If you’re a fan of makeup, then you know that it can be an expensive hobby. When a single foundation can sell for £30, and Youtubers and bloggers frequently recommend beauty advent calendars that cost well over £100, hopefully you’ll appreciate my ideas to help you save money.
I’m Bronni. As well as writing my money blog, I also run the makeup blog Beauty Markdown, so money saving beauty tips are well within my wheelhouse. Here are my top 6 tips to help you spend less on beauty and skincare.
We all know that sinking feeling when one of your favourite products starts running low. What if you were able to replace it with a very similar product for a fraction of the price? These lookalike products are known as dupes. Think how Aldi has their own version of Kinder Buenos, but for makeup.
Companies like Revolution have great dupes for products like the Tarte Shape Tape concealer and the Anastasia Beverly Hills eyeshadow palettes. So next time you’re looking for some makeup that’s a bit out of your price range, why not search “X makeup product dupe”, and watch some reviews?
Check out outlets
If you love high end brands, and cheaper dupes just aren’t going to cut it, then you might like makeup outlets. You’ve probably seen discount makeup in TK Maxx, but you might not know that if you hunt through the shelves, you’ll find big names like NARS, Stila, Huda Beauty and MAC. Another in store makeup outlet you might not have heard of is the Cosmetics Company Store. They only have locations in outlet villages like York Designer Outlet, Bicester Village and The Icon Outlet in the O2 Arena, London. Like shopping online? Check out AllBeauty and Fragrance Direct too!
Don’t discount discount stores
Shops like Poundland, Wilko and Aldi might not be your first stop when you’re buying beauty products, but they have some hidden gems I can definitely recommend. Aldi has my favourite moisturiser in their Caviar Illumination line, and why spend £2 on a pack of cotton pads in Boots when they’re less than 30p in Aldi.
The Poundland ridge filler base coat is £1 (obviously) and it’s what I always use before I paint my nails. People also swear by their eyeliner and fake eyelashes, if you can believe it! Wilko stock the European brand Essence in their stores. It’s much better known in Ireland and Germany, but it’s cruelty free, high quality and seriously cheap. If you’re running low on mascara try out Essence’s Lash Princess, you’re unlikely to regret it as it’s only £3.30.
Samples can go a long way
When you’re deciding whether to drop some serious cash on a high end makeup product, always try and get a sample. It’s often not possible to return makeup, and it can be a huge waste of money if you end up not liking it. Drop in to your local Boots or department store and ask at the counter about the product you’re interested in. The salesperson should offer you a small amount to try at home, or they could apply it for you. Before you buy, make sure you go outside and see it in natural light, try wearing it for a whole day, at least. Check the freebies section of Beauty Markdown for free samples available online.
Only buy what you use
Often so many of the must-have makeup releases in a year are big palettes, or huge “vaults” of multiple shades of the same lipstick or nail polish. Even though these sets might be great ~value~ per gram or per item vs the price of the individual products, they’re still very expensive, especially if you only use one or two colours. You can buy eyeshadows individually and use a magnetic palette to store them, and really, who needs more than two colours of blush?
You probably aren’t finished when you’re finished
Once you’ve got to the end of a makeup or skincare product, you might just throw it away. STOP! I did an experiment and some of the items I’d assumed were totally empty actually had more than half the contents still in the packaging. That’s a lot of money going in the bin when it comes to expensive beauty products. Don’t be afraid to get your scissors out and cut apart your old packaging. You can even swap your old beauty packaging for freebies.