7 Colorful Eye Makeup Looks That'll Cast a Shadow on Your Nude Palettes

colorful eyeshadow looks


We've talked a lot about maximalism lately—a way to take back the editorial, creative edge makeup offers and kick it up a notch. We'll always be one for nude palettes and less-is-more makeup looks. That won't change. But we're also ready to shake things up and have fun with color again. Given the ease with which I found each one of these looks on the internet, it seems so are our favorite makeup artists. When you think about it, bold, bright, well-painted (or, let's be real, smudged) eye shadow is a testament to the artistry of the brand from which it's made—the texture, the pigment, the finish. Really, more than just a trend, colorful eye shadow is a love letter to makeup and the innovations the industry has made in terms of product.

To pay homage to our favorite celebrity makeup artists, their muses, and the no-longer-pared-down makeup looks they showcase, we rounded up a few of our favorites with colors you're sure to be seeing as the seasons turn. Below, find the It colors of the moment and how to re-create them on yourself (or anyone else, for that matter).

Royal Blue

Royal blue, cobalt, denim, and the like have been making waves for a few seasons now. Iconic makeup artist Sir John even predicted as much a few years ago. Now, though, the color has been cemented as a mainstay, with other makeup artists (like Hung Vanngo, above) and celebrities alike reaching for something blue before a big night out. It's cool because it can fancy or entirely dressed down. All you need is the pigment and you're good to go.

Milk Makeup Eye Pigment in Sesh
Milk Makeup Eye Pigment in Sesh $24

Golden-Hour Peach

For something a bit softer, look no further than that good-light apricot color we're dubbing golden-hour peach. It's the sunlit shade that happens naturally during a sunset, and it's absolutely glorious at any time. Laura Harrier shows it off here, but you don't need to use prestige product or have a famous face to make it work for you.

Elf Beautifully Bare Blush in Rose Royalty
E.l.f. Beautifully Bare Blush in Rose Royalty $4

Jewel-Encrusted Emerald

Then, there's the go-big-or-go-home mentality of Pat McGrath in all her glory. She came up with this jewel-encrusted, diamond-dusted look for Paris Fashion Week, and we had to double take about a thousand times. The light hits it, and we're done for. It's everything. But you can do it too—and without gluing actual rhinestones to your eyelids.

Lemonhead Spacepaste in Private School
Lemonhead Spacepaste in Private School $22

Sheer Lilac

Speaking of fashion week, who can forget the shimmer-dipped models who walked in Rihanna's show for Savage x Fenty? Every woman had her own look, crafted by the makeup artists backstage based on her vibe and skin tone. One of our favorites, of course, was this sheer lilac confection, easily translated by a few washes of the Galaxy Eyeshadow Palette ($105). FYI: Read about why that particular palette is representative of a deeper movement.

Fenty Beauty Galaxy Eyeshadow Palette
Fenty Beauty Galaxy Eyeshadow Palette $59

Glossy Paint Splatter

For the artistically-included, we have you covered too. Makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes has mastered this look, serving it up on her own face as well as one of our favorites, Walker Ash. The beauty is in the gloss—after you apply the various colors, smudge a bit of light-catching vinyl on there to set it all together and make the look literally radiant.

Make Beauty Face Gloss
Make Beauty Face Gloss $25

Warm Yellow

See what we told you about Katie Jane Hughes? The woman knows her way around a color. Here, she tries warm yellow on for size, a bold but oddly neutral-feeling shade when done with not much other makeup. We're intrigued by the hue, as it's not neon, but rather more like sunshine.

Colourpop Pressed Powder Shadow in Tiki
Colourpop Pressed Powder Shadow in Tiki $4

Electric Fuchsia

Celebrity makeup artist Patrick Ta is known for his bronzy, sun-kissed looks. That is, until he goes full-throttle pink on Shay Mitchell's insane bone structure. We're really feeling this look, as the shape makes it more modern than just an '80s throwback. It's fresh, cool, and shockingly beautiful.

Pat McGrath Labs Mthrshp Subversive La Vie En Rose Eyeshadow Palette
Pat McGrath Labs Mthrshp Subversive La Vie en Rose Eyeshadow Palette $55

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