Makeup Secrets

Alright, let’s talk name brand makeup. I used to be under the impression in college that name brand items fell under the category of “you’re paying for the name, not the product…” Except when it came to my girl, Lilly P. She was my sorority girl – & still adult – vice. The more obnoxiously preppy the print, the better. I still to this day ask off of work for the After Party Sale & camp out by my computer waiting for a great spot in line… It’s a systematic & calculated effort to look this flawless for less.

So let’s translate that mindset to makeup. Until honestly after hurricane Irma, I had never bought name brand makeup before. I was ballin on a budget & I thought the only way to do that was via drugstore makeup. Hurricane Irma changed my soul – during that evacuation for work, my entire life belongings in the form of a military rucksack fell off the truck into oblivion… laptop, makeup, clothes, etc. All GONE {later to be found by a kind Navy Diver who mailed it back to me – bless you} During this heartbreaking time, I had the amazing opportunity to rebuild my makeup collection! Yesssssss. I started to plan out what items I would purchase because I desperately needed a revamp.

Here’s the part my husband quickly caught on to… I started shopping at Ulta & Sephora for my newly acquired taste for name brand makeup. Granted they cost more, right? It’s not that we couldn’t afford it, or that he’d be upset that I was choosing to spend my hard earned $ on makeup – it’s just that most men don’t understand, ok? I mean he chooses to spend his money on new accessories for his shiny Audi, so I can spend money on accessorizing my face… right? Right.


So my trick at first, right? When I’d get to the register I’d spend half in cash & half on the card… so the charge that we get texted immediately to us when a purchase happened was only half of what it really was. I’m sneaky sneaky, ok. At least I thought I was until one of my coveted highlighters cracked after getting pushed off the counter by our dogs & I screamed “NO THAT WAS $50!!!!” Hubby say whhhhhhhhhat?!


It’s fine. I was fine. This is all fine. But it made me realize that I maybe needed to find a balance in my makeup spending. Accidents happen – bags fall off military trucks. Why would I buy all this fancy smancy makeup if I didn’t even feel comfortable enough to travel with it? Novel idea… I started having two makeup bags: one that I travel with that I didn’t care if it cracked & another that stayed at home in the safety of my bathroom drawer. How sad is that? Name brand makeup being confined to only when I was home? I’m a girl who’s constantly on the move & I want to look great wherever…

Enter the Name Band Makeup Hack – well not so much a hack but a fabulous secret. Ladies & Gentlemen, have you ever heard of Marshall’s & TJ Maxx? Yes? Great. Go to those stores, specifically the beauty section. Ahhhhh yes. The hidden holy grail of smart shoppers everywhere. On Instagram I follow tons of beauty accounts & bloggers, one of whom’s specialty is finding name brand makeup & telling her readers where & when it goes on sale. #Blessed. I quickly noticed most of her posts were originating from these stores & decided to go take a looksy for myself. EYES. OPENED.


This is my current haul from TJ Maxx & Marshalls within the past month: CHI hair products, Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Cream Kit, Anastasia Beverly Hills AURORA Glow Kit & finally the Too Faced GLITTER Bomb Palette. All in one trip. I was in makeup heaven…


So let’s talk Glitter Bomb – This product was being sold on Too Faced’s site for $45.00 {I got it for $15 at Marshall’s} It’s a great palette that has TONS of pigment & the glitter stays put with little fallout if you use a setting spray & eye primer. So cute. So fun. So worth it.


Next up we have the AURORA Glow Kit – Okay this was a holy grail to me. $40 on ABH site & only $25 at TJ Max! I love this palette SO incredibly much, mostly because these colors are so fun & make me feel edgy for wearing a colored highlighter. It’s a real contender for my love of Champagne Pop {that’s saying ALOT GUYS}. It’s also scented – to me. I swear it is. I can’t find anywhere that confirms that but it has this almost tangerine fruity smell to it that makes me feel summery & great. I actually went to multiple TJ Max stores to find this Glow Kit because the first couple had all broken ones… rude.


Ahhhh yes. The Contour Cream Kit – originally $40 but I snagged it for $25. This was such a wildcard buy for me. They had the powder contour kit but some makeup force of nature was calling me towards the creme. I’ve never worked with a creme kit before & the idea really enticed me. I’m in love. It’s just the right amount of pigment & stays PUT alllllll day/night long. This kit comes in three different shades: fair, light & medium. I purchased the fair & love love love it. I’m a die hard fan & pair it with a powdered bronzer to set. I can’t go on enough how this was such a great find. IMG_9635

Last but not least, CHI hair products:

Keratin Mist – Originally $16, got it for $5.99

Helmet Head Extra Firm – Originally $20, got it for $7.99

Enviro 54 Firm Hold – Originally $20, got it for $9.99

To say all of these products were a STEAL is honestly an understatement. They all are amazing & these stores sell even more variety of name brands. TJ Maxx and Marshalls carry the exact same merchandise that you’d find in a department store. Same season. Same quality. Same designers. They buy some directly from designers and some from department stores that have purchased too much. Either way, it is brand new, first-run, department store quality stuff that is updated each week!

So next time you want to splurge on high end makeup, check out your local Marshalls or TJ Maxx first! I promise you won’t be disappointed… & neither will your wallet. You’re welcome!

x -A

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