Friday, September 16, 2011

#Frugal Makeup Finds- Feed Your Addiction For Less!

I paid $6 for all this and I received a $3 in Extracare Bucks to find out how!

You are walking down the aisle to go pick up a necessity when out of the corner of your eye you see it. A beautiful, oh so perfect eyeshadow shade. Of course this eyeshadow cost $8 and is similar to 4 other ones that you have at home. However, it is not exactly the same and you are sure that THIS eyeshadow will be the PERFECT one. So, you spend $8 plus tax and hide it in your purse so you don't have to feel guilty about wasting money on something you don't really need. Then, three weeks later you find it in your purse and say "ohh yeah, I remember that" and add it to your stash (with or without using it depending on your mood). Ladies, you know what I am talking about, right? I think we have all been there. For some reason we have a biological need to buy makeup (or sometimes shoes, clothes, purses) that we could live without.

I have some great advice for the makeup addiction. Of course, you should always stop and ask yourself "do I really need this?" However, logic often fails when you are within viewing distance of glitter! So, we proceed to step two: If you must buy makeup, learn how to buy/obtain it cheap or even free. Here are the top places to do that with what to look out for:

1) The Dollar Store-  It used to be that the Dollar Stores only had really bad, cheap makeup with brands that you had never heard of. This is not the case anymore! The Dollar Tree (my local dollar store which is a national chain, so hopefully you have one too) has name brands now. I purchased the Maybelline dream mousse shadow in silver halo, L'Oreal colour fresco eye color creme in both cool sorbet and dew drop, the Covergirl lipstick (I disposed of the packaging, so I can't give you the exact name) and the donna MICHELLE plum scented lip gloss (all pictured above) for $1 each at my dollar store! These are all name brands that retail for over $5 each. My dollar store seems to have mainly eyeshadow, lip gloss, lipstick, nail polish (Revlon 2 packs for $1!) and eyeliner in brand names. Beware that these are mixed in with the "no name" brands. So, look closely to get the good products.

2) Big Lots- Big Lots is trickier. Some of their makeup is too expensive. However, if you look closely you can get some great deals. Expect to pay $1-$4 depending on what you get. They will have some brands the dollar store doesn't like Neutrogena. They will also have mascara. Their inventory varies more based off of location. I sometimes visit 2 Big Lots in one day & it is like shopping at 2 different stores. I bought the Revlon Polish-me Perfect cuticle protector in the above picture for $1 (not sure if that officially classifies as makeup, but we are pretending it does).

3) Target- I quite often get super cheap or free makeup or nail polish at Target. This one involves a little more work. First, visit Target's website once a month and print off Target coupons for makeup and other things you might use. Then, look on the back of the makeup aisles for clearance. They often change out their stock and have markdowns. Be careful here! Some of their clearance is way over-priced. However, if you search through and find a cheap item that you have both a Target and a manufacturer coupon for (you can use both at Target and clearance is not excluded!) then you can get it cheap or free. I bought some Sally Hansen nail polish for 12 cents a few weeks ago. I have also received free nail clippers, nail buffers, eyeshadow, etc. Another thing to point out about Target is that they now carry E.L.F. makeup. E.L.F. is the only makeup I have ever tried that is regularly priced cheap (starting at just $1!) and really good stuff. So, if your coupons are a bust and you must buy anyhow..go with E.L.F.

4) CVS/ Walgreens-

a) These stores go through cycles of having certain brands either buy one get one free or buy one get one half off. Pay attention to your "everyday" makeup and before it is out start looking for the brand to go on sale. Then, visit the brands Facebook page, check coupon inserts and magazines and even google for coupons. If you have a BOGO sale and use two coupons, you can get both items pretty cheap (sometimes free depending on the value of your coupons). I have done this for Physician's Formula, Covergirl, Revlon, Neutrogena and some other brands.

b) Check for their clearance sales for cheap makeup and use coupons to make it possibly free. Walgreens posts large orange tags on their clearance and they leave it mixed in with the normal items. Since it is normally overlooked, it often gets REALLY cheap. They also sometimes have it on endcaps (mine does both). CVS generally has a hidden clearance endcap.

c) Check their ads for Register Rewards and Extra Care Bucks. Sometimes they have makeup deals where you buy $10 and get back $4 in rewards. These are $10 BEFORE coupons. So, spend $10 on 2 items, use two $2 off coupons and get back $4. That would make $10 worth of makeup only $2. I used a deal like this to get the L'Oreal Paris Double Extend Eye Illuminator Mascara (which is awesome by the way) for FREE with $3 Extracare bucks! I spent $10 on the mascara and used a super rare $10 off coupon (courtesy of my Mom, she was mailed it from L'Oreal for doing a survey) making the mascara FREE and then I received $3 in ECB. The rewards systems are great if you know how to use them!

So, if you must feed your addiction, use my tips and do so cheaply! I have actually been better with step one (Do I really need this?) since I had to clean out all of my makeup recently. I have a ton! Here are a few more parting tips to help you save money:

*Do not buy an extra item that you don't want just because it is a good deal!
*Beware of damaged packages. I inspect all makeup closely before buying.
*Watch out for expiration dates on Register Rewards (about 2 weeks) and Extracare Bucks (about 1 month)

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