High End vs. Drugstore
I love high end makeup. I don't know whether that makes me a snob or not, you can put a label on it if you want to, I don't really care. I understand that they aren't always of quality and sometimes you're simply paying for the brand name itself, however, they provide a feeling of luxury and that's something I really enjoy in my products. If you're going to spend your money, it may as well go towards items you know you're going to get use out of and really treasure. As you get older, you're not always going to love what you have to spend your money on, so you should feel like you can indulge whenever the budget allows.
So why don't I buy from the drugstore anymore? Well, I have a higher income than I did during my teens and I still live at home. I got my first job at a supermarket when I was 16 and come payday, my favourite thing to do was wander the aisles of Priceline. Since then, I've graduated from both high school and university and work more than just a Thursday night and Saturday afternoon in between my classes. I swapped the aisles of Priceline for those fancy counters and shelves at Myer and Mecca Cosmetica and I also actually work at Myer, which means I'm constantly surrounded by higher end brands. The staff discount card is definitely a perk too! I find a lot of drugstore products too gimmicky, the packaging too bright and tacky, and it simply doesn't appeal to me. I don't want to waste my money on products I'm simply not going to use or enjoy as much, regardless of how cheap it is.
I guess you could say the majority of my purchases are influenced by bloggers, I mean, that's why I started reading blogs to begin with anyway, and it's not necessarily because they're hyped up, but because they look like lovely products I'd really get use out of. When I don't, sometimes I've tried out products in store and disliked them, I have something similar or I'm just downright not interested. The Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette doesn't suit my complexion and when I tried out the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes and Benefit's They're Real! Push-Up Liner in store, I found the blushes too chalky (even though I love the setting powder) and the latter to be a horrible consistency. Then there are brands I've just never really taken an interest in such as Bobbi Brown, Smashbox and Bare Minerals. I don't think all higher end products are appealing, though if I'm in the market for something or curious about a product, high end is what I favour.
These days, I tend to be quite selective of what products I buy and because I like the more expensive brands, I kind of have to be. I love the scent and the minimal aesthetics of Diptyque candles, the fancy gold packaging of YSL products, the fragrance of my Chanel Vitalumière Aqua Foundation and the pigmentation and colour variety of MAC lipsticks. Aesthetics and fragrance are definitely part of the reason why I prefer high end brands and there's absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to own nicer things. Maybe it's shallow, but it's even more shallow to judge someone on the makeup they choose to buy. Honestly, I find it a little odd that people can get so easily offended over a personal choice that in no way affects them.
While I enjoy my high end brands, I do have a pretty solid savings account for the more important things in life like a car, more travelling and moving out of home. I wrote about how I save my money here. I think there definitely needs to be a balance between being responsible and treating yourself because if I save a lot, I will majorly slip up and spend a lot and when I spend a lot, I feel guilty. Shopping is meant to be enjoyable and while I do allow myself to be frivolous at times, I want to be smart with my money too because a high disposable income is a luxury I may not always have. I only work in retail (for now), I don't make a load of money, but I can still buy what I like. I never buy for the sake of buying or make random spontaneous purchases and that's how I can afford my nice things. Come payday, I will choose a select few things to buy off my wishlist, put some into savings and then the rest is for general spending and bill paying. I'm not going to lie, sometimes I've slipped up and have bought things that aren't on my wishlist or have been influenced by the sale assistants, but that doesn't happen too often. Don't be afraid to say no and if you're still on the fence, save money and ask for samples. If they say no, it's not the end of the world.
What ever you choose to buy with your own money is your choice. You should buy from brands that make you feel happy and that you feel are fitting with you and your personal taste, though I understand we don't always have that kind of budget. For me, I would rather save my money and wait a little longer until I can afford from those brands I love because as tempting as it can be go to nuts in Priceline and test out those latest releases, I just know I'd never end up using any of those products because I'd always favour my high end stuff more. Not only that, but drugstore makeup isn't even that cheap in Australia and I have no issue parting with an extra $10 or so to get myself something a little nicer. In one way, I also think we can actually end up wasting our money buying inexpensive products. When it's cheap, you're not as conscious of what you're spending your money on, but when something is a little out of our price range, more thought goes into those purchases. I see people that say they can't afford high end brands, yet they'll buy ten different drugstore lipsticks and obviously, you could buy yourself one really nice, amazing lipstick if you had just saved that money. If it's cheap or on sale, it doesn't mean you have to buy it. We know all the sayings - "quality over quantity" and "less is more". That doesn't mean to say drugstore products can't be of quality - from what I have, I really like - but it's easy to buy a lot or buy for the sake of buying when you're paying less. Having a massive makeup collection isn't my goal, but as a beauty enthusiast, I want to buy quality products from my favourite brands and of course, try out new things from new brands from time to time. I've discovered some amazing brands and products through blogging, but I also know where to draw the line.
By choosing to buy a select few things from my wishlist, I find this is the best way of using new products without forgetting about my old ones. Things can stay on my wishlist for a good few months to up to a year. I'd say my makeup collection is medium sized and while I certainly don't need any more, it's what I enjoy spending my disposable income on, but having said that, I also want to ensure I'm using all those beautiful products I own. I always make sure I use up products until the very end before purchasing new ones and if I have purchased new products, I won't start using them until I've used up others. If I'm simply not reaching for certain products anymore, I'll give them away.
I've progressively noticed a lot of YouTubers talking more and more about drugstore brands than they used to and that's totally fine - if it's their job, I can understand wanting to appeal to a wider audience, but as a blogger, that's not what I'm aiming for. If I were to start buying drugstore makeup again, it would be a waste of my money as I would never reach for those products and that's not being my true self. My blog isn't about budget beauty or drugstore dupes because it doesn't interest me. I always want to be authentic on my blog and talk about what I love, not what I think others will and what will sell. I'm not saying readers aren't an important part of blogging, but what is the point if you have to compromise yourself in the process? Having said that though, I've never felt like I needed to because you guys are all great!
I'm not trying to bad mouth drugstore brands here, both high end and drugstore play their role in the market and as a high school and university student, there's no way I could've afforded the brands I buy from now. I never had the luxury of owning five different foundations or had a million different skincare items in my bathroom cabinet. In fact, all my makeup and nail polish fit into one medium sized makeup bag up until I was 19. I'm glad I didn't discover YouTube until my final year of university! I would've been too young and impressionable, nor would I have built up my savings account had it been any earlier. I'm glad I learnt the importance of saving money at an early age.
There are always areas where you can save or splurge and I'm not here to tell you how to spend your money, but to simply share with you why I like high end brands and how I can afford them. At the end of the day, you should buy whatever you like and whatever works for you, but don't ever feel like you need to buy certain brands or give into the hype. If you want to though, go for it. Your money can be spent on whatever you want.