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Thursday, 30 May 2013

Beauty Bites: US Drugstore Haul

On my holiday blog post, I mentioned that I had bought some make-up and beauty products while in Florida. I thought I would split my hauls into two separate posts: what I picked up at drugstores such as Walgreens and Wal-mart, and then I will post separately about the goodies I bought at Sephora. In this post I will summarise my drugstore haul. WARNING: This is a pretty long post by my standards and a lot of make up chat!

Before going on holiday I had made an unofficial list of products that I have read about on some of my favourite overseas blogger babes' and beauty reviewers pages and wanted to try for myself. Normally when I go on holiday I try to take advantage of the lower prices on brands such as MAC and Benefit, but for this trip I decided to focus on brands that are difficult to get in the UK. If I really want that new MAC lipstick, at least I know I can get it in town but there are some things that I can't just stroll into Boots or Frasers and pick up. So as tempting as it was to get some cheaper high-end goodies or some new Revlon Lip Butters, I decided to stick with the harder-to-get products.

I would say that the biggest of my drugstore hauls came from Wal-mart. Not only did I find their prices better than Walgreens, but they had products that were exclusive to their store and I really liked their range. The first brand that I went to look at was Flower, a cruelty-free cosmetics line by Drew Barrymore that promises the quality of a high-end make up brand at an affordable price. I have a lot of love for Ms B as it is, so I was keen to see her new collection of make up and pick up a few things. I would say that Flower (also the name of Drew's film production company, fun fact) offers a lot of choice when it comes to foundations, concealers, BB creams and powders. There seemed to be lots of different textures and coverages to choose from. I knew that I was likely to buy a lot of make-up on this trip so limited myself to only a few things from each brand. I decided on a bottle of About Face foundation in shade LF2 and a Lip Service lip butter in Tempting Tulip. I haven't tried the foundation yet but the lip butter is a nice, non-sticky formula with the option to build a deeper colour.

I next hit the Covergirl area. We don't have this brand in the UK but anyone that has ever watched America's Next Top Model or read important US magazines will be familiar with the 'Easy, Breezy, Beautiful' tagline and celebrity faces representing the company. In fact, Drew Barrymore was a previous face of Covergirl (do I see a pattern forming here?) . The selection of Covergirl products is MASSIVE - picking out a couple of things is always a hard task when there are lots of nice things to choose from! I opted for the new Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 foundation, concealer and primer as I had read rave reviews about it declaring it as UH-MAY-ZING and was curious to try it for myself. I bought the shade in ivory, one of the palest shades from the broad spectrum of colours available.

I had only looked at two brands and already picked up two foundations - this is very unlike me as I am a creature of habit when it comes to foundation (normally darting between Soap & Glory's Show Good Face and Benefit's Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow foundations, and no-one else ever gets a look in). But both of the foundations I chose do look high quality and get excellent reviews so I look forward to trying them both.

From Covergirl I also decided to pick up a tube of their newest mascara, called Flamed Out. This has just been launched recently and Pink is the face of the product. It is described as being able to deliver bold lashes that 'curve up and out' so as someone that wants the eyes of a Disney character (not asking too much, am I?) I look forward to seeing if this mascara delivers the goods. The last Covergirl product I picked up was some Clean pressed powder. I haven't tried any of the Covergirl goodies as yet but look forward to it.

Remember Hard Candy? I used to love Hard Candy! Their cute packaging and bright colours made them a favourite of mine as a teenager. And then one day they were gone from the shelves! I re-discovered them a few years back, rebranded and stocked exclusively in Wal-mart. Now, this line is really inexpensive so it's easy to go a little nuts if you aren't careful! I have bought some of their lipstick (meh) and blusher (awesome) in previous years so decided to try out some of their Sheer Envy primer and All Glossed Up lip stain in Pout (their lip stain is a similar idea to a Clinique Chubby Stick). So far I've tried the lip stain, and while it has little staying power is does deliver a hydrating shine with a pop of colour so I still quite like it.On a second trip to the make-up aisles of Wal-mart (OOPS) I treated myself to some of Hard Candy's nail polish but I will write a separate review of that one!

The next brand that I looked at was ELF. Ah, ELF - holy grail of the bargain lover and urban legend to many. Now, I am aware that you can buy ELF online in the UK but I sometimes like to see things (especially make-up) for myself before buying online. ELF (Eyes, Lips, Face) aim to provide studio-quality make-up at extremely low prices - all products are between $1 and $3. Like Hard Candy, the low prices make it easy to toss loads into your trolley and think about it later. I was trying to be considerate of what I was buying though, so settled on a lip stain (this one was more the marker-pen consistency that I'd normally expect) in Pink Petal, an eyelid primer, a concealer stick (have used it a few times and it's fine so far), an all-over colour stick in Pink Lemonade (I really like this product after a couple of uses) and an eyeshadow brush (I've still to use it properly but it feels like nice quality).

Finally, I indulged my lip balm obsession and picked up an EOS ball in Summer Fruit (yum but not pictured - you can see what it looks like here), pomegranate flavoured Carmex (double yum) and Yes To Carrots chapstick in mint. I've tried all three of these so far and they are all great. I especially love the dome shape of the EOS lip balm, it's quite unique to what we have in the UK.

I'm really happy with my US drugstore beauty haul - I'm looking forward to trying all of it!

Have you tried any of these products? Which is your favourites? Any US drugstore goodies that you'd recommend?

Thanks for reading!

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