What makes one black eye shadow stand out from the crowd? For me, it should be pigment rich and easy to blend, so you only need to use a little bit to get the job done. Still, the number one reason why I might choose one black shadow over another is if it can be worn wet and dry — letting it double as an eyeliner without damaging the composition of the shadow.
The following blacks have been my favorites for years. They stay put, so by the end of the night they don't flake or wind up halfway down my cheeks. For those of you who have tried-and-true favorite black shadow as well, by all means let me know about it!
Laura Mercier Caviar Eyeliner in Black Caviar ($22) is categorized as an eyeliner, actually (oh the irony!) but I love to use it as a shadow as well. It's got a more textured consistency than a powder shadow, yet it's not quite a cream consistency either. The best part about it that it will never fall onto your cheeks, and it glides on easily with a brush. If you haven't yet tried it, this is a must-have.
For two more bellissima black eye shadows,
T. Le Clerc Eyeshadow Duo in Noir ($24) actually contains two colors: a golden, shimmery green on one side and the most luxuriously-rich deep-black matte powder shadow on the other.
This duo is a staple for any evening affair. Use the black on the lower part of your lids or as a liner, and use the green in the crease and in the inner corners of your eyes for sparkle.
MAC Eye Shadow in Carbon ($14) is an intense black eye shadow. It contains high pigment and it blends well. What I love about this color is that it's a real black — meaning it's dark and matte. It's always a great product to have on hand if you want to create a smokey eye.