Article: Last-Minute Drugstore Bridal Makeup Under $100

Category: , , / 1/02/2012
About an hour before I was left for a friend's wedding, I was asked to do the bride's makeup. Normally, I have my pro makeup kit packed in my ZUCA, ready to go. But this was in South Carolina, and my trusty kit was in Texas. So what is a makeup artist to do? I calmly finished my own hair and makeup and left 15 minutes early, so I could stop by the local drugstore: Walgreen's. (Note: Walgreen's is a good choice for these types of situations, especially if you have to try new products.)

As an eco-friendly makeup artist, I had hoped to find the safest, gentlest cosmetics I could at Walgreen's. I knew I wouldn't be able to find many of the cruelty-free and vegan options I had mentioned in my recent "Vegan Bridal Makeup Under $100" article, but I still had a few brands in mind that are available nationally. Unfortunately, the selection of a store in the South combined with my time constraints forced me to make some sacrifices, including purchasing products from some animal-tested companies. If you're looking for cruelty-free makeup, check out the vegan link above, but read on for the best I could find in a short amount of time.

Brushes/Applicators: $18
You'll need a few decent brushes (Eco Tools are my preferred drugstore brand) and a couple of basics (cotton swabs and tissues).
  • Studio 35 (Walgreen's brand) foam eyeshadow applicators and brush set (to get an angled eyeliner brush)
  • Ecotools 5-piece brush set
  • Cotton swabs
  • Travel tissues
Primer: $5
Aloe vera is available in almost every drugstore and is a decent primer. Primer is an essential part of a bridal look if you want it to last for more than four hours.
  • Aloe Vera gel
Foundation, Powder, Blush and Concealer: $35
L'Oreal True Match is one of the best drugstore foundations. I don't normally support them due to animal testing concerns, but they do have an excellent range of colors. Wet 'N Wild has some cheap, decent powders in the Natural Blend line, and an okay concealer (it was my first time using it). Choose a neutral shade for blush, or consider using a neutral peach lip color as blush.
This is why I love false lashes!
Eyes: $28
Cover lids with a decent foundation and/or concealer and you'll reduce the need for primer. Instead, buy a neutral eyeshadow quad that can double as an eyebrow palette (for all but the redheads). Then make sure to get a waterproof eyeliner and a waterproof mascara. Unfortunately, waterproof eye products are mostly of the animal-tested variety in drugstores.
Lips: $7
This is one of my favorite lip glosses in a great universal color (unfortunately, it does contain beeswax):
Misc: $7
Bobby pins are essential for anything resembling an updo. Hand sanitizer doubled as makeup sanitizer so the bridesmaids could also use some of the powdered makeup. Optional makeup remover is not included in the estimate.
  • Goody bobby pins
  • Burt's Bees Hand sanitizer
  • Optional: Makeup remover (to correct mistakes or clean up any leftover makeup; can also use olive oil or coconut oil)
The total price, with tax, was around $100, after sale prices/coupons. The only thing we added to the look were some false lashes from Winks by Georgie (La Cherie, in compact) that I had brought along as a gift. We had plenty of makeup left over, so some of the bridesmaids also got in on the fun (after sanitizing and using new applicators, of course).

And remember, if you have time to plan ahead, I encourage you to look at my Vegan Bridal Makeup Under $100 series. That includes many safer, more natural, and cruelty-free options that can get the same effect. It also includes application instructions, which will easily translate to this set (especially if choosing a neutral eyeshadow quad).
Thanks for sharing!

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