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10 Ways to Save Money on High-End Makeup

Updated on October 1, 2012
High-end makeup can be high maintenance unless we keep it basic and beautiful.
High-end makeup can be high maintenance unless we keep it basic and beautiful. | Source
Unless we are artistic makeup artists, then we can keep our high-end makeup buys low.
Unless we are artistic makeup artists, then we can keep our high-end makeup buys low. | Source

High-end makeup – women rave about them and professional makeup artists swear by them.

Most of them have excellent pigmentation, long staying power, and beautiful finishes.

Many of them are budge-proof and do not appear cakey on the face.

They, however, are not so cheap. They are quite pricey actually.

When hauled, they can rack up to a bill that can break the bank.

In fact, makeup artists or women who have developed an unhealthy obsession with high-end makeup are bound to struggle paying their makeup bill unless they learn how to save on their purchases or build up a treasure trove to finance their collection.

Fanciful as it may sound, it is still possible to save money on our favorite expensive makeup brands.

After all, purchasing high-end makeup should not be all about splurging.

It ought to be about getting great value for our hard-earned money.

Below are some ways women, makeup artists, and makeup worshipers can save money on posh makeup brands.

1. Check the Size

In classy makeup, size does matter.

By size, we mean the size of the product and not the size of the packaging, which can be chunky, eye-catching, and yes, deceiving.

When buying high-end makeup, we want to make sure that we are paying for the product, not the package that may be cute but useless because we cannot put it on our pretty faces.

It pays to always check the amount of product we are getting from our expensive buys.

Doing this will let us know how much cosmetics we are actually getting for our money.

Generally, the bigger the amount of product we get per dollar, pound or whatever currency we spend for it, the better.

We should always be asking these questions when checking for the sizes.

  • Is the amount too small?
  • Are we paying too much for the size?
  • Is the amount of product good for its price?
  • Is the price tag way too much for its teeny-weeny product?

2. Look for Pigments, not Powder

Teeny, costly makeup is not at all too bad if it has good color payoff or what makeup junkies often refer to as pigment.

Imagine this, if a product is small but gives out a vibrant shade, then that means we do not need to be swiping our brushes again and again just to pick up a colossal amount of it to build up the dazzling color that we want.

In short, if a little product goes a long way, then that product must be a good one.

The product’s use can be stretched for weeks and even months, ultimately letting us save money over the course of time.

To check for pigments, just swatch high-end eyeshadows, eyeliners, and lip colors on our wrist or back of hands.

If a product dusts off into powder or nothingness per each swipe, then that means that the product is chalky or too creamy and most likely not very pigmented.

That product would give us powder or colorless cream and not pigment, which we want from our makeup.

3. Get Discount Cards

Professional makeup artists, established makeup bloggers, and identified beauty editors often get a perk from high-end makeup brands.

They get to have a discount card!

This discount card allows them to purchase items at a price that is lower than retail price.

Just like many other forms of cards, this card has to be earned. It is not given, at least not most of the time.

Of course, not all high-end makeup brands have this discount card but most do.

Also, not all high-end makeup brands have the same procedures for getting this card.

Whatever is the case, it is worth giving the card application a crack.

It can give a lot of savings over time.

4. Go Online

The internet can be a makeup enthusiast’s best friend and a money-saver as well.

A handful of websites has been offering high-end makeup on a discount and not just a tiny discount but a huge one at that.

What is more, some of these websites offer the makeup well before it hits the counters, making us try it ahead of many other people.

Admittedly, buying online is not a fool-proof idea.

Swatches can be off most of the time and dead-on sometimes.

Also, shipping costs can be costly too.

However, there are ways of going around these drawbacks of buying high-end makeup online.

  • One, we can search for swatches on the internet to see if the makeup we are keen on buying actually has the color we want.
  • Two, we can wait for more products that we want to purchase and order everything at the same time to save on shipping costs.

5. Request for Testers

It is so obvious that it needs not be said, we have to test everything we want to buy before actually paying for them.

Who knows if we are getting crap?

We should always request for testers of high-end makeup.

By testing a makeup before purchasing it, we would get a good idea of how it would look and feel on the skin, factors that can really make a makeup either a good or a bad buy.

If testers are not available for a particular makeup, then we might as well skip buying for the meantime.

It is as simple as that, no testers, no purchases.

We like to keep the trial and error to a minimum when it comes to upscale cosmetics.

Buying a palette instead of a collection of individual eyeshadows is a sure way of saving money on high-end cosmetics.
Buying a palette instead of a collection of individual eyeshadows is a sure way of saving money on high-end cosmetics. | Source
Checking a product's size and pigment is another way of saving money on high-end makeup.
Checking a product's size and pigment is another way of saving money on high-end makeup. | Source

6. Search for Palettes and Kits

Spending $20 or more for a coin-sized eyeshadow is plain crazy and spending several $20s for several eyeshadows to build up an eyeshadow collection is straight up outrageous.

Even if we have the resources to fork out money for these eyeshadows, we should not do so.

Why should we?

We can buy them in palettes and save much money!

Yes, palettes turn out to be a less expensive way of buying eyeshadows.

The same is true for other items of high-end cosmetics.

When bought individually, they turn out to be more expensive.

When bought in kits, which contain other items, they turn out to be less expensive.

So the trick is to search for high-end makeup kits and palettes and make sure that the items in those would be useful to us.

7. Wait for Discounts

Many high-end makeup brands rarely go on sale.

Managers of these brands know very well that their brands have a cult following, a mass of people who would be willing to shell out money to get their hands on expensive cosmetics.

Lucky for us, we can choose not to be part of the gullible cult, at least somehow.


Wait until the brands or the many website that carry them go on sale.

The sales offer unbelievable discounts, which makes the wait all worth it.

Again, we just have to have a bit of resolve to put off our planned purchases until the discounts are on.

8. Search for Discontinued Products

Cosmetics companies are forever updating their range of offerings.

They are constantly improving on bestsellers, staples, and not-so-popular items.

Also, they are discontinuing products, which are not necessarily bad purchases altogether.

Discontinued products may be good products that were just intended for a limited or special release.

Many of these discontinued or about to be discontinued products are scaled back from the market and sold at a huge markdown on websites.

Again, we have to make friends with the internet and from time to time check websites that offer discontinued products for a fraction of their original costs.

9. Read Reviews

When we’re on the fence about buying a high-end makeup, dropping by forums in cosmetics review websites just might help us make the right decision.

Forums have loads of reviews about practically any item of both high-end and low-end makeup available in the market.

The reviews are from real women and makeup artists who have tried or used the products.

These reviews are most of the time extremely useful, as they are often categorized according to the reviewer’s age, skin type, ratings, as well as good and bad experiences using the product.

As in any form of reviews, however, the points of view of the reviewers might not match our own.

It is still important to check out the products ourselves by using testers or free samples.

10. Buy the Basics

Unless we are professional makeup artists or need a collection of makeup for a living, then we can opt to streamline the contents of our makeup bags.

Sounds painfully difficult? Not really.

Come to think of it, who said we need all the pretty, fancy makeup items that high-end brands release all year round?

We do not want our faces to look packed on with cosmetics.

We just want to look polished without much hassle and the high makeup bill.

We can go for multitasking and basic makeup like foundation, mascara, and lipsticks.

We can add in concealer and eyeliners and still keep things sleek and simple.

That’s it! We save money on high-end makeup by buying less of it.

Copyright © 2012 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

How to Save Money on High-End Makeup


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    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 

      6 years ago from Taos, NM

      This is a great article! You give some valid, informative and interesting tips on buying the expensive make-ups. We all love them, and they are pricey. I enjoyed reading this and even learned a few tips myslf. Thanks so much!


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