Confession time. I collect eyeshadow palettes and I now have around 100 palettes. Now I love neutral makeup, so some people would say they’re all the same (that someone being my husband) but they all have subtle differences.
Plus, it’s my job to test makeup, so I have been testing and searching the 10 BEST neutral eyeshadow palettes for months now… and I’m finally ready to share my top 10!
I have a mixture here of high end and more affordable. Most of these palettes are around £20-£30, but a few are more expensive I’ve tried to include something for everyone. Cool neutrals, warmer ones, pinkier neutrals. I have everything from Colourpop to Bare Minerals to Violet Voss. At a range of price points, I’m sure you’re going to find the perfect palette in my 10 Best Neutral Eyeshadow Palettes, so let’s get into it!
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COLOURPOP GIVE IT TO ME STRAIGHT PALETTE – $18/£14 from Colourpop
Let’s get this palette out of the way first in my round up of the 10 best neutral eyeshadow palettes, as it’s the one on my list that is most colourful. It’s described as a pinky neutral palette, which I think is a good description, but once you see the rest of the palettes on my list, you’ll realise this is the most colourful!
I adore this palette, it’s my absolute favourite from Colourpop. It’s got your browny neutrals, pinky neutrals, burgundy neutrals… It’s so versatile and you can get some gorgeous looks from it.
This palette came out quite a while ago now, but it’s a classic for me and I hope Colourpop don’t discontinue it. This is definitely on the warmer end of the spectrum in terms of neutrals, but it’s just gorgeous.
For the price point, Colourpop shadows are bomb. Their formula keeps getting better and better. I think I will actually have to do a dedicated post to the best Colourpop makeup soon as I love so much from them.
BARE MINERALS GEN NUDE EYESHADOW PALETTE IN NEUTRAL – £29 from John Lewis
These palettes from Bare Minerals might be small, but they’re mighty! I actually have all four colourways, but although they all pass as somewhat neutral, I didn’t want to clog up this post with the same palette.
This neutral palette and the rose ones are my favourites. The rose one isn’t actually that rosy. I would say it’s a cool neutral palette with a hint of pink. This neutral palette is the perfect travel palette.
It has 6 shades, but you have everything you need to create gorgeous eye looks. You have your all over setting shade, transition shade, two shades to deepen things up and two shimmer shades for the lids.
I’m a sucker for a one and done palette. I don’t want to have to use 8 different palette to get an eye look. I love the gen nude eyeshadow formula too. These shadows are buttery, super pigmented and easy to blend. Whenever Bare Minerals release limited edition versions of these palettes, I buy them!
MAC EYESHADOW PALETTE X9, DUSKY ROSE – £26 from MAC Cosmetics
I have loads of these MAC x9 palettes, but this one is by far my favourite. This is another reason I didn’t want to put the Bare Minerals Rose palette on this list, because it’s very similar to this palette.
This is the perfect cool toned neutral palette with a hint of pink and grey. I use this palette all the time and I just love it. It’s so easy. If I’m in a rush and can’t think what to use, I grab this palette and every look turns out perfectly. It’s just so wearable!
MAC eyeshadows are a classic, they’re not the most pigmented on the market, but they’re pretty easy to work with on the whole. I’ve had a few limited edition palettes where there are a few duds, but mostly I really enjoy MAC’s eyeshadows.
These mini palettes are great if you have a tonne of eyeshadow palettes like me! Full size is great if you have one palette and use it every day. However, realistically, I’m never going to be able to use them all up.
There’s much more chance of that happening with a mini palette, so these MAC ones are great. They’re always very cohesive and I love the shades in them.
In this palette you don’t have many deeper shades, so I don’t think this is going to be great for people with darker skin. However, usually I can’t find a transition shade in a palette as they’re too dark for me, so this palette is great for fair people!
NARS VOYAGEUR PALETTE IN SUEDE – £28 from Nars
This was the palette I bought last year when we were on holiday in Switerland. It quickly became a favourite and my love for it is still going strong. It’s just perfect. It’s small, but so pretty and wearable.
Again, this is a palette which is just easy. You can thow on a shimmer shade all over the lid, or do a full look and the looks I’ve created with this paltte are always ever day appropriate.
You get three shimmers and three mattes in this palette. They all perform brilliantly. The mattes are some of the best I’ve worked with. The shimmers aren’t mind blowing, but they’re really pretty. I love the different colours in this palette. I feel like you have the mattes to ground the look, but then you can add a pop of pink, gold or brown shimmer on the lid.
When we were away, I took eyeshadow palettes with me, but after I bought this on the second day, I used nothing else! Every day I managed to make a slightly different look, which is great for a palette with only 6 shades.
The Nars eyeshadow formula can be hit or miss for me. Some are drier and dusty, others are beautifully soft and pigmented. I really don’t like the hybrid glittery formula they do. Luckily there are none of those in this palette!
MILANI SOFT AND SULTRY PALETTE – £22 from House of Beauty
These used to be £22, so the price increase is annoying, but you know I adore Milani and this palette is no different.
I wanted this palette for years and years, but it was one of those ones that kept getting bumped down the list when new, exciting makeup came out.
I’m so glad I finally bit the bullet and bought this palette though. I got it for $9 on Amazon US, but they don’t ship to the UK anymore.
This is a cool toned palette with a couple of warmer shades. The mattes are great, the shimmers require slightly more work, but they’re not terrible. Some are creamier than others, but I just find they don’t pick up on a brush at all and they take some building with a finger too.
There are plenty of deeper shades in this palette, so it’s great for all skin tones. I think Milani have done a great job of making sure there are enough lighter and darker shades in this palette. The mattes are really beautiful and blend so well. They definitely perform like high end shadows.
There are rumours this palette is being discontinued… I have no clue if that’s true, but if it is I’ll be so sad as I love this palette!
TARTE TARTELETTE IN BLOOM PALETTE – £38 from Tarte
This is such a cult classic palette! It’s also the palette I used on my wedding day, so it has a special place in my heart.
I love how Tarte have managed to make this palette both warmer and cooler, while staying cohesive. It has warmer, orange toned browns, cooler deep browns and a couple of pinkier shades. I love the Tarte clay eyeshadow formula, it’s just beautiful. I’ve never had any issues with blending, all the colours are pigmented.
The shimmers are really pretty, but I have had some hard pan on the light gold colour which has made it slightly flaky. However, this palette is getting on a bit, so it could be age too. I probably do need to order another one, but I can’t get rid of this as it holds sentimental value!
I would say if you are looking to buy one palette that will do you for every type of eye look, this is well worth the money. It’s got everything you could ever need in a palette. You can create warm looks, cool looks, lighter looks, deeper looks. I just think this palette is fantastic!
TOO FACED NATURAL EYES EYESHADOW PALETTE – £35 from Too Faced
There have been quite a few of the Natural and Natural Matte palettes by Too Faced. I have the original Matte one, but I didn’t have this one because I didn’t love the shades in the original.
Some people don’t like the fact that they keep changing these palette and updating them. Usually one or two shades are different from the previous one and the packaging is different. I’m indifferent to them changing it and I have to say that I prefer this Natural Eyes palette to all the others before. However, I prefer the old matte palette to the new one.
This palette is gorgeous and it smells fantastic! It takes me back to childhood as I think it smells like a baby doll I used to have. Sort of a sweet talc smell. If you don’t like scented shadow, maybe give this one a miss. Although it’s the least offensive of all the Too Faced scented shadows I think.
This palette is similar to the Tartelette in Bloom one, but it has more shimmers. Too Faced can be very hit or miss with their formula, but this is the best formula they’ve ever put out I think.
These shadows are like silk. The shimmers are stunning and easy to work with and the mattes blend themselves. I just love this palette. It isn’t the most versatile on this list, but you can get quite a few different looks with it. It does still have everything you need to create a look.
VIOLET VOSS TAUPE NOTCH PALETTE – $45 from Violet Voss or £43 from Beauty Bay (currently out of stock)
Yes, this palette is like 50 shades of brown, but I can’t help but love it and it had to make it onto my 10 Best Neutral Eyeshadow Palettes list! I also love their Holy Grail palette and was so close to including it in this round up. However, I felt like this is the perfect palette if you are a makeup artist doing bridal makeup, or someone who wants one big palette with every shade of wearable brown/taupe you can get. If you are into warmer shades with some orange and burgundy shades, go for the HG palette.
The formula is fantastic, really pigmented and easy to work with. The shimmers are stunning too. I have all of the big Violet Voss palettes and I love them all. They’re not the most travel friendly, but I wanted to include a wide range of palette in this post. It’s not a post about travel friendly palettes (although I need to do one of those too!) so I just wanted to include the 10 best neutral eyeshadow palettes, regardless of size.
This has a mixture of cooler and warmer shades as well, which I love. I’m not someone who can pull of super warm shades, so this suits my skintone perfectly. I have had this palette for a couple of years now and I have no hard pan on the shimmers and all the shadows still perform like the day I got this palette.
I really believe these palettes are worth the higher price tag. You are getting 20 shades and this is a palette I go back to time and time again. I do have their Ride or Die palette and that is HUGE. It’s bigger than my face and has every colour you could think of, but I don’t use it much as it’s just so big! These palettes are pretty big, but not so big they’re aren’t workable.
TOO FACED BORN THIS WAY THE NATURAL NUDES SKIN CENTRIC PALETTE – £35 from Cult Beauty
This is the newest palette in my collection and boy has it come in and found its place in my drawers. This palette is fantastic! I’ve used it so much since I got it, it’s earned its place in my 10 Best Neutral Eyeshadow Palettes. I know I’ve already mentioned a Too Faced palette, but this one is definitely more diverse in colour. It’s based on their Born this Way foundation and has shades from very light to pretty deep. This palette is warmer toned, but not overly warm, which makes it super wearable.
The mattes are absolutely fantastic, but the shimmers do require a bit of work. Again, they don’t apply with a dry brush or a finger really. The only way I could get them to stay on my lid and actually look like a shimmer, was to spray my brush with Fix+.
The colours in this palette are gorgeous too. All together, the palette really looks beautiful. I love the copper shimmer shade and that really dusty pink/mauve.
This palette has a great layout. Of course, you can pick whatever shades you want, but the way it goes light to dark and has all the taupe shades together, then the pink, then the deep brown. It makes it user very user friendly.
I went back and forth about buying this palette for ages as I was seeing mixed reviews. However, I’m really glad I bought this as it’s been a great addition to my collection.
URBAN DECAY NAKED RELOADED PALETTE – £39 from Look Fantastic
The Urban Decay naked range is probably one of the best known eyeshadow palette ranges in the world. I’m pretty sure they were the first to start really doing the 12 shade palettes. I don’t think that any 10 Best Neutral Eyeshadow Palettes round up could go without an Urban Decay palette!
There have been a few Urban Decay naked palettes I haven’t liked, but overall they are good palettes. I do think this Naked Reloaded palette is the best of the bunch. It’s similar to the Anastasia Sultry palette, but a bit cheaper.
I also find Urban Decay shadows easier to use than Anastasia shadows. They’re a bit lighter in pigment, take more building up, but aren’t scary to use. Sometimes with Anastasia palettes, even with the tiniest tap into a shadow I end up with a dot of intense colour I can’t blend out. I’m no makep artist though, so I’d rather have shadows you can build up.
Considering how far eyeshadow palettes have come since the Naked line was launched, the formula isn’t mindblowing. However, it’s a good, blendable formula that I think everyone can use and get good results from.
And now one more notable mention to a palette if you want one palette to see you through everything. This palette is newer to my collection, so I haven’t had much time to play with it, which is why I didn’t place it in my top 10. Also there are a couple of things I don’t like about it. However, I just had to mention it as it’s so versatile. I haven’t played with the formula enough to know if it’s top 10 stuff. I do expect it is though, knowing Colourpop’s formula.
COLOURPOP BARE NECESSITIES PALETTE – $34/£27 from Colourpop
This might look like a big palette, but it’s not actually that big! It’s about the same size as the Violet Voss I mentioned above, but you get 30 shades.
All of these shades swatch well and the couple I’ve used so far have been great.
I do think there are too many creamy/pale shades. The first two rows are all varying shades of cream/beige. There are some shades that when on the eye would look the same. I do appreciate that they have added shades that pale people can use as transitions too though, I just think there are too many. They could have added a few more deeper shades, but overall I do think this palette is a great buy.
There are warm tones, cool tones, really pale shimmers, deep shimmers, red tones and a black. It’s a really good all in one palette since it has that black that you could use as liner too. I’m excited to play with it some more!
PHEW! That was intense! There we have it guys, my 10 Best Neutral Eyeshadow Palettes. I really hope you have found this useful and found a palette that will work for you. I have so many neutral eyeshadows, this was quite the task!