You can turn loose or broken eye shadows into solid pressed powder with ordinary household stuff and a little free time. I hunted down and tested several online tutorials for doing this and found this simple method actually works. It’s also great for mixing your own colors out of shades you have that don’t quite work.
- Loose eyeshadow
- Rubbing Alcohol (higher concentrations work quicker, but 50/50 does just fine)
- A mixing dish (shallow bowl-like container)
- A small measuring spoon
- Some cloth
- Books or other heavy objects for pressing
How to press loose eyeshadow powder
And yes, this method does work on loose blush and face powder, too.
- Spoon some loose eyeshadow into a small shallow cup or container (you’re going to mix it with alcohol, so make sure it’s got room to hold the shadow and more).
- Spoon a little bit (even just a few drops) of rubbing alcohol into your mixing dish and stir it well. She uses a 91% alcohol dilution. I only had 50/50 on hand, and it worked fine – just took longer to dry. It’s hard to say just how much alcohol you’ll need, so just add a little and stir, then add more until it’s the consistency of a thick, goopy, pasty blob – kind of like mercury blobs. You don’t want it wet – you just want it not to be powdery anymore. If you do get it too wet and don’t have anymore powder to add, it’ll just take longer to dry (in one case, mine took two days to dry!).
- Spoon the mixture into the container where you’re keeping this eyeshadow permanently. Shake it gently and the blob will even out, forming a nice level surface. If your container’s not full, you can mix some more powder and alcohol and add a second layer, if you want.
- Let it dry for at least an hour. You’ll know it’s dry when you can run your finger over it and come away with powder on your finger without disturbing the blob of pigment.
- Lay scrap cloth over the powder.
- Stack some quarters over the cloth. If you’re not using a round, quarter-sized container to press the shadow, find some object that fits your container and stack that on top.
- Put some books on top of it so their weight is pressing down. Leave it overnight. Tip: if you’re using a hinged shadow container with a lid that won’t bend back far enough to accommodate stacking books on top of it, a dumbbell works perfectly. Basically, any dense, small object you can wedge on there will work.
Now your newly pressed shadow is ready to go!