Here's How Makeup Artists Achieve Flawless Eye Shadow Looks Every Damn Time


(Image credit: @melissa.hurkman)

Professionals make applying eye shadow look way too easy—any time I find myself scrolling through makeup TikTok, I become instantly dumbfounded by how little time and effort it appears to take artists to complete a full, intricate look. Granted, I know these videos are condensed into a short-form reel for the platform, but it still takes a certain level of skill to be able to pull off that kind of artistry in such a short amount of time.

Sure, foundation application can be a breeze when you have a great sponge or brush, but I'll timidly admit that eye shadow is where I struggle most. How do the pros make every eye look so flawless, you ask? Well, don't look at me. I'm turning this one over to them. I asked three celebrity makeup artists to reveal their best-kept secrets. I'll give you a hint, it involves a super clean canvas and the right brushes.


(Image credit: @melissa.hurkman)

"Good, soft eye shadow brushes will always be one of the most important elements to a flawless eye shadow application," says celebrity makeup artist Melissa Hurkman. "You'll also want to use a string eyeshadow primer before applying any eyeshadow. This will help enhance the colors of the shadows and help them stay all day long without creasing. Set your primer with a soft powder highlighter or a base shadow before the application—preferably, something neutral. This will prevent any skipping of product during the blending process."

So the mastery is possible and that comes straight from the source. For the inside scoop, keep scrolling below. These are without a doubt the best eyeshadow brush sets that even celebrity makeup artists swear by.

Cara Lovello, Celebrity Makeup Artist


(Image credit: @makeup_cara)

Renée Loiz, Celebrity Makeup Artist & Founder of Color May Vary


(Image credit: @reneeloizmakeup)

Melissa Hurkman, Celebrity Makeup Artist


(Image credit: @melissa.hurkman)

More Eye Shadow Brush Sets We Love

Up Next: These Makeup Trends Are Unexpected, But They've Been Huge in 2021

Shawna Hudson
Associate Beauty Editor

Shawna Hudson has worked in editorial for over six years, with experience covering entertainment, fashion, culture, celebrities, and her favorite topic of all, beauty. She graduated from California State University, Fullerton, with a degree in journalism and has written for other publications such as Bustle, The Zoe Report, Byrdie, Elite Daily, Mane Addicts, and more. She is currently an associate beauty editor at Who What Wear and hopes to continue feeding her (completely out-of-control) beauty obsession as long as she can. Stay up to date on her latest finds on Instagram @shawnasimonee.