How To Not Spend A Gajillion Dollars At The Drugstore

I have friends who are real drugstore junkies. A new lipstick here, a crazy nail color there…it really allows even the budget conscious to take the phrase "Buy a little something nice for yourself" seriously. But there is a reason that the phrase "lipstick indicator" exists. It is often a symptom of us trying to cover up a problem, something to the effect of "If I look good enough, bad things won’t happen to me", which makes no sense if you’ve never been in a really difficult situation and perfect sense if you have.

I was at the local drugstore buying cold medicine yesterday. I specifically went for a kind my mom used to get us when we were kids but apparently it had codeine in is so they don’t sell it over the counter anymore. (We were high! That’s why we felt good after taking it!) I was looking at a row of sub-par medication when it occured to me it had been months since I had been in a drugstore. Sure, I’ve read they are good for food deals but I looked around and felt so tempted by the bottles of potions, the pots of cream, the glossy colors. I bought just my cold medicine and left.

I have $75 a month budgeted for personal care, including haircuts and drug store items. I often come in under budget in this area though because I don’t buy drug store stuff that often. Here’s how I do it though I’d love to hear some other tips on this one:

1) DIY Tinted moisturizer- I wear Clinique. It’s the right shade and as a friend once said when I asked her "It looks like you aren’t wearing anything". Just as a foundation should be. It seems ridiculous that it’s only SPF 15 and that the thicker foundation and thinner tinted moisturizer cost almost the same. So I take my favorite SPF 30 facial sunblock (under $5) and mix in a little Clinique foundation and poof, my own tinted moisturizer with better protection then the foundation.

2) Two lipsticks- I have one for day and one for night. I bought a four pack of lipsticks at Marshalls a couple months ago for $1.50. Two of the four were flattering colors. All set for six months, though I do plan on going paraben free once they run out.

3) Mineral Makeup- Sometimes alone or in combination with the foundation, I wear bareMinerals makeup. One kit has lasted me over six months. I canceled my "membership" upon recieving my first shipment.

4) Pick a bodywash or other item that the person you live with will be uninterested in "borrowing" when they run out of their own. In my case, Skin So Soft (from Avon) and Pomegranite Pizazz (from Method) bodywashes are just girly enough that Sean will never use them and therefor be forced to get his own. 

5) Shower less or don’t wash your hair every time you do. Not showering daily is actually better for your skin and hair anyway. It also means though that you use less product over time. (Additional bonus is I get to sleep in for an extra 20 minutes.) I swear no one even knows the difference.

6) Only go in drugstores when you are so stuffed up that you can’t think. :^)

Any more I’m forgetting? How do you stay beautiful, anyway? 

Nicole runs Breaking Even Communications, an internet marketing company in Bar Harbor Maine. When she’s not online, she enjoys walking her short dog, cooking with bacon, and trying to be outdoorsy in Acadia National Park.
Nicole Ouellette
Nicole runs Breaking Even Communications, an internet marketing company in Bar Harbor Maine. When she's not online, she enjoys walking her short dog, cooking with bacon, and trying to be outdoorsy in Acadia National Park.
  • laura

    Have you seen this website?: http://www.eyeslipsface.com
    I have yet to try it, but must say I’m intrigued. If you’re into buying in bulk to save cash probably not for you (I’m pretty sure the way everything’s a dollar is that they’re sample sizes), but if you’re like me where anything other than foundation, mascara, & eyeliner is for “special occassions” than checking it out might be worth your time…