makeup snobs

makeup snob [adj.] – makeup enthusiast who only uses med-high end/luxury beauty brands.

I used to wear braces all the way up until my senior year of college (yikes!). When I finally got those suckers off, I wanted nothing more than to draw attention to my beautiful straight teeth (but then I failed to wear my retainer and now have an overbite again. Let’s not dwell on that, though). So naturally, I bought MAC’s bestselling lipstick, Diva, as soon as my braces were removed. I, then, started my makeup addiction by buying MAC lipsticks religiously. I was working a part-time job that didn’t pay very well. Yet, every payday, I bought at least one lipstick at MAC (two if I was treating myself). Quickly, my collection started growing and I started learning more about what lipsticks I liked most (matte, reds and plums, limited edition). However, this need to have limited edition items soon became a headache. Since I wasn’t in the best financial place to purchase an entire line at a time, I had to prioritize what I wanted most and leave the rest for the next pay period. By then, it was usually too late and what I wanted was sold out and being resold on eBay for 10 times its retail price.

I had this silly idea that only makeup from certain brands was good. I refused to even look at the makeup section when I was buying shampoo at Target or soap at Rite Aid. The cheap packaging of some brands made me cringe and question the sanity of all these people I saw obsessing over brands like Maybelline and L’Oréal.

On the hunt for my sold out lipsticks, I googled similar shades and almost lost my sight from rolling my eyes so hard (okay, maybe not my sight but I certainly gave myself a headache)  at the lists of “Drugstore Dupes” I kept coming across. I would think “Ew! Who would think of using a $2 lipstick?!”


Then my best friend’s aunt got a job at NARS and would give her goodies, which she shared with me. There developed the NARS obsession, and my paycheck was split between MAC and NARS. I was in looooooove with the rubberized, clean, black packaging. It all looked so neat and uniform. Lining up my lipsticks and being able to spell NARS with four of them was almost orgasmic to me. I felt a sense of pride, and had this greater-than-thou attitude towards anyone who didn’t own MAC and NARS products.

Then one day, I bought a MAC Jumbo Penultimate eyeliner ($22) and hated it. It was awful! The pigment didn’t work with my oily eyelids at all, and as much as I tried I couldn’t get it to work for me. My friend, Eve, suggested I try the NYC Liquid Liner that every YouTuber was raving about. I laughed at the thought of trying an eyeliner under $3 and dramatically thought of the cheap ingredients burning my eyelids and leaving horrible scars (slightly dramatic, I know). But I dared myself to try something new (’cause I was broke, you know).

So off I went, to the makeup section of CVS, which I turned my nose up to so many times. I grabbed the NYC liner (for $2.50!!!!) and a $3 Jordana Mascara. I paid for my items, blissfully unaware of how they would change my life. I got home and immediately tried both the eyeliner and mascara on and it was love at first sight. The eyeliner was absolute perfection. The brush-like applicator was much easier to use than MAC’s felt-tipped one. The pigmentation was amazing, it was the blackest eyeliner I’d ever used. The mascara made my lashes look so good, they almost looked like falsies! I was ecstatic! It was the best day ever! I had an epiphany! I could have perfect winged liner for under $3! I was unstoppable!

That’s when it dawned on me, I was a makeup snob. I thought my products were better, just because they cost more and sometimes looked more uniform . I had completely disregarded the patchiness of some of those MAC matte lipsticks, how the Studio Fix foundation broke me out, how the NARS Laguna Bronzer barely even showed up on my skin.. and the list goes on. I was foolish and close-minded. But alas, I had seen the light.

While I do still live for MAC’s vanilla-scented, black-bullet-cased lipsticks, the Wet ‘n Wild ones are actually really good too (and they’re like $1). I also can’t live without my Maybelline Baby Skin. And though the Beauty Blender is nice, I actually prefer the Real Techniques Sponge.

In all, there is absolutely nothing wrong with preferring more expensive brands. For some of us the only way to own anything like Givenchy, for instance, is by buying a lipstick. For others, if something isn’t visually pleasing (as in contained in some bomb ass packaging) they can’t justify a purchase. That is completely fine! However, being completely against trying something simply because it’s a drugstore brand, is.. well, silly! Although there are some cheaper products that suck, there are many hidden treasures that cost a fraction of the price we pay at Sephora and Nordstrom and do the same, sometimes even better, thing! Open up to the wonderful possibilities that are offered by drugstore and indie brands, you might be very pleasantly surprised.


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