Color-Changing Makeup Has Got Us Like Whoa

Photo: Courtesy Of Tom Ford Beauty.
Anyone who has ever been fascinated by the mercurial hues of oil swirling in a puddle, or mesmerized by a mood ring, knows the power of color-shifting. Shades that seem to change based on the way the light hits them are, predictably, a total makeup slam dunk. Eyeshadows, nail polishes, and even lipsticks are incorporating duo-chrome pigments into their formulations, and the results are some of the coolest colors this side of the Northern Lights.
So what is duo-chrome? In the makeup world, it refers to products that appear to change color when viewed from different angles. The products do not, in fact, change color — they just look like different shades or layered hues depending on where the light hits.
Sound cool? It is. As a self-proclaimed lazy girl, I love anything that makes it look like I put more effort into my look than I actually did. And after extensive road-testing, I've found that duo-chrome is legitimately the easiest and fastest way to make your eyes (and lips, and nails) look rad AF.
Ahead, I've rounded up some of my fave color-shifting makeup picks. Each one is a guaranteed swipe-and-go situation. No brushes, no blotting, no smudging, no complicated crap. Get on it.
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This was my first real foray into legit duo-chrome, and I am so glad I gave it a go. It's a gold-and-peach situation with a rose-gold, luminescent effect. Who knew sunset tones could be so wearable? And I mean that with all of my heart — I wear this so much that my coworkers see it on me and remark, "Oh, it's that gold-y thingie you love." Indeed, I do love my gold-y thingie.

Topshop Chameleon Glow in Shuffle the Cards, $12, available at Topshop.
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Troy Surratt went above and beyond with this launch — it's a duo-chrome shade within a double-decker compact. It's the inception of eyeshadows.

You can wear the violet-and-blue prismatic powder alone, or layer it over the deep-plum matte cream. The powder also makes for a great highlight or intriguing undereye liner.

Surratt Beauty Prismatique Eyes in Glamour Eyes, $38, available at Barneys New York.
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Periwinkle on its own is an interesting liner hue, but add a silvery iridescence and an earthy-brown undertone and it's impactful enough to let your lids go naked.

MAC Pearlglide Intense Eye Liner in Industrial, $16.50, available at MAC.
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I've seen the wonders of this powder up close and personal, on the lids of UD founder Wende Zomnir. While interviewing her for a story, I kept getting distracted and would catch myself gazing at her eyes, head tilted and mouth agape, looking like a vacant makeup zombie. I couldn't tell you what we talked about, but I distinctly remember the magical twinkle this violet-and-blue stunner created.

Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Tonic, $19, available at Urban Decay.
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Duo-chrome lips tend to be a bit more subtle, and usually fall into the light-pink or Champagne families. This gloss has just the subtlest of sheen, thanks to some fine particles of platinum-gold shimmer.

Nyx Mega Shine Lip Gloss in Baby Rose, $4.99, available at Ulta.
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There's something about a jewel tone layered with chocolate brown that just slays it. While it looks kooky in the pan, on the eyes it reads as a rich neutral accented by intriguing flashes of green.

Ardency Inn Modster Manuka Honey in Peacock, $21, available at Sephora.
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If an oil puddle was funneled into a nail-polish bottle and had a metric butt-ton of glitter dumped inside, this is what it would look like. And you know what? I'm not mad at it.

KB Shimmer Take the Punny and Run, $7, available at KB Shimmer.
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This frosty hue is the palest of pinks, enhanced by Champagne and violet — it's opalescent in the truest form of the word.

NARS Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow in Cassiopeia, $29, available at NARS.
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This limited-edition Lip Tar from OCC is duo-chrome gone rogue. Highly pigmented (as all Lip Tars are), it's actually an opalescent gray with pink shimmer. It's definitely a unique take on the concept — it sounds really off-the-wall and it is, but it also happens to look really sick in the process.

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Indrid, $16, available at Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics.
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The prism power on this one is strong. Geek Chic is notorious for creating some unique shimmer combinations that bring serious dimension to the lids. Case in point: This taupe-and-blue combo. Also, it's part of a Doctor Who-themed collection, so there's that.

Geek Chic Cosmetics Sexy In Suspenders Eyeshadow, $5.99, available at Geek Chic Cosmetics.
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The minds behind this R29-fave polish brand describe this shifting hue as "the chameleon," and we couldn't agree with that moniker more. Gunmetal shot through with green, gold, and a hint of silver will make it impossible for you to concentrate on anything other than your fingertips. So maybe wear gloves at work?

RGB Cosmetics Nail Color in Dusk, $18, available at RGB Cosmetics.
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I really don't know why I'm so drawn to this golden-orange-pink color, but whenever I come across it, I can't help but snatch it up. Perhaps because the rose-gold shade it creates truly is universally flattering. Tom Ford's version is a creamy, silky wonder that drops an intense amount of pigment. While it doesn't crease anywhere near as badly as most creams, I still recommend layering some primer underneath (Urban Decay's Primer Potion is my go-to eyeshadow Super Glue) to lock that prettiness in place.

Tom Ford Beauty
Cream Color for Eyes in Sphinx, $45, available at Tom Ford Beauty.
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Metallic lipstick in general is pretty rad, but this one from lipstick legend Poppy King is the best thanks to the light-catching fuchsia pearls embedded in the creamy formula.

Lipstick Queen All That Jazz Lipstick in Paint the Town, $30, available at Nordstrom.
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While it reads equally gold and purple in the package, when swiped on the eyes, this not-quite-cream, not-quite-powder shadow is actually a shimmering plum with a subtle golden sheen.

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow in Purpura, $30, available at Giorgio Armani.
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