Have you ever walked by the displays of the cheaper drugstore makeup – Wet N Wild, NYC, e.l.f., etc. – and thought, “nope, those are going to be extremely poor quality”? I would ask you to double back and take a closer look. Is every single item a gem? No. But there are some products that are definitely worth your time and what little money they cost! Here are five great products that cost under $5.
Wet N Wild Color Icon Palette – Comfort Zone: If you don’t follow any beauty blogs or YouTube channels, you may not know about this product. If you do, I’m probably beating a dead horse but, this is one of the best eyeshadow palettes out there and it only costs $4.99! The formula is creamy and extremely pigmented, I don’t experience a ton of fallout, and they have great staying power. On the left side of the palette is a sort of neutral color scheme, with a buttery gold highlight, pink and brown mid shades, and a dark brown shade (they are the leftmost 2 swatches and the 3rd set of swatches from left to right – I swatched them a little out of order, sorry!). On the right side you get a green color scheme, with a taupe-y gold highlight, light green and forest green mid shades, and a great reddish-brown shade with a green pearl reflect – this shade is a great cheap dupe for MAC’s Club eyeshadow. This palette can help you make anywhere from a subtle eye to a dramatic smoky eye, and is a great value.
Wet N Wild Color Icon Palette – Silent Treatment: All of Wet N Wild’s Color Icon eyeshadows are amazing. Their only drawback is they don’t have an amazing range of colors – they sometimes come out with limited editions, but their permanent range only has a handful of options. This is one of their 3 color palettes, and one of the best in my opinion. You get a pink-y highlight, a taupe mid shade, and a dark brown crease shade. Again, you can either go subtle – and if you want a subtle look and you’re using that dark brown shade, be VERY light handed with it, it is shockingly pigmented – or dramatic. For $2.99 this is a very versatile little palette!
e.l.f. Essential Jumbo Eyeshadow Stick – Rock Out: I also have this stick in Like a Boss (navy blue) and Midnight Rendezvous (black with silver sparkle). This one is a brownish-silvery-grey, and it makes the best subtle grey smokey eye! e.l.f. has some amazing diamonds in the rough – their most expensive items are only $6, so they are definitely worth a try! This item is only $2, it is creamy but not greasy, very pigmented, and stays put. You can either put this all over your lid as a base, use it on it’s own, or use an angled eyeliner brush to line your eyes.
NYC Liquid Eyeliner: This is, hands down, one of the best liquid black eyeliners on the market, and it’s only $2.99. I’ve been using this a lot since my Jesse’s Girl bit the dust; the Coastal Scents version I got from Ipsy is okay, but the brush is a little harder to control. This has a nice fine tip brush, which allows for great control. The formula is rich and black and stays put without sliding around, although it doesn’t set SO quick that you can’t correct any mistakes. If you’re in the market for a new eyeliner, give this one a try!
e.l.f. Studio Translucent Matifying Powder: This is just a great matte powder. I use it to set my concealer mostly, but on more humid days I use it to set my t-zone also. It creates a nice matte finish without adding a lot of heft or color onto your face, ruining what’s underneath. It’s only $3, so if you need a new powder in your life check this one out.
It’s easy to turn your nose up at cheap makeup, but the fact is, there are some very good products at every price point, not just high end. Take a chance and try some new products from your local drugstore! Be sure to check your store’s refund policies; some may not accept opened or used makeup. In the end, it’s all about experimenting and having fun – and if it looks good, who cares if it’s Wet N Wild or MAC?