Photo by Maegan Tintari
The other night, I found myself at the mall exchanging a pair of jeans, and I initially felt a bit worried I would overindulge. I’ve put myself on a serious “money diet” since entering school, and the luxuries of clothing and makeup hauls have taken a major backseat compared to what they had been prior to my academic life. I don’t have much time, but lucky for me, I can supplement my studies with the makeup artistry I do on the weekends (a passion of mine to say the least).
I did step in to Forever 21 (just to browse, of course), and was instantly swayed by the oh-so-helpful sales associate to try out a lip gloss by the checkout stand – it was “only $1.88,” she informed me. Albeit reluctantly, I accepted the offer and bought the inexpensive lip gloss.
I suddenly realized that a lot of the time, society places huge emphasis on the correlation between the quality of something and the price tag. I thought to myself: how often are we wrong in this assumption? How often are companies, specifically makeup brands, jacking up the price just because we women will buy it?
As I walked away, smearing my new lip gloss onto my lips, I concluded that this number was probably pretty high, and was unexpectedly pleased. The brand is called Love & Beauty, and the product is High Shine. As a bit of a lip gloss snob, I’ll be the first to admit I did not expect to love this cheap gloss – but I do.
It mimics M.A.C.’s cake-like lip gloss and lipstick scents, and has the thickness of Lancome’s Juicy Tubes which I’ve always been a huge fan of. It’s highly pigmented, and actually a lot more like a liquid lipstick than a lip gloss. The stuff is only slightly sticky, so you just have to be careful in how much you apply. For $1.88, it’s awesome, and I highly recommend it.
My point here is not to say that makeup shouldn’t be expensive and that high-end brands are crooks, but to encourage you to give drugstore brands and after-thought checkout line products and discount stores a chance. I will forever and always spend good money on the majority of my makeup, and my kit is probably worth more than I am (I have different favourites from different brands: almost everything from M.A.C.; Benefit’s concealer, eyebrow pencil, and “They’re Real” mascara; Urban Decay’s eye shadow, Lancome’s lip glosses, etc.).
But, I also have a list of favourite “drug store” brand items that I’ve been a fan of and hooked on for years: Cover Girl Smoothers Pressed Powder in Translucent Medium; L’Oreal Voluminous mascara in Carbon Black; Gosh foundation (this isn’t a true “drug store” brand even though it’s sold at Shoppers Drug Mart, but it’s an affordable mid-range price); and Maybelline Baby Lips tinted lip balm in Pink Punch (you will never see me leave the house without this product).
Give them a try, especially if you’re a student on a “money diet,” and share your successes with your compatriots. I’d love to hear your favourite “drug store” brand makeup products!
Tannis Miller is a personal trainer and business owner at Twistmetoned.com, and an experienced self-taught makeup artist and beauty guru. Tannis’ work has been published in and on the covers of It’s Love Winnipeg, Status Fitness Magazine, and Inside Fitness magazines.