This is the time of year when I tend to scale back on my beauty routine – in fact, I think there have only been a handful of days since we moved that I’ve actually put on a full face of makeup! I’ve been testing out lots of drugstore options lately and have been amazed by what I’ve found. While I do believe some products are worth paying more for, I have found some great affordable options that are strikingly similar in both formulation & finish. So, for those who are looking to save a few dollars on their beauty routine, I’m sharing my top picks for a fresh-faced summer look that’s also easy on your wallet:
1) Fresh Sugar Lip Polish vs. Burt’s Bees Lip Scrub
To be honest, I’ve never tried the Fresh Sugar Lip Polish (which uses brown sugar, shea butter & jojoba oil) – but, it’s cheaper counterpart is 100% natural & works like magic to soften chapped lips. And it’s $16 less than the more expensive scrub!
2) NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer vs. Maybelline Fit Me Concealer
This is such a close matchup to the expensive version that I almost couldn’t believe it! The drugstore version has a creamy consistency with a slight hint of radiance to it & the coverage is excellent – I tried it in my undereye area and didn’t have any issues with creasing.
3) Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment vs. Babo Botanicals Lip Tint
These both have SPF15 built-in & provide a pretty sheer wash of color that’s perfect for summer – but after investigating the ingredients list, I discovered that the Fresh Sugar lip balm has added fragrance and alcohol. The more affordable option is 100% natural and comes in four different colors (see them all here) – I purchased the Crimson Rose, which is a mauvey berry hue that’s universally flattering.
4) It Cosmetics CC+ Cream vs. Neutrogena Healthy Skin Perfector
There are a few differences between these products – It Cosmetics has SPF50 and Neutrogena has SPF20 and the Neutrogena formula has retinol added. In terms of consistency and coverage, these are very similar, though there are less skintone options available for the drugstore version.
5) Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz vs. NYX Cosmetics Microbrow Pencil
After picking up this NYX pencil on a recent Target run, I don’t know that I’ll ever go back to buying the more expensive one (which I was using previously). These are an exact match in shade, ease of application & staying power (I wear Taupe).
6) Supergoop Glow Screen vs. UnSun Cosmetics Mineral Tinted Sunscreen
After falling in love with the Supergoop sunscreen & realizing how quickly I would be going through it this summer, I set out in search of a budget-friendly alternative. I tried several drugstore brands and this UnSun Cosmetics sunscreen was my favorite (honorable mention goes to this one). It has less of a sheen/radiance than the Supergoop formula (and it’s SPF30 vs. SPF40), but I like that it’s mineral based and evens out my skintone (perfect for those no-makeup days).
7) Glossier Cloud Paint vs. Flower Beauty Blush Bomb Color Drops
In the summer, I try to avoid as many powder makeup products as I can because they can look cakey and don’t always wear well in the heat & humidity. Both of these blushes are a mix between a gel & a cream, which makes them so easy to blend & build to the intensity you want. I bought the colors Pinched & Melon, which give the most natural-looking flush – I love them so much I may never go back to powder blush again!
8) Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray vs. Milani Make It Last Setting Spray
I’ve talked about this Urban Decay spray quite a bit before and it has been my go-to for a while. But when my daughter started using mine regularly, I realized I needed to find a less expensive option. I tried a few from NYX & Revlon, but this one was the closest to my old standby & the most effective by far.
9) Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara vs. L’Oreal Voluminous Lash Paradise Mascara
I’ve worn Voluminous mascara off & on for years so I was anxious to try this new version. It is mind-blowingly similar to the Too Faced mascara (right down to the brush!) – I bought the Blackest Black, which also comes in waterproof.