I’ve become somewhat of a snob when it comes to cosmetics – I think partially because I have so much stuff, that buying more expensive items keeps the amount of products amassed in check. Also, because once you get a taste of luxury, well…you’re totally screwed.
Anyway, I still spend a fair bit of time in Shoppers Drug Mart perusing the aisles, and buying basics such as moisturizer or conditioner that require regular replenishment (and therefore shouldn’t be breaking the bank!). Particularly, there are a few products that I’ve picked up over the last year or so from the drugstore that have been quite impressive and deserve a good mention.
1) Milani Sunset Duos Blush & Bronzer in Sunset Beach – Milani cosmetics are sold at Lawtons Drugstores and while I’ve not tried any other of their products, this blush/bronzer combo is really beautiful. The blush is a plummy shade with a touch of shimmer, and the bronzing shade is more brown than orange, and matte. It garners high marks on MUA, and rightly so: the two swirled together and applied to cheekbones, temples and a swipe down the nose look exceptional. It gives my skin some color without looking obvious – more like a bronzer, enhanced, than blush. I use this if I’m going to do a more dramatic lip so that it balances my skin but doesn’t compete. I’ve had bronzers in the past, but they never make my skin look as good as this product does. Well done, Milani!2) Aveeno Nourish + Condition Leave-In Treatment – I’ve been trying out a bunch of different leave-ins (Infusium23, Nexxus, eg.), but they just didn’t give my hair the hydration and slip I was looking for. As my hair is so curly, I really need something that will allow me to detangle easily while minimizing breakage, and this product does the trick. And I does seem to improve the health of my hair over time as well. The one downside is that because of the way it sprays out, I find the bottle only lasts a couple months – but as it’s under $10, it’s not a huge problem.3) Sally Hansen Age Correct No Chip Base + Top Coat – I’ve been using this exclusively as my base coat for about two years now, with continuous success. I usually grab one when it goes on sale, for around $5, though it’s only $8.99 regular price I think. On MUA it says its discontinued, but I have been able to get it at Shoppers consistently without issue. It easily compares to CND’s ‘Stickey’ base coat, or Orly Bonder, and performs just as well (actually, I like it better than ‘Stickey’). And it doesn’t get goopy until you’ve got about a third of the bottle left, which is pretty good considering some other formulas! Used as a top coat, it is damn near impenetrable – which I actually find as a downside because it makes removal so much harder!! But at least it’s doing a good job :) I will still stick with my S.Vite though – I’m addicted to how fast it dries! 4) Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Cream – This was my first foray into retinol-based products, and I’m completely sold on the effectiveness. Even thought this is OTC (over-the-counter), it still works great, for a fraction of the price of other Retinol/Retin-A products. For a newbie to retinol, it’s a great option as it’s not too harsh but you get good results – smooth, even skin with breakouts minimized. I have eczema and have had no irritation or issues with this product at all. For $22, it’s a great anti-aging product for almost anyone!5) Revlon Lipsticks – I rarely buy lipstick, as I don’t wear it all that often, but when I do buy one I usually go drugstore because of the infrequency of use (although, for classic shades like red, I like MAC…and mmm that creme brule-vanilla scent is yummy). I have found that Revlon consistently makes a good lipstick, with a large range of shades and textures, and good wear time. I have one from the Super Lustrous line – which is creamy, easy to apply and has a TON of shades (mine is actually a ‘Up the Amp’ dupe called Haute Berry) – and one of the Color Burst shades, in Mauve, which has dense pigmentation and is also very creamy. Neither are drying at all and just feel great on the lips. For a relatively inexpensive product (around $9), I’ll be coming back for more shades in the future, without a doubt.So there you have it. Many of these products I picked up because of great reviews, as no matter how much or little a product costs, I still rely of other cosmetic junkie’s opinions So I ask you – what are your own personal drugstore favorites that are standouts to you? What items should I be giving a second look? Suggestions, please!
*Aside from Milani Cosmetics, which are sold at Lawtons Drugs, all other products can be found at both Lawtons or Shoppers Drug Mart.