The Best Loose Pigments On A Budget

Powdered eye pigments to wear wet or dry.
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Powdered eye pigments to wear wet or dry.

For my day to day I usually stick with standard eye shadow, but every now and then I like to bust out a loose pigment to kick it up a notch. There are many high quality loose pigment options but these are my four favorites. 

L to R: Maybelline Forest Fatale, NYX Purple, BH Party Girl  in Turn it Up, and Makeup Geek Nightlife

L to R: Maybelline Forest Fatale, NYX Purple, BH Party Girl in Turn it Up, and Makeup Geek Nightlife

Maybelline Color Tattoo 24HR Pure Pigments

maybelline Color tattoo pigment

Forest Fatale is my favorite shade in the Color Tattoo pigments line.

I have an ever-growing stash of Maybelline Color Tattoo Cream Shadows, and yet it took me a while to try the loose pigments. What I like about this formula is that it's pigmented yet subtle when worn dry and shimmery when worn wet. It's not as soft as the NYX formula (see below), but it is still smooth and not at all grainy.

NYX Ultra Pearl Mania

NYX Ultra Pearl Mania

The NYX pigments are small but mighty--a little goes a long way.

This ultra-fine powder is one of my favorites. It is the cheapest loose pigment I’ve found that doesn’t make me feel like I’m swiping chalk on my eyelids. It’s super soft and yet surprisingly manages to pack a pretty pigmented punch. Applied dry it has an iridescent effect, and worn wet it gives off a duo chrome sheen.

BHCosmetics Party Girl Loose Pigments

BH Party Girl Pigment

Hands down one of my best BHcosmetics purchases.

These pigments are newer to my collection but they are my second favorite of the bunch. They seem to be a bit denser than the other pigments on my list, but they apply so smoothly that I rarely bother adding moisture. They are some of the most intense pigments I’ve seen at any price point.

Makeup Geek Loose Pigments

Makeup Geek Loose Pigments

Every time I get on the Makeup Geek online store it's like #shutupandtakemymoney.

It’s no secret around here that I am a huge fan of Makeup Geek, but their shimmer pigments really are INCREDIBLE. They have some more glittery pigments as well, and while I think they are beautiful when applied wet, they don’t really work dry. The shimmers on the other hand work both ways. All of the pigments on my list last for a long time, but these definitely hold up the best.

Budget Pigment Swatches

L to R (swatched wet then dry): BHCosmetics in Turn it up, Maybelline in Forest Fatale, MUG in Nightlife, NYX in Purple. 

  • How often do you use loose pigments? 
  • What are your favorite loose pigment brands? 
  • Do you prefer to wear them wet or dry?