If you used to follow me over on Byrdie, you might know I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to my makeup routine. If I had to choose between hair, skincare, nails, and makeup, the latter category would be my favorite. By far.
Ever since I first swiped a mascara wand over my lashes back in middle school, I’ve been obsessed—poring over my favorite magazines, creating very extensive lists of very expensive products to try (much to my parents horror, I’m sure), and creating binders and folders filled with torn out inspirational beauty looks from said magazines. Luckily, I think I ended up in the right career path to put my passion to good use.
I’m not sure why I became stuck on high-priced, prestige makeup, but I did. Throughout high school and college, I’d spend most of the money I made nannying and working at my retail job to squirrel away Dior mascaras, Clé de Peau concealer, and Giorgio Armani foundations and luminizers. My friends, meanwhile, would shake their heads and grab whatever they needed at the drugstore. I was the odd one out, but I didn’t mind.
Fast-forward to years later and I still love really expensive, luxurious makeup. That said, one of the biggest things I’ve learned as a beauty editor (and makeup artists agree) is that some makeup products just aren’t worth the investment. Slowly but surely, I’ve found foundations, mascaras, and highlighters that are just as magical as their pricier counterparts, and I’ve begun sprinkling them into my (still mostly expensive) routine.
But what would happen if I made the complete switch to drugstore products? To settle my curiosity, I decided to re-create my $436 (I know—whoa) makeup routine for a drugstore version ringing in under $100 ($99, to be exact!). Keep scrolling to see how my makeup routines compare, products and photos included.