How To Apply Glitter Eyeshadow That'll Actually Last The Whole Night Out

by Lollie King
Lawanda Stallworth / EyeEm / Getty

If you're heading to a big party and don't fancy forking out a huge amount for a new outfit, one simple way to step up your up look is to go bold with your make up. In 2019, glitter came back into vogue in a big way and glitter eyeshadow is the perfect way to incorporate this style into your look. However, it's no secret that the process can be a very tricky to nail. With that in mind, here's a guide of how to apply glitter eyeshadow according to make up experts.

Be prepared for mess

"It’s always going to be messy, so just be prepared," says Beauty Expert and Makeup Artist on ITV's This Morning, Bryony Blake. If you're doing a full-face look, she suggests always starting with your glitter eye look first. "This will make life so much easier to clean up any fallen glitter and then you can have a beautiful clean base."

Step One: Clean & Hydrated Lids

The first step to is to begin with clean lids. Then add a pop of hydrating eye cream (I like Glossier's Bubble wrap) to ensure that you eyes are plump and full of moisture pre sparkle.

Step Two: Primer

Without a doubt, the most important part in the application process when it comes to glitter is the primer. Morphe's head makeup artist and all-round make up guru Lipstick Nick tells me "Try using a glitter primer as a base for extreme shine and colour payoff." The reason that glitter can be pretty hard work is because it can be difficult to stick to lids. You need a high-strength primer instead of your usual one to ensure that the pigment and sparkle stays on all day or night. Trust me, there are few things worse than glitter falling down your face.


This Morning's Blake says that there are also alternates to primer such as a glitter glue. And Bridget O'Keeffe, makeup artist and founder of Blush and Blow, suggests clear lip gloss.

Step Three: Under Eye Masks

Before you apply the glitter, I would suggest putting some under eye masks. Firstly, they hydrate and brighten your eyes, banishing dark circles, but more importantly, they protect your skin from the glitter fall out that happens during application, it can get pretty messy.

Step Four: Applying The Glitter

If you're looking to combine glitter with an eyeshadow, Suzanne Potts, founder and principal at Aqua Rosa Media Makeup School, has some advice: "Make sure your glitter kind of matches the eye shadow it’s going over."

You can either apply the glitter itself with your ring finger, or if you're looking for more precision use a brush to press the glitter onto your lids. Potts says, "You want a flat headed brush that will allow you to ‘dab’ the glitter on, pressing it into place, rather than sweeping it over the lid. Give each lid time to set, keeping your eye closed or looking down to avoid building glitter up in the crease." Don't forget setting spray to ensure the glitter doesn't stray.


If loose glitter feels a little too advanced for you, Blake suggests trying glitter pens. "Collection, Stila and Too Face do some really good ones and they can be used as a liner or all over the lid," she says, and adds this tip: "I often use a glitter pen first and then tap glitter on top."

Step Five: Cleaning Up

If there is any mess at the end of the process, Blake suggests using masking tape to clear it up. "Take a small piece and roll it over the area and it will pick up the glitter," she says.

And there you have it. Now go forth and sparkle.