Can You Really Get Good Makeup at the Drugstore?

Can you really get good good makeup at the drugstore? The short answer is yes. Looking beautiful really doesn’t have to be expensive. There are plenty of good eye, face, and lip products you can conveniently purchase at your local pharmacy that are highly pigmented, long-lasting, and great quality. There are various brands, such as L’Oréal Paris and Maybelline, which belong to the same parent company that produces Urban Decay, Lancôme Beauty and YSL Beauty, just to name a few. As such, a lot of these products benefit from the cutting-edge research used when developing their pricier counterparts.

That being said, you can definitely find some lackluster makeup in the same aisle. Some are made with low-quality ingredients that won’t deliver good results, and might even make you break out. In order to help you sift through all of it, we’ve created this handy guide. Get ready to look great for a lot less.

1. Eyes

woman doing makeup in front of a mirror

Eye makeup is abundant at the drugstore. |

When it comes to eyebrow pencils, mascara, and eyeliner, which most women purchase on a consistent basis, why not turn to drugstore brands to save money? After all, a lot the products are designed to achieve results with the same precision as more expensive brands. For example, this L’Oréal Definer Brow Liner,  is a dupe for Anastasia’s Brow Wiz, at a fraction of the price. Both will help ensure your brows look gorgeous.

The story is similar for mascara and eyeliner. Here are two of our favorites, which are of great value and quality: Maybelline Falsies Mascara and Covergirl Line Exact Liner. You can easily spend twice as much on something else, but why would you?

2. Face

girl checking her face for pimple in mirror

Who doesn’t get their face wash from the drugstore? |

You’d be surprised by the advanced technology that has made its way into drugstore makeup. When it comes to foundation, there’s a huge range you can choose from — liquid foundation, pressed compact foundation, loose mineral foundation, cushion foundation, mousse foundation — the options are endless. In addition to this staple, drugstore makeup has also expanded to include concealers and color correction concealer palettes (green, purple, orange, and white, which cover up various imperfections). And let’s not forget blush in an array of shades, from pink to peachy orange. You can even score great bronzers. The next time you’re stocking up on laundry supplies, you might want to consider stocking up on these beauty staples as well.

3. Lips

Woman putting on lipstick

A good lipstick is not hard to find if you look in the right places. |

There are way more lip products at the drugstore than a girl can try. Whether you are looking for a feminine, pale pink, a barely-there nude, a classic statement red, a deep burgundy, or a surprising pop of purple, your wishes can all come true in one place. Make sure to take advantage of the testers to try each shade on your fingers. This is a good way to see how it goes with your skin tone and it’ll also help you determine if you might have an adverse reaction. If you notice any itching or redness, it’s best to pass.

4. Nails

Hands with gray metallic manicured nails

Avoid the crowds and buy your polish from your neighborhood drugstore. |

This one may be a no-brainer, but it’s important to mention. The beauty of drugstore nail polish is you can typically find one of your favorite brands. Who needs to go to a department store for a good nail polish when you can get the same exact one at your neighborhood drugstore? It certainly pays on commute time and crowds (God forbid Sephora is having a sale on the same day you need nail polish). From bright red to turquoise, your local CVS or Walgreens is bound to have what you’re looking for, or at least a close alternative.

5. Hair

woman buying hair spray and shampoo at the store

All hair textures can be accommodated at drugstore. |

If you haven’t been turning to your neighborhood drugstore for hair products, then you’re in for a huge treat. Drugstores typically have a wide variety of hair products. Whether you have lustrous curls or thin hair, there is really something for everyone. What’s important here is to know what kind of hair you have and what products will work best for your texture. No ideas on where to start? We know exactly which ones you should seek out.

Additional reporting by Jordan Porter-Woodruff