not a professional. just crazy.

I Found the World’s Best Baby-Blue Eye Shadow

Photo: Rio Viera-Newton

It’s possible that in the past year, baby blue has eclipsed lavender as my color of eye shadow choice. Let’s put it this way: If lavender shadow makes me feel like an ethereal space alien, matte baby blue makes me feel like a modern Andy Warhol muse rising, with a Marc Jacobs S/S 2019 runway model moon. And I’m far from alone in this affinity: Lucy Boynton, Mandy Moore, Gigi Hadid, and Willow Smith are outspoken fans of the look.

Here’s the catch though: It’s really hard to find a good baby-blue eyes shadow. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve purchased a sky-blue shadow that looked beautiful in the pan, only to find that it barely showed up on my lids — even when I used the best eye-shadow primers in the game (Urban Decay’s and Fenty Beauty’s, my trustiest go-tos, couldn’t even get the job done). Every time I wear my MAKE beauty shadow in Celeste, or ColourPop’s Moonlite, I spend a good 30 minutes on the application — packing on layer upon layer before it even begins to show up. After complaining about this particular issue to a bevy of industry insiders, including my friend and product developer Alexis Page, I found out that this isn’t just a Me problem — pale, sheer blue is apparently a particularly tricky color to formulate into an opaque shadow.

But apparently (and please don’t ask me how), one company managed to figure it out. That company’s name is Kosas, and I decided to buy their baby-blue eye shadow “Waterfall” a couple of weeks ago after trying, and really liking, their cream blush and bronzer palettes. Still, my expectations were low — science, as I’d recently found out, was not on my side. But the first time I tried it, I knew this was something different. The shadow is a liquid-to-powder formula, meaning, as the name suggests, that it’s super-wet when you apply it. One single swoop gives a totally full-coverage, superbright, bold baby-blue wash of color. From afar or at night, this shade might appear matte, but if you look up close, you’ll note it has a slight satin sheen to it. That sheen, I believe, is what gives the blue more dimension and makes it appear bolder and brighter than any other baby-blue shadow I’ve used before. It saturates the eye.

Since it went on so well, I assumed it would be a giant pain to take off. Happily, I was wrong: One swipe with a cotton pad soaked in Glossier’s Milky Oil and it was off my eyelids, with no stain or residue. (I should note here that it’s super-important that you shake the tube well before you apply it. Since it’s a liquid formula, the pigment can separate a bit between use.)

I loved the eye shadow so much that I decided to check out a few more Kosas products, and found a couple more hidden gems: The Tinted Faces Oil foundation is like a slightly more full coverage Glossier Skin Tint, and gave my skin the most beautiful, dewy, hydrated-looking finish.

I also quickly fell in love with their mauve-y matte lipstick in “Rosewater” (it’s sort of like a deeper-toned Pillow Talk from Charllote Tilbury) — it has quickly become one of my everyday staples for both daytime and evening.

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I Found the World’s Best Baby-Blue Eye Shadow