How to Use Glitter for Show-Stopping Makeup Looks

Plus the best products to use.

Glitter Makeup - LEAD
Photo: Grant Lamos IV/Getty

Remember the days when applying loose glitter would undoubtably end up looking like a unicorn sneezed on your face?

I remember having to use adhesive on my eyelids and then patting on my loose glitter, with a ton of fallout. So it goes without saying that the process was the opposite of beginner-friendly.

But if you're new to makeup and want to explore the sparkly life, fear not — those days are long gone!  I have been testing out a variety of glitters over the years as a makeup expert, and have compiled a list of my easy-to-use favorites, with something for every occasion.

Discover my picks, and how to use them, below.

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Stila Glitter & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow

Stila Glitter Eyeshadow
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To shop: $24; sephora.com

Did someone say disco ball? And I mean that in the best way possible. The Stila Glitter & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow will surely get you noticed from across the room. My favorite way to apply this is with the applicator directly on the lid, then I diffuse the edges with a fluffy brush. With very minimal effort, you’ve created a look that appears as if you spent hours on your makeup! This secret weapon is a must have for the holidays. 

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Kaja Eye Bento Bouncy Eyeshadow Trio

Kaja Glitter Eyeshadow
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To shop: $26; sephora.com

I have literally purchased almost every shade of these trios because I am obsessed. The packaging is ultra-cute with a stacked compact of pressed glitters. Anyone can use these and when I say anyone, I mean anyone. All I do is take my finger and apply the product directly to my eyelids. This is the one swipe pigment of my dreams, with the most impressive glitter. The finish is almost creamy, which I think is crucial - 'cause nobody wants a dry, flaky finish. And it's a definite head-turner. I always get compliments when I’m wearing these glitters. I have a strong feeling that once you try these, you will be hooked, so you can thank me later.

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Makeup By Mario Master Crystal Reflector

Makeup by Mario Glitter
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To shop: $26; sephora.com

For those who want a no fuss, understated glitter — this is it! I like to think of this product as a topper. You can apply this product with your finger on your bare lids or on top of any eye look to elevate and add some glamour. This low-key glitter looks exquisite when the light hits just right. Perfect for those on the go, you can swipe this glitter on in a flash, taking your look from day to night in seconds. Try applying this glitter to the centre of your eyelids for a brilliant spotlight effect.

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Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner

Urban Decay Heavy Metal
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To shop: $22; sephora.com

This iconic product holds a special place in my heart because it is solely responsible for making sure I made it on time to multiple holiday events over the years. This eyeliner allows you to be precise with your lines and contains ultrafine glitter with a fast-drying clear base. The easy application has cut the time I would normally spend on an eye look in half! The Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner can effortlessly help you to create a glistening cut crease or a gleaming graphic eyeliner — the possibilities are endless, and I encourage you to get creative. Another bonus is that there is a shade for every mood.

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MAC Dazzleshadow Liquid

Mac Dazzle Shadow
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To shop: $25; maccosmetics.com

The name of this product speaks for itself. I love layering this glitter on top of my eyeshadow looks to create the most striking pop all over my eyelids. I encourage you to step outside of your comfort zone by applying some glitter in the inner corner of your eyes for an easy eye-opening effect that will light up your eyes. I can safely say that I’ve pulled for this product every year for my birthday for the past few years — as soon as Scorpio season hits, I leave this on my vanity because I know it’s going to be getting lots of use during the holidays.

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