5 New In & Current Favourite Drugstore/ Affordable Makeup & Skincare Picks (Inc. Reviews) – Cruelty Free/ Vegan

There’s been so much good stuff coming out of the drugstore recently! Some more hyped than others and there’s more and more in the way of cruelty free/ vegan options coming our way than ever before too which can only be a great thing! Brands like Makeup Revolution and NYX who are not only cruelty free, but affordable, easily accessible, trend based and fast paced with new launches…make it so much easier to try new things without spending a fortune. Don’t get me wrong, I’m such a high fiend too (I don’t discriminate) but who doesn’t love a bargain/ affordable product that’s actually good?!

I’ve spoken about a few of my favourite affordable/ drugstore on here recently actually, they all seem to be coming out at once! I talked about the new Makeup Revolution Fast Base Foundation Sticks (read the full review here) a couple of weeks ago, that are a great affordable alternative to some of the higher end spendy sticks around at the moment and probably one of my all time favourite drugstore buys to date before that…their much hyped Conceal & Define Concealer (more about that one here). So here’s a few of my most recent drugstore/ affordable picks that I’m enjoying right now!

Speaking of Makeup Revolution, the first two things I’m talking about today are from there too! Both of them technically more skincare than makeup but definitely makeup related and both new! First up the new Makeup Revolution Baking Oil

✖Skincare/ makeup hybrid
✖Unique blend of natural oils
✖Nourishes, primes and boosts radiance
✖For all skin types (dry – oily and everywhere in between)
✖Can be used on face, body and cuticles
✖Cruelty free and Vegan ????????

There’s so many of these primer/ beauty oils around at the moment and a lot being pretty spendy, so was interested to see how this one compared. I’m all over using oils for my hair, but am always a bit wary when it comes to skin especially as I’m oily/ combo. I do like what an oil can do though (if used minimally/ properly) and that includes this one!

The MR Baking Oil comes in a glass bottle with a dropper style, the packaging looks good and feels well put together for such an affordable price point. It has a gorgeous citrus scent, but from the actual oils (citrus peel oil) used as apposed to added scent…which also means it (so far) hasn’t irritated my sensitive skin or caused any breakouts what so ever. I personally (having oily/ combo skin) wouldn’t really use an oil all over as primer, I do normally use a hydrating primer (KVD Lock It Hydrating Primer (UK* / IE*)) but just don’t need the level of hydration an oil gives. I do like using this though over my usual primer but under foundation on my cheeks to add moisture, brighten and give my glow a bit of a boost. I’ve also tried a tiny bit patted along the top of my cheeks as a sticky base for a more blinding powder highlight and it works great!

Brilliant if you have a drier skin or just want to add a bit more dew/ luminosity to your skin or if you have a slightly too matte foundation add a drop or two for a radiance boost. You only need a tiny bit, so just go easy and go in with more as you need.

Next…the new Makeup Revolution Sport Fix Fixing Spray

✖Ultimate hold fixing spray for makeup that lasts all day/ night
✖Designed to keep makeup in place through the toughest workouts
✖Combats oil and shine
✖Cruelty free and Vegan ????????

I’ll start by saying that I don’t always wear makeup for the gym and even if I do, I’m generally not that bothered about it being fully perfect and in place when I’m done. Let’s be real it’ll either be coming off and staying off after my workout or taken off and reapplied fresh (hence not being bothered to wear it normally or going super minimal if I do). For the sake of those that do like to wear a fuller face to the gym for whatever your reason or if you go to work/ out somewhere straight from working out and need it to last…I’ve tried it, got my workout on and it does seem to keep everything where it should be! It does have a slight alcohol scent, but then it does contain alcohol and that’s what’s responsible for the spray’s benefits and I’ve definitely smelt stronger. You also can’t smell it once it’s on nor does it make your face feel tight or tacky when more heavy duty setting sprays often can. It has a really good spray applicator/ nozzle too which gives you a super even spritzing of product, no noticeable droplets on the skin either. Makes makeup look fresh all day and although I still needed to blot my face down once or twice throughout the day, that’s normal for me and I did notice that it was a longer time in between touch ups.

This would be a brilliant affordable option for long days or when makeup has to last/ look perfect all day…great for bridal makeup too!

I love The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5%* for eyes…it’s effective, affordable, lasts for ages and is also cruelty free…but over these colder months we’ve been having, I decided to up my eye moisture levels and happened to come across the Illuminating Eye Cream by ELF. I don’t get crazy dry eyes but especially when it’s colder/ dryer, I feel like I need a little somethingddd extra so my concealer/ eye makeup sits as smoothly as possible. If you don’t already know (I’ve mentioned it before here) I’m naturally a bit darker under eyes no matter how much water I drink (loads) or how much sleep I get (not as much as I’d like) so tend to go for eye care that focuses on that concern as well as general brightening/ looking more awake and moisture.

✖Purified water base and packed full of essential nutrients
✖Infused with Jojoba, Vitamin E, Shea Butter and Cucumber
✖Rich in antioxidant Green Tea
✖Hydrates, minimizes the appearance of dark circles and puffiness
✖No Parabens, Sulfates and Phthalates
✖Cruelty free and Vegan ????????

I believe ELF have reformulated this recently to be a more gentle formula…I have sensitive eyes/ eye area and have experienced no issue with this. I’ve been using it mainly in the morning and on top of my Caffeine Solution (I have tried it without and it feels great…you could definitely use it alone, I just prefer the combo of the two), I pat a small amount on over my whole eye contour area (under the eye, outside corners and brow bone). I wouldn’t say it’s particularly illuminating, but it sinks in nicely, gives extra hydration and smooths without disrupting eye makeup. Concealer applies beautifully over the top and it feels good, really soothing and makes you feel more awake.

✖ For all you guys in Ireland…ELF skincare is also now available in most larger Penney’s stores too! Just check your local one for more info.

The last two products are both from NYX and the first one’s a brush…the new Sculpting Highlighting Brush*. Part of their new Holographic Halo Strobing Brush Collection…there’s 7 brush styles altogether, but this one really caught my eye and has been the only highlight brush I’ve reached for since it joined the party. Cruelty free and Vegan, this synthetic brush is so soft! It’s the perfect size (not too small, not too big) for applying/ blending out highlight…I prefer and use it for powder highlighters but you could equally use any of the brushes in the collection for liquids or cream. Why I gravitated towards the Sculpting Highlighting Brush specifically…

✖Angled head to softly hug the contours of your face
✖Closely packed soft fibres to buff and polish highlight on to the skin
✖Cruelty free and Vegan

It really does do all the things! The size and shape allows for perfect placement of product and the soft close packed fibres buff out the highlight to perfection with the most control. Building your glow if effortless with this…it buffs on a tiny amount for a healthy glow and polishes more up to a blinding but still smooth and blended finish. LOVE this brush!!

As you’ll already know, I’m all about the grunge when it comes to my makeup…but who doesn’t like a bit of glitter?! I’m a fan of NYX glitter anyway, they do some really pretty/ bold shades and are super fine so less irritating on (still irritating when you end up consuming it/ finding it in everywhere in the house 6 months later…glitter probs!). I really like the NYX Glitter Primer* with all glitter brands too, it keeps it in place all day/ night. Anyway, NYX recently came out with 6 shades of brand new metallic formula glitter and they’re stunning! Ultra-reflective to holographic and from sparkling neutral to grungy bling. My favourite and of course the most grungy of the 6 shades is Style Star* pictured above (although it’s so hard to capture it’s beauty on camera! It’s a super fine and reflective black base with multi colour holographic reflects…yesss!! Keep an eye on my Instagram here as I really want to create some looks with these, especially this one!

What have you picked up from the drugstore/ an affordable brand recently that you can’t get enough of and any great dupes for high end products you’ve found and want to share??

Lyd x



I’m now based in Cork, Ireland. Although I do still take select bookings for North Wales/ Cheshire and Dublin (get in touch for more info) and am available to travel country wide…I’m mainly taking makeup bookings for Cork City and surrounding areas. 

As a bridal makeup specialist, I do get booked up well in advance so if you’re looking for wedding makeup in Cork contact me asap to check availability, secure your date and avoid disappointment! I’m freelance and travel to your home/ venue of choice.

Also available for makeup for any occasion/ event, lessons and master class makeup…find more information and a full list of services here.

Contact us for enquiries/ bookings and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Cruelty free.

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