In my makeup bag, tubes and boxes from luxury brands are totally mixed up with drugstore beauty products, and sometimes I honestly can’t tell the difference! The thing is, drugstore cosmetics is equivalent in terms of quality, wear-time and color saturation to its high-end analogs. The only significant difference is that when purchasing drugstore makeup you won’t be burdened with the spending guilt.
America is a Mecca for makeup hunters from all over the world! That’s why when I finally got my visa and crossed the vast ocean, the first thing I wanted to behold was not the Statue of Liberty or Grand Canyon but an American drugstore.
I chose my favorite top-notch products of American drugstore makeup that I am ready to purchase in bulks despite the risk of exceeding my bag limit.
1. Ultimate Brow Kit by Wet n Wild
It does not matter whether you are a make-up neophyte of even if you do not have eyebrows at all (hello over-plucking!), because with this brow kit, you are getting those wow-brows and no more excuses! For the price as small as five dollars, you get fully equipped. Aside from the two most popular shades of richly pigmented brow powder and a tiny angled brush, there are also wax, a pair of tweezers, and even a small retractable mirror.
The durable pigment of brush powder is very easy to apply, it blends in nicely, and you do not have to worry about it smudging out during the day. The real highlight of this small kit is, however, the brush. This flat angular brush is so tiny and delicate, and yet so firm that you can define eyebrow hair strokes very naturally or even draw them from scratch.
2. Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink Lip Color
Aren’t you just tired of having to check on your lipstick and re-apply it every two hours or so? I dreamed about such lipstick that I could easily swipe on in the morning and forget all about it for the rest of the day. It turns out, dreams come true with Maybelline. Having applied this SuperStay matte lipstick, you can rest assured that at least for the next 16 hours (let me repeat it in letters – sixteen bloody hours!) the color will not fade, dry out or crack. You can eat, you can drink, you can kiss – and still, your lips will look fabulous. This lipstick would be perfect for birthdays, weddings and other special days when you have a lot going on and very limited time on your looks. This lipstick is so high-endurance that it may be actually hard to get it off even if you want to, so make sure to use good lipstick remover.
Remember that all matte lipsticks no matter how good they are can be dehydrating. That’s why you’ll also need…
3. Carmex Lip Balm
Once you have used this lip balm, you can actually believe in magic. It soothes and cures lips suffering from dehydration, it also protects them both from winter colds and summer sun. The original formula consists of a range of natural ingredients composed by Alfred Woelbing in the 30s.
4. e.l.f. Cosmetics poreless face primer
One thing about primers first. Da Vinci used a special formula for priming his poplar wood panel before painting over it and look where this useful habit got his creations – La Gioconda is 500 years old and her skin still looks fabulous (just do not come too close)! I am sure we should learn from the great ones, thus I never neglect the step of applying my drugstore makeup primer that melts into my skin so easily and seamlessly.
It is absolutely lightweight, you will not feel it on your skin at all. In fact, you may not even notice its effect at first, but after applying your usual foundation you’ll know the difference at once. It minimizes pores and smoothes all the fine lines. With this primer, your skin will look younger and more radiant. It will also keep your makeup on your face all day long.
5. L.A. Girl PRO.Prep Correcting Primer
Yet another option for you to compete in good looks with Mona Lisa. It will not only shrink pores to get your face ready for applying further makeup, the primer’s formula includes vitamin B that is an antioxidant to nourish your skin and give it that amazing natural glow and sodium hyaluronate to magically hydrate it and smooth fine lines and wrinkles. It also contains extracts of chamomile and cornflower to soothe your skin. Overall, with this primer, you get youthful and healthy complexion and your makeup looks fresh all day long.
6. COVERGIRL Peach Punch Highlighter Palette
Now, that is just one item from the Peach Punch collection from CoverGirl, but I reckon it is the most universal one. This compact and totally purse-friendly box includes richly pigmented peachy blush and bronzer, and also a shimmering highlight. Even though the colors are intense and saturated, they look very natural once blended into the skin and are good for everyday use. Of course, you can always build these shades up depending on how much of a drama queen you feel today. The high-quality smooth powders have a nice silky texture, are easy to apply and blend in, they are also quite durable even in the hot temperature. Oh, and it also smells amazing!
7. Milani Pure Passion Eyeshadow Palette
An amazing eyeshadow palette of 12 warm-toned richly pigmented shades, some of them with matte and some of them with a shimmering finish. All powders are smooth, dense enough, easy to blend and apply. They are not for extra high-endurance makeup but your eyelids will stay colored at least for 6-7 hours and then the shade will fade gradually. I personally love the range of colors, they are neutral yet so saturated and you can mix them easily to create amazing combinations.
8. Maybelline Eye Studio Master Precise Liquid Eyeliner
Even if you are all thumbs, I believe you can draw flawless eyeliner arrows on your eyes with the magic felt tip of this Maybelline Master Precise liquid eyeliner. It is right there in the name – master precise! The tip is just 0.4mm, it is so tiny you can draw lines as thin as you want. The eyeliner’s formula is neither thick nor watery, it is applied easily and stays there all day no matter what happens. I also like this blacker-than-coal color that doesn’t fade away during the day.
9. Covergirl micro-fine + define pencil
As we started this list with an eyebrow beauty product we should complete it with yet another one! An amazing brow pencil with a micro-fine tip that is able to fill in the thinnest eyebrows and bring them from merely existing to being bold and thick as fashion dictates! This is my go-to product since it is super easy to apply and it looks so natural.
10. ColourPop No Filter Matte Concealer
It’s a multi-use concealer designed for concealing, contouring, and highlighting with its blendable, yet crease-proof formula. It also creates a blurred filter-like effect on the skin. A high coverage formula which is very budget-friendly. Well done, ColourPop!
See how I use most of these products in my make-up routine in the video!