Splurge vs. Save: Makeup Edition

Ever wandered over to the makeup aisle at Shopper’s, collegiettes, and wondered what’s actually a good product for the price? What about Sephora, and what’s actually worth the cash? After all, makeup is hard, and bank accounts tend to be unforgiving. Read on for a comprehensive guide to what products to save on and what products to splurge on!

Primer: SAVE
A lot of bloggers swear by the Maybelline Baby Skin Primer as a replacement for more expensive silicone based primers. The ingredients of silicone primers are pretty standard across the board, so if you’re looking to smooth your pores choose a drug store primer and save your cash! I personally swear by the water-based Maybelline Face Studio Master Prime. It has the same smoothing and blurring effects as more expensive silicone primers and the Baby Skin primer, but it’s way lighter on the skin - and only $12!

Foundation: SPLURGE
Flawless skin is a girl’s (or guy’s) best accessory, so spend the money to make sure you have the perfect colour match and formula for your skin. I mean, if you can find a match at the drugstore in a good formula, go for it. But I’ve always found it tough, and I am just the light beige girl drugstores cater to. My personal favourite is MAC’s Studio Fix Fluid - below you can see my shade (the lightest shade they make), and the darkest shade that MAC does.

This one is solely based on my own opinion and experience, so if you disagree with me, let me know where you found this magical cheap blush. But in my experience, drugstore blushes tend to go super patchy or just straight up disappear. That’s not a cute look on me, so I spend a little more on Kat Von D blush, which does not move. Ever. Also, higher end brands tend to have more shade variation in their blush lines, so it’s easier to find one that suits you well.

Highlighter: SAVE
On one hand, drugstore highlighters can be overly sparkly and give a very disco ball-esque look. On the other hand, I’m not into spending $50 on a stick of glitter, so what to do? Answer: multitasking products! Seriously, there’s no need to buy a special product to highlight. Use an eyeshadow for a sparkly highlight, or a concealer for a matte one, both one shade light than your skin. I’m into a glittery look, and my favourite multi-tasking eye shadows are the L’Oreal Colour Riche singles.

Eyeshadow: SAVE
If you’ve been through the drugstore makeup aisle lately, you’ll know what I’m about to say: there is literally no reason to spend a lot of money on eyeshadow. There are plenty of amazing formulas and colours at lower prices, and more dupes for high end palettes are coming out every season. My personal favourite drugstore eyeshadow is the Maybelline Colour Tattoo, which looks great and lasts forever on the lids!

Mascara: SAVE
Just in case you don’t know - mascara only lasts three months. Yeah - not until it dries out on you after about a year, that little tube of black eyelash goodness is only good for twelve measly weeks before you don’t really want to be putting it on your eyes. So buy from the drugstore - Maybelline and Covergirl do particularly good mascaras - and save you money!

See, you can save money on almost all of your makeup products… leaving more cash for essentials like takeout and cute shoes, of course! Have any of your own recommendations on products to save or splurge on? Let us know on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter!


Research: 1, 2, 3
Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7