Monday, April 11, 2011

Cheap Tricks: Drugstore Darlings

Last Friday, I had to get ready for work at my mom's house. Thursday night, like a good little girl, I laid out what I was going to wear and packed up all the necessaries for the next day: makeup, hairspray, hairbrush, etc. Of course, once I got to Mom's and started my attempt at putting myself together, I realized that I'd forgotten my concealer and mascara. Bad beauty blogger! Bad!

Never fear, Mom is here! She bounded up the stairs, and returned with a Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Dark-Circle Eye Roller and Maybelline Volum' Express The Falsies black mascara. Now, being accustomed to my usual pricey products from the magical land of Sephora, I was a little nervous. How were drugstore finds going to compare? Not only that, but my mother and I have completely different skin tones. She and my brother have glowing olive skin that represents the Cuban end of our gene pool. My dad and I share day-glo, lily-white skin, courtesy of the Irish ancestry that makes up the other 75% of our DNA. How was this going to work?

Photo Credit: Garnier USA
I tried the eye roller first ($11.99, Target). Now, I have one of these things at home, but not the type with concealer in it. The one I have just helps with puffiness, but it's one of those rare products I just can't live without. This is basically the same thing, but with a lightweight concealer mixed in with the caffeine gel, and added lemon essence for brightening the eye area. I swiped the metal roller ball under my eye, and immediately noticed a pool of liquid concealer. This frightened me, at first, but once I patted it into my skin, I was amazed with the results. My circles were completely covered, puffiness decreased, and the concealer really did appear to brighten my eye area. On top of that, the color (there is only one to choose from) somehow managed to match my mom's and my skin tones.

The Good: Full coverage in a lightweight, lotion-like formula. Decreased puffiness, increased brightness. Affordable price point.
The Bad: shade? Seriously? This worked for me and my mom, but I woudn't recommend it for anyone with skin darker than olive.
Final Verdict: I'm picking one of these up for Summer. It'll be great with tinted moisturizer for days by the pool or visiting theme parks. 9 out of 10.

Next on the experiment list: mascara. Again, Mom and I differ greatly. I've been on shows where the makeup designer demanded false eyelashes, only to have them tell me I can skip them if I want. I just need soemthing to darken and accentuate what I already have. My mom, on the other hand, is...lash-challenged. She needs something really volumizing and lengthening.

Photo Credit:
Enter The Falsies ($7.99,! I really had no expectations for this mascara. My experience with mascaras that insist they can create a false lash look has generally been disappointing. About the only thing false about them are their claims. However, this mascara does a better job than most. My mother brushed a little on her short lashes, and they were lengthened. They did appear thicker and more voluminous. I swiped on a couple of coats*, and was pleased with the results, as well. While not quite on par with my beloved Buxom Lash (but really, what is? I'm about to start my third tube), it was as good, if not better, than most of the higher-end, specialty store mascaras I've used. Best of all, it's waterproof, so it's perfect for sun, surf, and Summer weddings.

The Good: Volumizes and lengthens, waterproof, curling brush, affordable price point.
The Bad: I'm out on this one. No complaints.

Final Verdict: 10 out of 10. For the price, you can't really beat the results. I'm picking up a tube to keep on hand this Summer.

You know, sometimes Mom really does know what she's talking about.

*Disclaimer: I am not, in any way, endorsing the sharing of mascara wands. That's a great way to give yourself, or someone else, a nasty eye infection. This was a one-time deal with my mom, whose entire medical history is known to me, and mine is known to her. And if she ever gives me an infection, I know where she lives.

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