Shopping for supplies

By Bobbi Brown

One of the best and easiest ways to stay current is to test the latest products on the cosmetic floor of any large department store - MiNDFOOD reports.

One of the best and easiest ways to stay current is to test the latest products on the cosmetic floor of any large department store. The makeup artist at the counter will show you new items and techniques. You can try the cosmetics and get information, all without any cost.

It is a good idea to develop some shopping strategies to avoid frustration, intimidation or impulse buying. First determine your budget. Makeup can be expensive. Estimate the cost of your supply needs and add a realistic amount for trying new products.

Making an inventory list of all the supplies in your makeup kit is very helpful. Use it as a shopping list and highlight the items you need. Ask for sample, or trial size containers of any new product you like. Only purchase a product if you love the way the makeup looks and you know you will use it.


Department stores – High-end brands are typically sold through dedicated counter areas in department stores. Most of the counter personnel are trained in makeup application and are able to provide information and advice. You can test the makeup before purchasing so you know exactly what you are getting.

Pharmacies – These stores are convenient and carry a wide variety of mass-market products. Purchase basic supplies such as nail polish, cotton balls, makeup sponges, and cotton swabs at these retailers.

Beauty supply shops – Makeup artists depend on these industry Meccas for professional-quality products at budget-friendly prices.

Catalogues – Shopping from catalogues that are specific to a brand is a convenient way to stock up on favourite shades of cosmetics.


Has your signature fragrance or favourite lipstick disappeared from the market? Discontinued beauty products are available if you know where to look. Use the internet to do your research. Visit the company’s website first where there will generally be information available on discontinued products. Estee Lauder, for example, publishes item closings in advance on their web site.

If you still can’t find your old favourite, make a plea. Either email or write a personal letter asking the company to bring it back.



–    Buy multipurpose makeup, such as lip-cheek combinations.

–    Shop in daylight for foundation.

–    Save your receipts. Many stores will refund your money within a specified period of time if you are not satisfied with the product.


–    Equate ‘dermatologist tested’ with better quality. This claim does not guarantee that the doctor approved the product – just that it was tested.

–    Toss leftovers unless the makeup is more than eighteen months old. When that lipstick or cream blush gets near the end, scoop the remainder into small, covered, compartmentalised boxes (palettes) that are available at art and beauty supply stores.  


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