Words by Patsy O’Neill
3 Minute Read
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Isn’t January just the dreariest month?! In my endeavour to brighten it up, I’ve been scouring the High Street for the best drugstore makeup it has to offer for 2024.
I’ve worked my way around the face, picking my favourite product for each area. Hope you find something new and exciting to experiment with.
1. The best drugstore foundation
Yes, this is a higher priced High Street product than I hoped to give you, but please hear me out, because I believe that this foundation is a very competitive, high-end product but for a mid-range price.
If you’re after an everyday base that can be used day and night, then this is the foundation for you. It goes on like a dream because it’s super easy to blend with your fingers and can be layered up if you want more coverage. But for me, what makes this product worth the spend is the dewy glow that gives your skin a beautiful luminosity even on the greyest of days.
It’s a truly classy product for the price because it can be used in multiple ways and the lightweight packaging means it’s handbag friendly too.
My tip: Personally, I find on days that I’m actually happy with my skin, I just blend in a sparing amount around my red areas (nose & chin). You can manipulate the product to use like a skin tint.
2. The best drugstore concealer
e.l.f Cosmetics (short for EyesLipsFace) is one of my favourite brands for makeup on a budget. If you have teenagers wanting to experiment, e.l.f. make excellent products at a great price so you don’t have to spend a fortune whilst they find out what they like.
This liquid concealer is very versatile and can be used all over the face. It gives super coverage and the satin finish also means a crease-resistant finish. I really like the large doe foot applicator for ease, and it comes in a vast range of shades.
My tip: Sometimes I double this product up as an under-eye concealer by mixing it with a little moisturiser as it’s a much dryer skin area. It also helps the reflective properties do their job of concealing any darkness.
e.l.f Cosmetics, Hydrating Camo Concealer – £7
3. The best drugstore eyeshadow pallet
Morphe have been very forward thinking with their amazing makeup artist eyeshadow pallets. They come in an enormous range of shades – just perfect for aspiring makeup artists and creatives. I’ve singled out this particular pallet as it’s what I would call absolutely ‘perfect’. It’s not too big, but with enough options to encourage you to be brave and use a variation of shades.
Their eyeshadows have a lovely texture and blendable formula, making them a high-end product for a High Street price.
4. The best drugstore blush
The Refy Cream Blush is a High Street product with a high standard. For those of you who have skin that eats colour up, this super-pigmented blush is perfect for you.
It’s suitable for all skin tones and types, and especially those with more sensitive skin like me. It’s easy to build up – but I find that a little goes a long way with this blush, so go easy with application. I also love the packaging because it’s slim and neat.
My favourite shades are Malaya & Peach.
My tip: If you want to make it appear a little more dewy, try mixing the blush with a tiny amount of primer or moisturiser.
5. The best drugstore bronzer
This bronzer is a great competitor for one of my favourite high-end vegan LA brands –
The ultra-refined pearl and soft-focus pigments are super unique to this bronzer, which aids the glowy, multi-dimensional look that a good bronzer should deliver.
Infused with Murumuru Butter, the formula instantly melts into skin. It’s this combination of cream and powder that gives it the sponge-like consistency that is great for application. Love it.
Physicians Formula, Murumuru Butter Bronze – £14.29
6. The best drugstore mascara
This mascara was an instant hit when it launched a few years back – and I think it needs another big up. Not only is the consistency lush, I have to mention saving grace of the bright white and yellow packaging which stands out a mile when rummaging through my kit or own makeup bag.
I love the wand and its ability to separate lashes evenly and truly recommend you give the award-winning Colossal a whirl for yourself.
My tip: I don’t even have to use lash curlers with this product as it does help them to stay curled up naturally.
Maybelline, Colossal Curl Bounce Mascara in Black – £9.11
7. The best drugstore eyeliner
If you’re new to liquid liner or you just want incredible value for money with a 2-for-1 product, then this eyeliner is for you. If you’re just starting your eyeliner journey, the dual ended liner is the perfect way to discover what you like.
The thicker end is great for a bold statement and the thinner end is for precision details or for being creative with double lines or fashion-led looks.
This product has loyal following and is a favourite with many. The colour is intense black which gives a defined look. Just remember: the key to a slick, flicked eyeliner is practise, practise, practise.
My tip: If you make a mess and need to tidy up a line, make sure you have some small cotton buds to hand and a light moisturiser to edit mistakes.
8. The best drugstore lipstick
Here I go again, raving about e.l.f. Cosmetics. These moisturising creamy lipsticks are super charged with goodies like Marula Oil, Jojoba Oil and Squalane that all promise to nourish your lips whilst you wear it.
The pigment is just enough to make a statement without drying your lips out.
My tip: Be brave with a wide range of shades. ‘Spicy’ and ‘Loud AF’ & ‘Feeling Myself’ are my top three shades.
9. The best drugstore lip balm
I love this hydrating tinted lip care balm because it glides on with a glint of colour whilst nourishing and conditioning lips. For me personally, Rimmel’s eco conscious range is a very welcome range.
The clean skin care formula is 100% vegan, with FSC certified packaging. They have 6 shades to choose between.
My tip: I love the ‘Hibiscus Blaze’ shade, and I’d also recommend the blush stick they do in this range as it’s amazing.
Rimmel London, Kind & Free Lip Balm in Hibiscous Blaze – £6.99
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Makeup Artist and Beauty Consultant