Budget-Friendly Makeup Bag Makeover


I’ve downgraded my makeup a lot in the last two years, and am pretty happy with my current rotation in both quality and price.

Here’s a breakdown of what I use on a daily basis compared to what I used to use:

I’ve tried a lot of drugstore BB creams, many of which have left me too oily, too dry, or too orange. Ponds is the only one that has the same consistency, coloring and coverage as Too Faced. And the price? Love.

Elf goes on thinner, and feels a slight bit oily at first, but the coverage and lasting power is almost identical to UD’s. UD’s lasts maybe a month longer with daily use, but for a $19 price difference, this has been one of my happiest switches.

It is crazy and slightly embarrassing that I once thought nothing of spending so much on eyeshadow. Especially since I only used like, three colors out of the whole palette. The power of suggestive salespeople… This Maybeline quad takes me from day to night and I use every single color. Win!

Mascara is my thing. I have blonde eyelashes, so if I only do one thing that makes me feel put-together for the day, it’s put on a fresh coat (or 4) of black mascara. Needless to say I’ve tried countless brands and wand styles over the years. The absolute best I’ve ever had is Benefit’s “They’re Real.” It’s also the only mascara I’ve ever worn and had people actually ask me if I’m wearing falsies – no joke! At $23 I think it’s a total bargain, especially since even with daily wear it lasts a really long time, doesn’t clump at all, and isn’t a crazy mess to get off. However, I ran out and at the time just couldn’t justify the expense. The Falsies is good enough, but doesn’t really compare to “They’re Real.”

I was nervous about this replacement because Dusty Rose was the only blush I ever really liked enough to apply daily. When it was running low I took it to Target and seriously looked at just about every single blush in a similar color. Kashuk’s Rose was identical! Not sure about their other shades, but this has been a seamless replacement.

Here’s what I got rid of entirely: 

I was sold this by a overzealous salesperson at Ulta as “the” powder to have as a bride. For what it’s worth, I liked the way it felt on my skin, and the way it smelled. And it lasted for a while, but I don’t normal wear powder and I haven’t missed this one bit.

Here are a few old standards that have remained unchanged:

I’ve used this for years and have had zero reason to even try anything else. Self-sharpening, stays on well, lasts a long time, and super cheap.

I’ve never tried another pencil so I have nothing to which to compare this. I wish it were self-sharpening, but the color is good, and it comes two in a pack.

I don’t know enough about brushes to know if this is a good or bad brush, but it puts my blush on nicely, has lasted without so much losing a single bristle for over two years, and the price? Can’t complain.

Previous bag total: $192

Current bag total: $59

Savings = $133

Not too shabby considering I look NO DIFFERENT. 🙂

What are your favorite budget-friendly beauty swaps?!


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