Makeup Dupes – Drugstore Makeup vs. High-End Makeup
I don’t know about you, but I LOVE finding great deals at the drugstore.
You may be thinking to yourself, “Is expensive makeup better than cheap makeup?”
And I can answer that with, “No, not necessarily.”
There are so many drugstore makeup products that work just as well (or even better) than high-end makeup products.
After trying out A LOT of both drugstore makeup and high-end makeup, I’ve accidentally discovered many drugstore dupes.
There are SO MANY awesome drugstore makeup dupes for high-end makeup products, it’s crazy!
When trying a drugstore makeup product for the first time, I often think to myself, “Hey, this reminds me of (high-end product).”
And now it’s like a game! I love searching for drugstore products that are makeup dupes for high-end makeup!
In my recent posts, I’ve mentioned that a handful of drugstore makeup products are dupes for high-end makeup products, so I thought it would be a great idea to put together a master post of all the drugstore dupes I’ve discovered over the years!
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What are Makeup Dupes?
Before we get deep into the makeup dupe list, I realize even after throwing the word “dupe” around in my intro, you might still be thinking to yourself, “What are makeup dupes?”
And sometimes it can be confusing because people (including myself) will use “drugstore dupes,” “makeup dupes,” and “high-end makeup dupes” all kind-of interchangeably.
So, let me break it down for you.
“Dupe” is short for the word “duplicate.” So basically, a “makeup dupe” is a product that is similar in quality and/or shade to another product.
And usually, it’s used in a way to describe an affordable and/or drugstore product that is an alternative to a high-end (and well-known) makeup product.
You might even be able to say that these makeup dupes in today’s list are the best high-end makeup “knock-offs” found at the drugstore.
I know “knock-offs” has a negative connotation to it, and sometimes these drugstore dupes are dupes by coincidence, but there are definitely some that are total knock-offs!
Now, let’s get into the list!
Oh! Also, if you plan on buying any makeup soon, be sure to sign up for Ebates first!
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Best Drugstore Makeup Dupes in 2019 – The Ultimate List
The Tarte Shape Tape Concealer is my absolute favorite concealer when it comes to covering dark circles under my eyes and highlighting my face.
Of all the concealers I’ve tried, nothing ever really came close to how much I love the Tarte Shape Tape Concealer.
UNTIL I tried the L’Oreal Infallible Full Wear Concealer.
This concealer is a recent release from L’Oreal and I’ve only been using it since last month, but from the very first time I tried it, I thought to myself, “this is exactly like Shape Tape.”
Everything is spot on – down to the tube and giant doe-foot applicator.
The coverage and longevity of the L’Oreal concealer is just as good as Shape Tape and I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’m still in shock by it.
IT’S A TOTAL DUPE.
The Makeup Revolution Conceal & Define Concealer was super hyped up as a dupe for Shape Tape when it was first released.
I do think that it’s a good concealer and before the L’Oreal concealer was released, it totally came closest to Shape Tape.
It’s just a tad bit lighter on the coverage and a little thinner in consistency that Shape Tape.
But, if Shape Tape is too heavy for you, this would be a great alternative.
The Stila Glitter & Glow Liquid Shadows are arguably the most STUNNING liquid glitter eyeshadows on the market.
I’m not sure if Stila was the first one to create a liquid glitter eyeshadow (they probably weren’t), but they sure as hell popularized it!
Stila nailed the formula of the shadows to provide insane pigment (sparkle) and staying power that doesn’t crease or flake off throughout the day.
The Pixi Liquid Fairy Lights are a great affordable alternative if you want a liquid glitter shadow.
There are different shades offered by each brand, so you have your options when it comes to shades.
Pixi’s version isn’t quite as sparkly as Stila’s, but it does get the job done!
The ColourPop Supernova Shadows are probably more of a dupe for the Stila Shimmer & Glow Liquid Shadows as they are more of a shimmer shadow instead of a glitter shadow.
I absolutely love the ColourPop Supernova Shadows.
The quality is amazing, they have so much color payoff, and all of the shades are gorgeous!
I’ll be honest – just go with the ColourPop Supernova Shadows instead of the Stila Shimmer & Glow Shadows because they’re just as good, but WAY cheaper.
I am a long-time user of the Laura Mercier Loose Translucent Setting Powder and I still love it so much!
It has the finest, softest texture that leaves a beautiful finish to the skin, while adding a hint of coverage.
However, with the amount of loose powder I use (A LOT), $39 for one powder is way too much for me to handle.
I was on the search for a drugstore dupe for a long time and GUYS, the Maybelline Fit Me Loose Finishing Powder is where it’s at.
The texture is almost exactly the same and it works just as well!
The only difference is that there are shades to the Maybelline powder, so be sure to choose the right shade for you.
I’m hoping they eventually release a translucent shade!
The Marc Jacobs O! Mega Bronzer in Tan-Tastic is hands-down one of my favorite bronzers for its smoothness, blendability, and because it’s the perfect shade for my skin tone that isn’t too warm or too cool.
Since the Marc Jacobs bronzer retails for a whopping $49, I wouldn’t be surprised if you think anyone is crazy for spending that much on just a bronzer! (It is massive, though, at 0.08 oz/2.26 g.)
The best dupe I’ve found for the Marc Jacobs O! Mega Bronzer in Tan-Tastic is the Milani Silky Matte Bronzing Powder in Sun Kissed.
It’s a tad bit cooler-toned than the Marc Jacobs bronzer, but the shades are still very similar in my opinion.
And the application of the Milani bronzer is beautiful – smooth, easy to blend out, and absolutely no patchiness.
Another similarity is that they both smell like coconuts, but the Milani bronzer has a subtler scent.
I’m sure we all remember when Iconic London went viral on Instagram for their liquid highlighter drops and this glittery spray.
The Iconic London Prep Set Glow Spray in the Original shade is supposed to make you glow like a goddess!
And yes, it does. I love it. It’s the most “glowy” setting spray I’ve ever tried.
It has really fine reflective particles in it that does show up on your skin and I’m all about it. I love the glow!
Well, guess what?! Makeup Revolution just dropped a dupe on us.
The newly released Makeup Revolution Glow Revolution Illuminating Face & Body Spray is just like the Iconic London spray, but at a fraction of the price.
It also comes in a massive bottle! It’s actually ridiculous how big the bottle is. You get 6.76 fluid oz./200 ml, which will last you a VERY long time.
The spray nozzle on the bottle kind of sucks though, so I’d recommend pouring it out into a bottle with a better spray nozzle if you have one.
The Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer is a fan favorite and best seller because it just makes your skin soooo smooth.
It has an airy whipped texture that is so lightweight and silky when applied to the skin. It just glides over the skin effortlessly and leaves a smooth finish all over.
And the NYX Angel Veil Primer is pretty much exactly the same!
I think everyone that has tried both products would agree that it’s a dupe. They both even have “Veil” in its name…
The NYX primer is slightly heavier than the Hourglass primer, but I would still definitely consider it lightweight.
And it does just as good of a job smoothing out the skin.
I know that showing you how the primers look doesn’t do a good job of showing how similarly the primers perform, but at least it shows you how much they look alike!
The NARS Orgasm Blush is the first blush I ever fell in love with. It’s the perfect peachy pink shade with a hint of gold shimmer in it to really liven up the face.
And the Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso is the second blush I really fell in love with!
It really isn’t a dupe for the NARS Orgasm Blush as the shades aren’t close enough to call it a dupe.
Milani Luminoso is much peachier than NARS Orgasm, but the both have a hint of gold shimmer in them.
They just…kind of create the same kind of vibe, you know?
They aren’t the same, but they create the same kind of feel to my makeup when using either one.
The entire line of Milani Baked Blushes is amazing and I actually own a handful of shades. But, I always find myself reaching for Luminoso over and over again!
Dolce Pink is another shade from the Milani Baked Blush collection that I love. It’s a tad bit pinker than the NARS Orgasm Blush, so it’s not quite a dupe, either. But, it’s beautiful!
NARS Orgasm is like right in between Luminoso and Dolce Pink.
The Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz is definitely one of the most loved brow products on the market right now for its ability to create fine, hair-like strokes with ease.
But, when I was using it, I’d run out of it so quickly! Ya girl has a lot of brow to fill in! And at $21 a pencil, it quickly became wayyy too expensive.
The NYX Micro Brow Pencil is the closest dupe to the Anastasia Brow Wiz I’ve tried from the drugstore.
It allows you to create fine, hair-like strokes just as easy at less than half of the price!
Yes, these are different shades, but the application is nearly identical.
I mentioned earlier about the hype that once surrounded the Iconic London Illuminator. And the hype is so real.
This liquid highlighter is stunning and it gives you a crazy glow.
I personally like to use it as a foundation mixer or I apply it all over my face before foundation to give myself an all over glow.
And boy does it make you glow!
However, I think we can all agree that $40 for a liquid highlighter is pretty ridiculous.
I bought it because the hype got to me, but I probably won’t buy it again, just because of the cost.
Instead, I’ll buy the Makeup Revolution Liquid Highlighters over and over again! At less than a quarter of the price, it works just as well!
I didn’t consider this a shade dupe because I wasn’t trying to match the shades when I bought them, but it’s a total dupe for the purpose of a liquid highlighter and the shades actually are pretty close.
There are many shades available for the Makeup Revolution Liquid Highlighters, so there may be an actual shade dupe for the Iconic London Illuminator (in Original) in there.
The Makeup Revolution Liquid Highlighter could also be a dupe for the Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops (which costs $42), but I haven’t tried the Cover FX drops, so I can’t say for certain. (They really look like they would be a dupe, though.)
I was a really long-time, loyal user of the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer and I used to swear that no other concealer could come close to it.
Since then, I’ve tried a lot of concealers and have found many that I like, but the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer is still one of my favorites.
It’s a medium-full coverage concealer that blends out easily, doesn’t dry out your under-eye area, doesn’t crease (when set with powder), and doesn’t make you look cakey.
Many people say that the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer is a dupe, but I personally think the consistency is too different to call it a dupe.
The Maybelline Fit Me Concealer is a little thinner in consistency and doesn’t provide as much coverage.
However, it is still a very good concealer that applies and blends out nicely, and it’s a small fraction of the cost of the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer.
This isn’t a popular dupe as I haven’t seen anyone mentioning it, but I personally think that the Maybelline SuperStay Better Skin Concealer is closer to the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in terms of consistency and coverage.
The Maybelline Better Skin Concealer is severely lacking in the shade department, though… There are only 8 shades available!
At the time I initially wrote this post, I thought I had the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer, but I couldn’t find it anywhere when I was taking the photos! 🙁
But, I found a super old swatch photo comparing the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer to the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. See how much more watery it looks?
This is totally just a shade dupe as the MAC Satin Lipstick formula is creamier than the Wet n Wild Megalast Lip Color Formula.
But, for literally a tenth of a price, can you go wrong?
This was totally an accidental drugstore dupe discovery!
I haven’t heard anyone mentioning that the NYX Matte Bronzer in Medium is a dupe for the Laura Mercier Matte Radiance Baked Powder in Bronze 03, but it totally is.
I was swatching all of my bronzers one day and I realized that these two shades are almost exactly the same!
The NYX bronzer has more of a matte finish and the Laura Mercier has a really slight sheen to it, but it’s a total shade dupe.
This was another accidental drugstore dupe discovery, especially because they don’t look like they’d be that similar when you’re just looking at them in the pan.
But, when applied on the skin, they are extremely similar!
The Marc Jacobs O! Mega Glaze All Over Foil Luminizer has a hint of peach in it, whereas the Maybelline Master Chrome Highlighter is more of a true gold, but they are still pretty close in shade.
And I love them equally!
I could not recommend one over the other based on quality and performance because they’re both so good.
The Maybelline one just happens to be about a quarter of the price LOL.
I would actually not be surprised if someone told me that the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper and the NYX Epic Ink Liner are actually the same product, just in different packaging.
It’s that much of a dupe.
I’ve used both and I honestly can’t tell the difference.
They both have a brush tip, which makes it easy to draw a precise line. And the formula of both liners are pigmented and don’t budge throughout the day!
This is another dupe that is totally a shade(s) dupe.
The quality of the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette is amazing and (unfortunately) the Wet n Wild Color Icon Palette in Rosé in the Air doesn’t compare.
But, the Wet n Wild Palette is $5!! That is absolutely ridiculous!
And the quality of the shadows is very good – not hard to work with at all and the color is definitely there!
It’s not one of those palettes where there is no color payoff at all. It’s totally an amazing drugstore dupe for the Modern Renaissance palette at about an eighth of the price!
Here are some swatches of the most similar shades:
The following makeup dupes are products that I’ve tried, but don’t currently have both high-end and drugstore products on-hand to take comparison photos.
This is one instance where I think the drugstore dupe is better than the high-end product.
I used the L’Oreal Voluminous Lash Paradise Mascara for a LONG time and it’s still one of my favorites.
The color of the tube and the shape of the brush is so reminiscent of the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara, but I think the formula is so much better.
The Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara seemed to clump up on me and dry out really quickly, so I would need to buy a new one really frequently. At $24 each, we can’t have that!
On the flip side, the L’Oreal Lash Paradise Mascara seems to last a really long time and it creates amazing volume in the lashes without clumping up or flaking off.
Found a super old comparison photo from my Pinterest Made Me Try It post!
It’s been a while since I’ve used both of these products, but from what I can remember, the NYX Pore Filler is an EXACT dupe for the Benefit POREfessional Primer.
Down to the color, consistency, how it applies, and how it performs – I could barely tell the difference.
The Makeup Revolution Fast Base Stick Foundation is not an exact dupe for the Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick, but it comes pretty close.
I love both foundations, but the Makeup Revolution stick has a slightly more dewy finish and the Hourglass stick provides more coverage.
As far as stick foundations go, the Makeup Revolution Fast Base Stick is my absolute favorite drugstore option.
Other Popular Dupes:
The following drugstore dupes are products that have been noted as dupes by others in the beauty industry, but I have not personally tested it out.
I have tried the Flower Beauty Flower Pots Powder Blush in Sweet Pea and I love it! It is a gorgeous shade and applies beautifully!
I haven’t tried either of these products, but they both seem to have that silky silicone-y texture, so they sound similar!
I’m super curious about this one because the Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer is part of my everyday routine.
It would be crazy if the e.l.f. Poreless Putty Primer is a dupe because it’s so much cheaper! This primer has gotten a lot of attention in the beauty world recently and I’m dying to try it out.
The 16HR Camo Concealer is another e.l.f. product that has gotten a ton of attention recently! Many of the YouTube reviews I’ve watched were positive, so I have high hopes for this product!
Edit: I just bought the e.l.f. 16HR Camo Concealer last night. I still haven’t tried it out on my face, so I decided to keep it in this section of the post. I’ll update if it turns out to be a dupe!
Edit #2: After trying out the e.l.f. 16HR Camo Concealer for a while now, I don’t think it’s a dupe. It’s thick and full-coverage, just like Shape Tape, but the finish is much more matte and drying to me. Still a super sold concealer for the price, though! (Only $5!) But, I wouldn’t recommend it if your under-eye area is dry.
Obviously they are different shades, but damn that e.l.f. concealer looks full coverage!
This pair is a little complicated for me because I actually have used both of these products before, but…
I used to use the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Powder YEARS ago, and I remember liking it at the time. But, when I tried the Maybelline FaceStudio Master Fix Powder recently, I didn’t like it at all.
It could be that my preference in makeup has changed over the years (which it most definitely has), or it could also be that the Maybelline powder isn’t as good.
It’s been too long since I’ve used the Make Up For Ever powder to make a fair comparison, though.
Can you believe I have never tried a beautyblender? I just can’t fathom spending $20 for a sponge!
I spend money on a lot of things, but that’s not going to be one of them LOL.
And I absolutely LOVE the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge, so I feel no need to try the beautyblender!
And that’s it for my master list of the best drugstore makeup dupes for expensive makeup!
I’m sure there are a ton more out there, but these are the ones that I’ve tried, and feel confident in recommending to you (besides the last section, of course).
If you’re planning on trying any of these out, don’t forget to use Ebates when you shop!
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What are some of your favorite drugstore dupes? Have you discovered any that I didn’t mention on this list?
Let me know what they are in the comments!
I will continue to add to this list as I discover more drugstore dupes, so definitely hit me with some recommendations I should try!
Thanks for reading and until next time! <3
P.S. If you like what I do here on lianadesu, it would mean so much to me if you bought me a coffee (support my blog)!
More Drugstore Makeup Posts:
- New Must-Try Drugstore Makeup – Spring 2019
- Drugstore Makeup Holy Grails
- Best Drugstore Foundations for Dry Skin
- Best Drugstore Foundations for Oily Skin
- Best Loose Setting Powders Under $10
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