13 Smart Makeup Shopping Tips for Budget Beauty Junkies

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Looking good can cost you. Looking good can cost you. Here are some tips for the budget conscious beauty junkie when shopping for makeup and personal care products.

1. Recycling works in makeup

Recycling old containers from brands like MAC gets you free stuff. Six old containers, for example, will get you a free MAC lipstick. This way you will also be doing something for the environment while rocking your beautiful self. Origins is another brand that give you free samples if you bring in old products (which you would have otherwise throw out). It doesn’t really get better than this!

Related: 5 Small Eco-friendly Things to Buy to Help You Save Money and the Environment

2. Save money with DIY

Don’t waste your precious makeup budget on stuff like brush cleaner and cleansing cloth. Cleaning up can be done for a fraction of the price using a gentle shampoo and baby oil. Save money here and buy the lipstick shade of the season, guilt free.

Some age-old tips can also work wonders for simple things like blackhead removals, chipped nails, etc. Spending on the latest fashion fad for some of these may be an unnecessary drain.

Related: 8 Things You Should Always Buy Used to Save Money

3. Go online for all your war-paint needs!

Buying online not only gets you better prices but you receive free samples as well. Sample size packing of your favourite makeup works really well for trips and also when you are trying out something new. Some online sites you can check out are Beautybay, Beautylish, and Luxola. Sephora online can also get you some great deals.

Our top tip here is to give local brands a try. They may bring you more localised shades and products at cheaper prices. Check out Faux Fayc, Inga, 13rushes.

Use your HSBC Revolution Credit Card to get 5x Rewards on online transactions. Read our review of the card here.

4. Do the math

Some brands, Benefit for example, sell smaller packs of popular items that actually work out to be much cheaper than larger packs. However, oftentimes it is the other way round. Go for professional sized versions of your favourite product to save big. Look out for this detail, and let your mental math skills save you money!

5. Or let a website do the math for you

What’s better than someone giving you discounts *and* telling you how to go about it? Log on to ezbuy and check out their ‘Friends Deal’, which combines social networking sites with your online shopping list. Here’s how it works. Choose a product deal from their beauty section, share the deal with your friends, and when there is enough of you on board, you reap the benefits of having bought something at wholesale prices. Save, save!

Use your HSBC cards for a 12% cashback from now till June 30.

6. Dupe your way through

Sounds like cheating, but technically it’s not. There are a number of websites that give you cheaper versions or dupes of the latest makeup trend – same shades, different brand theory! There is a lot of hard work that goes in here. These websites actually list every colour of the high-end brands and suggest a cheaper alternative.

For example, Revlon Plumalicious is a cheaper MAC Amorous lipstick and NYX Volcano is an affordable MAC Twinks. Big bucks saved! We’re talking up to 75%; and you’ll still be fashionable!

Related: 52 Ways to Save Money Because We Live in the Most Expensive City in the World

7. Cheat the fashion cycle

This works for those who are not technically ‘fashion slaves’. Buy what you like; just avoid the ‘hot’ shades of the season. Buying off-season colours gives you the chance to avoid falling into the ‘mark-up trap’. And who knows, you could start a trend of sorts on your Instagram account!

8. Loyalty pays

If you shop at a particular brand outlet often, be sure to sign up for its rewards program. It is not just the points that you benefit from; loyal customers are sent samples they can try out before purchasing the full size.

A great one to check out is Sephora’s VIB and Beauty Insider programme. While most pay you on spends, this one unlocks gifts and makeovers! We like.

Related: 11 Sweet Loyalty Deals for the Millennial Crowd

9. Work the free samples offer

Ask for a free sample of any new product or item that you may wish to try out. Trying out that free sample helps you identify if you may be allergic to something, or simply whether it looks good on you or not! Helps you save by not buying an item you won’t use.

Our top tip here is to browse through the airport cosmetic stores and pick up these samples. If you like them you can pick up the product on your next trip and enjoy tax savings as well.

10. Be smart

Identify your quality vs quantity items. Figure out what you use the most and buy that from a branded store. Other stuff that you may use only a couple of times a month can be bought from a drugstore.

Use your OCBC Titanium Rewards Card for 10x points on personal care items bought from a drugstore or pharmacy like Guardian or Watson.

11. Hit YouTube – be a makeup geek

Go online and watch some makeup tutorials. Many are sponsored by the bigger brands and not only give you useful details about the product but also discount codes.

Related: 10 Tips to Save Money Effectively

12. Downgrade

Make up is like clothes. Same thing under different brand names, and vastly different prices! If you have been using top-end products, downgrade your brand one notch and you will see that there is not much of a difference in the outcome, except that your budget stays intact!

13. Look below eye level

Multi-brand outlets like Sephora use the ‘eye-level’ tactic, wherein the most expensive items are placed at eye level. Drop your gaze and bend a little for huge savings in your make up bill.

Related: 5 Awesome Credit Cards That Singaporean Women Will Love

Do you have more tips to save money on make-up? Let us know on Facebook.

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