9 Cheap AF Beauty Must Haves If You Can't Afford High-End Makeup

Stay looking great on a budget.

If you're as active on social media as I am, you're probably constantly bombarded with images of beauty gurus and influencers flaunting perfect makeup looks that you wish you could re-create. 

I mean, nothing's stopping you from killing the makeup game too! Except for your bank account, of course... It's no secret that a lot of popular makeup products are SUPER expensive, and that makes it hard to build a good collection for yourself!

Anyone who's been to Sephora knows how easy it is to walk in and drop $200 no problem, and often times that's all it costs for four little products! If you look hard enough though, you can actually find some seriously great products at your local drugstore that will keep you serving looks all summer long.

We've done some research on the best of the best, and have created a list of some incredibly cheap staples to add to your makeup bag so you can splurge on other things, like clothes, and food, obviously. Have a look, test them out, and let us know what you think!

1. E.L.F Precision Liquid Eyeliner

Price: CAD $3.97

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Finding a good liquid eyeliner can be time consuming, and expensive. Many drugstore liners crease easily, dry out immediately after purchasing, or wear off before your day even starts. The infamous E.L.F. Precision Liquid Eyeliner is just $3.97 at Walmart, and will create the perfect black wing that lasts all day!


2. NYX Cosmetics Soft Matte Lip Cream

Price: CAD $9

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I was recently gifted some of these, and I'm obsessed. When I go for a matte liquid lipstick, I tend to buy Anastasia Beverly Hills or Two Faced, but those run for a much higher price, and to be honest, are somewhat overrated. The formula for these guys is super lightweight, not drying at all, and they've got an incredible shade range!


3. L'Oreal Paris Voluminous Mascara

Price: CAD $5.97

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I'm primarily a falsies kinda gal, but when I'm going for a more natural look, or don't have time to apply lashes, this is one of my tried and true favourites. As the name of the mascara suggests, it's super voluminous, giving your lashes that bold, dark black look, without getting too clumpy! Plus, it's only $5.97 at Walmart.


4. Rimmel London Natural Bronzer

Price: CAD $5.98

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If you're just learning how to contour, and don't want to spend a ton on a high-end, professional palette, this product is a great starting place! The Rimmel London Natural Bronzer gives you a perfect summer glow, without making you appear orange or cakey. You can pick it up at Walmart for just $5.98.


5. Maybelline New York Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser Primer

Price: CAD $9.96

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If you didn't already know, primer should definitely be a part of your makeup routine. It can be pretty pricey if you're shopping at Sephora, but the Maybelline New York Baby Skin Pore Eraser is only $9.96 at Walmart, and seriously works wonders. Your skin will stay super healthy, and your foundation will look flawless!


6. Maybelline Baby Lips Moisturizing Lip Balm

Price: CAD $3.74

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Chapstick should definitely be something in your makeup bag, especially if you're prone to sunburns like me. Keep your lips moisturized and hydrated with Maybelline's Baby Lips. You can get clear coloured ones if you're into a sheer look, or fun, bright colours if you're looking for a tinted look!


7. NYX Studio Finishing Powder

Price: CAD $12

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In this upcoming hot summer weather, you'll want to make sure you're setting your makeup so that it doesn't melt off. Most good quality setting powders are $40+, but the NYX Studio Finishing Powder is only $12, and will keep your foundation in place all day long, even through the heat!


8. L'Oreal True Match Foundation

Price: CAD $15.96

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When I can't afford my usual Fenty Beauty, I'll head to Walmart and pick up a bottle of the L'Oreal True Match for just under $16. It is a bit more expensive than other drugstore foundations, but trust me when I say that a little bit goes a long way, and the bottle lasts forever! I love that they have warm, cool, and neutral tones, as well as a great overall shade range so the foundation can work for just about everyone!


9. Maybelline New York Total Temptation Eyebrow Definer Pencil

Price: CAD $11.99

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I personally prefer pommade and liquid brow products, but for anyone who loves brow pencils, I've read nothing but good reviews about this one! The pencil is just $11.99, and creates full but natural looking brows, so you can avoid suffering from block-brow embarrassment. 

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Hayley Hynes content creator + hedgehog mom + third year journalism student at mount royal university. i have an affinity for rap music, pop culture, makeup, fashion, writing, animals, travelling, and much more. i’m not a kardashian, but you can keep up with me @hayleyhynes 🌻