A few weeks ago I saw Youtube videos by Emily Noel (emilynoel83) and Jessica Braun (JAMbeauty89) on the 10 things they’d buy first if all their makeup disappeared and I love the idea of curating a list like this because it truly shows which products I SERIOUSLY cannot live without.
So I decided to list out my picks, but only from the drugstore because to be completely honest, if I did lose all my makeup I would be too depressed to repurchase anything from Sephora or department stores at first. Realistically, the first place I’d hit up would be Ulta, Target, Walgreens or Walmart (or Priceline in Australia) LOL.
There’s a lot of overlap between this post and my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations and Top 5 Best Affordable Drugstore Makeup posts, so make sure you also have a read of those posts!
Disclaimer: Prices are accurate on the date this post was published. Post may contain affiliate links.
1. NEUTROGENA HEALTHY SKIN ANTI-AGING PERFECTOR SPF 20
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Target ($10.49), Ulta ($13.99), Walgreens ($14.49)
My favorite base product of all time is the It Cosmetics CC Cream SPF 50, as I mentioned in my 15 Most Repurchased Makeup Products from Sephora post, but it is a whopping $15 for a tiny 0.4 oz/12 ml tube and $38 for a full-size 1.08 oz/32 ml tube.
A close drugstore dupe is the Neutrogran Healthy Skin Anti-Aging Perfector at only $13.99 for a 1 oz bottle although the coverage isn’t as full and the SPF isn’t as high, but for me it does the job because I don’t have any blemishes to cover right now and it’s currently my favorite base from the drugstores.
I love that it’s moisturizing enough for me to use without a moisturizer underneath, so I would often just slap this on right after I cleanse and tone my face in the morning.
2. MAYBELLINE INSTANT AGE REWIND
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Target, Walmart ($7.49), Walgreens ($7.99), Ulta ($9.99), Priceline Australia (A$18.95)
It was a no-brianer for me that the concealer I would get is the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind. I love the Fit Me too, but if I had to choose one, I would go for this because it’s so much more moisturizing especially for my under eye area. When my skin is drier than normal the Fit Me would sometimes crease, so the Instant Age is a much safer bet.
I mentioned them both in my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations post.
3. RIMMEL STAY MATTE PRESSED POWDER
AVAILABLE FROM: Target, Walmart ($3.99), Amazon ($4.99), Walgreens ($5.29), Priceline Australia (A$11.95)
Also mentioned in my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations post, this powder is so soft on the skin and it is completely translucent. It also doesn’t make my skin feel tight and uncomfortable (I find that some powders do that on my dry skin!). I’ve never encountered a better pressed setting powder in the market. I love the Coty Airspun, but it’s loose and messy and I hate having to deal with messy powders, so on days when I’m in a rush (i.e. most days) I’d use this instead because it’s so easy and mess-free!
4. FLOWER BEAUTY FLOWER POTS BLUSH
AVAILABLE FROM: Flower Beauty (
$10 $8), Walmart ($8), Ulta ($9.99)
I haven’t had time to review this line of blushes yet, but I hope I’d be able to sooner rather than later because THESE. ARE. BEAUTIFUL. They’re so similar to the Milani Rose Powder Blushes (reviewed here), but these are smaller in size and I don’t know why I gravitate towards these more. I have all four shades and Sweet Pea is my favorite, I haven’t been able to put it down ever since I got it!
If I can’t find these blushes, I’d definitely go for the Milani Rose blushes because they’re beautiful (and super affordable) too!
5. PHYSICIANS FORMULA BUTTER BRONZER
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Target ($8.99), Walmart ($13.23), Ulta, Walgreens ($14.95)
Hands down my favorite bronzer of all time. I love the scent, the color is perfect, it lasts all day and it’s so smooth and easy to blend. Check out the swatches in this post.
The only thing that bothers me about this is probably the unnecessarily-bulky packaging. It makes it so hard to travel with! The sponge applicator that it comes with is so useless, there’s really no need to include it in the packaging. I hope Physicians Formula will create thinner packaging for these Butter bronzers and blushes!
6. PHYSICIANS FORMULA NATURAL NUDE SHIMMER STRIPS PALETTE
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Walmart ($8.38), Ulta ($13.99) Priceline Australia (A$24.95)
This was mentioned in my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations and Top 5 Best Affordable Drugstore Makeup posts, and is obviously my favorite drugstore highlighter. Not only is the highlight so beautiful and smooth, it also works as a light blush, bronzer and an eyeshadow palette! I never use it as a blush or bronzer but as an eyeshadow palette, this palette is surprisingly versatile. It’s got pink, white, dark brown and bronze gold shades, perfect for a natural, every day eye look. I love how the shimmers aren’t chunky at all so they look so natural on the skin!
7. RIMMEL MAGNIF’EYES DOUBLE ENDED SHADOW & LINER
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon ($6.99), Walmart ($8.38), Priceline Australia ($16.95)
These are my favorite shadow sticks, check out my Rimmel Magnif’Eyes Double Ended Shadow & Liner review for more details and swatches! I’ve been traveling with this a lot and I haven’t needed a separate eyeshadow palette every time I use this. This serves as an eyeshadow and an eyeliner – so handy!
Rimmel Magnif’Eyes Double Ended Shadow & Liner Review & Swatches
For once I honestly don’t know if these are available in the US, but they’re definitely available in Australia and Europe. If I had to find an alternative I’d go with the Rimmel Scandaleyes Shadow Sticks as the formula is pretty similar, they’re just not double ended that’s all. I’d go with a really dark color, maybe black or a dark brown, so I won’t have to get an eyeliner.
8. MAYBELLINE TOTAL TEMPTATION BROW DEFINER
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Target ($6.89), Walmart ($6.94), Ulta, Walgreens ($7.99)
This is my current favorite eyebrow pencil! I still love my Kevyn Aucoin Brow Pencil a bit more, just because the tip is so fine and is perfect for filling in bald spots, but the tapered, kite-shaped tip of this pencil is perfect for a quick, easy-breezy application. The color is perfect for me and it applies so smoothly. I honestly have never encountered a better brow pencil in the drugstore!
9. ESSENCE I LOVE EXTREME VOLUME MASCARA
AVAILABLE FROM: Amazon, Ulta ($4.99), Priceline Australia (A$5.75)
This is my holy grail mascara and, to no one’s surprise, was also listed in my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations and Top 5 Best Affordable Drugstore Makeup posts. Read about it there!
Although I am obsessed with the L’Oreal Lash Paradise too, I hate that the product often gets chunky and piled up in the neck of the tube, but it’s my no. 2 go-to mascara. I still like the Essence a bit more.
10. BURT’S BEES LIP CRAYON IN NIAGARA OVERLOOK
AVAILABLE FROM: Target ($5.99), Amazon, Walmart ($6.78), Ulta ($8.99)
I’m getting bored of writing this LOL but this is also one of my holy grails so, again, these were listed in my Priceline Makeup Favorites & Recommendations and Top 5 Best Affordable Drugstore Makeup posts. I’ve also done a full review with swatches here!
It’s incredibly pigmented for a lipstick so moisturizing. We usually have to choose one or the other – full pigment but dry lips, or sheer pigment but moisturizing. I love how I could get both with this lip crayon!
If all your makeup disappeared, what 10 products from the drugstore would you buy first?
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