We're all about that base.

Pia Velasco
Apr 23, 2021 @ 12:46 pm
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best eyeshadow primers
Credit: Too Faced, KVD Beauty, Urban Decay

Finding the best beauty products has never been easier thanks to Pia's Picks, our weekly curated list. As the Senior Beauty Editor at HelloGiggles, I test and examine the latest skincare, makeup, hair, and nail products so I can confidently recommend the best ones to you.

If you've ever done a full face of makeup only to have your eyeshadow crease, fade, and transfer onto your cheeks, then you know that having a good eyeshadow primer is necessary. Like face primers, these are formulated to keep all types of eyeshadow on your lids, crease-free. However, unlike face primers, these tend to have more grip as eyeshadows are typically more pigmented and have elements such as glitter that require more sticking power. Here, we rounded up 11 of the best eyeshadow primers for all budgets, concerns, and eyeshadows.

1. Best eyeshadow primer:

KVD Beauty Shake Primer High-Impact Invisible Eyeshadow Primer

Not only is this primer vegan and cruelty-free, but its clear formula is designed to intensify the color of any eyeshadow shade. The first time we tried it, we were shook by how well it worked, which is why we gave this lightweight eyeshadow primer a 2021 Beauty Crush Award.

2. Best cream eyeshadow primer:

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

This is the OG eyeshadow that everybody and their best friend have been using since high school—and for good reason. The light nude shade goes on tinted and dries transparently, and since it has a blendable formula, you can dab a bit on the center of your lid and spread it out evenly to the sides.

3. Best drugstore eyeshadow primer:

e.l.f. Cosmetics Putty Eye Primer

Infused with hydrating squalane, this primer moisturizes eyelids while creating a smooth canvas for eyeshadow. It also comes in six colors—white, cream, rose, sand, clay, and black—so you can brighten and color correct your lids or use the colored shades to add depth to your makeup or create a smoky effect. If you're testing out eyeshadow primers for the first time, we suggest you start with this budget-friendly Beauty Crush Award winner before exploring pricier alternatives.

4. Best eyeshadow primer for dry skin:

If you have dry skin, you're most likely familiar with the pain and discomfort that can come with tightness around the eyes. For you, using hydrating skincare products is necessary, so your makeup should have moisturizing properties, too. This silky eyeshadow primer is packed with nourishing vitamin E to keep the delicate eye area soothed and will keep your makeup set all day.

5. Best eyeshadow primer for oily skin:

Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Eyeshadow Primer

For people with oily skin, getting eyeshadow to stay on your lids can be a challenge—but it doesn't have to be. This eyeshadow primer is infused with kaolin clay to help absorb excess oil while keeping your makeup on your lids.

6. Best Black-owned eyeshadow primer:

FENTY BEAUTY by Rihanna Pro Filt'r Amplifying Eye Primer

Give it up to Rihanna for creating one of the best eyeshadow primers on the market! The lightweight formula comes in a subtle peachy shade that looks good on all skin tones. To apply, add a dot of the primer using the cotton bud applicator, then with your fingers or a makeup brush, smooth it across the lid. Then, wait a minute for the formula to dry before applying your eyeshadow for a completely crease-proof and smooth look.

7. Best eyeshadow primer for glitter:

Too Faced Glitter Glue Eye Shadow Primer

We love a fun, glittery eyeshadow look, but we don't particularly like the fallout that transfers onto the rest of our faces. For glitter eyeshadows, you're going to need a super stick, and we mean a super sticky formula that will grip the larger particles and keep them on your lids. Enter: Too Faced. The creamy formula holds loose pigments, glitters, and shimmers on your lids and prevents them from creasing throughout the day and night.

8. Best clear eyeshadow primer:

NARS Pro-Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base

If you're looking for a no fuss eyeshadow primer that goes on completely transparent and will get the job done, this NARS pick will do the trick. With nearly 100k likes and 2.5k reviews on Sephora, it's safe to say that this is one of the most loved eyeshadow primers around. Apart from being clear, meaning it will work with all your eye makeup shades, it's also ophthalmologist-tested, making it perfect for people with sensitive eyes.

9. Best tinted eyeshadow primer:

MAC Cosmetics Pro Longwear Paint Pot Cream Eyeshadow

Available in a whopping 18 shades, this MAC primer is it if you're looking for a tinted version to further intensify your eyeshadow color. In fact, the options are so pretty that you can wear them as eyeshadows themselves if you please.

10. Best clean eyeshadow primer:

bareMinerals Prime Time Eyelid Primer

bareMinerals, a Hailey Bieber-approved brand, is to thank for our favorite clean eyeshadow primer. The paraben-, sulfate-, and phthalate-free formula has a brightening effect that helps to visually awaken the appearance of tired eyes, which, let's be honest, we could all use from time to time.

11. Best brightening eyeshadow primer:

NYX Professional Makeup Eyeshadow Base

Prevent your eyeshadow from fading, transferring, and creasing with this super stay primer that keeps makeup intact. The white shade will make bright colors, such as blue and pink, really stand out, whereas the off white shade has pearly pigments to brighten up your look by further reflecting light off your lids. For the best results, apply a tiny bit to the center of your lids, with either a makeup brush or a finger, then spread it out across the lid for a smooth, thin layer.