Walking into a Sephora store is totally dangerous—at least, for the bank account. We’re all so obsessed with trying the new Tarte bronzer or Naked palette, but there are actually quite a few amazing cosmetic stores beyond Sephora. While we’ll always love the staples, here are 10 other places that actually have rockstar-quality beauty products.
Their logo is a bulls-eye for a reason. Aside from the typical drugstore brands like Maybelline and NYX, Target also has Pacifica products and Neutrogena makeup remover wipes, which are absolute must-haves. It’s a one-stop shopping place for your standard beauty brands.
Amazon is taking over the world—and their Beauty & Personal Care department is no exception. You can choose between fragrance, makeup, skin care and even luxury beauty. This means you can get Stila and Lorac products online and delivered to your door in two days with Amazon Prime. Another perk about buying makeup online? Amazon gives you suggested gifts, so if holiday shopping is in your future, you might want to opt to buy online versus talking to a salesperson behind the counter.
3. Nordstrom Rack
Nordstrom products are known for their superior quality, as they sell high end brands like Clinique and MAC in-store. Nordstrom Rack, however, gets many of the same Nordstrom brands, but at better prices. Yes, that means hello Urban Decay lipsticks and eyeliners for half the price. It’s a great spot to find everything from NYX Wonder Stick Universal to Mario Badescu Setting Spray. You might think the clearance rack only means clothes or Marc Jacobs bags, but Nordstrom Rack offers premium cosmetic brands at lower prices—just make sure the box isn’t crushed and the lipstick isn’t dented.
4. Urban Outfitters
Urban sells all the trendy chokers, velvet and rompers you could want. But their makeup section isn’t half bad either. Yup, they sell the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dream Highlighter Kit ($45) or the Stila Glitter + Glow Liquid Eyeshadow Gift Set ($25) if you want something as ~out there~ as your chic denim jacket from Urban Outfitters. I also highly recommend their bh cosmetics 10 Piece Sculpt + Blend 2 Brush Set ($20), which are cruelty-free vegan synthetic brushes. Urban’s face masks are always a good option too, if you want to de-stress.
Madewell curates its Beauty Cabinet and then photographs the products themselves to show you what they’re like. One of their best sellers is the French Girl™ Lip Tint ($16). However, my favorite part about Madewell’s cosmetic counter is their blog, Madewell Musings, which features a lot of fun content about beauty and hygiene. Staffers talk about their own beauty routines and some of their fave items; they’re trying to keep it authentic by giving us real talk about makeup brands. It’s helpful for beginners who want to try out products reviewed by their staff.
Walking into this store means stepping into a wonderland. Whether it’s home decor, fringed apparel or quality cosmetic products, Anthropologie provides beautiful and useful goods for college women, and it’s not just for real adults. Anthropologie’s wellness section includes not only makeup, but also body care products, so you can be sure to find salt spray for your hair, thick shea butter for your hands or that creamy lipstick you’ve been wanting. Some of their top products include Henne Organics Lip Exfoliator ($24) and the Ilia Lipstick Crayon ($24).
7. Hot Topic
I know, I know, but hear me out. This place of our middle school horror days has a few redeeming qualities. While their beauty products might not be as long-lasting or good quality as Too Faced or NARS, Hot Topic is an ideal option for one-time makeup for parties and costumes. From the Blackheart Unicorn Blood Eyeshadow Palette ($8.90) to the The Nightmare Before Christmas Sally Lip Collection ($14.90), you can find a lot of vibrant colors and niche products for your Christmas party or Magic Wonderland themed formal.
ipsy offers glam bags each month with a surprise bundle of bougie products. You can subscribe and pay $10 a month to get a shipment with five beauty products tailored to your preferences and type. For example, one goodie bag came with Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Pencil in Perversion, Cute Balms Lip Balm in Vanilla, Tarte Cosmetics Deluxe lights,camera, lashes 4-1 Mascara, Hey Honey Trick and Treat: Active Propolis Cream Concealer and Doucce Freematic Highlighter in Solstice. Just check out #glambag if you want to see all the options for yourself.
Similar to ipsy, Birchbox has you pay $10 a month to get a mix of five personalized sample products. You can also buy set boxes curated by Birchbox editors to get a taste of a specific trend or beauty regime. Again, Birchbox provides one fab resource for those just starting their makeup collection, because you are able to try a variety of luxurious products from 550 different brands.
This online shopping site has it all – including free shipping. While Sephora and Ulta offer free shipping on purchases over $50, Dermstore has free shipping with no minimum purchase, and often has huge site-wide sales where you can save 20-30 percent on all your favorite brands, including Tarte, bareMinerals, First Aid Beauty, Herbivore Botanicals and more. Plus, when you sign up for their email newsletter, you get 20 percent off your first purchase!