1. Bourjois Petit Guide de Style

Americans have always envied French women and their seemingly effortless mastery of everything style-wise. Now we’ve got an inside track to Parisian glamour with these shadow and liner duos, available in six shade combinations. Not only are the colors fabulous, but the photos give you a handy two-step cheat sheet and shows how the finished product should look. ($16; Sephora, sephora.com)

2. Stila Smoky Eye Palette

After countless questions from customers about creating a smoky eye, Stila’s in-house innovators decided to create a talking palette. Yes, talking. Press a button and a voice guides you through the process, step by step, including which shades to use, how to apply them and even the best brushes to use. Just in case you miss something, it comes with written instructions, too. ($38; Sephora)

3. Pantina Naturally Stunning Minerals Face Palette

This palette scores major points with its instructional diagrams and shade map. Four eye shadows, a blush and a highlighter are mapped out by shade on the lid, along with a color illustration of where each should go. A set of six easy-to-follow instructions finishes off the guide and helps take the guesswork out of makeup. ($10; mass retailers)

4. Maybelline New York Expert Wear Eye Shadow Quad

These colorful shades feature identifiers like crease, lid, brow bone and outer corner stamped into the shadow itself, so there’s never any confusion about where each is meant to be applied. Bonus: Maybelline  global consulting makeup artist Troy Surratt contributed to a pull-out tip sheet on the back of the package that tells you how to use the shades to create varying looks, from subtle to dramatic. ($6.25; mass retailers)