Beauty dupes: buy this, not that

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Beauty dupes

Buying high-quality beauty products doesn’t necessarily have to be an expensive endeavor. In this article, we’ll show you some alternatives to popular beauty products currently on the market. Additionally, we’ll let you know what to look out for and how to save even more when buying these beauty products. 

What is a beauty dupe?

A beauty dupe is a beauty product that replicates a higher-end product for a less expensive price. Beauty dupes are usually based off of a pre-existing product, so the shade and texture is intended to be similar. Even though these products can vary in terms of quality, some of them are as good as, if not better than, the more expensive product. Beauty dupes range from blushes and foundations to makeup brushes and more. 

Are beauty dupes actually worth it?

Beauty dupes can be either hit or miss. It is important to test products prior to purchasing them if you can. Also, take time to look at the product’s reviews. In some cases, the beauty dupe will replicate the same quality and shade of the expensive item. 

However, this is not always the case. Some dupe products can be made with a drastically different formula, making the texture dissimilar to the popular one. You should also be aware of the prevalence of counterfeit, fake, and knock-off beauty products since these products are not regulated. They can have harmful effects on your skin if you’re not careful, too. 

What are the benefits of shopping for beauty dupes?

One of the main benefits of shopping for beauty dupes is that you might get the same value for a much more affordable price. It can be hard to keep up with all of the beauty trends and purchase the related products without spending a lot of money on them. But with beauty dupes, you can be part of the trends without having to suffer from expensive prices. 

How to save on your favorite beauty products

Here are some of our favorite beauty dupes and the products that they replicate. 



  • Dior’s Lip Oil: $35


  • Tower28 Shine On Jelly Lip Gloss: $14

Average Savings: 

  • $15

Lip savings tips

If you love a good glossy lip without the sticky feeling, lip oil is a great option. Here are some tips to help you find a lip oil you love for less.

Check Ingredients

Lip oil doesn’t have to be expensive to work well, look for products that incorporate vitamin A and E to help keep your lips healthy. In addition to hydrating and smoothing your lips, this product helps plump them.

Switch up colors

Be open to making color adjustments and trying different shades to find your favorite look. Playing with colors can drastically change and elevate your makeup. 

Skin Toner


  • Laneige Cream Skin Toner: $33


  • Good Light Moon Glow Milky Toning Lotion: $22

Average Savings: 

  • $11

Skin Toner Saving Tips

Skin toner is a great product to use for skin tightening, minimizing pores, and helps remove oils from your skin. Additionally, it helps aid the skin in retaining moisture without having to put an excessive amount of moisturizer on it.

Know your skin type

Depending on your skin type, it dictates what type of skin toner you should buy. Your skin type can be sensitive, dry, oily, or mixed. By observing your skin, whether it gets shiny or oily frequently or is more flakey, can help you find which type of skin toners you should use. 

Look out for ingredients

Once you know your skin type, you can easily see what ingredients can aid you. For oily skin look for ingredients such as salicylic acid, witch hazel, and alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs). For dryer skin, look for toners with glycerin or hyaluronic acid. Lastly if you have sensitive skin, look for toner with aloe vera. 



  • Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow Instant Soft-Focus Beauty Flash: $44


  • Milani Soft Focus Beauty Enhancer: $10 

Average Savings:

  • $34

Primer Saving Tips

Primer can drastically improve your makeup and allow it to stay on longer. Not only does it smooth out fine lines and dry patches but also it controls the shine from your foundation.

Know what type of primer you want

Depending on your skin type, it will alter what type of primer you want. If you have oily skin, you will want to purchase a matte primer. If you have dry skin you will want to find a hydrating or glossy one.

Avoid Ingredients that can cause irritation

When it comes to your skin, you don’t want to mess around with what you put on your face. Make sure to avoid products that contain denatured alcohol, ethylhexyl palmitate, or oleyl alcohol since they can cause irritation or break you out.

Facial Brush 


  • Foreo Luna Sonic Facial Brush: $139.30


  • Plum Beauty Mini Sonic Facial Brush: $29.99

Average Savings: 

  • $109.31

Facial Brush savings tips

Using a facial brush can get rid of dead skin cells faster through exfoliation. Additionally, using this type of product tightens your skin and allows your skin to produce more collagen.

Type of bristles on the brush

Try to find facial brushes that have silicone bristles rather than nylon ones. Silicone bristles are non-porous therefore it is harder for bacteria to build up in the bristles. Whereas nylon ones are more prone to which can cause irritation on the skin.

Make sure it will help and not hurt your skin

If you have sensitive skin or rosacea, make sure your dermatologist approves you using a facial brush. Sometimes the harshness of the bristles can do more harm than good. 

Peptide Cream


  • Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream: $68


  • The INKEY List Peptide Moisturizer: $15

Average Savings: 

  • $53

Peptide savings tips

Peptide cream has been known to improve the skin barrier, reduce wrinkles, create more elastic skin, and calm down inflammation. This type of cream has been a game changer for skin care routines. 

Ingredients in the product

If not clearly stated on the bottle, look at ingredients in the product to see if there are peptides in it. Peptides can be spotted by words that end in “peptide” or start with “palmitoyl.” Additionally, prefixes such as “di,” “tri,” “hexa,” or “oligo” also indicate amino acids in the peptide.

Skin care routine

Depending on your skin care routine, peptide cream may hurt your skin rather than benefit it. If your other products include retinol, tretinoin, vitamin c, or AHAs/BHAs avoid layering with peptide cream to prevent irritation.

Brow Pencil 


  • Precisely, My Brow Pencil from Benefit: $24.99


  • Milani Precision Brow: $8.99

Average Savings: 

  • $16

Brow Pencil savings tips

Brow pencils are a great natural way to define your brows. They can shape and fill in your brows enhancing your features.

Finding the right shade

Choosing the right color for a brow pencil can be difficult. Find the highlight color and base color of your hair. Once you dictate which one is which, find a brow pencil that represents your base hair color.

Know what pencil tip you want

Brow pencils can vary in tip types such as microbladed. If you want more individual and controlled lines in your lines, choose a single brow tip. However, if you want more synchronized lines, look for microblade type brow tips.

Full Coverage Concealer


  • Tarte Shape Tape – $30


  • Covergirl Trublend Undercover Concealer: $11.99

Average Savings: 

  • $18.01

Full Coverage Concealer saving tips

Full coverage concealer is a great way to cover dark circles, blemishes, and discoloration. However, due to the thickness of the product, it is hard to find one that naturally blends into the skin, 

Undertone colors

When searching for the best coverage and concealer, know what your undertone skin type is. Whether that be more red toned, cool toned, or neutral, this will help assist you when choosing the right shade.

Texture types

It is important to get a concealer that correlates with your skin type and other makeup products. If you have dry skin, look for oil based face products. If you mix a concealer with an oil base with a foundation that is water based, it can make your makeup look less cohesive. So, it is important to know what product bases are to ensure it lasts and you get the best results from the product.

Liquid Exfoliant


  • Paula’s Choice BHA Liquid Exfoliant: $29.50


  • COSRX BHA Power Liquid: $15 

Average Savings: 

  • $14.50

Liquid Exfoliant savings tips

Rather than brushing off dead skin cells, there are options such as liquid exfoliants to help dissolve them. This alternative is great for those with acne prone skin and those who have congested pores. 

Read the label

Make sure to look at the ingredients prior to purchasing a new product. Finding a good liquid exfoliant should contain either alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), or poly hydroxy acids (PHAs). 

Know what to avoid

When it comes to choosing a good exfoliate, make sure you know what to avoid. Exfoliators with hard grains, sugars, or salts can cause small incisions on the face harming your skin more than aiding it.

Cream blush


  • Cloud Paint Glossier: $18


  • Maybelline Cheek Heat Gel-Cream Blush: $8

Average Savings: 

  • $10

Cream blush savings tips

Cream blushes give a more youthful and natural look due to its dewey texture. Since it is cream based it gives a very natural soft effect.

Texture and Weight

Look for cream blushes that give a light-weight feel and not too oily. Try on some products prior to purchase to see if the cream sits on top of your makeup rather than blending in with the rest of your look.


Cream blush tends to be more pigmented than blush powders. Keep this in mind when choosing a color since it can be more vibrant than other powders. 



  • Fenty Beauty Trophy Wife Highlighter: $36


  • Spongebob Highlighter Wet’n’Wild: $6

Average Savings: 

  • $30

Highlighter savings tips

Highlighters draw attention to the face by lighting it up, which creates depth across the face. Also, highlighter quite literally highlights people’s natural features.

Shades and Undertones

Your highlighter should be two shades lighter than your natural skin tone. When choosing a highlighter, additionally find one with a similar undertone to you for a more natural effect.

Scale of pigmentation

Some enjoy having a bright highlighter and others enjoy a more natural effect. Due to this some products may be too intense or too dull depending on your preference. 

Beauty on a budget

Buying new beauty products shouldn’t break the bank. Enjoy these beauty dupes and try new makeup trends at an affordable price. Before you purchase any new products, it is important to look at the ingredients prior to buying them. Depending on your skin type and your undertones, some products may be better for you than others. 


What are dupes in cosmetics?

Beauty dupes are products that function similarly, and look similarly, to high-end products at a less expensive price.

What is a dupe product?

A dupe is a product that replicates a high-end one. Typically these products function and look similar while being at a cheaper price.

Is drugstore makeup just as good?

Whether drugstore makeup is good depends on the product and brand. Some products are just as good as the high-end ones as others lack in quality.

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