What's the best make-up for the least money?
Credit: photo by tommydaspit.com

The Ten Best Drugstore Make-Up Products

If you are anything like me, you can't generally afford to purchase your full line of make-up products at a department store or Sephora.  Personally, I have to avoid Sephora altogether because as a confessed cosmetic junkie, I just don't have the funds to support my habit. Sephora to me is like a liquor store to an AA member. I just know I can't go in. Still, I must have my make-up. Not to support a frivolous habit, but because I'm one of those women who was raised to never, ever, ever go out in public with a naked face (I'm from the South, that's what we do). However, now that I have three children who require food, clothing, and iPod Touches, I have no choice but to scale back on the amount I spend on the beautifying products. Ah, such is life. So now, I typically stick to the make-up section at the drugstore, but in doing so, I've discovered some really great products - for pretty darn cheap. So here's my list of Top Ten Cheap Make-Up Products, starting from the pores up.

1. Favorite Cheap Moisturizer: Neutrogena Oil Free, $9.99. I always begin with moisturizer before applying make-up, or my skin will get dry and irritated. I like this product because it goes on smoothly, doesn't sting my face like some lotions do (my skin is extremely sensitive) and it has SPF 15 in it. The best part is, I've had my 4 ounce bottle for about a year, use it every day, and there's still plenty left in the container. Now, that's good for cheap!

2. Favorite Cheap Foundation: Almay Wake-Up Liquid Make-up, $11.44. I love that this has broad spectrum SPF 20. I never go anywhere without SPF on my face. I also like this foundation because it covers well, it's not greasy looking, and it stays on a long time.
3. Favorite Cheap Concealer: Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer for Eyes, $8.26. I have a hard time finding a non-department store concealer that actually covers well. But for the price, this does a good job. And though it is technically an under-eye concealer, I use it on any area of my face that needs a little extra coverage.

4. Favorite Cheap Loose Powder: L'oreal Paris, Translucide, Naturally Luminous, $11.50. I like this powder because it goes on smoothly, is long-lasting, has just a hint of luminous glow, yet still looks natural.

5. Favorite Cheap Pressed Powder: Cover Girl Clean for Sensitive Skin, $5.94. Even though I use a loose powder for my initial make-up applications, I keep a pressed powder compact in my purse for routine touch-ups. This product covers up my shiny nose and doesn't look cakey.
6. Favorite Cheap Eyeliner: Almay Crayon Contour in Black, $5.98. This is a twist-up liner with a built-in sharpener. What I love about this liner is its staying power. One application in the morning, and no retouches for the rest of the day. How great is that?

7. Favorite Cheap Eye Shadow: L'oreal Studio One Sweep, in Playful Blue Eyes, $8.97. I admit it's a bit of a cop-out, and true make-up artists may cringe at the concept, but I love the idea of not having to apply three different shadows in order to get that shaded, highlighted look. (Ain't nobody got time for that!) You can apply all three colors in just one swoop. Yes, at first it was a bit awkward trying to learn how to use the applicator, but after a couple of practices, I was a pro.
8. Favorite Cheap Mascara: L'oreal Double Extend Eye Illuminator in Black Crystal, $9.97. This is a two-step process mascara, but if you're short on time, the wand and mascara in the first step is perfectly good enough to act on its own. I do like the enhancer wand though, as it really separates the lashes and gives them some extra glowy highlights.
9. Favorite Cheap Blush: E.L.F. in Pink Passion, $3.99. This stuff is ridiculously inexpensive, is a pretty, subtle color, and lasts as long as most high-dollar blushes. What more could you want from a cheap, cheek color?
10. Favorite Cheap Lipstick: Boots No. 7, Stay Perfect in Nude. The Boots No. 7 lipstick line is pretty fabulous. To me, it has that expensive, department store feel to it, and all the available shades are attractive. Right now I'm enjoying the Nude color as it's a good neutral that I can wear with anything.
So there you have it! My favorite cheap make-up picks. If you have any others you'd like to add, feel free to comment!