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The 14 Best Eyeshadow Palettes Under $20

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    We easily cough up our paychecks for the latest skin-care innovations or the newest K-beauty must-haves, but when it comes to eyeshadow, we’re wise to the game. We know that the drugstore market is just as good (or at times, better) than the luxury products available. The biggest challenge is figuring out which palettes are worth plucking off the shelves — especially when you can't swatch them on your hand like you would in a department store.

    We went ahead and solved the problem (and then some) with a little help from our favorite celebrity makeup artists. Ahead, find our 19 favorite drugstore palettes for under $21 — whether you're looking for some smoky-eye inspiration or a jewel-toned kit worthy of your next night out.

    You've never seen beauty quite like this before. Check out our Beauty Innovator Awards for the smartest, funkiest, most fresh to death products of the year.


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    Best For: Neutral Smoky Eyes
    Sonia Kashuk’s palette, filled with shimmery neutrals, is makeup artist Fabiola's go-to for smoky eyes. You can easily upgrade the 12 shadows (which are impossibly soft and silky, btw) from day to night by layering or sweeping them on with a wet brush.

    Sonia Kashuk Neutral Shimmer 3 Palette, $19.99, available at Target.

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    Best For: Classic Smoky Eyes
    But if you're in the market for a more classic smoky-eye look, try this collection of dusky-gray, charcoal, and silver shades. The powders are velvety-soft and perfect for blending.

    Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Shadow & Liner in Smoky Eyes, $11.95, available at Physicians Formula.

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    Best For: Shadow Pros
    Do you know your way around a plum smoky eye? Have you spent tortuous minutes blending your shadow until it’s just right? Do you hit the pan on your favorite shades monthly? We feel you, girl, and it’s time to upgrade. E.L.F.'s mini version of its pro palette offers endless color selection in a small-but-mighty case ideal for travel. (Makeup artists, take note.)

    E.L.F. Studio Endless Eyes Pro Mini Eyeshadow Palette, $7, available at E.L.F.

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    Best For: Shadow Newbies
    But if you're just dipping your toes in the shadow waters, this well-edited palette is the perfect start, says celebrity makeup artist Andie Markoe-Byrne. The shimmery neutrals are foolproof, and there are even cheat sheets included on the back of the packaging so you can try a variety of looks.

    L’Oréal Colour Riche Palette Nude 1, $19.99, available at Ulta Beauty.

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    Best For: The Bold
    These compact palettes are full of vibrant colors, allowing you to express yourself with whatever plum, emerald, bronze, or yellow eye look you're feeling at the moment. Each kit is also packed with several neutrals to help balance the bold shades. (But don't feel like you need to.)

    Nyx Avant Pop! EyeShadow Palette, $16.99 each, available at Ulta Beauty.