Top 10 Drugstore Makeup Must-Haves

My love for makeup has been lifelong, beginning with my mom’s ’80s eyeshadow when I was a wee little tot. Unfortunately, a wee little tot of my own keeps me from applying and experimenting with it as much as I used to pre-baby. Recently, however, I’ve been making it a point to spend more time doing things I love and makeup is included in that list! I’ve been experimenting more with drugstore makeup (cause we’re on our debt free journey!) and I just had to share with y’all my current favorites. I don’t always get to have fun with makeup, but when I do, these are my favorites and they’re affordable too!

  1. ELF Flawless Finish foundation $6
    I have purchased at least 4 or 5 bottles of this stuff since discovering it! It’s medium coverage and it dries down to what the company calls a, “semi-matte finish.” It’s not too dry, not too dewy, it lasts all day and you really get some bang for your buck! Walmart or Target can hook you up with any and all things ELF!
  2. Jordana Fabuliner $2.99
    I prefer a pen-style liquid liner and this stuff doesn’t disappoint. It does tend to dry up a little quicker than pricier options, but it dries nicely and is such a rich, pigmented black that I can’t complain. You can get it at your local Walgreens if you don’t want to buy online (since this is a drugstore post, after all.)
  3. L’Oreal Lash Paradise $9
    It’s very important that you buy the shade Blackest Black because I had a terrible experience with the Mystic Black. I’m not sure what the difference is between them, but it is noticeable! This mascara is extremely comparable to Too Faced Better Than Sex, but I like this version better. I have pitiful lashes, but this stuff makes a world of difference. It lengthens, it separates, it thickens, and it doesn’t crumble under my eyes.
  4. Maybelline Fit me concealer $6
    I’m certain I was born with bags under my eyes, but Fit Me has always done a great job of covering them without needing any additional color correctors and it dries down without absolutely needing to be set with powder, which is nice for the under eye area.
  5. Almay Smart Shade Butter Kiss lipstick $7
    I’m over the matte lip/liquid lipstick phase because it’s just so drying on my lips. These days, I like something that still packs a pigmented punch but does so while moisturizing and plumping, and Almay does just that! I’ve got two different shades from the line, both on opposite ends of the spectrum, and I’ve not been disappointed once. They’re buildable, somewhat long-lasting considering the formula, and they smell like cocoa butter.
  6. ELF baked highlighter in Moon Pearls $4
    At first, I hated this highlighter. It was dry and I couldn’t get any product to pick up on my finger or my brush. Then, someone in a makeup group I’m in suggested scraping the top of it, and it was a total game changer! Admittedly, I don’t want my face to shine to the heavens and prefer a more subtle highlight instead, but this is buildable and I’m so glad I didn’t throw it away!
  7. ELF Contour Quad $6
    Everything you need for contouring, including a subtle highlight, is included in this palette! The packaging is durable and comes with a giant mirror, the product goes a long way, blends easily, and lasts all day. I’ve been using it for 3 years now and I’ve repurchased it multiple times.
  8. Wet n Wild Color Icon 10 Pan Shadow $4
    Y’all. I’ve used the 8 pan shadows from this line since 2014 or before, but they’ve increased the number of shadows you get, kept the price the same, and expanded the color selection. The palette “Rose’ in the Air” is a dead ringer for ABH Modern Renaissance and they’ve got another one that’s eerily similar to the original Naked palette from Urban Decay. If you’ve never tried one, go buy one now and thank me later!
  9. Milani eyeshadow primer in nude $7
    EmilyNoel83 on YouTube introduced me to this eye primer years ago and I haven’t purchased my high end go to (Urban Decay Primer Potion) since my first use of Milani’s eye primer. It lasts for all of eternity because a little goes a long way and I swear the formula is the same as more expensive brands.
  10. ELF Instant Lift brow pencil in Taupe $2
    I’ve lost count on how many of these brow pencils I’ve purchased, but it’s been several and not because they use up quickly. My only complaint is that it would be nice if the tip was a bit smaller, but I love that it comes with a spooly and that it doesn’t have that overly-warm tint that so many other drugstore brow products have.

And there you have it! Drugstore makeup brands have really upped their game in recent years, and I’m thankful for it because there’s really not a Sephora category in our budget. If you have any drugstore favorites not listed her, comment below!

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