Regardless of where you fall on the makeup spectrum–bold, classic, minimalist, adventurous….a neutral eyeshadow palette is an essential part of any kit. Like the LBD, a neutral palette can go from day to night effortlessly, work on a variety of skintones and is endlessly versatile. These are some of my favorite neutral palettes at the moment…
Urban Decay makes some of the best neutral palettes–currently there are four: The NAKED Basics Palette (review), NAKED 2 Palette (review), NAKED 3 Palette (review) and current obsession, the NAKED Smoky Palette (review). The NAKED Smoky Palette ($54) is the newest and I love that this palette explores the darker side of a neutral smoky eye.
From Tarte, the Special Edition Amazonian Clay Eyeshadow Palette ($42) features 16 full-size shadows infused with Amazonian clay. There are a various textures, including mattes, shimmers, and satins, plus a dual-ended brush included. Pigmentations is excellent. If you love classic neutrals, this is a fantastic palette to own! Available at QVC/QVC.com.
La Palette Nude 2 from L’Oreal Paris has a diverse range of neutral eyeshadow shades. This palette includes 10 full-size eyeshadows (4 shimmer, plus matte/satins) with good color-payoff. What I like about this palette is that if you flip it over, there is are 4 illustrated looks with easy to follow directions. You can find La Palette Nude 2 ($19.99) in mass, food and drug retailers nationwide.
If small but mighty is your thing, then the LORAC Black Skinny Palette is your friend. This was one of my Top 10 Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive picks and at $15, it was a steal (sadly, it appears to have sold out). There are 7 full-size eyeshadows in the palette. The quality is excellent and personally, I love this one for travel. So many looks in a small, convenient size. This was the only palette where a brush was not included.
Step right up to the BUXOM Eyeshadow Bar for the brand new primer-infused eyeshadows in their own six-pan customizable palette. There are several pre-curated palettes; if you like neutral shades, you’ll want “May Contain Nudity”. Or you can customize your own, like I did. There are 40 shades and numerous textures, so you can mix and match. The formula is long-wearing, with good pigmentation. I like the slide-out drawer, which makes it easy to pop in shadows. Available at Sephora, $40; each shadow $12.
When I think of neutrals, I have to confess, for me…it’s Bobbi Brown that I turn to first. This season’s Telluride Eye Palette (review) is a perfect example that no matter how many palettes Bobbi puts out, there are still beautiful color and texture combinations to tempt us! This is a neutral palette, yet the finishes are modern. And for those wondering about pigmentation/color-payoff; the Telluride Eye Palette ($52) is among the best of some of the more recent Bobbi palettes I’ve tried.
For my splurge pick, I have to go with the By Terry Eye Designer Palette ($96) in Smoky Nude. There are ten ultra-pigmented, silky eyeshadow shades that can be worn wet or dry. Each shadow is embossed with a quiled pattern and “By Terry” imprinted on the edges. The smoky colors are, to me, the most interesting. You are able to use these shades as liners; the dual-sided brush has an angled side that is up to the task.
These are my recent neutral eyeshadow finds, but I’m always on the lookout for more. If you have a favorite neutral eyeshadow palette, let me know in the comments!
Disclosure: Some press samples were provided by the brand/PR for editorial consideration, product testing, photography and review. Others were bought by myself. Affiliate links have been used in the post.