For the average woman, a trip to the drugstore is full of danger and intrigue. Beauty and wellness products abound, many of which promise to accomplish extraordinary feats, such as "defying gravity." But be forewarned, the only thing that will diminish with many of these products is the size of your wallet. Not to worry, I've invested my own time — and money— and rounded up a list of the five best drugstore products on the market, so you don't have to waste a dime, or a moment, on products that don't deliver.
The brow have it
Revlon's Pre/Post Tweezing Cream is one of the products that I plucked off the shelves at my local drugstore expecting to be disappointed. After all, what were the odds that for just six bucks one could buy an easy to apply product that would miraculously make tweezing more effective?
Amazingly, this drugstore darling delivers, actually making hair noticeably easier to grip when tweezing and less painful to remove. Additionally, Pre/Post Tweezing Cream soothes skin and eradicates redness with a blend of aloe, cucumber and algae extracts. Get it for $5.99 at Walgreens.
Lashes that last
I'm eternally skeptical about inexpensive mascaras so I have to give full credit to a close friend who insisted that I spend $8.49 on CoverGirl's Lash Blast, left. Housed in a thick orange container, I was even more cynical when I pulled out the product's bulky applicator — normally a dead giveaway that the mascara will end up on my eye lids, not my eyelashes. But Lash Blast defied all my preconceived notions, serving up surprisingly thick and full lashes.
Turns out the oversized applicator works brilliantly, in fact the CoverGirl calls it a "volumizing brush" designed to amp up lashes thanks to 50 percent more bristles than the leading blush. Smudge-proof, smear-proof and hypoallergenic, the volumizing mascara is also available in a waterproof formula. Get it for the MSRP of $8.69 at drugstores locally.
Mining for minerals
As you probably know, I'm a stickler about mineral makeup. But even I could find no fault with Maybelline's Mineral Powder. Free of preservatives, fragrances, fillers and oils, this triple-refined powder foundation is available in eight shades to suit skin tones from the palest to the darkest.
Applied with the included natural kabuki brush, this powder offers up long lasting coverage that has been recognized with best in beauty awards from Oprah Magazine, Self Magazine and now, yours truly.
This isn't the first time I've paid my respects to Milani's Easy Lipliner Retractable Pencil, and it looks like it won't be the last. After testing 10,000 products over the years, I still turn to Milani's lipliner in "cherry pie" every time I wear red lipstick.
This affordable pencil goes on smoothly and stays for hours without feathering or bleeding. The product is so good that I pick up several each time I head to the drugstore for fear that they'll discontinue this beloved beauty bargain. Get it for just $4.49 at Walgreens.
A product I picked up at CVS and use every day is Organix Coconut Milk Split Ends Mender. Thanks to coconut oil, as well as silk and keratin proteins, this product keeps my naturally curly hair soft and shiny in even the most humid of weather. Organix features sulfate-free, organic ingredients while boasting results similar to those of much pricier brands. Best of all, it sells for only $6.99 at CVS and Walgreens.
— Carolyn Brundage is the founder of PrettyCity.com, a guide to all that is hip and happening in local beauty. Need beauty advice? Email Carolyn at firstname.lastname@example.org