Kevyn Aucoin Midnight Matte Eye Shadow belongs in my secret weapon shortlist. It doesn't look all that exciting in the pan: a charcoaled navy, matte and flat. But as a card-carrying member of the not-quite black eye makeup club, I find Kevyn Aucoin's Midnight to be a top performer.
The pigmentation is quite intense and requires a light hand and a good brush. The smooth texture blends nicely into any lighter shades I'm using on the lid and provides a dark smoky effect. Obviously, Midnight also makes a fabulous eyeliner, with or without pencil/liquid support. It's a dark and saturated color, so a little goes a very long way.
Bottom Line: better than black.
Kevyn Aucoin Midnight Matte Eye Shadow ($28) is available from Bergdorf Goodman (in store only) and Barneys.