Let’s face it: makeup can be an expensive hobby. While we all expect high-end brands to be pricey, even drugstore brands have been hiking up prices. What’s worse is that, after you buy the makeup, you need certain tools in order to properly care for or apply it!
Luckily, you don’t have to break the bank when buying certain beauty tools, because you can actually get some good quality stuff from your local dollar store.
When you’re buying something for $1, there’s always the risk that you’re getting a piece of junk. For that reason, there are certain items available at the dollar store that I won’t be mentioning, because they’re simply not worth spending even $1 on. However, there are some good quality beauty-related items you can get at the dollar store.
- Pump Bottles
These little gems are one of my favorite dollar store finds. I love to fill them with makeup or nail-polish remover for easy and mess-free distribution onto a cotton ball.
- Cotton Swabs/Cotton Balls/Cotton Rounds
Drug stores charge more for cotton rounds than they do for cotton balls, and if you’re like me, that makes you wary to spend the extra money, despite how convenient the rounds are for removing eye makeup. That’s why I never by my cotton rounds anywhere but at the dollar store anymore. One pack of cotton swabs for a dollar will last me a month.
- Makeup Sponges
Whether you don’t like the idea of reusing makeup sponges, you don’t want to spend money on the Beauty Blender, (see an article on a cheap dupe here) or you like to use cosmetic sponges for baking or undereye concealer, you should definitely check out the dollar store’s options. I got a pack of fifty sponges for $1, and I use them whenever I don’t have the time to clean my Beauty Blender
- Rubbing Alcohol
I go through a lot of rubbing alcohol. Not only is it great for cleaning and disinfecting my foundation palettes, I like to use it to sterilize my brushes between washings. I just pour a little onto a paper towel and swirl my brush on it after use to keep it cleaner in between washes.
- Makeup Brush Holders
The dollar store is practically a miniature container store. You can get all kinds of dishes and glasses. I like to buy shallow decorative glass vases to use as containers for openly storing my makeup brushes. If you like to display your makeup brushes, then this is a great idea.
- Makeup Brushes
Believe it or not, you can actually get some quality makeup brushes at the dollar store. Brands like Wet N’ Wild have a strong presence at discount stores, and the pink and white Wet N’ Wild brush collection is full of quality brushes.
If you’re someone who likes to use tape for eyeshadow or eyeliner application, then you should definitely be buying your tape at the dollar store. The thing about dollar store tape is that it’s usually pretty poor quality. While that’s not good if you’re trying to tape something together, it’s great when you’re putting it on the delicate skin around your eyes. It’s sticky enough to adhere to your skin, but weak enough that you won’t have to tug too much to remove it, meaning you won’t be causing any premature wrinkles!
- Baby Oil
Baby oil probably has a hundred different uses around the house, but my two favorites are for removing waterproof makeup, and breaking down makeup on my makeup brushes before deep cleaning them.
- Baby Shampoo
Baby shampoo is my go-to cleaner for makeup brushes and sponges. I use a lot, and it can get expensive. That’s why I always go with the dollar store brand, now.
- Baby Powder
Baby powder is great for baking, mattifying your makeup, adding volume to your lashes, and as a substitute for dry shampoo. If you’re getting it at the dollar store, try to avoid talc-based formulas, and go for the corn-starch based stuff instead.
- Foundation “Palettes”
Not all foundations are kind enough to come with a pump. In that case, you’re either going to have to use the back of your hand, (which I can’t stand to do, since I always manage to get it on my clothes), or you can use a palette. I like to get glass plates or ashtrays from the dollar store to use as foundation palettes. This is especially useful if you mix foundations, or use loose powders.
- DIY Makeup Brush Drying Rack
Drying your brushes without a rack can be risky, as laying them down at an angle to dry can result in them being damaged. Avoid the risk by trying out this simple hack.
You can get little grated shelves at the dollar store to help sort things in your cabinets. Sometimes, they also have locker shelves on sale. They look something like this:
By stretching a few rubber bands across these racks, as shown in this tutorial, you can create a DIY brush drying tree. This is an excellent alternative to the pricey alternatives you can get from high-end brands.
- Organizing baskets
Do you just throw all of your makeup into a drawer and call it a day? I used to do that with many of my tools. I ended up having to spend a lot of time searching for stuff, and on occasion, things got damaged. I found a bunch of narrow baskets at the dollar store that are perfect for fitting inside drawers, and they’ve allowed me to sort my tools and makeup for easier access:
- Nail Polish Remover
My local dollar store has both acetone, and non-acetone nail polish removers available for just $1.
- Brush Scrubbing Mats
If you’ve been eyeing the Sigma Spa Brush Cleaning Mat, but you don’t want to spend the money, take a trip to the dollar store and pick up a silicone oven mitt or potholder. These have textured surfaces that you can use to dig your brushes into when cleaning. It’s a great alternative for the Sigma mat, and it’s only $1!