14 Best Eye Shadow Sticks of 2024 for Flawless Eye Looks in Seconds, According to Makeup Artists

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Eye makeup doesn’t have to be complicated, especially if you have one of the best eye shadow sticks in your arsenal. These surprisingly versatile sticks are an easy medium for beginners, whether they’re being used as eyeliner or for a smudged-out shadow look. The creamy formulas slide and glide without pesky powder fallout, meaning you get a punch of pigment without risking your foundation base. Best of all? You don’t need a brush to apply or blend these. Your fingers are your artistic tools.

Our Top Picks:

Read on for the 14 best eye shadow sticks on the market and get ready to swipe and serve looks.

Best Overall: Charlotte Tilbury Color Chameleon

Charlotte Tilbury

Charlotte Tilbury Color Chameleon Eye Shadow Pencil

Why It’s Worth It: New York City-based makeup artist Tobi Henney adores Charlotte Tilbury’s Golden Quartz shade (pictured above) for its versatility, and says the entire Color Chameleon range “is beautiful for a super-fast smoky eye.” Makeup artist Vincent Oquendo agrees, explaining that the creamy shadow sticks are highly blendable and don’t create creasing. While certain shades are suggested for certain eye colors (like Amethyst Aphrodisiac for green eyes), don’t let that stop you from experimenting with whatever you’re tempted to try.

Editor Tip: For the best results and maximum precision, sharpen the pencil before you use it.

Who It’s For: People looking for a long-lasting formula | Available Shades: 9

Widest Shade Range: Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Shadow

Laura Mercier

Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Shadow

Why It’s Worth It: Laura Mercier’s Best of Beauty-winning Caviar Stick Eye Shadows are a makeup artist staple. “I’m a die-hard fan of the Laura Mercier shadow stick in Cocoa (a rich chocolate with bronze pearl pictured above),” New York City-based makeup artist Kirin Bhatty tells Allure. “I always have them in my kit as they are super versatile, and you can create something very natural to something very smokey in a few swipes.” And with almost 40 shades in shimmer, matte, and metallic finishes, you can unleash your inner artist.

Editor Tip: You can also use this shadow stick as an eyeliner.

Who It’s For: People looking for a transfer-proof shadow stick | Available Shades: 36 (24 original, 12 matte)

Best Neutral Shades: Chanel Stylo Ombre Et Contour


Chanel Stylo Ombre Et Contour

Why It’s Worth It: “Chanel has the most beautiful, matte-brown eye shadow stick in the shade Contour Clair,” Henney says of the pictured shade. “It’s a fabulous, go-to shade for day-to-day looks.” This shadow stick blends easily, and the medium-thick tip gives you the ultimate freedom of application. Plus, Sofia Richie Grainge wore it at her wedding. Enough said.

Editor Tip: While the formula is long-wearing, you can pair it with an eye shadow primer for extra insurance that your color won’t fade away by aperitivo.

Who It’s For: People looking for luxury | Available Shades: 4

Best Double-Ended: Bobbi Brown Dual-Ended Long-Wear Cream Eyeshadow Stick

Bobbi Brown

Bobbi Brown Dual-Ended Long-Wear Cream Eyeshadow Stick in Cashew

Why It’s Worth It: Double the colors means double the fun and double the “your eye shadow looks amazing.” Don’t be surprised when you reach for Bobbi Brown’s crease-proof Dual-Ended Long-Wear Cream Eyeshadow Stick (pictured above in Bronze Pink/Espresso) day after day for the easiest and breeziest of easy-breezy looks. Whether you want to start light in the middle and blend out to a darker, smokier look, or mix the shades with a finger on your lid for a DIY color moment, this is a total go-to.

Editor Tip: You may already know and love Bobbi Brown’s original, Best of Beauty-winning Long-Wear Cream Eyeshadow Stick. This is the same thing, just with two colors. If you want to dig deeper into the hue offerings, the one-sided stick has 24 shades.

Who It’s For: People looking for expertly-paired color combos | Available Shades: 7

Most Versatile: Nudestix Magnetic Eye Color


Nudestix Magnetic Eye Color

Why It’s Worth It: We couldn’t preach our favorite eye shadow sticks without mentioning Magnetic Eye Color from Nudestix. As one of the first brands to fully embrace the shadow stick trend, it has since expanded its options to close to 30 shades in matte and luminous finishes that suit casual and glam looks alike. Better yet, this stick (shown above in Taupe) comes with a makeup tin, mirror, and sharpener. Yes, please.

Editor Tip: Some of the lighter, glittery shades (like Angel and Nudity) can moonlight as highlighter, too.

Who It’s For: People looking for versatility | Available Shades: 28 (13 matte, 15 luminous)

Best Waterproof: Urban Decay Cosmetics 24/7 Shadow Stick

Urban Decay

Urban Decay Cosmetics 24/7 Shadow Stick

Why It’s Worth It: Urban Decay’s Cosmetics 24/7 Shadow Stick (Digitalized pictured above) comes in a wide range of shimmery and matte shades for your choosing (or combining) pleasure. It resists transfer and fading for up to 24 hours, never sacrificing creaminess. Thanks to ingredients like emollient-rich bran wax, this formula goes on smoothly, blends easily, and then dries to a waterproof texture. This stick also contains a small amount of caffeine, which is a fabulous antioxidant with anti-inflammatory benefits, among others.

Editor Tip: Blend the shadow within 15 to 30 seconds of applying, because it’s fast-drying.

Who It’s For: People who don’t have time to touch up | Available Shades: 14 (9 shimmer, 5 matte)

Editor-Approved: Victoria Beckham Beauty EyeWear Eye Shadow Stick

Victoria Beckham Beauty

Victoria Beckham Beauty EyeWear Eye Shadow Sticks

Why It’s Worth It: If we had to describe Victoria Beckham Beauty’s EyeWear Eye Shadow Stick in two words: Creamy perfection. Each of the 10 shades is ideal for sheered-out, low-key looks, or bold, smokey eye styles. Try channeling warm weather vibes with Sunflower, a matte mustard yellow, or Macaron, a matte lilac (pictured above).

Editor Tip: Commerce writer Jennifer Hussein is a fan of these versatile, easy-to-use formulas and can attest that they last up to 12 hours — even when you’re out and about on an 85-degree day.

Who It’s For: People going out in humid weather | Available Shades: 10

Best Vivids: About-Face Shadowstick


About-Face Summer Shadowstick

Why It’s Worth It: Halsey knew exactly what she was doing when she went to the lab and whipped up the About-Face Shadowsticks. The shade selection is top-tier, with hues you’d be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. Swipe on a few layers of pearly Acidic (the neon yellow-green pictured above) for a bold look in seconds — and tons of DMs asking what you’re wearing.

Editor Tip: Each pencil has a perfectly slippery glide, but the mattes are slightly more pigmented, while the pearly shades are sheerer but impressively buildable

Who It’s For: People who don’t shy away from bold colors | Available Shades: 16

Best for Waterlines: Make Up For Ever Aqua Resist Smoky Shadow

Make Up For Ever

Make Up For Ever Aqua Resist Smoky Eyeshadow Stick

Why It’s Worth It: Need an eye shadow that lasts through your longest days? Take it from us — Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Resist Smoky Shadow (pictured above in Pink Canyon, a pearly rosewood) has wildly impressive staying power and a waterproof, smudge-proof formula that doesn’t require touch-ups throughout the day.

Editor Tip: The pointed tip is also great for filling in your waterline sans irritation.

Who It’s For: People who spend a lot of time outdoors | Available Shades: 14

Most Beginner-Friendly: Nyx Professional Makeup Jumbo Eye Pencil

Nyx Professional Makeup

Nyx Professional Makeup Jumbo Eye Pencil

Why It’s Worth It: If you’re looking for a major steal, you’re in luck. For just $6, you can indulge in one of 16 gorgeous shades in Nyx Professional Makeup’s Jumbo Eye Pencil range. These ultra-creamy crayons couldn’t be easier to use as a priming base (neutrals), all-over shadow (brights), or liner (deeps). Channel your inner “Rain on Me” diva look with Milk, an opaque white that’s unexpected yet classic.

Editor Tip: This pencil can also be a primer for powder shadows or loose glitters.

Who It’s For: People who want pigment | Available Shades: 16

Best for Cat-Eyes: Tarte Quick Stick Shadow & Liner


Tarte Quick Stick Shadow & Liner

Why It’s Worth It: Every great cat eye requires two things: A precise liner and a shimmery shadow to highlight your artistry. The good news is you’ll find both in Tarte’s two-sided Quick Stick Shadow & Liner. The thin, charcoal-black eyeliner is one of the smoothest pencils out there. Its creamy texture seamlessly glides along your lash line, creating a perfect wing.

Editor Tip: The Rose Gold Luster/Brown shadow stick pictured above is easy to smudge for a soft finish. In the words of former associate news editor Gabi Thorne, it’s “the perfect cat eye tool.”

Who It’s For: Contact lens wearers (it’s ophthalmologist approved) | Available Shades: 10

Best Clean Option: Rare Beauty All of the Above Weightless Eyeshadow Stick

Rare Beauty

Rare Beauty All of the Above Weightless Eyeshadow Stick

Why It’s Worth It: The Rare Beauty All of the Above Weightless Eyeshadow Stick is a subtly shimmery pick that lasts all day — rain, shine, or something else entirely. The shades bridge the gap between earth and jewel tones and result in a collection of super-wearable hues — like Well-Being, a soft pink pictured above — that can take you from day to night repeatedly.

Editor Tip: Apply a lighter shade like Integrity to your brow bone for a gentle highlight.

Who It’s For: People with sensitive skin | Available Shades: 6

Best Drugstore: E.L.F. No Budge Shadow Stick


E.L.F. No Budge Shadow Stick

Why It’s Worth It: Glide E.L.F.’s No-Budge Shadow Stick (Rich Amethyst shown here) onto your eyelids, dab with your finger to spread, et voila, your look is ready for lights, camera, and action. Combined with a smudge-proof formula that reviewers swear lasts through beach days and heat waves, this $5 long-wear cream shadow is a fun, fast way to add a wash of color to any look.

Editor Tip: You can apply this stick closer to your lash line as you would with a regular liner.

Who It’s For: Makeup newbies | Available Shades: 9

Most Unique Shades: Colourpop Shadow Stix


Colourpop Shadow Stix

Why It’s Worth It: Another affordable hit is the Colourpop Shadow Stix, which New York City-based makeup artist Amrita Mehta loves for its “great color payoff.” At $8 a pop, these creamy sticks offer a unique shade range across metallic and matte finishes, including Surf Sesh (the metallic teal shown above), Cold Girl (metallic icy white), and Friday Feels (metallic peachy coral).

Editor Tip: You can buy a 16-stick set if you’re ready to commit to becoming a shadow pro, or simply shopping for a gift.

Who It’s For: People who like to blend using their fingers | Available Shades: 22

How we test and review products

Before reviewing any makeup, we ask questions about a number of factors: What ingredients are in it? Does the brand offer a wide shade range inclusive of consumers with all skin tones and undertones? Is it safe for readers who have sensitive skin or wear contact lenses? Is it on the affordable side or more of a splurge? Is its packaging consciously designed or needlessly wasteful?

For our review of the best eye shadow sticks, we enlisted the help of multiple editors, writers, contributors, and professional makeup artists to review the products. This ensures our testing base spans different skin tones, genders, and dermatological conditions. We considered each product’s performance across four primary categories: wear, longevity, color variety, and ease of use. For more on what’s involved in our reporting, check out our complete reviews process and methodology page.

Our staff and testers

A beauty product is a personal purchase. You might be searching for a face cream to address persistent dryness or a new nail product to add to your Sunday self-care routine; you may simply be browsing around for the latest launches to hit the hair market. No matter what you seek or your individual needs and concerns, Allure wants to ensure that you love anything we recommend in our stories. We believe that having a diverse team of writers and editors — in addition to the wide range of outside testers and industry experts we regularly call upon — is essential to reaching that goal.

After all, can we really say a skin-care product is the “best” for people over 50 if the only testers we’ve solicited opinions from folks who have yet to hit 30? Can we honestly deem a high-end diffuser worthy of your hard-earned cash if it’s never been tested on curls? We’re proud that our staff spans a wide range of ages, skin tones, hair textures, genders, and backgrounds, which means that we are able to fairly assess any beauty product that comes into the beauty closet.

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