Like many bloggers, I love my share of high-end, more expensive beauty products, especially from Nars, Tarte, MAC, and Urban Decay.
But I also love a good bargain (especially when it means I can save money for other things…..like shoes or handbags), so I thought I would share with you some of the best drugstore beauty buys I’ve found over the summer. These items have become an regular part of my daily beauty routine, especially on weekends, when I prefer to wear a bit less makeup. They help me keep a natural but polished look and you can’t go wrong with the price.
Here are five of the best budget beauty buys I’ve found recently:
Garnier 5 Sec Blur Skin Renew Instant Smoother
I confess to having classic combination skin, which get so much worse in the summer. There is nothing more annoying than makeup slipping all over your face during a heatwave, so I’ve been actively searching for a good primer to wear under my makeup, particularly on my nose and forehead. If you have combination skin and tend to have large pores in certain areas (like me), a good pore perfecting primer is an absolute must. I’ve tried both Smashbox and Make Up Forever primers, and while they’re not bad, they don’t seem to work well enough for me to splurge on the $50 price tag. And don’t even get me started on Benefit’s The Porefessional – literally the worst primer I have ever tried (though I do love many of their other products). Enter the Garnier 5 Second Blur, which I bought on a whim. The consistency is great for a primer and glided on smoothly when I applied it. It filled my pores without making them more noticeable (which in of itself is a small miracle, as my combination skin friends will understand) and provided a smooth surface on which to apply my makeup. Even better than how it applies is how it lasted -after five hours, I still hadn’t had to touch up my nose or forehead with powder or use anything to absorb oil. Combine this with the price tag (under $10) and I am one thousand percent sold!
Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Medium Sheer Tint
If like me, you don’t want to wear a ton of makeup over the hot summer months, you may be searching for a good tinted moisturizer or BB cream. I tend not to be a huge fan of BB creams because they tend to make my combination skin too oily. I did some research before purchasing and found out that the Maybelline Dream Fresh BB cream is oil free, an instant win in my books. I can honestly say this is the best BB cream I’ve used – it stays matte without being chalky, gives just enough coverage for the summer months and feels great on the skin. If you are looking for a great oil free sheer tint, I definitely recommend it.
Maybelline Define-A-Brow and Maybelline Brow Drama
So I’ve not really used a lot of Maybelline products before this summer, but I have already become completely dependent on these two. Sadly, the Define-A-Brow has been discontinued, but apparently it is being replaced with a new product. If any of you grew up in the nineties, you may relate to the ongoing brow struggle faced by anyone who over plucked. I was one of those girls and I wish I had listened to my mom and her esthetician (but I will totally deny it if she asks!), but I didn’t and so here I am with less than full brows in an era where Cara Delevingne gives us brow goals. I’ve struggled for years to make them better and will say that finding some good templates to use when filling in brows (as well as hiding my tweezers for extended periods) has made them much more tolerable. But I still need to do some work to make them look the way I want. I’ve probably used every powder and pencil known to man, though I have not broken down and picked up Anastasia’s Brow Wiz. Rather than that, I decided to try the Sephora equivalent back in early June.
While the Sephora brand pencil provided good coverage and applied like a dream, it barely lasted me a month (and no, that’s not because my brows are THAT bad). I was pretty disappointed, given the $16 price tag (and definitely knew I would not be forking out $36 or whatever it is for the Anastasia original). Again, off I went in search of a good dupe, and I found it in the Maybelline Define-A-Brow. The waxy consistency provides more natural coverage than traditional pencils (which I don’t recommend using) and so far, has lasted longer than the Sephora version, despite physically being smaller. I usually use a bit of powder over it to blend and set the pencil for a more natural look. I am sorry to see it gone, but looking forward to trying the forthcoming version and will give an update once I do.
Now, onto the Brow Drama, Maybelline’s newest brow product. This stuff is literally the bomb. I have always avoided brow gels because I assumed they would be messy (and probably useless), but I tried this one, again on a whim, and it is fantastic! It sets my brows perfectly after the pencil and powder and adds just enough coverage to make the brows look even more natural. The brush takes a bit of practice to use, but once you are used to it, it is amazing. I literally cannot say enough great things about this one. All in all, Maybelline has definitely made me a happy beauty blogger this summer.
L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray
This is a very affordable and very effective dupe of the cult classic Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. At around $16.99 (and I’ve seen it cheaper), it is well worth the price and helps your makeup set and stay in almost perfect condition all day. I spray it on over my makeup before leaving for work in the morning, and while I usually have to do a minor powder touch up on my t-zone, my makeup usually still looks almost perfect when I get home at the end of the day. Like a good primer, this is a must for us combination skin gals, and while the Urban Decay spray will probably always been the benchmark, if you’re looking for a fantastic dupe, you literally cannot do any better than this.
I love sharing my favourite makeup tips and tricks and would love to hear from you about yours. If you have any other great drugstore finds, leave a comment below. I’m always on the lookout for great beauty buys.
Enjoy the pretty things in life,