Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Dealing With Eyeshadow Fallout - Tips & Tricks

*Everything in this post purchased by me, except the makeup wipes, which were a Sephora VIB gift*
Dealing With Eyeshadow Fallout - Tips and Tricks

Dealing with eyeshadow fallout can be such a pain in the a**! Yes, I said it! It's true. Nothing is worse, than spending time doing your makeup, only to have flecks of shadow fall onto your cheek and ruin your perfect foundation job. Sometimes, the most beautiful shadows are the most prone to fallout.  Added micro glitter can create a beautiful metallic look on the eye, but should that same glitter fall on your cheek you will look like a disco ball rather than have the pretty shimmery lids you intended. 

Luckily, I know several tips and tricks to help you cope with fallout. These are the best methods I know.  Whichever method you choose is a personal choice.  There is no "right" way to deal with fallout.  However, these few are tried and true for me.

When I look at all of the different ways used to manage fallout, they basically fall into two categories: 
  1. Putting something underneath the eye to catch the fallout
  2. Allowing the shadow to fall onto your face and cleaning it up later
Here are some of the things you might put under your eyes to catch fallout:

Shadow Shields: These are little pieces of paper with a sticky back created to catch eyeshadow fallout. When I first tried these, I was less than impressed. At first, the glue on the back seemed too sticky, then when I patted the tape as recommended to lessen the stickiness it fell off my face mid application. Once I mastered the technique, I realized these can really be a great tool. While these can be costly, they can also save your makeup. There are other similar brands available as well including one made of silicone that is washable and reusable.

Tissues: Everyone has tissues. This is a super easy method. Plus, if you fold your tissue and hold it at the corner of your eye, the angle can actually help you create a winged shadow look. By holding the tissue the way I have it in the picture below, then sweeping a shadow into your crease, the tissue will help create a nice edge to your eyeshadow look, while protecting your cheek from fallout.

Translucent Powder: This is an old trick makeup artists have used for years. Simply apply a thick coat of translucent powder just under your eyes. The eyeshadow will fall onto the powder, and can then be easily swept away with the flick of a powder brush. I don't prefer this method for mature eyes, as the extra powder, if not cleaned up properly can settle into fine lines and wrinkles.

These are the methods of clean up I prefer:

Do the eyes first, then use a makeup wipe: It's such a simple concept, but many people never think of it. We are often taught to do our foundation first. However, by doing your eyes first, you can easily wipe away any eyeshadow that has fallen down onto the cheeks with a makeup remover wipe. Then proceed with the rest of your face makeup as usual. This is a great method, and I highly recommend it.

Put a little primer or moisturizer on a sponge: This is my preferred method. Even if I don't do the eyes first, I may just do foundation (no powder), and clean up with a little primer or moisturizer on a sponge. I can simply touch up any foundation if needed, but it won't completely remove your makeup the way a wipe will. Any eyeshadow will stick to the primer on the sponge and easily be wiped away.  This is the method I use most. I like this method even if completely doing foundation second, as I can go right into priming the skin after doing eyes.

Some of the eyeshadows that are most prone to fallout are ones containing heavy glitter (*cough* Urban Decay *cough*).  In addition to the above methods, there are some additional steps you can take when dealing with glittery shadows prone to fallout.

Extra Tips & Tricks: 

Choose your tools wisely: While everyone is familiar with Urban Decay's primer potion and various other eyeshadow primers, one that I don't hear talked about nearly enough is Too Faced Glitter Glue. Unlike other primers, this creates a somewhat tacky base on the lid.  The stickiness is what helps glittery shadows stick to the lid better so it ends up on your eye, rather than on your face.

When using an eyeshadow that is heavy on the micro glitter, you may want to consider a sponge tip applicator. Yes, you read that right. I know, I know. I was taught to always throw the sponge tip applicators that come with traditional eyeshadow duos and quads right in the trash. However, a good sponge tip applicator can really help in pressing the glitter onto the lid.

If you just can't do the sponge tip thing, the next best thing is a stiff flat synthetic brush. I recommend one that has a firmer flatter head as it will more easily hold the glittery shadow.

Whichever applicator you use, make sure you press the shadow onto the lid, rather than swipe it. You want to use a gentle patting motion and pack the color onto the lid for maximum intensity. Swiping the product will only encourage fallout.

If none of the above work for you, try using your eyeshadow wet. Simply dampen the sponge tip applicator or brush slightly, then pick up some shadow and press onto your lids. The water will help it stick to your lids much better than if it were dry.  Just check to make sure your eyeshadows can be used wet, and give them proper drying time before closing the lid to prevent bacteria growth or ruining your shadows.

Choosing the Right Tools Can Help 
Prevent Fallout 

I hope you found this post helpful. Let me know if you try any of these tricks, and how they work for you!


  1. i've not tried the primer/moisturizer trick, so i'll have to remember it for next time. i typically apply my foundation after my eye makeup (except for mascara) so that i can cover any fall out. great tips!!

    1. Yes, it's my favorite way. Doing eyes first really makes things easier. Especially when doing a dark smokey eye or working with glittery shadows. Thanks for reading! Let me know how the primer trick works for you. :)

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  2. Love the primer/moisturizer idea! I'll have to try that. The Glitter Glue seems like a good idea too. I was actually looking at it today. I was thinking of using it with loose shadows. Do you think it would make a good base for loose shadows too? I have a bunch of beautiful loose pigments, but they always seem to fade so quickly - and they create tons of fallout! :)

    Love the tips!

    1. Thanks! Yes, I think the glitter glue is a great base for loose shadows and pigments. I don't know why I don't hear about it more, its a great product. Laying down a slightly sticky base first really gives the product something to grab onto. Maybe the word "glue" confuses people. Its not so sticky that you can't still blend shadows easily. I'm a big fan. Let me know if you try it :)

  3. Thanks for tips. Really helpful.

  4. Thank you SO much for this! really CAN find ANYTHING on the Internet! I just searched for "eyeshadow falling on my check", and got your page! Like you, I have started putting on my foundation LAST and do my eyes first. Also, those sponge applicators are great!

    I have actually tried putting regular TAPE under my eye...I DON'T recommend hurts coming off!

  5. Do you have any tips so that it doesn't fall out during the day? Cause none of these tips have helped me! The primer and patting kind of does, but still, I need help!


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