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Sunday 18 March 2018

The Top Recommended US Drugstore Beauty Products- Reviewed!

I find shopping in Sephora and US Drug stores confusing, if I'm honest. Even when I've prepared myself and made a list of things I want, I always find myself feeling a bit overwhelmed; there's just too much beauty stuff.
The gap between what we can't get here and what you can only get in the states has definitely narrowed, but there's still the few items that most Irish gals will be on the lookout for when beauty shopping in America. The last time we were over (November 2017), I knew exactly what I wanted from Sephora but hadn't thought a huge amount about budget beauty so I found myself scrolling through "the top ten drugstore beauty products you need" articles online in our hotel room one night and sure enough, I made my way to a CVS the next day.
These were all recommended by various magazines, I haven't tried them all yet but they didn't cost the earth so I thought they'd be worth a go! (there was also many more products recommended, that either didn't suit me, wrong hair or skin type etc or else products that I already have/have tried).

E.L.F Hydrating Face Primer
This is part of a series of face primers from the budget beauty brand E.L.F (Eyes. Lips, Face). I have dry skin so this seemed a no-brainer and every online magazine raved about this one in particular. If memory serves me correctly, it cost less than $6. It has no fragrance to speak of but I do notice a slightly chemically scent that does wear off as you wear it. It's clear and looks a bit like Vaseline when you pump it out. I've only used this once because I just didn't love it. It is somewhat softening and provides a base in the same way a silicone-heavy primer would. On me, it felt a bit greasy and unpleasant. I'll give it another go but for the moment, I'm not a big fan. I would save your $6 and put it towards this one instead.

Aveeno Positively Radiant 60 Second In-Shower Facial
This was hailed as a new miracle product and one that I sense will take me a good long time to finish. This idea with this is you pop it on your wet face while you're in the shower, leave it on for 60 seconds and gently massage in a circular motion, then wash off. I like to do this while my conditioner is doing its thing. It has a little bit of grit in there (gentle grit, there's no plastic beads in here) but it's mostly the alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that does the exfoliating. I've used this a few times now and have noticed my skin is nicely smooth afterwards and my make-up applies well after using it. I've since found out that Aveeno test on animals so I won't be buying from them again but for now, I'll use this up. It's good.

Almay Healthy Glow Makeup + Gradual Self Tan
This is a medium coverage foundation that supposedly perfects your skin while you wear it; when you take off your make up, you have a natural glow. This has a pump function and two separate chambers that combines the self tan and the make up together when you press down. I got the shade light, which was the lightest there was. There's also an SPF 20 in there, which is good. I've only tried lip products from Almay, which I liked and again, there was great excitement online over this fella. This is a reasonably good colour match for me, if not slightly darker than my own skin tone. It does have that fake tan scent to it, which is never nice but goes fairly fast once it's absorbed. I also quite like the coverage of this; it's buildable but looks natural. So far, I like!

Carmex Daly Care Moisturising Lip Balm 
I love Carmex and didn't need any encouragement to get this three pack of lip balms. I usually use either the tubes or pots of Carmex but I haven't tried the stick version, plus this was only a few dollars. There's a cherry (my fave), strawberry and wintergreen and they all have an spf15.

Covergirl Outlast All-Day Concealer
This is a concealer with a soft-tip applicator, designed to erase the appearance of dark circles and blemishes. It's oil-free and doesn't clog the pores. I got the shade fair. I think this is Covergirl's version of Maybeline's under eye eraser concealer yoke (that I also love and also featured in every top drugstore beauty product article out there). I wouldn't say this is as good as the Maybelline. It's quite a light formula but feels a bit drying. I also don't think it covers my particular dark circles as well as other concealers do. 

CoverGirl Ink It! All-Day Eye Pencil
This is a twist up pencil that glides on like an ink but with the crease and fade-resistance of a kohl pencil. It's also waterproof. I got the shade Charcoal Ink cause I wanted a liquid eyeliner effect. When I opened it I didn't think I'd like it based on how the top of the pencil was packaged but actually, it applies really nicely. I would say; it's not the blackest of the black liners but I can get over that. It's not a super messy liner but you can smudge it if that's your thing (it is mine). Overall, I like!

CoverGirl Ink It! All-Day Eye Pencil

Burt's Bees Tinted Lip Oil
I love Burt's Bees so of course, I had to get this. These are supposed to be moisturising and comforting on the lips while providing a shot of natural looking colour. I wanted a more nude shade but they were all sold out, so I got Crimson Breeze instead. I LOVE this and I need more shades!! I was surprised by how much I like this shade too, I was worried it would be too dark but it's more of a flattering pink plus it feels so lovely on! The only flaw I can see is that it wears of fast but I find that happens with all oil-based lip products. But I like that it's a light gloss and the oil means that it's softening on the lips. So good!

Burt's Bees Tinted Lip Oil. CoverGirl Melting Pout Gel Liquid Lipstick

CoverGirl Melting Pout Gel Liquid Lipstick
Pretty sure these are a rip off of the Too Faced ones but at a fraction of the price. I got this in the shades Don't be Gelly and Evan-Gel-Ical (I can't find that one to take the photo, it's more than likely in the bottom of a bag somewhere). This has a soft tip for application. The formula of these are nice but the quality of the overall shade application varies according to each colour. I like these but having not tried the Too Faced ones, I can't make a proper comparison. 

That's my take on the top recommended drugstore beauty products. Have you tried any of these? 


  1. I have not tried them, but was wondering about some of them. I think I'll give the lip oil a go. Thanks for the review!