What Is Press on Eyeshadow?

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  • Written By: Donna Tinus
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 01 September 2019
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Press on eyeshadow is a one-time-use eyeshadow that is transferred onto the user's skin by pressing it onto the eyelids. It comes readily prepared on a single-use sheet or sponge. The user presses the sheet or sponge against the eyelid, transferring the eyeshadow onto the skin in the process. This usually is followed by another powder that holds the eyeshadow in place and discourages smudging.

Eyeshadow that is packaged in coordinating colors gives confidence to people who are not comfortable with producing complex eyeshadow looks themselves. Some press on eyeshadow comes in combinations of two or more colors, making it easier for the user to create a sophisticated look. This eyeshadow is targeted toward novice makeup-wearers and people who might have limited time for the application of cosmetics. People who are unsure of where to place eyeshadow to make the most of their eyes might benefit from press on eyeshadow.

A box of press on eyeshadow comes with several eyelid-shaped transferable eyeshadow sheets or sponges. Some have interesting and exotic designs, such as camouflage or leopard skin, and these are often referred to as eye tattoos. Each brand comes with its own application instructions in the box. Some brands come with a primer that goes on the eyelid to keep the eyeshadow from creasing during wearing. A setting powder is also included in some boxes to keep the eyeshadow from smudging or wearing off.


Application begins by peeling the protective plastic covering off the top of the single-use eyeshadow sheet. The user then aligns the sheet up with the inside corner of the eye and places the sheet on the eyelid. Eyeshadow sheets or sponges usually cover the area from the eyelashes up to the area immediately under the eyebrows. The user then rubs a finger or two over the press on eyeshadow sheet to transfer the eyeshadow onto the eyelid, after which the sheet is carefully removed.

Someone who has small eyes might find the eyeshadow sheets to be a bit too large. A sheet can be cut smaller to fit the eyelid, or the user could use a cotton swab soaked in eye makeup remover to wipe off any eyeshadow that was applied outside the eyelid area. Removal of press on eyeshadow presents few to no problems. A cotton ball or cotton pad is soaked with eye makeup remover, then swiped across the eyelid.


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