Homemade Eyeshadow Trio

I recently learned to use make-up (thanks, YouTube!), and along with that, I’ve learned about what seems really overpriced, and what seems less stupidly overpriced. Of course all make-up is overpriced to some degree or another (ahem, $50 mascara), but some things are worse than others.

I tend to think eyeshadow is worse than everything else. Well, everything else that I buy, so it’s pretty much just mascara vs. eyeshadow. I am clearly a very experienced cosmetics shopper.

I recently made some mineral makeup, and then branched out into blush and bronzer. Since all of those things are in the fluffy coloured category, so I figured eyeshadow couldn’t be too far away.

My initial hesitation against making eyeshadow was the colour issue; needing a different mica or oxide for everything. But I have come to the realization that I am rather boring, and pretty much just wear brown, beige, and beigy-brown eye shadows. I’ll branch out into something with green hints, but not really. I’m pretty dull. And I already had a brown oxide. And I’m tired of having a hard time finding non-sparkling eye shadows. So I had no more excuses.

The are a few minor differences between eyeshadow and mineral makeup. You want them to be more pigmented, a finer grind, and more opaque. So I used less titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, and more sericite mica and magnesium stearate. I used French Red clay since I was making brown shadow anyways, but if you wanted to do something in a cool colour, you would want to use a white clay.

The handyness of this process/recipe is that it makes a trio of eye shadows that blend together beautifully because you start with the pale colour, scoop some out, add some more oxide to get the medium shade, scoop some out, and then add some more oxide to get the dark shade. That way you get three eye shadows that are all part of the same colour continuum. And you only have to make one mess.

I recently discovered the brilliance of using an old coffee grinder to make mineral make-up. It does a beautiful job of crushing and grinding down the powders, like the titanium dioxide that I bought that’s fairly large grain. It also means far less powder pressing and bowl dirtying. Brilliant! So, before you do this, go to Value Village and get yourself a used $5 coffee grinder.

Homemade Eyeshadow Trio

1 tsp titanium dioxide
2 tsp sericite mica
1 tsp silk powder
1 tsp magnesium stearate

5 drops jojoba or argan oil

1 tsp red clay
Brown oxide, as needed
Red oxide, as needed

Before you get started, keep in mind that this is a light, fine powder, and the coffee grinder really gets it whipped into a frenzy. So each time you’re done blending, give it a minute or so to settle down or you’ll end up inhaling a bunch of it every time, and that’s probably not good for you.

Place the first four ingredients in the coffee grinder and blend, stopping to tap the lid and the sides every so often, for a minute or two. Once that’s been turned into a fine powder, add a few drops of argan or jojoba oil, and blend until you can’t tell you added it. You’ll want to scrape the corners and the bottom of the grinder to make sure it all gets incorporated.

Add the clay and blend. Then start adding the brown oxide. Here’s what I did for my skin tone and preferences:

First off I blended in 1/32nd of a teaspoon of brown oxide, and then scooped out about 2tsp, enough to fill a 5g sifter jar.

Then I went back to the blender and added 5/32nd a teaspoon of brown oxide and 1/32nd of red oxide to warm it up a little. And that made my medium tone. So I scooped out another 2tsp to fill another sifter jar.

Then I went back to the mixture left in the blender and added 7/32nds of a teaspoon of brown oxide, and 1 or 2/32nds of red oxide to take it to the dark side.

Be sure to test it on your skin! And not just your skin, but your face. Use the same kind of brush you’ll be using to apply it later so you can see exactly how it will go on later. I used a “smidge” or “pinch” (or something) miniature measuring spoon that measured 1/32nd tsp and added one or two at a time. If your skin is darker, which it easily could be, you may need more oxides. If you’re paler, you’ll need less, of course.

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Wondering where I get my ingredients? I get almost everything from New Directions Aromatics (Canada, USA, Aus, & UK) and Saffire Blue!

23 Responses to Homemade Eyeshadow Trio

  1. Jennifer says:

    This sounds like a lot of fun! To bad I have to work so much.

    • Marie says:

      I made these as a fun little after work project earlier this week, and it wasn’t terribly time consuming. Probably faster than taking the time to go to the drugstore and buy some, especially considering I’m set for eyeshadow for ages. Also, using a coffee grinder makes this SO much faster than my previous method of using a sieve!

  2. Carrie Mundy says:

    I apologize if you covered this previously, but may I ask where you purchased all the ingredients? I’m not sure I have anything locally that would have them. Thanks!

    • Marie says:

      Carrie; I order almost all of my ingredients from http://www.newdirectionsaromatics.ca. They have the best prices I’ve ever seen, often being 1/3 or less of what you could get in a local store. The shipping is a bit steep (~$16 in Canada, though it is UPS), but it’s totally worth it. If you spend $25 you’re probably saving at least $16. New Directions also has American and Australian branches, so you can likely avoid paying over-border shipping charges. They also sell a lot of different types of packaging. I got the sifter jars I used here at a local soaping store, but you could easily use little lip balm containers, which NDA sells. And lastly, the coffee grinder is from Value Village, and it’s a total lifesaver!

      • Grace says:

        Can you use the same coffee grinder you use for coffee beans? I don’t want to wreck the taste of my coffee, but don’t want to have to get another grinder if I don’t need to :) I just have a simple kitchen aid grinder.

        • Marie says:

          Sadly having your coffee grinder do double duty is not a good idea here :( The powders for make up are very fine, and I don’t think you’d ever be able to get your coffee grinder totally clean of them. I can’t vouch for their taste, haha, but it’s probably not a good idea. I’ve wrecked coffee grinders trying to get them thoroughly clean (water, it turns out, is a bad idea), so I’d just drop by Value Village and grab one for $5 when you can. I’ve got two DIY-specific coffee grinders that I paid $5–15 for, and I always keep my eye out for coffee grinders at rummage sales & op-shops. I think you’ll find it’s a super useful thing to have once you’ve got it (I use a coffee grinder for all my masks & make-ups these days, as well as for grinding up things to add to soaps)!

  3. Kelli says:

    I have an allergy to store bought eye makeup. Would this be a safer alternative?

    • Marie says:

      Well… that depends. What ingredient(s) are you allergic to? My homemade cosmetics are free of things like artificial fragrances, talc, and parabens, but unless you actually know which ingredients you’re allergic to, it’s pretty hard to say one way or another :(

  4. W. Devine says:

    Hi Marie,
    Can you tell me what the clay in this recipe is for? I made the eyebrow filler/fixative and didn’t use clay in that one but just noticed that this recipe calls for clay. I’m planning on making a cooler, purple-y coloured eyeshadow with ultramarines so just wondering if I need the white clay. Thanks!

  5. Grace says:

    I might’ve asked this on another post already… Is the titanium oxide supposed to be titanium dioxide? I can’t find titanium oxide on sapphire or NDA, or even amazon. Is there something that could serve as a substitute? is it ok to leave it out? Or is it a must have?

    • Marie says:

      Yes it is! Good catch, whoops. So many “oxides” and one “dioxide”, looks like my fingers got a bit confused there ;) I fixed it :)

  6. Kristen says:

    Is there any alternative to silk powder? Will the recipe turn out fine without it? I don’t have any on hand and am super keen to try this recipe out!

  7. Liz says:

    In your picture you have activated charcoal in the background. Could you use some charcoal to really darken the base and then add a blue or purple oxide to get a fun color? Or would you recommend black oxide instead? I’m trying to get a cool tone dark purple to make as a gift.

    • Marie says:

      Hi Liz! You can definitely tweak the colour however you like with different oxides :) Feel free to use either activated charcoal or black oxide—whatever you have on hand. I often save my activated charcoal for purposes where it’s special drawing properties are useful and use the oxide for places where I’m only looking for colour :)

  8. Ali says:

    Just wanted to add my two cents that I made this and played with it in two ways – we switched out the clay for kaolin because my friends and I made a silver one, and then for australian beige and made a bronze one. Both are great. WE also decided to try and press it with rubbing alcohol, which did not go well – almost no pigment picks up on a brush or finger. If you make it, keep it loose!

    • Stefania says:

      Hi Ali,
      I was just wondering how this would be if I pressed it with alcohol, so THANK YOU so much for your comment! That saves me some time. :)

    • Marie says:

      Wonderful! I’m so glad you kicked some eyeshadow butt :) And thanks for the tip on the rubbing alcohol—how odd!

    • Ashlynn says:

      Pressing is a tricky process! Matte shadows are very difficult to press, opposed to those with mica shimmer in them. Mattes need something to bind them together. Silk Natruals sells a nice pressing medium. You can press shimmer shadows though with some coconut oil and 70 but preferably 90% alcohol, a quarter (or whatever fits in your pan) and a cloth. YouTube has some excellent tutorials for pressing!

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