🚚 Free US shipping on orders $65+

⭐️️ save 14% with our 5 in 1 premade starter stak ⭐️

How to Apply an Eyeshadow on the Go to Enhance Your Travel Glam

How to Apply an Eyeshadow on the Go to Enhance Your Travel Glam

Woman Applying Eyeshadow

How to Apply an Eyeshadow on the Go to Enhance Your Travel Glam

Regardless of how many Tik Tok and Instagram hacks you watch, eyeshadow is just so intimidating. If this resonates with you, then you’ve got a case of the eyeshadow woes, which is totally normal! After all, eyeshadow can take some time to master, especially if you’re trying to throw on a quick look while traveling. But, with the right travel-approved tips and tricks, you’ll be an eyeshadow pro in no time. 

If you want to learn how to apply an eyeshadow on the go, then you’re in the right place: We’ve compiled a beginner-friendly guide to understanding eyeshadow jargon, the importance of choosing the right brush, and an easy way to throw together a quick (but still flawless) look. Here’s the scoop:

Understanding Eyeshadow Jargon

Have you ever looked up an eyeshadow tutorial only to be bombarded with words like “cut crease,” “smokey eye,” and “transition shade?” Eyeshadow jargon can be a pain to understand, especially when you want a quick “how-to” while traveling.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to apply an eyeshadow on the go, it’s important to learn some basic terminology to make things easier to understand:

  • Blending: The technique of smoothly merging different eyeshadow shades to create a seamless transition
  • Pigmentation: Refers to the intensity or color payoff of an eyeshadow
  • Crease: The natural fold of the eyelid where eyeshadow is often applied to create depth and dimension
  • Transition Shade: A mid-tone eyeshadow shade used to blend out the edges of darker colors to create a smooth transition between different shades
  • Cut Crease: A technique where a sharp line is created in the crease using a lighter shade, separating it from the lid color for a defined and dramatic effect
  • Smokey Eye: A classic eye makeup look characterized by the use of dark, blended eyeshadow shades that create a sultry, smokey effect
  • Lid Color: The eyeshadow shade that’s applied to the movable part of the eyelid
  • Inner Corner Highlight: A light, shimmery eyeshadow shade applied to the inner corner (by the tear duct) of the eye to brighten and add dimension
  • Matte Finish: Eyeshadows without any shimmer or shine, providing a flat, non-reflective appearance (remember when Kylie Jenner made matte ultra-popular?)
  • Shimmer or Metallic Finish: Eyeshadows with a reflective, shimmery, or metallic sheen that adds sparkle and dimension to the eyes

Makeup Application Chart

Pictured: Terminology: How to Apply an Eyeshadow   |   Source: Quora

How to Choose the Right Eyeshadow Brush When Traveling

Different Kinds of Makeup Brush

Pictured: Different Makeup Brushes (Left Eyeshadow Tools)   |   Source: Beauty Blotter

How to Apply an Eyeshadow in a Pinch While Traveling

“The right tools make any job easier, and great makeup brushes are no different,” says makeup artist Michael Ashton. “A small — but well-curated — collection of brushes will really help elevate your eyeshadow game.” 

Here are the four most common eyeshadow brushes to add to your travel beauty kit:

  • A Fluffy Domed Brush: This brush is wonderful for covering your whole lid with eyeshadow as it's packed with soft bristles made for blending and building
  • A Smaller Tapered Blending Brush: This brush is mostly used for blending eyeshadow into your crease
  • An Angled Blending Brush: This tool is great for getting to and blending any hard-to-reach areas (think the outer/inner corners of your eye and lower lash line)
  • A Stiff Angled Eyeliner Brush: This brush is made for precision use on areas like your lash line, but it’s also great for filling in your brows
  • A Flat Shader Brush: This brush is small and flat, making it perfect for your eyelids and blending out liner

Dual Ended Makeup Brush and 4Piece Brush Set

SUBTL BEAUTY PROTIP: Since you likely don’t want to travel with a pile of makeup brushes, we created the Subtl Beauty Dual-Ended Eyeshadow Brush. It’s all the brushes mentioned above wrapped into one perfect tool that’s designed to cover all your eyeshadow needs without taking up much space. One side has a densely-packed brush that’s perfect for packing eyeshadow on your lid, while the other angled side is meant for blending. You can also snag our Subtl Beauty 4-Piece Brush Set, which is adorably mini and sleek. 

Always Have a Travel-Friendly Mirror on Hand

Here are a few travel-friendly tips and tricks on how to apply an eyeshadow while gallivanting around the globe:

Always Have a Travel-Friendly Mirror on Hand

Travel Friendly Mirror

Have you ever left your house on an adventure to find that your hotel or hostel doesn’t have a mirror? Left wondering how in the world you’re going to apply your eyeshadow since you didn’t pack a mirror, you probably vowed never to make the same mistake twice. By packing a travel-sized mirror, it’s a safe bet that you’ll be able to catch a glimpse of yourself every now and then. Plus, you’ll probably need it for retouching after hitting the trails and/or beach.

SUBTL BEAUTY PROTIP: The Subtl Beauty Travel Makeup Mirror is the perfect palm-sized mirror to take on any trip. It’s even cleverly designed to include two mirrors: One is regular, while the other is magnifying for close-up applications. It’s honestly an eyeshadow-on-the-go life savior. 

Prime Your Eyes

Prime Your Eyes

Thank Me Later Eye Primer

Pictured: About Elizabeth Mott’s Thank Me Later Eye Primer   |   Source: Elizabeth Mott

While you’re probably thinking, “Primer? Not another thing to add to my carry-on,” hear us out: Primer helps your eyeshadow last longer, especially when you’re vacationing in a new climate. “Primer aids in eyeshadow color opacity and staying power,” says makeup artist Tai Young. It’s recommended to apply your eyeshadow primer with your ring finger as it has the lightest touch and won’t irritate your skin.

SUBTL BEAUTY PROTIP: Apply your primer across the entirety of your lid, up to your eyebrow, around the inner corner of your eye (where your tear duct is), and along your lower lash line. Not sure of a primer to try? Check out this affordable Elizabeth Mott Thank Me Later Primer that’s made to keep your eyeshadow looking flawless all day long. 

Build Your Base

Eyeshadow Base with Different Shades

Pictured: About Elizabeth Mott’s Thank Me Later Eye Primer   |   Source: Elizabeth Mott

Most eyeshadow looks can be created with four or fewer colors: Neutral shades are used for your lid, medium ones for your crease, darker tones for your outer corner, and shimmers for your inner corner and brow bone. “Start by using a powder eyeshadow product, blend it out using your fingers, then go back in and use a brush to buff a different eyeshadow of choice over top,” says Michael Ashton. “By layering your eyeshadow over a base, you’ll get maximum color payoff, product performance, and it’ll last the distance without needing any touch-ups.”

SUBTL BEAUTY PROTIP: If you’re unsure of what eyeshadows to go for on your next vacay, we’ve made it easy with our Subtl Beauty Eyeshadow Duos. They’re crease-proof, fade-proof, and come in complimentary tones. You can also try using them in conjunction with our guide to makeup matching for your eye and hair color

Get To Blending

Comparison of Blended and Unblended Eyeshadow

Alright, Subtl Beauties – it’s time for the B word, and by that, we mean blending. As the most important step in any eyeshadow routine, blending helps to “marry as many colors together without being able to see where they start or stop,” says Tai Young. “Think of a watercolor painting and how each color flows into the next.” To do this, use your brush to diffuse the shades on your crease and outer V. If you’re having trouble getting a seamless blend, especially while traveling, press some more shadow in and continue to blend, blend, blend! 

SUBTL BEAUTY PROTIP: If you’re still not getting the blended look you’re wanting, try a fun tip from makeup artist Jeannie Giannone. She says to use a translucent power (like the Subtl Beauty Shine Control Pressed Powder) to blend out any harsh lines from your eyeshadow. 

The Subtl Beauty Stack Has All Your Makeup Needs Covered for Your Next Vacation

Travel Makeup Stack

Subtl Beauty has reimagined the way you apply and store your makeup with our revolutionary Subtl Beauty Stack. Each Stack is fully customized by you, which means that your Stack will only include products you need and none that you don’t. And, with our stackable makeup, you’ll never have to sift through your travel makeup products again, meaning more time to actually apply your eyeshadow. 

So whether you’re a busy mom or about to board a flight, our Subtl Stack will solve all your makeup and eyeshadow woes. Want to enjoy the portability of Subtl Beauty? Take the quiz here to find the products perfect for you. Need a quick beauty fix before traveling? You can grab one of these premade stacks. Either way, happy traveling, and remember: just keep blending!

Tell us – how do you apply an eyeshadow? Will you be trying our eyeshadow tips the next time you travel?

1. Good Housekeeping   |   How to Apply Eyeshadow
2. Ipsy   |   How to Apply Eyeshadow: Beginner-Friendly
3. Real Simple   |   How to Apply Eyeshadow for Beginners 
Previous post
Next post