Beauty / Staff Picks

Your Drug Store Guide To Badass Beauty Products [Part I]

Beauty products are overpriced. Period. While some are nicer than others, most of us can and do settle for the drug-store variety.  Can it be true? Can we wear the cheap crap without looking–you know–cheap? Yes. Why? Because you can make anything work when used correctly. So, why am I trying out the cheap stuff? I studied poetry in graduate school. You work it out.

cheap nailpolish

NYC Color’s lip color in Blossom, and Wet N Wild’s nail color in Blue Moon.

NYC COLOR’s Ultra Moist Lipwear

My overly-abused, totally used and always-with-me Ruby Woo is my main boo. When I put it on I become Wonder Woman, or Elvira, or Bettie Page. I love Ruby Woo. I wear loads of it at night, finely applied so that my lips look as though someone sketched them on. I also wear it at work–just one coat, dabbed into the edges of my lips to create a softer look. Sometimes I throw a little Russian Red over it when I feel like devouring a man alive. But $15 isn’t always what I’m looking to spend on lipstick, and so my frugal journey begins. 

My purses are literally filled with lipsticks–some are my favorites and some are just new colors I’ve tried on for the day. I buy cheap lipstick maybe twice a week, either because I want to try a new look or because I’m shopping on my lunch-break at work.

The result: NYC Color’s Ultra Moist Lipwear doesn’t suck one bit. It lasts much longer than you’d expect, its got a tad bit of reasonable sheen and it keeps your lips from being dry. 99 cents. 
Make it work: Reapply once per hour, and have fun with this cheap, easy lipstick. It can be a bit heavy and a tad bit greasy, so go lightly when you apply and kiss a napkin.

WET N WILD’s Wild Shine Nail Polish
I love these polishes! My favorite Wet N Wild colors are Blue Moon (#466), Bijou Blue (#443D), French White Creme (#449C) and Burgundy Frost (#412D).

The result: This nail polish is pretty decent; it goes on thick and clean–it’s not watery or thin or transparent. What you see in the bottle is what you get. 99 cents. 
Make it work: Two coats will do the trick. Use a top coat for scratch protection. You’ll probably want to re-do your nails in 2-3 days.

Feria Wild Ombre hair color

Feria’s Wild Ombre does the trick.


FERIA’S Wild Ombre

I have had long, wavy, luscious black hair since about a decade ago. I was born with naturally dark hair, and though I’ve dyed it a few times (remember those 90s bleach bangs?) it’s generally been the same. I’ve gotten bored. People would tell me that if I wanted a change, I’d need to bleach my hair since it was too damn dark, and because bleaching is basically hair suicide, I decided against it.  Why spend $300 on something very permanent and very risky?

When I saw that Feria released an DIY Ombre box, I was naturally suspicious (boxed ombre = possible destruction), but I decided if anything went wrong I’d cut the last two inches off and call it a day. After using the O60 Box for Medium to Dark Brown hair, I definitely have really lovely caramel ends. I watched a few tutorials and applied the bleach on the ends of my layers in not-so-perfect patterns so it looked more dipped in gold than literally cut in half by another color. $15

The result: dry, brittle ends with a vibrant, noticeable color.
Make it work: Use olive oil and hot oil hair treatments twice per week to keep the ends from fraying and splitting even more.

Feria’s Wild Ombre does the trick.
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2 thoughts on “Your Drug Store Guide To Badass Beauty Products [Part I]

  1. That line of Wet and Wild polish is great for another reason, too: If you ever get into nail stamping (which anyone can for less than $20), they’re cheaper and better than the “special” polishes you’re supposed to use to apply designs.

  2. Oooh! I would like to add to this list: Wet n’ Wild “mega protein” mascara. It’s paraben-free and allegedly contains some sort of lash-health-boosting protein formula. And it’s $3. I use it as a base and put my fancier ($8!) mascara on top.

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