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  • Writer's pictureJacqueline Parker

Budget-Friendly Makeup Finds: 8 Affordable Alternatives for High-End Favourites

Updated: May 11

Are you a makeup enthusiast on a budget? You don't have to break the bank to achieve a flawless makeup look. In this post, we'll explore some budget-friendly makeup finds that are perfect alternatives to their high-end counterparts.

1950's woman in pastel car applying lipstick with cat eye sunglasses and head scarf

1. Foundation:

Instead of splurging on expensive foundations, try drugstore options like Maybelline Fit Me! or L'Oréal True Match. These foundations offer great coverage and come in a wide range of shades to suit every skin tone.

2. Eyeliner:

For precise and long-lasting eyeliner looks, e.l.f. Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner is THE BEST! Its waterproof formula glides on smoothly and dries quickly for a smudge-proof finish that seriously lasts all day. I purchased one today at the teeny price of $15. If you prefer the convenience of a pencil eyeliner, consider the Rimmel Exaggerate Waterproof Eye Definer. This retractable pencil eyeliner offers rich color payoff and a creamy texture that is easy to apply and blend.

3. Mascara:

As a pro makeup artist, I tried hundreds of mascaras with higher price points that simply didn't deliver results. I ALWAYS went back to Maybelline mascaras - they deliver impressive results without the hefty price tag! I particularly love 'The Colossal' Longwear waterproof mascara.

eyeshadow quad palettes

4. Eyeshadows:

You don't need to spend a fortune on eyeshadow palettes to create stunning looks. Brands like ColourPop and Makeup Revolution offer affordable palettes with richly pigmented shades and versatile color combinations. Avoid buying eyeshadow palettes from unofficial online retailers - whilst the cheap price point can be enticing, they can often be knock-offs and may contain harmful ingredients. And if you want to be extra thrifty - use your eyeshadow as a blush to save on buying extra products!

5. Brow Pencils:

For beautifully defined brows on a budget, consider Natio Brow Pencils. These are my go-to for everyday wear! Their pencils have a smooth texture that allows for easy application and blending, helping you achieve natural-looking brows with precision and ease. There is a brush on one end for tidying those straggling unruly hairs.

Another great option for brow pencils is the NYX Professional Makeup Micro Brow Pencil. This ultra-thin pencil creates precise, hair-like strokes to fill in and shape your brows effortlessly.

budget lipsticks

6. Lipstick:

Revlon and NYX are known for their wide selection of lipsticks in various finishes and shades. Whether you're into bold reds or subtle nudes, these brands have got you covered at a fraction of the cost of high-end lipsticks.

7. Setting Spray:

To lock in your makeup all day long, try setting sprays from brands like e.l.f. or NYX. These budget-friendly options will keep your makeup in place without melting or fading, even in hot and humid weather.

8. Makeup Brushes:

You don't have to invest in expensive makeup brushes to achieve a flawless application. Brands like Real Techniques and EcoTools offer high-quality brushes at affordable prices, perfect for blending foundation, eyeshadow, and more. I have even been known to improvise when doing my own makeup - using a finger to apply eyeshadow, or a cotton bud to blend! Don't be afraid to get creative.

Achieving a stunning makeup look doesn't have to cost a fortune. With these budget-friendly alternatives, you can create glamorous looks without breaking the bank. Next time you're shopping for makeup, consider these affordable options and save your hard-earned cash for other essentials!


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