Here's a great option for those of you who like bargains and super pigmented eyeshadows. Try buying mica in its unmixed form from a company such as TKB Trading. After watching YouTube videos and checking out blogs, I decided to order some micas from them. They have a huge array of super gorgeous colors, including many neutrals. A sample size costs $1.50, but it's not a "sample" by any means! One sample baggie has more than enough to fill a blush container to the brim.
These are micas, not eyeshadows, and you may be asking how they can be used. In fact this is the most asked question on TKB's FAQs:
Question: Can the colored mica be used as pigment eye shadows or do you have to do anything special to them to be able to use them as eyeshadow?
Answer: There is no particular harm in using our eye-permitted micas and pigments directly as an eye shadow. The problem is that the results will probably not satisfy you. The mica will fall off too easily.As they note, the mica alone is loose alone and will fall off too much. However, there are several ways to remedy this. My favorite way is to mix it with a medium or foil it and then apply to the lid. Another way to do it is to apply some type of base with a little bit of creaminess or stickiness to the lid first and then applying the shadow. Then, it is easy to use and the results are great! I've worn these pigments plenty of times, and you can also find tutorials all over YouTube of how to work with them.
Here's some swatches of the ones I got:
My absolute favorite is Chameleon, a warm reddish brown that has a blue duochrome. It's warm in some lights, cool in others: it's just so neat and sophisticated! I'm also a big fan of Bronze Fine and Moonstone Mica. I use all of the warm toned ones on the face for blush, bronzer or highlight, or mixed in with my mineral products to add extra shimmer and pigment. They are so versatile!
Ingredients: Varies for each pigment. Most contain a combination of mica, titanium dioxide and iron oxides. Some also contain carmine, tin oxide, bismuth oxychloride, ferric ferrocyanide or FD&C dyes. When purchasing pigments I recommend avoiding colors with FD&C dyes, ferric ferrocyanide, or bismuth oxychloride. Ingredients are available for each individual color on the website. All pigments are sold uncoated and do not contain nanoparticles.
Price: $1.50 each at tkbtrading.com