How to Buy Makeup

I’m sure most women have purchased a brand new lipstick, or a new shade of foundation, and no matter how great it looked earlier, decided later on that it just wasn’t the right color. Thankfully, now most department stores and even many drug stores allow you to return your makeup purchases even if they’ve been lightly used, but trudging back to the department store and trying all those shades again can be a hassle. So here are a few tips I’ve come across during my quest for the perfect makeup to help others avoid this process.

Test It Yourself

A new eye shadow might look fabulous when a professional blends it for you, but once you take it home, you’re on your own. It’s important to find cosmetics that you will be able to apply yourself. Not everyone has the time to carefully paint on liquid liner, so no matter how great it looks, a pencil liner is the sensible solution. When the sales associates want to help, simply ask them to show you how to apply it yourself. Ask them for application tips, and take not of those so you can repeat them when you get home. And make sure to always use q-tips and disposable applicators when trying makeup in stores, and get a new one after each one is used. This keeps things sanitary for yourself and others.

View It In Different Lights
Just like clothing, makeup looks different in different lightening. This is especially true for foundations, and any makeup that is used to even skin tones. Cosmetics also look different once they’re given a few minutes to set. So when you go to the makeup counter, simply try what looks best to you and then tell the sales associates that you’ll be back after shopping to pick up your purchase. This will give you time to step outside and see how the color looks in natural light.

Don’t Layer Colors
One of the biggest problems I’ve had almost every time I try and buy a new shade of lip gloss, is when the colors I’m trying mix together. Sometimes you’re just lucky enough to create this awesome, custom shade, which you mistake for the last lip gloss or lip stick you’ve tried. You buy the gloss, wash off your makeup, try it again the next day and it just doesn’t look the same. The thing to do in between colors is to make sure you’ve completely removed the last color. Usually, there should be tissues and makeup remover available at the makeup counter. If you don’t see it in the open, ask the sales associate. Be sure to use this before applying the next color, so you can see how it really looks on it’s own.

Shop Around
One thing I’m guilty of is choosing a brand and sticking with it. It’s no wonder that most of my cosmetics come from the same brand when I only spend time at that brands counter! I’ve learned that MAC may not always have the perfect eye shadow or best shade of lip stick for me. Benefit might not have it either. So it’s important to at least browse the other makeup lines, just to see if a color catches your eye. And often, colors might look similar in the bottle, but differences in texture and ingredients can cause slight color variations, which can make all the difference.

Pay Attention To Where You Shop

You always want to make sure you can try on cosmetics before you buy them. At department stores, makeup samples are easy and accessible, but the same can’t be said about drugstores, the majority of which never have samples available. If you choose to purchase makeup from a drugstore, make sure that you’ll be allowed to return them. Talk to clerk and ask them what the return policy is on cosmetics; you want to hear them say you can return the makeup even if it’s been opened or lightly used. If not, as tempting as it may be, simply walk away. Most Walgreens and Rite Aid stores have fair return policies when it comes to cosmetics.

Value Your Own Opinion
We all know how sales associates can pressure shoppers to get sales. As genuine as some may seem, believe it or not, it’s not uncommon for them to tell you something looks good when it really doesn’t. Stick to your first impression of your new look, or, if you can, bring along a friend or relative who’s taste your trust. Two opinions can sometimes scare off the sales associate, or force him or her to be a bit more honest. But most importantly, make sure you like the makeup that you’ve tried.

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