mary Kay
Model
4
  Strong Contender

Urban Decay Sulfate & Phthalate-Free Eyeshadow Compact

Urban Decay's amazing 0.17-ounce Moondust eyeshadow is packed with iridescent glitter that makes your eyes pop. It goes on like a cream, but is lightweight and comfortable. It comes with a thin, precise brush.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Urban Decay
Model
5
  Also Great

NARS Duo Crease Resistant Formula Eyeshadow Compact

This modern two-color palette comes in surprising color combinations, like "Indian Summer" golds or "Demon Lover" purples. Shadows are made with highly-pigmented, crease-resistant, long-lasting, micro-fine powders.

Features


Specifications

Brand
NARS
Model

Our Eyeshadow Compact Buying Guide

Eyeshadows are designed to enhance and bring attention to the shape and color of your eyes. They often come in compacts, which can hold single hues or palettes of colors for creating different effects and adding depth and dimension to makeup looks.

Eyeshadow products are made from base fillers like mica or talc and are bound together with things like magnesium and zinc. Creamier formulas will have oils and wax, like shea butter and beeswax, but most eyeshadows also have preservatives like glycol. Colored mica pigments give the shadow its different tones; as you likely know, the variety is endless.

Eyeshadow compacts can be fun to experiment with, so you may wish to get a bigger palette with a good mix of textures (like matte, shiny, and shimmery) and shades (think light, dark, smoky and neutral). If you find a color that you think will be your go-to, you can always buy a supply of just that one.

Nude eyeshadow compacts should have a range of champagne, beige, taupe, brown and black tones, while smoky palettes need gray, black, other darker tones and a shimmery highlighter. Although one size doesn’t fit all, certain shades will bring out the colors of your eyes. You can deepen eyeshadows by adding a bit of water, and feel free to mix colors and blend to your heart’s content.

If you have sensitive skin, you can get eyeshadows made without potentially irritating ingredients. However, just because an eyeshadow compact says it’s clean or hypoallergenic, that doesn’t make it safe for you. If you have an allergic reaction to a makeup product like eyeshadow, stop using it immediately. 

Simplemost Fun Fact

Makeup compacts first became available in the 1920s, during the era of the flappers and bright, dramatic makeup was all the rage. Companies like Van Cleef, Tiffany & Co., and Yves Saint Laurent made 24-carat gold versions with jewels and wealthy women would commission jewelry designers to make them personalized versions with their initials. Other women used brass or silver ones with embellishments and art on their covers.

These compacts weren’t just for face or eye powders. They might fit a mirror, lipstick, powder, cigarettes and a coin purse all in one, or have a chain so they could be carried like a purse. Some had pop-up functions as well, and they were refillable. Today, compacts are still portable and convenient and designed to hold makeup, but most are not nearly so versatile or artistic. And they’re much more disposable. However, you can still buy refillable compacts if you wish to customize them.

The Eyeshadow Compact Tips and Advice

  • Applying eyeshadow is a learned skill; some people go way over the top when putting it on. Makeup artists will tell you that proper blending is the most crucial part of the application, and you can do it gently with a blending brush or your fingers.
  • Try a bold shade on your lids and then blend it upwards and outwards into a neutral. Another option is to use a light matte shade on the corners of your eyes and brow bones.
  • You can also use eye shadows as eyeliners with the right brush.
  • If a shade seems too intense, mix it with a neutral. Adding white can make it look chalky.
  • Creamy eyeshadows with waxes and oils generally have better staying power.
  • An eye shadow primer can help prevent creasing.
  • As a guideline, golds and coppers look nice with blue eyes; warm grays and browns pair well with brown eyes and purple tones bring out green eyes.
  • It is also essential to know your skin’s undertone since warmer color palettes are good for yellow undertones, and cooler palettes are recommended for pink undertones.
  • Some compacts come with their brushes, but others do not. You can also buy empty, refillable compacts that you can put your products in.
  • Remember to neaten those eyebrows, too, because you wouldn’t want messy ones to detract from your look!

About The Author

Danielle Smyth 

Danielle Smyth is a writer and content marketing expert based in New York. She has been writing on business and finance, home and garden, DIY, travel and tourism, and a variety of other topics for over a decade, and she holds a Master of Science in Publishing from Pace University. Danielle loves working on product reviews and helping others find the highest quality items and the best values, particularly in the beauty space, where every purchase is deeply personal and matters a great deal.