Why I Buy $10 Concealer

I love browsing around Sephora, peeking through the glass department store cosmetics cases, and trying on expensive designer make-up just as much as the next girl, but when push comes to shove, I’m a struggling college student who simply can’t afford to buy the high-end products (but a girl can dream, right?). I’m always hearing women praise the quality, longevity and overall appeal of high-priced cosmetics, but after splurging once or twice on a whim, I can honestly say I prefer to stick with the drugstore basics.

When it comes to concealer (one of the most essential necessities of life, am I right?), I don’t think there’s any reason to spend more than $11. I tend to go for Covergirl stuff, but I’m also a fan of the surprisingly cheap (and healthy!) Neutrogena cosmetics line. Here’s why:

1. It lasts long, but not TOO long: It’s true, drugstore goodies usually come in small packages, but I tend to get a least a few months use out of a single product. When it runs out, yes, I have to buy a new one, but frequently shopping for new make-up gives me the chance to explore different brands and tones.

2. It does the job: Sure, maybe some Dior concealer or some no-name, all-natural Sephora exclusive might cover up my blemishes with more perfection than I ever thought to be possible, but my Covergirl basics still do the job. It’s almost like your first car- it might be 15 years old and falling apart, but it gets you from Point A to Point B. I don’t need to look like a Photoshopped supermodel- I just need everyone to look past a few red spots.

3. It’s much easier to get: I know some people who order all their cosmetics from online boutiques overseas, but what happens if you have a blemish emergency when you’re at work, school or somewhere else important and suddenly notice you’ve forgot your make-up bag? Sorry to burst your bubble, but your designer favorite probably won’t be available at the Rite-Aid around the corner.

How about you- when it comes to make-up, are you a splurger or a spender?

    Related Topics concealer


    1. Marisa says:

      Try E.L.F Cosmetics. Most of the makeup is $1-3 so you can buy everything you want for under $25. I love it!

    2. Marie says:

      I always splurge. Since getting a regular job, I will never go back to drugstore stuff. I've never used anything high-end that wasn't completely and totally worth the money. My current favorite brand never expires, and it's the only brand that I've been able to find that doesn't expire, so $30 for a 4-6 month supply of concealer AND foundation that stays on all day AND is water resistant? Sooooo worth it. Especially since you need to replace all of your makeup every 4-6 months anyway, it's cheaper, healthier, and less wasteful long-term.

      I know some people feel that some things are silly to splurge on, like mascara, etc, but ever since trying Clinique, I will never go back to the Maybelline things that used to be my favorites.

      Furthermore, the base ingredient in most drugstore makeup is bismuth oxychloride, which also happens to be the base of arsenic. I really am squeamish about covering my face in that. The next most common ingredient is talc, which is just a filler! If I'm going to buy makeup, I'm not going to buy something that's less pigment than filler. No way.

      There are some brands that are definitely overpriced, but I've been lucky enough not to waste my money on them. I am absolutely of the opinion that about 80% of the time, you get what you pay for, whether it's from Rite-Aid or Sephora or anywhere in between.

    3. Sev says:

      I've never even worn concealer, foundation or any of that stuff and I'm all the happier for it.

    4. Victoria says:

      I vary depending on what the product is – when I was younger I bought all drugstore makeup because i never went anywhere that sold high-end… now I have been slowly trying to switch my makeup over to high-end, if I can find a more expensive version that I like… actually for my concealer though I use L'Oreal Paris True Match because it works well so I don't feel the need to search for one that costs more just because it might be better. I really like that I can pop into shoppers and pick it up rather than have to drive to Sephora an hour away

    5. Jennifer says:

      I don't believe that once you have the means to spend beyond drugstore brands, you move on to the more expensive brands. In my college days, I used a range of scrimp to splurge products from Maybelline to M.A.C to Chanel and Estee Lauder, and the cheaper ones aren't necessarily worse than the more luxurious brands.
      Now that I have a day job, I honestly don't find the need to revamp my entire makeup kit with expensive products when cheap ones do the trick just fine. That is not to say, though, that sometimes the pricier stuff do their job much better than their drugstore counterparts.

      I always buy drugstore brands for makeup products where I need different colours like eyeshadow, eyeliner and lipstick etc, but when it comes to tinted moisturiser, foundation and sunscreen, I buy the best I can afford. This way, I can be sure that my budget allows me variety and quality at the same time.

    6. Nicole says:

      I love L'oreal concealer! And I always get compliments on my makeup. I think the key is if you can blend low- and high-end cosmetics, that's best. I use my cheap mascara under my pricier translucent powder. (Bought as a Christmas gift every other year by my mom, thankfully!)

    7. Nicole says:

      Sorry, cheap concealer under powder.

    8. Kristi says:

      I do like Maybelline 24 Hour concealer and their Mineral Power one, too. All the rest seems to crease and slide away, or dry my skin out.

    9. I wish i could buy cheap makeup…but im black so i can never find my shade grrrrrrrr. thats y since i turned 14 i've been spending 42.50 for foundation that matches my skin tone

    10. Chelsea says:

      I use a combination of two Maybelline Cover Sticks (White and Ivory) to get my shade. It works perfectly. For high end, Bobbi Brown and Laura Mercier are the best, but I love what I use now.

    11. monica says:

      Witch kind of concealer would you recomend for acne prone skin? The ones for oily skin would damage my skin more?

    12. […] to Save Your Manicure — Jezebel Mend Torn Jeans Using Monster Knee Patches — BlogHer Why You Should Use Cheap Concealers — College Candy Opt for 5-Dollar Tribal Earrings Instead of a Pricey Pair — […]

    • You Might Like