How to Wear Glitter Makeup—Like an Adult

Leah Faye Cooper
glitter makeup

Photo: ImaxTree

Glitter has never been safe around us. We spent the better part of high school wearing glitter eyeliner, hoarding glitter lotion, and streaking our ponytails with glitter mascara. Though we can no longer get away with leaving the the house looking like a disco ball, our love of shimmer endures, and we’ve thus made it point to learn how to wear glitter makeup like an adult.

First and foremost, “less is more,” says New York City-based makeup artist Maria Scali, adding that a finely-milled glitter applied to just one area—the eyelids, cheeks, or lips—makes for a statement look that won’t read costumey.

Below are a few of our favorite glitter-infused products, along with tips from Scali on how to use them—because every beauty look can benefit from a bit of shimmer.

Urban Decay glitter

Photo: Urban Decay

Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner ($20,

Described by the brand as “a gateway drug to hardcore sparkle,” this cult classic is one of Scali’s favorite liners. Formulated with peach and cucumber extracts to condition the skin, the gel-based product can be used to create thin, subtle lines around the eyes, or as an all-over shadow.

Le Metier de Beaute eye prism

Photo: Le Métier de Beauté

Le Métier de Beauté Indelible Eye Prism ($38,

“Dabbing just a bit of glitter in the center of eyelid creates a beautiful reflection and really makes your eyes pop,” says Scalia. Get the look with these liquid eye prisms, which you can layer over a base of shadow to add your desired amount of sparkle.

Make Up For Ever glitter

Photo: Make Up For Ever

Make Up For Ever Glitters ($15,

“I love these because they can be use anywhere,” say Scali of Make Up For Ever’s glitter pots. Too keep loose glitter put on the eyelids, cheeks or collar bone, Scali suggests applying it over a cream blush or bronzer.

MAC Lipglass

Photo: MAC Cosmetics

MAC Lipglass in Oh Baby ($15,

“A tiny touch of loose glitter in center of bottom lip makes lips appear fuller,” says Scali. Another option, however, is to wear a layer of glitter gloss, either alone or over a lipstick. Our favorite is MAC‘s long-beloved lipglass.

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