It doesn’t matter how much something costs – if I don’t use it, that’s money down the drain. Since I can’t test drugstore skincare and beauty products, I tend to shy away in favor of higher-end products that I know will work because I’ve had the chance to speak with a brand rep, test the color on my skin and potentially sample the goods before I make a financial commitment.
During recent trips to Ulta and Target, I stocked up on my usual Maybelline mascaras and NYX Cosmetics Butter Glosses, but also some new goodies that have received outstanding reviews. I’d like to share the products I discovered that are so amazing and affordable that they’ll replace my higher-end makeup.
Instead of YSL Touche Eclait for $42, try…
L’oreal Magic Lumi Highlighter for $11
The cult favorite Touche Eclat earns its status for bringing light to the areas of your face that you want to brighten. I have used it in the past, but I never re-purchased (I now use Make Up For Ever lift concealer). It was lovely, but I couldn’t justify the return on investment. Until now. Other than its intended use, this is a perfect item if you don’t need concealer but want a little brightness on the inner corners of and under your eyes, or to keep in your bag for an afternoon touch up. It’s light enough that you can layer it on top of itself – or other products – throughout the day without looking cakey.
Instead of NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer for $30, try…
Maybelline Fit Me Concealer for $6
I will always consistently use five beauty products, and concealer is at the top of the list (the others are bronzer, eyeliner, brows and lip gloss). I wanted to hop on the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer bandwagon, and I have a tube, but I find it’s too heavy and drying for my under eyes. This version is much lighter, but offers the same amount of coverage, so you can layer it to fit your needs. It works so well with the Magic Lumi Highlighter, too.
Instead of the Beauty Blender for $20, try…
Real Techniques Beauty Sponge at $11 for two
One of the reps at Ulta said this was his go-to sponge, so I had to try it. I was blown away! My issue with the Beauty Blender (other than the price) is that it makes me so nervous – I want to make it last as long as possible, and since that includes wetting it then cleaning it every single time, I end up only using it for fancy makeup and on clients. Enter this little orange egg. You can use it wet or dry, and it does everything the Beauty Blender does.
Instead of YSL Rouge Volupte Shine Oil-In-Stick Lipstick for $37, try…
Sonia Kashuk Shine Luxe Sheer Lip Color for $11
This sheer, hydrating gloss/lipstick combo is my new favorite lip color to keep in my bag for every day touch ups – pictured here is the color Sheer Pink Lust. Also, it’s Claire Underwood’s signature color. Sold.
You just saved over $90. Remember my love affair with Lazy Perfection? If you want a comprehensive guide with many more drugstore dupes, use some of your savings to purchase the book as Jenny Patinkin created an entire chart of her approved products. Holler. Make sure you subscribe to keep up with the latest beauty tips and tricks, and follow me on Instagram @ElectraLane to stay in touch until next time!
Images c/o Ulta.com and Jessica Yost