When I was young and foolish and thought money grew on trees, I used to buy all my makeup at the department store! Clinique, Estee Lauder…those were my go-to brands. But then after I got married and started a family, my department store dreams quickly became drugstore deals. :-) It took a little trial and error, but I eventually ended up finding comparable substitutes to everything I used to buy at the fancy makeup counters in the mall. Today my daughter-in-law Kaitlyn is sharing her expertise on the subject of Beauty Dupes (duplicates) for those of us looking for beauty on a budget! After all, why spend $39 on your BB cream when could spend $7 on something that works just as well?
I’ve always been into very stereotypically girly things – clothes, hair, makeup etc. But I’m also a major bargain hunter! I’m not one to splurge on any product unless it’s completely worth it. In general, I would rather save my splurges for clothes and accessories, but lately I’ve found a major love for great beauty products. Unfortunately many beauty products do not come cheap. So I have been on the hunt for “dupes” (cheaper yet equally amazing versions) of my favorite products. I’ve found some that are just too good not to share!
Original: Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional $31
Dupe: Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer $4.79
I’m putting this one first because it is my absolutely favorite beauty dupe! About two months ago I started to notice that when I put on my mineral makeup it sort of sunk into my pores and made them look a lot bigger than they did without makeup. Talk about defeating the purpose of wearing makeup! Shortly thereafter I read about Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional. It’s a fantastic primer that helps to minimize the appearance of pores. I loved the idea but didn’t love the $30 price tag. While perusing Instagram one day I saw a post that said Maybelline makes a primer that works just as good as the Benefit version. I ran out that day and bought the Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer for around $7 and have been using it ever since. I absolutely adore this product! Since I hadn’t ever actually tried the Benefit version I decided to pick some up for the sake of this post. And guess what? I actually like the Maybelline version better!
Original: Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream $39
Dupe: Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream $7.39
Next to the Maybelline pore eraser, the Maybelline BB Cream is my favorite makeup product! I have struggled with bad acne and a very uneven skin tone since junior high. Even with makeup my skin rarely looks perfect. But the first time I used the pore eraser in combination with this BB cream I had a sweet lady at church tell me that my skinned looked absolutely flawless! Granted she was an older lady so her vision might not be perfect, but she convinced me to keep using those two products. BB cream is basically a glorified tinted moisturizer. It can be worn alone for a very light coverage or as a base for powder foundation. I actually like the Maybelline BB cream better than the more expensive Smashbox version. It leaves my skin with a beautiful dewy finish and creates a perfect canvas for my mineral makeup. If you prefer a more matte finish try the L’ORÉAL Studio Secrets Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream or the Revlon Photo Ready BB Cream.
Original: Nars Blush in Orgasm $30
I was a little hesitant to include this dupe because of the name of the original blush, haha! But I couldn’t resist because Nars Blush in Orgasm is fantastic! It’s a cult favorite that I gave in and bought a couple of months ago. The color is gorgeous and makes my skin look bright and radiant. But $30 for blush is a lot to me so I was determined to find a good dupe. I found two great ones that I couldn’t decided between so they are both listed above.
Original: bareMinerals Original SPF 15 Foundation $27
I am a die hard bareMinerals foundation fan! I mentioned above that I’ve always struggled with acne so I need good coverage from my foundation. But my acne also causes my skin to have lots of dry, flakey patches that don’t work too well with full coverage liquid foundation. Mineral makeup is the only thing I’ve ever found that offers good coverage without highlighting my dry spots. I’ve never found a good dupe for bareMinerals, so I looked on a few different beauty blogs I love and found recommendations for the two foundations listed above. I ended up really liking them both! The only real difference I found was that the Revlon Colorstay offered a bit more coverage than the Loreal True Match.
Original: MAC Eye Brows $16
Dupe: Maybelline Define-A-Brow Eyebrow Pencil $4.79
If you were to ask my husband and my closest girlfriends what the one makeup product is that I can’t live without, they would all tell you an eyebrow pencil. I’m a bit obsessed with filling in my brows because my natural brows leave much to be desired. They don’t have much shape and the hairs are so sparse that they don’t show up very well. Well defined brows frame your face and make all the difference in how you look. So I rarely leave the house without filling mine in. I’ve used a MAC eyebrow pencil since high school and haven’t really found anything that I like as much. But the closest thing I’ve found is the Maybelline Define-A-Brow Eyebrow Pencil. I actually like the pencil itself just as much as my MAC one but Maybelline only offers three color options so it’s hard to find a good match. If your brows happen to match one of the Maybelline colors you own’t be disappointed! I like to lightly line the bottom of my brows with my MAC pencil and then fill them them in the rest of the way with MAC eyeshadow. I haven’t been able to find a good dupe for the MAC eyeshadow so if anyone knows of one please let me know!
Original: MAC Fluidline Eyeliner $16
Dupe: e.l.f Cream Eyeliner $5.39
I’ve used Mac Fluidline Eyeliner for a few years. It’s a great gel eyeliner that stays put throughout the whole day and is much easier to put on than liquid liner. When my MAC liner recently ran out I picked up the e.l.f Cream Eyeliner at Target. It was so cheap that I figured it wouldn’t matter if I didn’t end up liking it. Lo and behold I like it just as much as the MAC liner! It goes on really smooth and lasts most of the day.
Original: MAC Select Moisturecover Concealer $19
I’m not too picky about concealers. I just want one that covers my blemishes and under eye circles. I’ve used MAC Select Moisture Cover Concealer for a while but wanted to find something cheaper and something that would cover blemishes a bit better. I decided to go with two different formulas for two different jobs. The Maybelline Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer is a thin, smooth formula that provides great coverage for under eye circles. The Sonia Kashuk All Covered Up Concealer is a thicker formula that is fantastic for blemishes.
Original: Urban Decay Original Eyeshadow Primer Potion $20
In general, you can get away with using really cheap eyeshadow as long as you use a good primer. Primers increase the color payout on shadow, make them last longer and cut down on creasing. I’ve always heard that Urban Decay primer is the best of the best but hadn’t tried it until yesterday. I have to say, it really is as good as I’ve heard. I made up one of my eyes with no primer and the other eye with Urban Decay and the difference was incredible. The colors were so much more vibrant with the primer! However, you don’t have to splurge on Urban Decay to get a good primer. Try using Loreal Magic De-Crease Base Pour and then adding Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo Metal Cream, 24HR Gel Shadow in Barely Branded on top of that. It doesn’t work quite as well as the Urban Decay but I’ve been using this combo for a few months and have been very happy with it.
Original: MAC Lipstick in Russian Red $16
Dupe: Revlon Matte Lipstick in Really Red $6.39
Who doesn’t love a great red lip? MAC Russian Red is a cult favorite so when I heard that Revlon Matte Lipstick in Really Red was a dupe I had to try it out. The Revlon lipstick is a little bit more orange than Russian Red but it’s still gorgeous and goes on great. I think I may actually like the Revlon version better than the MAC version.
And finally here are a few more of my favorite drugstore beauty buys:
- Wet ‘N Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow $2.24
- Revlon Colorburst Lipgloss $8.49
- Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter $8.49
- Rimmel London Lasting Finish Lipstick – Kate Moss Collection $5.49
- Covergirl Colorlicious Lipgloss $7.99
- Covergirl Outlast Lipstick $7
- Suave Professionals Keratin Infusion Dry Shampoo $8.59
- CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Mascara $4.89
- St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub $6.50
- Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Nail Polish $7.99
What are your favorite beauty dupes?