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From Frank Sinatra to Princess Diana, history is replete with icons who flaunted their beautiful blue eyes. Why shouldn't you join them?
There’s no better way to do so than with the right eyeshadow. To determine which hues are most flattering for you, think back to the color wheel that hung on the wall of your elementary school art class. Because orange is directly opposite blue, these types of warm tones (namely, oranges, bronzes, coppers, and anything in that family) are the best option to truly make your eyes pop and stand out.
But it doesn’t have to stop there! When it comes to pastel shades, consider opting for cool gray-blues; pinks can accentuate redness and make you look tired. As far as jewel tones go, pass on greens and blues, which are too close to your natural eye color, in favor of rich, amethyst purple. Yet another foolproof pick is a warm champagne shade; it has the same brightening and eye-opening effect as a beige or white, without looking too stark set against your light eyes.
On the search for a blue eye-flattering shadow? The top picks below fit the bill.
Best Overall: Maybelline New York The 24KT Nudes Eyeshadow Palette
Consider this a one-stop-shop for all of your shadow needs. With a dozen different shades, there’s a wide range of colors to choose from, all of which happen to be extremely flattering on blue eyes. Mix and match any of the five shimmery gold and bronze metallics, or use one of the three pale beige tones for the perfect neutral, all-over color. A rich purple will pop on blue eyes, and there is also two dark black-brown shades ideal for lining.
Best Budget: e.l.f. Cosmetics Smudge Pot Cream Eyeshadow
For less than the price of your morning cup of coffee, you can pick up a jar of this super smooth gel formula. Dab it on with your fingertips or a brush; either way, the two shades (a deeper bronze and pink-y champagne) will bring out your blue eyes. Also nice: Because it does glide on so seamlessly, it can easily double as an eyeliner when applied with an angled liner brush. Reviewers also repeatedly point out its impressive staying power.
Best Drugstore: Wet n Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow Single
This brand recently revamped their powder shadow formula, with a supremely silky feel that rivals that of much pricier powders we’ve tried. (The blendability and staying power have also been improved.) All of the shades pack a punch of pigment and ringing in at such a bargain price, you truly can afford to try them all. But you’re going to have to start somewhere, so pick up this saturated, pearlescent deep purple. Whether swiped across your entire lid or used as the base for a smokey eye, it adds instant drama to any shade of blue eyes.
Best Palette: Urban Decay Naked Heat Eyeshadow Palette
The OG Urban Decay Naked palette has now spawned many spin-off versions, none of which is more flattering on blue eyes than this one. The dozen amber-hues range from burnt oranges to warm browns, and everything in between, all gorgeous complements to cooler-toned blue eyes. All of them tout the brand’s unique pigment infusion system, which makes for the velvety feel and rich color; happy customers often call attention to how pigmented the shades area. Plus, it comes with a full-size mirror, dual-sided brush, and is available in a mini version, too.
Best Natural Formula: Jillian Dempsey Lid Tint
Made with a long list of organic ingredients, sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, and shea butter make up the extra hydrating and creamy base in this vegan formula. Not to mention that it’s super easy to apply; sheer and blendable, it’s pretty much mistake-proof, even if you haphazardly dab it on with your fingertips. (And it can be layered over powder eyeshadow, too.)
There are several colors that look great on blue eyes, but this vibrant peach is one of our favorites. While it may look unnervingly bright in the pan, it goes on fairly sheer, delivering just the right amount of eye-popping warm color.
Best Gloss: Surratt Beauty Lid Lacquer
Breaking news: Glossy lids are in, in a big way. And while many eye glosses can feel sticky or tacky, this lacquer packs high-sheen and buildable color, all in a totally lightweight formula. Tap it on with your fingertips for a more sheer finish, or with a sponge-tip applicator for more impact. While we’re fans of all the shades, this sunset hue is especially choice for blue eyes. It looks equally pretty dabbed on alone, or paired with some graphic black liner for a more dramatic effect.
What to Look For in Eyeshadow For Blue Eyes
Because blue is the opposite of orange, anything in the orange color family will brighten your eyes and contrast well. Among the top choices are nude shades, which may have tones of copper or bronze. Byrdie writer and makeup artist Ashley Rebecca points out that everything from champagne gold to bronze or peach will flatter blue eyes.
It's true that you want to avoid a jewel tone that's too close a match to your eye color, but there's a lot of wiggle room in there. You have all those glorious purples to choose from, as well as plenty of greens. Rebecca notes that "jewel tones of emerald green will perk up any shade of blue eyes."
Love a shadow in a cream pot? Or do you prefer a powder? Even if you're more the gel stick shadow type, there's a shadow that will make your blue eyes look beautiful. Just choose the format you like the best, and that you find stays on well.
Every type of shadow has its own set of tricks and tips to keep it from sliding off your face. But you'll worry about this less if you choose a product known for having staying power. Look for keywords like "all-day wear" if you're unsure about how well a particular eyeshadow is supposed to last.
How do you make blue eyes look bluer?
In addition to wearing eyeshadow colors that contrast nicely and make your blue eyes pop, you can venture out to other makeup products to enhance your eye color. For example, a red lipstick, especially a bright one, may create the illusion of your blue eyes being ever bluer.
Is black or brown mascara better for blue eyes?
Black mascara may be tempting, but because of the color wheel and its "opposites attract" rule, it's actually brown mascara that will make your blue eyes stand out more. Try one of these for a subtle lash lift.
Does blue mascara look good on blue eyes?
If you're interested in a blue mascara, note that you won't get the same color popping effect as you would from a brown one. However, blue mascara has the power to make the whites of your eyes appear slightly whiter. They're available in a variety of hues, from powder blue to navy.