Bet You Didn't Know Drugstore Makeup Could Do This

With fashion, we give ourselves free reign to splurge on basics. (Because, you'll totally wear that leather jacket for, like, ever.) But, when it comes to makeup, we stock up on our essentials — those everyday products that get us from point A to point B — at the drugstore. The cheaper, the better: No muss, no fuss. And, let's be honest, no pizzazz.

But, just because your makeup came from CVS doesn't mean it has to be...well, basic. In fact, some budget finds are the best for experimenting with your look. Because, hey — if you hate the way something turns out, it won't set you back more than a cup of coffee.

To prove it, we enlisted the help of Janessa Paré — makeup guru and owner of a seriously imaginative cosmetics palette. The challenge: Pick five products that cost under $10 each, and whip up seven different looks using just them. Impossible? We thought so, too. But, just ahead, Paré shows us exactly what our drugstore makeup can really do.

Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
The Goods
Wet n Wild Color Icon Liner Pencil in Taupe, $1.49 Buy
Jordana Easyliner for Eyes in Bliss, $0.99 Buy
NYX Cosmetics Two Timer Dual Ended Eyeliner, $9.99 Buy
Revlon PhotoReady Eye Art Lid+Line+Lash in Burnished Bling, $7.19 Buy
Rimmel London Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick in Bordeaux, $3.94 Buy
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Baby Blues
The simplest way to jazz up a metallic smoky eye? By lining your waterline in an unexpected hue, like aqua blue. It will contrast with the gilded glitter and add a seriously sweet accent.
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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
First, use the opaque side of Revlon's PhotoReady Eye Art to rim your entire eye. Sweep it under your lower lashline, and then cover your lid, stopping at your crease. "Tilt your chin back when applying to the upper lid," Paré says. "Wherever the first crease in your lid is, that's where the shadow should stop."
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Next, pull out your blue liner and go to town on your waterline. Paré suggests starting from the inner corner of your eye, and then winging out the line a touch. "How far you extend it is entirely up to you," she says. But, if your eyes are a little close-set, don't concentrate too much pigment on the inner corners.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Your go-to eye look just got a serious spring upgrade.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
High-Shine Brows
You can't exactly show up to your 9 a.m. board meeting with glittery brows. But, if you're interested in giving this trend a test-drive, reach for sparkle that's a bit more neutral. A bronzy-gold is an easier pill to swallow than a sparkling green, you dig?

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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
"Follow the natural grain of the hair, using the glitter [end of the Revlon Eye Art]," Paré says. You should use the same technique as if you were filling in your brows with a regular pencil. Flick in an upward motion toward the inner ends of your brows, and then draw out.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Once you're done applying, you can clean up any wayward glitter with a cotton swab. Then, get to brushing. "This will help break up the glitter that could stick your brows together, giving it a more natural look," Paré says.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
These brows are next-level bold.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Drive Me In-Stain
One of our favorite looks for spring? Completely bare eyes, an intense pout, and a slight wash of color on the cheeks. It's the ultimate in lazy-girl beauty — all you need is one product and a clean set of fingers.

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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Don't apply your lipstick straight from the tube for this look. Wash your hands, and then rub your pointer finger into the pigment. "Use a pressing motion, and follow the natural shape of your mouth," Paré says. "This will create the perfect edge with just the right amount of softness."
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
For your cheeks, don't double-dip your fingers — just use what's left of the pigment. "Smile, and swipe the remaining pigment along the apples of your cheeks," Paré says. Nervous about this shade? She suggests trying it out under your foundation for a caught-outside-on-a-crisp-day flush.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
This is officially on retainer as our casual-day, easy look.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Double It Up
We totally dig the mod vibe of dual liner. But, can it look cute without feeling ultra-dated? Paré says 100% — you just have to be careful with your shapes.

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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Start by sweeping on that blue liner. "Don't worry if you make a mistake here, because you're following right up by lining the lashline in black," Paré says. Draw the liner on from corner to corner, and make sure you're getting it on the visible part of the lid. "If you don't have a visible part of the eyelid when you're looking in the mirror, try applying it to the crease or contour," she says. Whatever you do, don't wing out the blue. That's a one-way ticket to looking too retro.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Follow with a slick, black line from corner to corner. Make sure to keep this line thinner than the blue.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
"The most important thing is to square off the edge of your liner," Paré says. This will keep it looking modern. You can either freehand the square, or draw out a flick and then knock off the tip with a cotton swab.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
You'll get a flirty little wink of color whenever you blink.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Freckle Face
Faux freckles are a major trend for spring. Even if you don't have spots, faking them is an easy DIY to play around with. "Freckles add instant youthfulness," Paré says.
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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Since this look is basically bare — save for the freckles — you're going to want to give your face a good frame. Start by filling in your brows like you normally would.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Then, start drawing on those spots. Paré's perfect technique: "Press the liner onto your skin, twist, and then pull off," she says. "Make sure to hold the pencil [perpendicular to] your face to get a good shape."

Keep the placement of your spots sporadic, and make some of the freckles larger and darker than others. "To make them look a little more natural, pat them out with your finger," Paré says. Don't forget to place a few on your nose.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
"Freckle face" just became a major compliment.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Give 'Em A Wink
Dig glitter, but aren't sure how to make it work for you? Two words: sparkly lashes. That's right. Adding a touch of sparkle instead of mascara is a subtle, yet sassy way to incorporate some shine.

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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
First things first: Give your lashes a really good curl. Then, use the glitter end of the Revlon tube to apply the pigment in an upward, sweeping motion. "You want your lashes to clump together," Paré says. "It will help the glitter to stick and stay on the lashes." Repeat the motion on your bottom lashes.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Then, pat some lipstick on the center, and blend it out. "Make sure your lips are well-moisturized, or else it won't blend," Paré says.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Glitter lashes — who would've thunk they could look so grown-up?
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Walk The Line
A reverse cat-eye is a cool-girl way to turn a classic trend subversive. And, a lower-lashline flick is actually a lot easier to pull off than its classic cousin — you don't have to worry about your lashes getting in the way.
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Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Start by freehanding a line from the inner corner to about the middle of your iris. Paré says to make sure not to make it too thick — it will make your lower eye look heavy.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Next, grab a business card to draw on the upper flick. "Place it along the natural angle of your eye and just draw up," Paré says. Clean up any wayward smudges with a cotton swab.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
Talk about taking a trend and flipping it upside-down.
Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.
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