When you are a dedicated bargain shopper like myself, you don't go to the mall much (or, ever) and you don't buy your girl products at big department stores (and by girl products I mean make-up, lotions and hair stuff, not "feminine products", gross). I don't think you need fancy (read: expensive) department store brands to look your best.
I save lots of money by shopping at Ulta, Target and CVS for all of my essentials, then splurging on something fancier from time to time. These savings can be spent on other things, like clothes, shoes, food and booze (my four favorite things). As you can see, I have my priorities straight.
So for me in particular, I love anything I can get right at CVS. Your neighborhood drugstore?! Yes, that's the one. They have this genius racket of giving you $$ off coupons every time you buy something so you get hooked into going back again and again.
Here are some tips on the bounty that can be found at your local CVS. Everything listed here costs between $5 and $16.:
L'Oreal Lineur Intense Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner: I've been using this eyeliner for years and I think it's the easiest product for lining your baby blues/browns precisely. I always have a black and a brown liner on hand.
Essie Nail Polish, assorted colors: Essie is probably best know for "Ballet Slippers," which is a versatile shade of light pink that looks great on everyone (except maybe dudes). But they also make an array of bright colors for the summer...including this raspberry pink number called "Big Spender" I picked up recently.
Maybelline Great Lash Mascara: I'm sure you've seen this on all the other beauty blogs and in fashion magazines. Loads of people swear by it. I'm one of them.
Maybelline Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser: I picked this up after seeing it on Pinterest. You slap it on before you apply your makeup. Your face will feel softer than a baby's butt (not that I've touched one). It's truly magical.
Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain and Revlon Super Lustrous Lip Gloss: This balm stain is similar to Clinique's "Chubby Sticks" and the lip gloss to MAC's "Lipglass." Each for less than $10 a pop.
Tweezerman Slant Tweezers: the leader in the tweezer game. Right there at CVS.
Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer and Healthy Skin Blends Natural Radiance Bronzer: Two more essential products that are part of my daily routine. This concealer blends in seamlessly and hides blemishes and dark circles. The bronzer is super natural (it says so right in the name) but gives a good glow.
Nexxus Shampoo/Conditioner: CVS has a full collection of salon quality hair products now; products like Nexxus, Rusk, Matrix Biolage, Big Sexy Hair, and Redken -- to name a few. Nexxus is one of my favorites. I use the Color Assure shampoo to keep my highlights highlight-y, and the Humectress conditioner to keep my hair soft and smelling good (at least for the first day, #dirtyhairiscool).
Dr. Scholl's Dream Walk Shoe Inserts: Dr. Scholl's has a whole line of "Dream Walk" products, including Ball of Foot Cushions, Hidden Arch Supports and High Heel Insoles. These are essential if you wear heels regularly. And most of the products are clear so you can slap them in your sandals as well as your pumps and boots. It's the small things that keep us sane, am I right ladies?
Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30 and Light Tint: I've been using a variation of this moisturizer for most of my adult life. Has the perfect amount of color so you don't look ghostly - even without makeup. It's oil-free, goes on smooth and light and soaks right in. I don't know if it's doing anything to prevent wrinkles but I love it anyway.
Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer Lotion: I use a combination of both the regular and the "3 days to Glow" gradual tanning lotions. They work like a charm to give you very natural looking color (as long as you have the time to be somewhat patient). They've figured out how to make them smell good too.
That's it for today! Happy weekend!
[Disclaimer: As much as I like shopping at CVS, I don't claim to know -- or support -- their business practices, if there should be any that are suspect. I just like their shit and they give me lots of coupons.]
All photos courtesy of cvs.com.
UPDATE 8-29-14: Here are a few additional products I've either just tried or were recommended by friends.
Revlon Color Stay Eyeliner: This eyeliner not only goes on smoothly and self-sharpens, it's considered waterproof, which means it won't run down your face by the middle of the day. I have black and brown.
Maybelline: The Nudes Palette: I have to admit, I got a little too excited when I saw this. I'm a sucker for brown shadows and this collection definitely covers all your bases. Love it! There's even a smoky charcoal shade for when you're feeling extra daring.
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat: OK so I stole this one from Ashley over at Witty + Pretty but I saw it at CVS so thought it was cool to mention. I'm all for a top coat that dries super quick as I have little patience for things like wet nails (why do I always get the urge to do laundry right after I paint my nails??). This stuff is no joke at sealing in your home manicure. I'm going on day five and not a chip!
CVS Nail Polish Remover Pads: And speaking of nails, this next one might in fact be the best thing since sliced bread. They're CVS brand, but these polish remover pads are NO JOKE. They take your polish off -- no matter how many coats -- in like two swipes per nail. Perhaps they are poisoning me, but I don't care! There's nothing worse than needing a blow torch to get your old color off. And these are individually wrapped so you can throw them in your purse or suitcase when you're on the move.
Dr. Teal's Lavender "Sleep" Epsom Salt Soak: I'm going to sound like an old lady here, but ever since I started running my feet hurt constantly. Epsom salts are great for soakin' achy feet and this one has lavender in it so it also calms you down and gets you ready for some serious beauty sleep. A win-win.