Pretty Thrifty: 7 Looks From Your Drugstore

We all get a thrill when we see the NARS holiday collection wrapped in a pretty bow, or the new MAC liquid eyeliner that promises to last through hell and back. But, when a beauty product gives us the luxe looks of runway stardom — at the price point of a Costco hot dog — we cue up our happy dance.
So, it's no surprise we tasked makeup wizard Tiffany Patton to create seven high-octane makeup looks fit for a holiday party with just five beauty products from the drugstore. And, boy, did she come through. Patton transforms a black gel liner into a burgundy lip stain, a deceptively unassuming lip balm into a highlighter, and more...oh, so much more.
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Get the most bang for your buck, literally, with these seven runway-worthy makeup looks, courtesy of your local drugstore, ahead.


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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
L'Oréal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H in Blackest Black, $9.95, available at L'Oréal; Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm in Quenched, $3.99, available at ULTA; Prestige Waterproof Automatic Lip Liner in Brick Red, $5.25, available at Prestige Cosmetics; Revlon Illuminance Crème Shadow in Moonlit Jewels, $5.99, available at ULTA; NP Set Day-To-Night Liquid Eyeliner Duo in Los Cabos, $15, available at Target.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Grungy & Sweet
"If there’s a theme for 2013, it’s that grunge is back," says Patton. So, our first look toughens up the classic red lip, keeping it matte and artfully smudged for a grunge effect, with a neutral but glimmery eye. Patton says this look can be done with just a few steps that "you can create with your fingers." Sounds good to us!

Vintage sweater.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Prep your skin with foundation and concealer, then apply the golden cream color from the eyeshadow quad to the eyelids and along the lower lashline. Next, apply the bronze color in the quad just to the crease and upper lashline for some contouring.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Use the red lipliner to fill in the lips just shy of the lip line.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Using your pinkie finger, blend the color outwards towards the lip line for a "deconstructed" look. "You’re toughening up the lip by smearing the edge," she says, which is why she traced slightly inside the lip line. (We’re talking a tough-girl smudge, not a Courtney Love outside-the-edges smear.) And, bonus: "With a smudged lip line, you don’t have to worry about it looking perfect," says Patton.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Oh, but we're not done. For even more drama, dab some black eyeliner onto a lip brush and apply it to the center of the lips for a wine-stained effect. Brilliant, eh?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
For the last step, try the trendy glossy lid by adding a dab of lip balm on top of your eyeshadow.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
See how we turned a girly, everyday red lip into a grungy, yet sweet finish?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Androgynous Glam
Our next look de-emphasizes the mouth and brings visual interest up toward the brow for a more androgynous vibe. Think Ziggy Stardust.

Something Else by Natalie Wood dress.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
To create a more “masculine” look, apply gold cream shadow under the brow. “This makes the brow more prominent, making it the focus of the shadow. It’s the reverse of contouring the crease, which creates a more feminine look," says Patton.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
To lighten the brows, mix the gold and bronze cream shadows together to create a shade that's a touch lighter than your natural color. Then take a spoolie brush (a.k.a. a reusable mascara wand) into the mixture and brush the color into the brows. An expert tip? Backcombing the brows ensures that you get all of the product in. "Things that shimmer blend in better," resulting in a softening effect, says Patton.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
For some natural definition, apply brown shadow to both the upper and lower lashlines.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Then, take the gold end of the NP Set liner and swipe a thin line along the upper lashline.
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Bare lip, glittery eye, and some serious brows make for a rockin' glam look Bowie would be proud of.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Pretty In Pink
Who says party makeup has to be all smoke and shadows? For a natural take on a festive look, all you need are these four products.

Rehab top.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
For the eyes, go for a glitter cat-eye, using the bronze end of the dual liquid liner.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Then, add some definition without taking away from the cat-eye. To do that, Patton says to line just the upper waterline. Lift your lid up, and you'll find the waterline underneath your lashes. Press your angled brush onto the waterline in a gentle, stamping motion. "This adds emphasis to the top lid without creating a line, making your lashes look fuller and creating a contrast between the whites of your eyes and the black liner," says Patton.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
With the gold end of the dual liner, line the cat-eye on the tips. Make sure to keep some of the bronze visible.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Then, mix the red lipliner with the lip balm on the back of your hand (which heretofore will be referred to as a “hand palette”) to create a sheer pinky blush. Apply the wash of color onto the apple of your cheeks for a natural flushed finish.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Use the same pinky mix for your lips, pressing into them for a stained effect. As you can see, lip balm can be used to dilute any bold color to make it more wearable.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Even without a crimson pout, you can rock a glamorous look with just a splash of glitter and some pretty pink lips. Where's the party?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Classic Hollywood
Channel the retro glamour of old Hollywood with this modern interpretation. Bombshell waves are optional.

The Reformation Monach Dress; Sweater, stylist's own.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Mix the gold and bronze colors from the shadow quad on your "hand palette," then apply the mix to your lids with your finger.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Using an angled brush, apply black gel liner to the upper lashline and the outer corner of your lower lashline. Make sure the tips don't meet to create an interesting graphic detail.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Next, use the brown cream shadow to contour your cheeks, starting from the hairline and hugging your cheekbones. “This is a contour look, not a blush look,” says Patton.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
For your lips, grab the red lipliner again, but this time, completely line your lips and make the red as saturated as possible.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Since this liner has a matte finish, add some sheen to the lips with some of that magical lip balm.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Bold yet simple, classic yet glam — and did we mention we got this look with four products?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Graphic Chic
Prepare to receive a lot of ooh-ing and ahh-ing with this Blade Runner-meets-Sophia Loren look that Patton describes as “futuristic sophisticated.” The key to this look is Patton’s use of the gel liner as the base before layering on jeweled cream shadow and glitter. Sometimes, more is more.

Acne Loyal Wool Sky Blue, $320, available at Acne.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Using the black gel liner, create a thick line on the upper lashline. “It’s not about covering the whole lid, but about creating a block shape," says Patton. You might want to use an eyeshadow brush or a flat brush here. Patton suggests having Q-tips soaked in makeup remover at the ready to clean up and shape this graphic line as needed.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Layer the blue cream shadow on top of the graphic black, buffing the edges out. “You get the shape you want with the gel liner, then you add blue on top to diffuse it," she says.
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For the trifecta of eye smolder, top it off with gold glitter, dabbing it just above the black liner. The gold softens the eye.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
With an eye this intense, you definitely don’t want a competing lip, so slick on some lip balm to give your lips a subtle gloss.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
This look is everything. With the oversized sky blue sweater, the sleek and softly waved hair, and the killer eyes to bring it all home, this is our dream look.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
The Jewel-Toned Smoky Eye
The smoky eye is like the little black dress of party-time makeup. You can’t not look ready to go out. Patton amps up the look with a jewel-toned lid for extra sparkle.

Topshop romper.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Start this look by rimming the upper and lower lashlines with black liner, bringing the corners together. Don’t forget your lower waterline!
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Then, take the brown cream shadow into the crease. This will act as a border for the smoky eye. "It’s helpful to use a color similar to your skin tone as a guideline, so that you don’t create anything too big," says Patton. Next, apply the brown shadow just above the black line on the upper lashline, blending them together. Lastly, take your brush and apply the shadow to your lower lashline, making sure to flick upwards at the outer corner.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Layer the emerald-green cream shadow on top of the black liner and blend into the crease.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Finally, we're going back to our handy-dandy lip balm. This time, we're using it as a makeshift highlighter: above the brows, on top of the cheekbones, and on the inner corners of the eyes.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
To finish the look, dab gold cream shadow on the lips. This gives a sparkly polish to the look without competing with the dramatic eye.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Who needs jewelry when your eyes are your best accessories?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
The Sunset Smoky Eye
Patton shows off her makeup wizardry by creating a whole new color on her "hand palette" with the same four products. This smoky eye recalls a sunset because the base color she uses — a gorgeous reddish burgundy she concocted— peeks through the brown layers. Instant eye drama.

Zara Polo Neck Sweater, $59.90, available at Zara.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Mix the red lipliner and brown cream shadow on the back of your hand until you get a burgundy color. Then, using a fluffy eyeshadow brush, apply the mixture onto your lids, concentrating the color on your lashline and feathering the color up towards your crease. Apply the color to your lower lashline as well.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Using your fingers, apply the brown cream shadow to your lids and crease. Using a brush, add more brown shadow to your crease and inner corners. "Trace the burgundy. The red needs to be an accent seen behind the brown," says Patton. You also want to create a barrier between the red shadow and your lashline so that your eyes don't look tired.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
For a hint of sparkle, add gold liquid liner to the inner corners of your eyes.
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
Then, revisit the ol' gold-shadow-on-the-lips trick. Why reinvent the wheel, right?
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Photographed by Amelia Alpaugh.
To finish the look, mix the gold and bronze cream shadows together to create a bronzer. Apply it under your cheeks for some depth. Make sure to blend it in so that it looks natural.
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How can you not fall in love with this romantic, sultry look? We're sold.
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