By Samantha Lennon
When makeup is your business, part of your job is to come across products from any and every brand, from all ends of the price spectrum. This makes it a pleasure to offer insight on the best products for all budgets and without having to endure certain trials and tribulations, such as spending $40 on something nearly identical that you can get for $15.
One of the more popular questions I get asked is “What are the best drugstore brands?”
Well, to help you start off your year on a budget-friendly path, I’ve compiled this list of the best of the best. These are my top 10 favorite makeup pics you can finds at drugstores, which for New Yorkers, is about two stores on each side of the street, on every block.
Maybelline Color Sensational Vivid Lip Color: Wow…just wow. Here’s a way to look like a million bucks without spending that. The range has an amazing array of bold and vibrant colors. The texture is not as wet as it looks; it’s slightly more on the satin and matte side. It’s safe to wear without any fear of feathering or bleeding.
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers Broad Spectrum SPF 30: This is a wonderful tinted moisturizer offering the lightest form of coverage with a healthy dose of SPF. It glides onto the skin and dries to a sheer matte finish and is perfect for oily skin, but is still a really a good product for all skin types.
Cargo Swimmables Water Resistant Blush: Cargo is now sold at drugstores all around the city and the brand arguably has some of the best blushes and bronzers ever made; they are certainly used by many professional makeup artists. This long-wearing formula withstands moisture so you don’t have to fuss with re-application. It’s specially formulated with a unique silicone-coated powder that provides better adhesion to the skin and withstands water. The texture is so smooth it almost feels creamy.
Nuance Salma Hayek Lasting Wear Gel Liner: This product is exclusively sold at CVS.I am very impressed by Nuance, Salma Hayek’s beauty line inspired by her grandmother, who dedicated her life to keeping people beautiful. The packaging is beautifully done, but the Lasting Wear Gel Liners glide on so smoothly and with rich pigment, allowing you to smudge or create a look that stays all day. It’s also safe for even the most sensitive eyes, with the bonus of being fragrance-free.
Salma Hayek – Lights Camera Action Eye Trio: Another great product from the Salma Hayek’s Nuance Collection that I love and think is very clever is the Lights, Camera, Action Eye Trio, which is a creamy eye shadow, shimmery highlighter and eyeliner pencil all in one. Blend perfectly for a complete modern and sexy look all in one convenient product that is great for traveling and for touch ups.
NYX HD Eye Shadow Base: This eye shadow base comes in a universal shade that pretty much anyone can use, especially if you have oily lids. The finish dries to a soft and satiny matte that prevents creasing of your shadows while making the colors pop.
L’Oreal Paris Colour Riche Lip Gloss: This lip gloss has been a favorite of mine for years and years and years. It’s definitely in my top (of a few) L’Oreal lip glosses. It has the best texture, tremendous staying power and incredibly flattering colors. I like the size and packaging of the product as well.
Maybelline Volume Express The Falsies Mascara: This is the perfect mascara for a wedding day. It’s perfect for the beach, perfect for those who have eyes that tear or those who want a little drama in their life. It never clumps or flakes and is one of the best waterproof mascaras out there.
Elf Baked Bronzer: I blindly walked into the Elf store by Astor Place in NYC and spent over a half-hour there. I could do an entire list of Elf’s best products, at the prices and quality they have, but I will just tell you about their baked bronzer for now. It’s a totally believable bronzer, even for super fair skinned people, without a hint of glitter or cheap graininess. I really cant believe how good these are, and at –get this– $3. You’re welcome.
CoverGirl Tru Blend Liquid Foundation: This is an amazingly natural-looking foundation that has a light-to-medium sheerness with buildable coverage. There is a wide range of colors to the line and they are also fragrance-free. As always, when choosing a foundation, match your chest, neck and face together with a color, not just your face. Indeed, one of the best drugstore foundations, and under $10!
Samantha Lennon, Makeup Consultant & Artist
“Your Makeup Artist”