26 Jan 2016

Drugstore bargain beauty products (and some high-end dupes!)

January can be a difficult month for so many reasons - you get the post-Christmas blues, your clothes are too tight, it's freezing cold and worst of all, you've blown all your money and January pay day takes forever to come round!  My pay day is on 27th each month, so I'm still waiting - one more day!  January's not the time to be blowing what little cash you have left on high-end beauty, so I thought I'd share some of my favourite bargains from the drugstore - some of them are great dupes for pricier products too.

Since I discovered this little drugstore bargain, I've not even thought about buying Bioderma!  Bioderma's great, but at the rate I get through this stuff, it's much more economical for me to rely on Garnier's budget version.  I use this to take off eye make up, to clean up makeup spills and messes, and to wash my makeup brushes!  I've even thrown it onto my cream carpet as a desperate measure when I spilt some tea and it got rid of the stain!

I remember someone likening this to a high end mascara - maybe a Benefit one, I can't quite remember, but I know that's why I bought it, and it really is an excellent drugstore mascara.  It applies really quickly, coating your lashes straight away without needing to build up lots of coats, and it really lengthens my lashes without clumping, and lasts all day.  The only slight issue I have with it is that although it's not supposed to be a waterproof mascara, it takes as much effort to remove!

I'm a liquid eye liner snob and I'm not afraid to admit it.  Most liquid liners are rubbish if you have oily lids like me, and until now the only one I've found that stays put without transferring onto my upper lid area is that Kat Von D Tattoo liner, which isn't sold in the UK! I tried this one on a bit of a whim after it was sent to me, fully expecting to have to re-do my makeup within ten minutes, and was thoroughly impressed that it dried straight away and stayed where I put it!  I'm super impressed, and of course this version from Maybelline is way cheaper and much easier to get hold of than my usual KVD favourite.

Nearly everybody loves this concealer, and it's not hard to see why.  It's probably the best concealer you'll find on the highstreet at this sort of price, and I find it covers better that a lot of my high end alternatives.  The lightest shade is brilliant for under the eyes.

I first discovered this lip liner when the shade Eastend Snob was being held up as a dupe for Charlotte Tilbury's pillow talk.  I bought it and loved, and then oddly enough, went on to buy the Charlotte Tilbury version when I was on a bit of a Selfridges makeup shopping spree.  Turns out I much prefer the Rimmel version!  I goes onto the lips really smoothly, it's very pigmented and lasts hours, plus it never needs sharpening!  Here I have the shade You're all mine, because Eastend Snob is constantly sold out when I look in the shops *sob* - but I've actually really grown to like this more pinky version.

Well hello there MAC fix+ dupe!  I love Fix+ it has so many uses.  I like to apply my makeup with a beauty blender type sponge, so a spritz of this is essential to dampen the sponge or the face to make blending much more seamless.  It's also great to spritz over makeup if things have become a little too cakey, and you can also use it to wet a brush and turn a powder shadow into a liner.  I'm sure there are lots of other uses, but those I the main things I use it for.  At £14 a bottle, it's not cheap, although it does last a while, but you can't argue that the Freedom Makeup version isn't a bargain at £6 and it has a lovely fresh summer scent to it.

We probably all need a bit of a skin pick-me-up at this time of year, and a glycolic acid toner is just the thing to reveal brighter and fresher skin.  If your budget's not stretching to Pixi's Glow Tonic right now, it's worth giving this version a try for £4!

So KIKO doesn't really qualify as 'drugstore' in the sense that you can only buy it from an actual KIKO store and not in the aisles of Boots or Superdrug, but it's a great value brand that fits the 'drugstore' price bracket.  KIKO are also opening stores all over the place (there's actually one in my local shopping centre now!) so it's becoming more accessible in the UK too.  This beautiful swirly single shadow can be used wet or dry, and to me it seems very similar in texture to the Nars dual intensity shadows, but at a fraction of the price - this is currently on offer at just £4.40.  I have the shade 200 which is a cool gold taupe, and it looks perfect swept over the centre of the lid with a darker, matte shade in the crease.

I also really rate KIKO's lip products, and have been getting lots of use from this matte, dusky pink liquid lipstick.  I love matte lips for winter, and I think it makes summer shades more wearable at this time of year when they're in a matte finish.  I can't find the matte muse lipsticks on the KIKO site anymore, but they might still be available in stores.  

If Santa didn't bring Urban Decay's Naked Smoky palette for Christmas, you don't have to worry, because Makeup Revolution have brought out the perfect cheaper alternative with their Iconic Smoky palette.  It has all of the same shades as the Urban Decay version, and as always with Makeup Revolution, the quality of the shadows is amazing for the £6 price tag.

I've never owned an actual Beauty Blender.  The price just always put me off, because let's face it, it's just a sponge!  Usually I go for the Real techniques makeup sponge which isn't really a Beauty Blender dupe as it has quite a few differences, but I really get on with them.  What I don't like is that they don't seem to last me that long - they go out of shape and a bit shrivelly quite quickly, and no matter how much I wash them, they get so stained by foundation that they never go back to their fresh orange colour.  Recently I discovered Makeup Revolution's pro blend makeup sponge, which I think is more of a Beauty Blender dupe, well in terms of appearance it is anyway - I can't comment on whether they work the same way.  This sponge doesn't seem to soak up my foundation like the Real Techniques sponges - I seem to waste less, the sponge blends really well, I like the shape, and best of all, because it's black it doesn't get that manky look from being drenched in foundation!  I'll be sticking to this sponge from now on - it's ticking all the boxes for me.

What are your favourite drugstore bargain beauty products?


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