In recent years, we’ve seen such a dramatic shift in interest in all things related to beauty. From what seemed to be just a frivolous ‘hobby’ for women worldwide, makeup artistry is now a serious (and much sought after) profession– and we’ve got beauty vloggers like Michelle Phan, who has millions of YouTube followers, and blogs like Beauty Lookbook, I Covet Thee and Cult of Pretty—to prove it.
Being a beauty junkie can be an expensive thing. It is all too easy to blow wads of cash in makeup stores, but it is also possible to find great stuff that doesn’t break the bank. My favorite source of amazing and cheap finds? Watson’s! Considering it’s technically still a drug store, you would be surprised at the products you’ll find in here. Thus far, I have never entered any branch this store without buying something. Here are some of the best things you can score there:
- Nichido Eyebrow pencil– If you by now have memorized the strokes to perfect your eyebrows, there is no reason you can’t work with eyebrow pencils that cost less than Php 100. They get the job done, last for months and cost less than your morning skinny latte! Get the ones from Nichido—they have a dark brown and light brown variety.
- Nichido Eyeliner– Ditto above! Nichido also has a great array of eyeliner pencils, from white or beige (to make your eyes look bigger), black (for that edgy kohl liner look), greens and blues (for a pop of color), and brown (for everyday use). Enjoy, girls!
- BYS contouring sticks– This thing is a dream! A retractable contouring stick you can easily use to draw in cheekbones, a sleeker jawline, a narrower nose, and a more balanced forehead. You won’t believe how easy it is. Just don’t overdo it ok, or you’ll look like one of those RuPaul drag queens. Think enhancement, not complete alteration of face.
- BYS foundation stick– This brand also has a foundation stick that’s super handy to keep in your purse. All you have to do is dab a few spots on your forehead, cheeks and nose, and blend with a sponge, and you’re done in 2 minutes. The coverage is great and it lasts all day. The only catch is, it doesn’t come in a wide range of colors so there’s a change your skin will not match the shade. A tip—no matter how good the purchase, do not force it if it’s not meant to be. There’s nothing more horrific than a face that’s waaay whiter than the neck/rest of the body, no matter how much blending you attempt to do!
- Maybelline mascara– As far as mascara goes, Maybelline’s Great Lash can go head to head with any of the luxury brands in terms of performance, and costs less than half of the price of the others. I’ve roadtested it and have remained loyal for years—there’s a reason why this is still the world’s most popular mascara.
- Gatsby oil blotting sheets– If you have oily skin, the worst thing to do is layering on face powder every time you get shiny. That clogs your pores and causes blackheads and breakouts! A better idea is to blot your skin with these lifesaving little sheets, then spritz with face mist. If your makeup has faded, that’s the time you need to pat on a little face powder. That way you’ll look fresh all day—because oiliness is next to ugliness!
- Garnier Brightening Eye Roll On– Of all the products this brand carries, this one is my favorite. Say goodbye to puffy eyebags with just a swipe! It drains the swelling and works like magic, even after long, harrowing nights of watching Game of Thrones episodes. So yes, I hardly slept for a month—and I consider it a personal triumph that nobody could tell! You need it, I’m telling you.
- Petroleum Jelly– Pop quiz. What product can you use to moisturize your elbows, and knees, serves as cuticle cream, removes makeup, does the job of an eyeshadow primer, can be blended to create a gel blush, doubles up as shaving cream, eyebrow gel, thickens eyelashes, and whitens teeth in photos? Oh you didn’t know? Yes baby, that inconspicuous little jar of petroleum jelly is the answer.
- Ever Bilena Lip and Cheek stain- I’ve always been a fan of a natural flushed look, like you’ve just come from a run or spotted a crush. Compared with blusher, a cheek stain, when applied correctly, looks more natural and less ‘made up’. So I was thrilled to find this product, it creates exactly that effect, and lasts all day too (unless you deliberately wipe it off). I prefer using it only for the cheeks, but it can function as a lip stain too. At less than 200 pesos, that’s a really good deal.
- Argan Oil- I’ve been using Argan Oil on my skin and the tips of my hair for the last 7 years and so far not a single wrinkle nor split end has appeared. That, my friends, considering my high stress-high gimmick lifestyle, is an amazing feat—not by me, but by this Godsend of a multipurpose oil. It’s called Instant Glow Moroccan Argan oil, and if you like it as much as I do, you’ll get the bar of soap as well.
- Vitresse Hair Cuticle Coat- With this heat and humidity, I am not surprised people are walking around looking like poofed up Persian cats with frizzy hair. To keep your crowning glory sleek and smooth no matter what happens during the day, it is necessary to follow up your blow out with a light hair cuticle coat. So everything can blow up for all you care, but you’ll at least look like you’ve got things under control.
- GT Carrot Lotion- My friends are going to kill me for publishing this, because we wanted to keep it our secret and hoard the stocks ourselves. But since I’m feeling generous today—ok, yes, this is our favorite lotion. At SPF 60, it doubles up as a strong sunblock, plus gives the skin a pinkish white glow, and it smells great too. Try it for yourself.
I know where you’re headed right now, girls! Enjoy shopping and tell me if you have some other great beauty finds from drugstores to add to our list!