Shadow, stay put!
June 18, 2010 6:56 AM   Subscribe

Eye shadow wearers! What do you do to keep your eye makeup from melting away?

Eye shadow lasts for a couple of hours for me, and then cakes up into the crease of my eyelid. Anybody else have this problem? How do you prevent it?
posted by orrnyereg to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (31 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Based on a recommendation in an early askme, I got Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion. My skin comes in two varieties, Greasy! and Extra-Greasy For Summer! and this stuff works well. It's overpriced and the packaging is designed so that if you don't eventually cut it open, you will waste a ton of 'product', but it takes very little to get the job done.
posted by acanthous at 7:03 AM on June 18, 2010 [5 favorites]

Best answer: Ditto everything acanthous says about the UD Primer Potion! It's amazing.
posted by phatkitten at 7:09 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: Yes, I was going to recommend the Urban Decay Potion as well. I used to be able to wear eyeshadow for an hour at the most before it would crease up or disappear. I used this on my wedding day (hottest day of the year) and my eye makeup was perfect all day. I would almost say this stuff has changed my life.
posted by nprigoda at 7:09 AM on June 18, 2010

This stuff is awesome. MAC also does an excellent primer. I use a paint pot in a neutral shimmer for everyday with a touch of shadow on top for evening. Lasts all day, extra easy and fast to apply.
posted by Go Banana at 7:10 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I came here to recommend Urban Decay's Primer Potion too. (If you google "primer potion," you'll get results on how to cut open the inconvenient bottle.)

A cheaper alternative is L'Oreal De-Crease, which I haven't personally tried but gets good reviews.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:13 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]

Yep, primer. Many versions exist. Go to Sephora and try some out. Get some samples. See what works.

Also, better eyeshadow, honestly. Mine always used to cake up when I was wearing drugstore shadow; once I started spending a little more money for a better product (in my case, Benefit), I stopped seeing as much flaking/caking.
posted by devinemissk at 7:16 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: I once read through all eighty billion Make Up Alley reviews for both Urban Decay Primer Portion and Too Faced's Shadow Insurance and I ended up going with the Shadow Insurance because it's a lot easier to get every drop out of the tube. Otherwise they are basically the exact same product.

You do need a brush to apply it. I just use a cheap concealer brush.
posted by Juliet Banana at 7:21 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]

I've used the MAC primer and the Loreal De-Crease. Both worked well, but you need a lot less of the MAC stuff.

If you don't want to buy anything new now, you could just try using liquid foundation or concealer on your lids, it can work.
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:27 AM on June 18, 2010

Benefit make a good eyeshadow primer, and the best brand for eyeshadows that don't crease is Dior, you really get what you pay for with them.
posted by ellieBOA at 7:28 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

Clinique also makes a de-crease product as well. I can't remember the name right off hand, but if you were to ask at the makeup counter, they'd point you in the right direction.
posted by ThaBombShelterSmith at 7:31 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: Yup, Urban Decay's Eyeshadow Potion is DA BOMB. Also, if you use eye cream/moisturizer, don't put it right on your upper lids unless they're extremely dry or crepey. Eye cream + eyeshadow = bad combination.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 7:34 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: Nthing UD's Eyeshadow primer. It IS hard to get out of the tube, though, as mentioned above. It can also cut down on how much you spend on eyeshadow, as it makes a cheap shadow way longer lasting than it usually would be, which helps to justify the primer's $20 pricetag.
posted by urbanlenny at 7:37 AM on June 18, 2010

MAC Paints have always worked well for me.
posted by tetralix at 7:44 AM on June 18, 2010

Wow, I feel like a cheater. I just rub a smidge of my moisturizer on a makeup sponge, anddip it in just a little bit of liquid foundation, then kind of smear it (VERY LIGHTLY!) across my eyelid. It's really just the tiniest amount of foundation, but it gives the shadow something to stick to. It seems to work wonders with even my cheapo grocery store eyeshadow.
posted by specialagentwebb at 7:52 AM on June 18, 2010 [3 favorites]

Price isn't a reliable indicator of whether an eyeshadow will last or not, and skin is idiosyncratic, so I'd put the idea of buying more expensive shadows out of your mind. Only trial and error will lead you to a shadow that lasts longer on you than other shadows.

When preparing your skin you should put a moisturizer around your eyelids and give it ten minutes to absorb. This will plump away any dry lines that your shadow would otherwise sink into.

The purpose of a primer is to give the eyeshadow a surface to grab onto, because if you apply the shadow directly to unprepared or only-moisturized skin it will tend to get absorbed and come out uneven and choppy. Some primers may do what they claim to do, but I'm skeptical that they really do anything that isn't done by foundation or equivalent gunk. I cover my whole face with sunscreen (not moisturizer + spf) and don't usually follow it with foundation or primer. You might want to put foundation on just your eyelids and see how that goes. Unless you have dry skin, I suggest a water-based liquid foundation as your best bet as it's the least greasy.

The next thing to do is powder. Put loose powder over your eyelids and brush the excess away. Now you have a good surface for your eyeshadow.

The longest-lasting shadows will be loose powders, followed by pressed powders. The shortest-lasting ones will be creams and liquids. Most people will tell you that you put cream/liquid eyeshadow on before you do the powder step; this doesn't work for me but YMMV.

Put your shadows on and blend them in.

Now take your loose powder and brush it over your eyelids again. Brush the excess away, comb out your eyebrows and eyelashes with a lash comb, and your eyeshadow will last as long as it's ever going to. It probably will still crease, but not as much.

I take a small container of loose powder with me, and twice a day (morning and afternoon) I blot the oil off my face with one ply of a tissue, smooth my creased shadow away with my finger, and powder up again. You probably aren't as greasy as me, so YMMV. Overall, though, my makeup tends to stay wherever it's put.
posted by tel3path at 7:53 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

I'm a greasy creaser as well. Benefit's creaseless eyeshadow stays put for me. It's amazing to find something like that after 30 or so years of messy lids.

You didn't ask, but people with creasing problems often also have trouble with eyeliner transfer to the lids. Make Up Forever's Aqua Eyes Waterproof gel eyeliner also doesn't budge on my oily lids.
posted by cecic at 8:04 AM on June 18, 2010

The longest-lasting shadows will be loose powders, followed by pressed powders. The shortest-lasting ones will be creams and liquids.

I don't know about other brands, but Bobbie Brown's long-wear cream shadow's last way longer than powder shadows for me. But everyone is different and I believe in general tel3path's comment is correct (that powders generally have more staying power than creams) but it doesn't take into consideration creams that are designed to be long-wearing. I can only speak from experience for the Bobbie Brown products (including the gel liner which also stays put).
posted by kaybdc at 8:15 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: nthing Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion. I don't even wear eyeshadow a lot and don't like to spend money on fancy makeup but its worth it.

I put it on for a wedding at noon, wore it dancing all night, slept in it and when I realized I'd forgotten remover I left my eye makeup on through going out the next night. Obviously you should take your makeup off every night but the point is my eyes looked as if I had just put makeup on after two days.
posted by Bunglegirl at 8:16 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

I came in to say exactly what tel3path said, basically.

I wear foundation all over my face (is this weird? it sounds like no one else here does that!) and I find that plus a dab of pressed powder provides a nice matt surface for my eyeshadow to stick to. I never have creases.

I personally like the mousse-y foundations (thicker mousses, like the No.7 brand in the UK, less so the Maybelline stuff, I find it greasy in itself) as these tend to 'fix' into powder too. Spend some time really matching the colour if you're only going to wear it on your eyelids, though, or else ensure the foundation doesn't extend beyond the eyeshadow area - otherwise you'll end up with unfortunate highlights!
posted by citands at 8:19 AM on June 18, 2010

Smashbox also makes a decent primer potion, though I prefer UDs. Also, putting on the shadow wet makes it last longer. Dampen a sponge applicator, blot it off on your wrist, load up the applicator with shadow, and apply. Let layers dry in between. I do this for the makeup I wear for roller derby (really seriously garish kelly green shadow) and it manages to stay on even with an hour of sweating.
posted by pixiecrinkle at 8:20 AM on June 18, 2010

I've suffered through this for 25 years. I used to use a product by Aziza that has since disappeared and after trying nearly every primer on the market, finally found the MAC Paint Pots after consulting one of the MAC artists. The shimmery ones work better than the matte ones - I use "Bare Study" nearly every day. In addition, I lay down a brief dusting of MAC's Blot Powder before the Paint Pot. I've never found anything that worked better than this combination.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 8:25 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: Nthing Primer Potion, but please look up guides to cutting open the tube to get the last of the product out before you replace your first bottle! If anyone her eis in the UK, Urban Decay is 3 for 2 at Boots at the moment.

A friend tells good things about Shadow Insurance too.
posted by mippy at 8:47 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: I use the MAC Paint Pots. My daughter, who is a makeup addict, prefers Urban Decay Primer Potion. As Juliet Banana alluded to, Urban Decay's packaging is cute but leaves a lot of waste. I've seen my daughter do surgery on a bottle and scrape the remaining primer into a fresh container. It's amazing how much product is left behind when the bottle appears to be empty.
posted by contrariwise at 8:57 AM on June 18, 2010

I've generally had good luck just using mineral makeup (powders.) They don't hold up in heavy sweat, though, but light perspiration they seem to hang on.
posted by medea42 at 9:04 AM on June 18, 2010

Primers work well for both a longer lasting and more intense color. I like the MAC paint pots because they come in a variety of colors that can boost the color of the shadow you put over it. Plus they last forever.

I also like using the FIX+ spray that MAC makes once I've got the eye makeup on. I've found it stays in place and lasts longer. This is especially the case for glittery/loose power style eye shadows. (It also helps the rest of my make up stay in place for the day too!)
posted by Palmcorder Yajna at 9:23 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]

I want to second Juliet Banana's recommendation of Too Faced Shadow Insurance. I don't use a brush with it though. I squeeze out a little bit on the back of my hand and then use the opposite ring finger to apply to the eyelids. I love having a squeeze tube instead of a wand applicator. If you balk at the $17 price tag, I will tell you that I have only just finished my first tube after using it 5-6 days/week for the past two years. (and yes, you can get every drop out without waste or performing bottle-surgery)

Searching on youtube for "eyeshadow primer reviews" will help get you to demos of how to use the products, and some are side-by-side comparisons.
posted by watch out for turtles at 9:31 AM on June 18, 2010

The Benefit "Stay Don't Stray" primer is amazing stuff. I have deep-set eyes and even metallic powders won't crease when I'm wearing it. Like cecic, I have fallen in love with Benefit's creaseless cream shadows.

I am sensitive to something in Urban Decay's line so I have no experience with their primer, but the packaging looks like it would waste a lot of product. [on preview: what contrariwise and Juliet Banana said.]
posted by catlet at 9:38 AM on June 18, 2010

Best answer: Nthing the UD Primer Potion. I got it and ended up not using it because it made my eyeshadow look the exact same color and just as opaque as it was in the case, and I thought it looked better thin and translucent.
posted by emilyd22222 at 10:24 AM on June 18, 2010

I just got some Make Up Forever Eye Seal. It's pretty awesome, especially when using eye shadow as a liquid eyeliner. But it also works to keep eyeshadow on. I was shocked at how well it worked, and I've tried other makeup/eyeshadow primers.
posted by pyjammy at 10:41 AM on June 18, 2010

Nthing MAC's paint pots. It's not greasy like the stuff that comes in a tube can be.

What kind of shadow are you wearing? I've found that the shadows with more of a shimmer finish tend to crease less on my skin.
posted by inertia at 3:13 PM on June 18, 2010

Response by poster: I knew AskMe would come through! I'm going to give the primer a try. Thanks everyone!
posted by orrnyereg at 1:10 PM on June 19, 2010

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