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Do Some Drugstore Cosmetics Work as well as High End?

Drugstore Makeup

Drugstore Makeup Aisle

Do some Drugstore Brands work as well as Higher End cosmetics? Well, in short, some do, and some don’t.

I often find that with items, like Foundation, concealers/correctors, and also skincare, it really behooves us all to invest in top quality products. And even there, price tags can vary greatly. But your skin looking amazing is seriously the very first step on any great makeup look. And these are the products that get that job done, they are LITERALLY the foundation of everything else.

Now, when it comes to other cosmetics, there you can have a much broader choice.

I definitely have a few drugstore items that I find (as a pro makeup artist) to be extremely kit worthy! Here’s a few I personally love and use.

Loreal Voluminous Mascara in Carbon Black- Both waterproof and regular. This mascara is a staple in my, and pretty much every pro mua I know’s, kit. It creates excellent depth, thickness, and coats lashes well. it works wonderfully with false lashes, and the waterproof really stays put! I find the formula very similar to Lancome’ Definicils, and the price difference  about $6 for the Loreal version vs. $27.50 for the Lancome- well you can see it’s a real bargain.
















Another great mascara for natural definition, is Maybelline Great Lash. I love this for a slight deepening of lashes without any heavy building or thickening. I use this exclusively in any clean beauty look I do- Like this one.

Heather- Makeup by Karrie Welch

Heather- Makeup by Karrie Welch

Another product I have found at most local drugstores is the micellar waters- both Simple ($5.97- though this is a smaller bottle than all the others), and Garnier ($6.97) have a version. I have personally used the Simple- and it is pretty good, and definitely worth the money at $5.97-6.99. It does not irritate my skin (as many drugstore items tend to do). I don’t count on them as my total face cleansing, but they do remove makeup well.

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

Simple Micellar                Cleansing Water

I do still prefer the higher end versions like Koh Gen Doh ($39), Embryolisse ($26) ( a little birdie told me Embryolisse are coming to Target (I cannot do without their Lait Creme Concentrate in my kit, so this could be exciting!), and Bioderma ($28.95) over the drugstore option. In my opinion all of these do leave the skin feeling a bit cleaner, and better prepped for skincare, and makeup on set.

BUT ,A fantastic mid range is Vichey which you can find at Ulta- it is what I currently have in my kit and at $17.00 is another great alternative. So far I am liking it, on set.

The Maybelline Color Tattoo– hands down- these things are fantastic! If you like a cream shadow that blends well, and still has holding power, then you should definitely give these a try! Bad to the Bronze is one I also personally carry, and I know many a fellow makeup artist, who swear by Tough as Taupe. At $6.99, a total bargain!


Lipsticks- and here, you can can really choose across so many brands as many beauty supply and drugstores have many well performing brands. I go for cremes over pearl, and be wary of anything that is long wear as they can may lips look dry. Anything labelled Hydrating or moisturizing is probably going to be the easiest to use, and have look great on the lips.

Here’s a Rimmel Moisture Renew in Summer Angel from CVS drugstore. It’s only $6.99. I Love this shade too- (I think I’m going to have to go get this)  You’re all enablers here…..

Rimmel Moisture Renew

Rimmel Moisture Renew

I also have a few NYX shades in my kit- I got a few matte shades for a specific job- and they were all matte, and worked well  without being drying, and the color payoff was great. I added them permanently to my lip palette, and would consider getting a few more, I may try a few of these Butter style finish lipsticks.  I got mine at Ulta, but I do see that some CVSs’ carry them, and at $5.99 they are worth trying!

NYX Butter Lipstick

NYX Butter Lipstick

Lashes- I love using a half lash, or corner lash. They can really lift and open the eye, but still look natural and not like you’re wearing false lashes at all. Using something like Ardell Demi Wispies can make a big difference, yet feel so lightweight.  They are only $4.99 at CVS, and yes, if you remove old glue, and clean them with 70% ip alcohol, you can wear them a few times. ( so save the package to store them) They also sell multi packs at a savings.


I adhere them with either Duo ($6.49) or Kiss glue ($3.99)- both of which I carry, and get at any local drugstore.

These are a few of my favorite Drugstore brands, most of which I also carry in my kit. I’d love to hear what drugstore brands are YOUR top picks!


As always FFM will include a free sample in any full sized order. This weeks sample shade is Sheer Warmer– our warming setting powder



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