Watered-Down Eye Shadows Are a Thing of the Past—Enter the New Breed of Brights



Rummage through my makeup bag (and undoubtedly your own too) and you'll notice that all of the warm, earthy, neutral tones that reside in the many eye shadow palettes have been buffed right down to the silver pan—that's how much they get used. All that remains are the perfectly untouched bold shades, the type that for so long gave me goosebumps at just the thought of actually applying them onto my eyes.

I know I'm not alone in this. Most of us have kept bright eye shadows at arm's length for years, avoiding the unwelcome flashbacks from our teen years that they incite. Back then, brights were pallid and diluted—merely wishy-washy excuses for colour. It seems as though times are changing, however, as technology means bright eye shadows are just that: bright.

"Bright eye shadows are typically more pigmented and longer-lasting nowadays due to the quality of pigment. Manufacturers are also sourcing the best, as there's more competition on the market," explains Danielle Roberts, Urban Decay's national makeup artist. And it's got me thinking that it might be time to give those bright hues a second chance.

Of course, it's daunting to face a palette of rainbow tones. The fear of looking like the result of a 5-year-old's scribbled crayon picture is real, but that simply means that trial and error is key here and be sure to start off slowly. "If you're a bright shadow novice, choose one shade and have that as your focus rather than trying to combine colours," suggests Roberts.

While generally, the technology has improved, eye shadows still aren't born equal, so we've sifted through them all to find the best brands to give you a serious dose of vibrancy.