Unlike what certain people may say, you don't necessarily need super high-end makeup products to still look flawless or get high-quality ingredients. Plus, there are a ton of hacks to make your drugstore makeup look expensive. It's often just about knowing what to buy and how to apply it.
According to doctor and beauty blogger Christine Mikesell in an interview with U.S. News and World Report, there are a ton of great options to be found at your local drugstore. "The quality of items at the drugstore is much higher now than it was just a few years ago," Mikesell said. Not to mention, a study from Cheat Sheet reported that the average woman spends $15,000 in her lifetime on cosmetics products, or $215 a year, which if put annually into a retirement fund could grow to $100,000 by the time she was 70 years old.
Basically, it's in our best interest to make those drugstore brands work for us, and at the end of the day, it's doubtful that anyone will really notice if you aren't wearing the most expensive brands on the market. If you're looking to make your dollar go further when it comes to your beauty routine, here are seven drugstore makeup hacks to help.
1. Remember That It's Often About The Brush
In an article for Total Beauty, makeup artist Rebecca Prior said, "To me, tools and products are equally as important as the makeup skills that you have," stressing that even if you only have average makeup-application skills, the right brushes can make a big difference. In the same piece, makeup artist Felicia Alva said, "Do what the professionals do: Use the proper brushes for application," and recommended having separate brushes for foundation, blush, contouring, highlighting, and several brushes for each area of the eye.
2. Do Your Research
This is a personal tip that I recommend from years of buying (and being disappointed by) products I bought at the store. I never just waltz into a store and purchase a makeup product based on the packaging any more. Instead, I go online and see what other people have been saying about it — that way I never have to feel like I wasted my valuable money on something that doesn't work as advertised. My friends now know me as the person who always has the "best stuff" in my makeup arsenal, and it's no coincidence. If you're looking for a place to start, MakeupAlley.com is a great resource for getting product reviews from real people before you buy.
3. Look For "Dupes"
This leap-frogs off the last point. A lot of times, high-end products will have drugstore "dupes" — products that have been created to look virtually identical and do the same thing. This video from beauty blogger and YouTuber Becky Sheeran features dupes for everything from foundation to eyeshadow, and there are tons more to be found online for almost every product you might want.
4. Always Moisturize
In an interview for Beauty Editor Magazine, professional makeup artists and YouTube beauty gurus Sam Chapman and Nic Haste stressed the importance of moisturizing when applying makeup — even if you have naturally oil skin. "Moisturize your skin really well," said Haste. "It's probably my number one thing people should do, because everything sits better on well-moisturized skin. It just looks healthier." So before you assume a product isn't sitting on your skin well because it's not expensive, make sure you've applied an effective moisturizer.
5. Use A Primer
Huffington Post fashion and beauty editor Dana Oliver said, "makeup primer is a godsend when trying to combat shine or create a smooth base for foundation. Yet, many people often skip this step because they believe they don't really need it, are unsure of how to use it or don't think it's worth the investment. However, using primer underneath your makeup will make everything last longer." Primer will go a super long way in making your less expensive brands look flawless and last just as long as those "fancier" brands.
6. Invest In A Finishing Powder
An effective finishing powder is another great way to extend the life and effectiveness of drugstore makeup. On her website, professional makeup artist Debbie Jacobs said that powder is incredibly important to a makeup routine if used correctly. She noted that, "Powder is used to set the foundation and concealer for a lasting fresh look. Foundation and concealer are both moist and therefore have no holding power without a bit of powder to set them in place. Not only does the powder set the make-up, it also reduces excess shine on the skin." You can invest in a high quality finishing powder (or dupe version) to make the rest of your more inexpensive makeup way more effective.
7. Shop Where You Can Exchange
In an article for She Knows, beauty expert Nina Sutton noted that sometimes shopping for makeup — especially foundation — at drugstores can be difficult, because there often are no sample stations. Because of this, she recommended shopping at stores where you know ahead of time you can exchange or return after trying. This will potentially save you a lot of money and waste. She also suggested bringing a product you already know matches your skin tone to the store for a better direct comparison.
Makeup shouldn't break the bank, and you also shouldn't ever feel dissatisfied with the less expensive products you buy. The good news it, with a few tips and hacks, your totally affordable drugstore makeup can also look totally flawless.