The 5 Eye Shadow Colors Every Woman Should Own

Updated 09/08/17

Whether you want to create an evening smoky eye, or just brighten up your peepers for brunch, there are five universal shadow color and texture combinations every woman should have in her makeup bag. When armed with these necessary shades, you can create almost any look, from simple to daring.

Click through our slideshow for the five eye shadow shades you need in your makeup bag.

You can apply a pale, slightly-shimmery champagne hue to the inside corners of your eyes to fake a wide-awake look, and your brow bone to complement a smoky eye. Plus, this shade can double as a highlighter on the tops of your cheekbones in a pinch. Or dust all over your lids to complement a deep wine lip color.

Stila Eye Shadow in Kitten ($18)

The most universally flattering way to wear a look-at-me smoky eye? Using a rich shade of brown. Dust, or smudge, your formula of choice around your lashline and onto your lid, then soften the edges with the aforementioned champagne hue.

Nvey Eco Eye Shadow Brown Sugar ($18)

Sephora Collection Colorful Eyeshadow in No. 86 Tiramisu ($13)

What did we learn from Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen? That contouring your lids with a shine-free taupe shadow is the perfect compliment to full lashes and dewy skin.

Kevyn Aucoin The Matte Eyeshadow in No. 104 ($30)

M.A.C. Eyeshadow in Omega ($15)

Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in Café Latte ($21)

A shimmery, golden hue is the ultimate summer shadow. It’s a fuss-free way to define your eyes on a night out and make the slightest tan pop. Plus, since the shade is in the family of nude, it’s incredibly easy to apply--just dust it on!

Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore ($26)

The final shade you need is, of course, black. Avoid anything sparkly, which will limit your use of it to after sunset. A matte version, however, can be used wet as liner for day and a statement shadow at night.

CoverGirl Eye Enhancers in Champagne $4
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Stila Eye Shadow in Kitten $18
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Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Bountiful Beige $17
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Nvey Eco Eye Shadow Brown Sugar $18
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Sephora Collection Colorful Eyeshadow in No. 86 Tiramisu $13
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Benefit Cosmetics Creaseless Cream Shadow in Bronze Have More Fun $20
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Kevyn Aucoin The Matte Eyeshadow in No. 104 $30
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M.A.C. Eyeshadow in Omega $15
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Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in Café Latte $21
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Rimmel Scandal Eyes Eye Shadow in Golden Bronze $6
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Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Ore $26
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Stila Magnificent Metals Foil Finish Eye Shadow in Comex Copper $32
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Maybelline Color Tattoo Pure pigments in Black Mystery $7
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E.l.f. Mineral Eyeshadow in Seductive $3
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Sunday Riley Prismasilk Eye Color in Little Black Dress $26
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