Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Beauty Buying Smarts - Top 5 Tips for Buying Beauty Products Wisely

I am a makeup addict and I've been a makeup addict for a very long time. I would honestly rather spend money on makeup than so many other things 99% of the time! As we ease into the new year we're beginning to see the first trickle of new products and pretty soon the flood gates will open--so exciting!

With so many amazing collections launching year-round, it's hard not to get caught up in the feeling of needing everything. While I'd certainly love to be able to buy just about everything, I simply can't. Like many of you I have a budget and I can't edge too far out of that budget without dipping into the budget for other necessities. Yes, I could take my kids out of their special activities such as gymnastics or swimming to buy myself a few extra palettes or highlighters ... but really that's not something I'd find too healthy a choice and certainly not something I'd recommend ;) 

Instead, I've got 5 tips to share with you today on how to buy wisely when it comes to your beauty products this year!

Tip 1: Research Upcoming Collections Ahead of Time to Avoid Impulse Buys

I know what it's like. A new collection launches and you're suddenly faced with a page full of beautiful new products all calling your name. They want to go home with you. You want to give them a home. YOU WANT EVERYTHING! Especially when it comes to limited edition products, the frenzy of trying to buy quickly can make buying wisely a challenge. I highly recommend researching upcoming collections before they launch and making a list of what you want. Most companies will release color stories and information prior to new collection launches so you can get an idea of what you may or may not want and create a list. I actually try to keep a running calendar with collection launch dates along with running lists of products I want from each collection (for the ones I'm interested in). As time goes on sometimes I'll cull those lists down as swatches emerge or as I buy other products. 

Tip 2: Avoid Accidental Dupes

We've all done it. You see a gorgeous blush/lipstick/foundation/nail polish and grab it or click "buy" then realize after you've already got at least 1 identical product in your collection. Unless you're intentionally looking for dupes, it can really help your beauty budget to prevent buying them accidentally! Before buying new products I always check my collection to make sure I don't have something identical. I used to keep spreadsheets of products and shades I owned and really need to update them for this year to make things easier on myself!

Tip 3: Set a Monthly Beauty Budget

I know budgets aren't the most fun, but sometimes they're just necessary evils. I like to set monthly beauty budgets. While my budget may change from one month to the next depending on other factors (extra expenses, additional work projects coming in, etc.), if I know what I have to spend that month I can comfortably spend without worrying as I purchase. If you're familiar with your favorite companies and when they tend to have certain sales each year, you'll be able to anticipate when you should increase your budget ahead of time. Occasionally some sales spring up without prior notice that are almost too good to pass up, but that's really not very often during the year and more often around holidays in my experience. If you can set aside some "extra" money outside of your regular budget for these random events that can be a lot easier on your wallet. With a little will power, sticking to a budget over time will become easier as the year progresses. 

Tip 4: Save For Bigger Purchases Ahead of Time

If an expensive item or collection you know you plan to buy a large portion of is coming up, plan for it. Calculate the costs and save between now and the day you plan to purchase. For example, if I know a collection is launching by one of my favorite companies that I plan to purchase a good chunk of (after researching it, creating my list and checking for possible dupes in my own collection) I'll calculate the total cost of what I plan to buy and begin putting money aside in a fund for that specific purchase. 

Tip 5: Bundle Purchases with a Friend to Save on Shipping

Shipping is probably the bane of my existence. I have no idea why I have this psychological malfunction in terms of paying for shipping, but it's there nonetheless. I understand paying reasonable shipping rates, though I absolutely adore companies that offer free shipping on all purchases or with purchases over a reasonable amount. But when I go to make a $20 purchase and my shipping cost is $14 ... I just can't justify the purchase for myself. I have nothing against companies that charge whatever rates they choose to charge, after all it is their choice, but I personally won't purchase if I feel shipping is unreasonable. If a store or brand tends to have higher shipping and they have something I absolutely need and can't get elsewhere, I'll often see if other friends want to go in on a purchase with me. $14 in shipping may be a bit high for me alone, but split 2 or 3 ways it becomes a lot more reasonable in my book. And sometimes with combined purchases you and your friends may even score free shipping!

So there it is! My top 5 tips for buying beauty product wisely in 2014.

What about you? Do you have any beauty buying tips? 


  1. Great post! I try to do this as often as possible (like with the Viva Glam Rihanna, which I've talked myself out of 10384757 times!).

    1. Lol I hear you ;) I'm actually planning to grab it later, but given that it'll be around for a little while I didn't want to rush!

  2. awesome post, these are great tips (some of which I need to remember more often!!)

  3. Great tips! I'm definitely a bargainista (ugh, full time student problems!). I mainly shop only sale/clearance events, and I use coupons.

    1. Thanks! Unfortunately a lot of what I like is expensive--yikes! I have a few sibs still in varying levels of college and I feel your pain though! It's tough being a beauty lover and full-time student!

  4. Such great tips! My beauty budget is very small, so I always have to choose carefully whenever it comes to makeup. I prefer to buy colours that I consider to be more classic rather than something crazy that might only get worn once. I just have to live vicariously through others with the crazy colours, or kind something in a less expensive brand.

    1. Thanks! I'm a giant mix of neutrals and "crazy" colors :) I have to say Sugarpill is very reasonable for what they are and although they're not quite as cheap as drugstore, the pay-off is ten times better than drugstore if you're ever looking for crazy!

  5. These are great tips! :D Avoiding impulse buys is definitely important!


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