The Best Makeup Products For Dark Skin You Can Find On The Cheap At Your Local Drugstore

I get shivers in my belly when I enter a drugstore. The good kind, just like the feelings you get when you walk into Sephora. At the drugstore, there's actually a pretty wide range of makeup for dark skin tones — all, of course, at an extremely affordable price. Coming from Singapore, where Maybelline mascaras will set you back at least $19.90, I get unadulterated, not-safe-for-kids feelings when I come face-to-face with $1 mascaras, no matter how many times I've been to CVS at this point.

Even if you have been living in the States all your life, the drugstore is a magical land with a cornucopia of beauty options and impulsive decisions. How many times have we gone into Duane Reade looking for tampons and came out with a dozen lip products? And sometimes you see something promising, purchase it, and disappoints you. Even though the drugstore has a wide range of products, you do sometimes still have to weed through a lot of product to find ones that actually work for darker skin tones.

Instead of spending too much money and time trying to figure out what actually works for your darker skin, I've done the leg work for you. Here are my drugstore favorites, all under $15!

Milani Color Statement Lipliner in #08 Fuchsia

Milani Color Statement Lipliner in #08 Fuchsia, $5, Milani Cosmetics

My only gripe about this lip liner is that it doesn’t come in more than just four colors. I don’t usually use lip liners under my lipstick, but this one really helps my bright pink lipsticks pop! For less than a meal at Subway, this baby delivers everything you want from a lip liner: It has a great texture, doesn’t bleed or feather, and the color payoff is commendable. In the photo above, I’m wearing only the lip liner on my lips.

Maybelline Face Studio Master Glaze in Make A Mauve

Maybelline Face Studio Master Glaze in Make A Mauve, $9, Bridgette's Boutique

These babies are comparable to pricier versions of an all-purpose stick. In fact, I often mix my favorite NARS Multiple shade with this for a perfect Princess Jasmine glow. It’s easy to apply, even with your fingers. You also don’t need a lot of the product, so it lasts for a while.

L'Oreal Colour Riche Extraordinaire Lip Color in Scarlet Concerto

L'Oreal Colour Riche Extraordinaire Lip Color in Scarlet Concerto, $10, CVS

The packaging, and product reminds me a little of YSL’s Rouge Pur Couture Vernis à Lèvres Glossy Stain. It delivers a punch, it’s hydrating, and gives me all the color I need without the high maintenance of a lipstick.

E.L.F. Wet Gloss Lash & Brow Mascara

Wet Gloss Lash & Brow Mascara, $2, E.L.F.

There are some things, like skincare, that I believe you should fork out a little bit more money for. Other things, especially ones that you can’t even see, like a clear brow gel, you should stick to ones that are cheap and good. E.l.f's Brow Gel is my go-to brow taming product.

Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Shameless

Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Shameless, $9, Ulta

Remember when the whole world flipped out over these when they first launched? And again when the matte ones launched? I’m still a big fan of these chubby babies, and if you’re trying to pull off Rihanna’s purple lips look without having to shell out more than ten bucks, this one is a great choice to try the look without committing too much to the cause.

L'Oreal True Match Super-Blendable Crayon Concealer

L'Oreal True Match Super-Blendable Crayon Concealer, $10, Ulta

L’Oreal didn’t lie when they say this concealer is super blendable. At first sight, the product looks way too light for me, but it blends right into my skin. I also use the product as a subtle brow bone highlighter from time to time.

Maybelline Eye Studio Master Precise Ink Pen Eyeliner

Maybelline Eye Studio Master Precise Ink Pen Eyeliner, $8, Ulta

When I look for eyeliner, I'm searching for the blackest black. It needs to have a drastic contrast against my Nutella skin, after all. This eyeliner has a felt tip that’s flexible enough for you to swish around the contours of your eye line, but firm enough so you don’t end up jabbing your eyeball. You’d need a primer if you’ve got oily lids, but this liner stays on for the whole party.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara, $9, Ulta

Mascara’s one of those things I don’t believe in spending too much money on. Why fork out $30 for something I can get under $10 that works just as well, and sometimes, even better? Duh. This magical mascara glides on your lashes whilst separating and lengthening. It doesn’t clump, flake or smudge but you might have a difficult time getting it off at the end of the day, unless you use an oil-based remover.

Revlon ColorStay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin SPF 15

Revlon ColorStay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin SPF 15, $13, Ulta

Honestly, I don’t use drugstore foundation too often. My go-to foundations are from Face Atelier and Marc Jacobs but I had to purchase this in a travel emergency — and I got hooked. Apply it with a brush and buff it out with a wet Beauty Blender before finishing with a setting powder and you’ve got yourself almost perfectly airbrushed skin.

NYX Rouge Crème Blush

Rouge Crème Blush, $6, NYX Cosmetics

NYX products are known for their amazing color payoff, and this blush is no exception. The Hot Pink shade gives me a blush that I’d never get naturally and the product is buildable.

Images: Faz Abdul Gaffa-Marsh