Makeup Toolbox (That Won’t Break the Bank!)

March 08, 2017


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As someone who loves all things beauty and makeup, I have quite the collection. Ask my roommate, she’ll vouch that I have entirely too much makeup for a single person to use during a lifetime. However, just because you or someone you know really loves makeup or wants to start wearing makeup, it’s totally not necessary to buy the latest setting spray, bronzer, contour, and…well, you know the drill. Today I’m putting together a toolbox of something that I personally feel like everyone needs in their makeup collection, whether you’re just starting out or just wanting to save some cash. Skip Sephora and head to Target or Ulta, because this is a makeup toolbox that won’t break the bank.



While many people say that the base – or foundation – is the part of their makeup regime that they’re willing to splurge a little on, it’s not a necessity. There are loads of drugstore foundations that work well for many people and I’ve found that a common theme is that people run to high end foundations because of the shade range. Luckily, it seems as though many drugstore brands are expanding their shade range recently. I feel as though L’Oreal have really great foundations for drugstore, especially their Infallibale Pro-Matte foundation for a fuller coverage and their Lumi Cushion foundation for a sheer to medium coverage, depending on your skin needs. As far as blush goes, there’s bound to be something at the drugstore for everyone, but I really enjoy ELF’s blushes. They’re super affordable and they get the job done!

Eyes are where I feel like things can get a bit tricky, because just like skin, what works for me may not work for other people and everyone has different tastes for what they like for their eye look. Regardless, I think that mascara is one of the most important steps in an eye look, and the drugstore has tons to choose from. The brand that stands out the most to me is definitely Cover Girl when it comes to mascara. I used their original Lash Blast (who hasn’t, honestly?) religiously in high school and college, and it’s one that I find myself recommending to people who like to try new mascaras. I also enjoy their Super Sizer Fiber mascara for a bit of length to my lashes. If you’re into super full and dark lashes, I would also recommend Soap and Glory’s Thick & Fast mascara which can be found at Ulta and even some select Target stores now! For eyeshadow, I’d once again recommend ELF due to the shade range, but also NYX, another super affordable drugstore brand with lots of options to choose from! ELF also has a great eyebrow kit if you’re into doing your brows like I am.
It’s no secret that lip products are definitely my area of weakness, but there are so many affordable options out there that I feel less bad for owning as much of them as I do. NYX Lingerie liquid lipsticks are seemingly a favorite among many people and with good reason – the shade range calls right to those who enjoy the nude and matte lip trends with several colors that cater to many skin tones. If you like a more sheer color, the L’Oreal Color Riche balms are perfect for a sheer wash of color that is infused with oils to keep your lips moisturized throughout the day.
So, you have all this makeup…now, how are you going to apply it? Brushes are something that I personally tend not to splurge on (I have less than five ‘high end’ brushes) because the brushes I have from drugstores are wonderful. ELF’s studio line is probably the best when it comes to affordability and performance – the studio line part is extra important to remember, as their regular $1 brushes tend to be scratchy and don’t work as well. In addition to ELF, I would highly recommend Real Techniques, which are being introduced to some Target stores! I use three Real Techniques brushes on a daily basis: their Miracle Complexion Sponge (better than the Beauty Blender, in my opinion), setting brush, and their expert face brush. Real Techniques is definitely a bit more pricy than ELF brushes, but I feel like they perform so well, it’s hard to believe they’re not high end!
Now that I’ve covered the basics of a makeup toolbox that won’t break the bank, I’d love to hear some of your affordable beauty finds!
xx Mary

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