If you’re anything like us, you live for a good insider secret—especially one that’s celebrity-approved. We’ll spend hours scouring Instagram after a red carpet event just to see how Julianne Hough styles her hair or what new skin care products Taraji P. Henson turns to for a luxe glow. Although, our absolute favorite finds are the mega-affordable drugstore products that celebrity makeup artists use to give their starlet clients flawless beauty looks. We’re talking the kind that send us running to the CVS on our block with only $20 in tow. Below, we talked to two major MUAs to see what drugstore products are always stocked in their makeup kits.
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It’s no secret that ChapStick is the LBD of the lip balm world: simple, classic, and entirely dependable. We’d like to make the case now that little black dresses are actually the ChapStick of fashion. Though initially invented in the early 1880s, ChapStick is still the product we lock lips with at the first sign of any dryness—and so do all of our favorite makeup artists. Matin Maulawizada, MUA of Mandy Moore and Rachel Bilson, refreshes client’s lip looks with the pigmented balm.
Maulawizada says, “I love ChapStick Total Hydration in Pink Nude ($5) because it’s a perfect lip tint to brighten the lip on their own or be used to refresh a lipstick during the day with out compromising the texture of any given lip products, i.e. liquid mattes.” With seven different shades available that each give buildable coverage and just a whisper of color, we’re convinced that if this tinted update on the classic is good enough for Rachel Bilson, we’ll take one in every hue.
Lisa Aharon, the celebrity makeup marvel who matched Rachel Brosnahan’s recent Emmy award to a gilded smokey eye on the red carpet, turns to another tried-and-true drugstore treasure: L’Oréal Paris True Match Super Blendable Foundation ($7). “This has been my number-one inexpensive foundation recommend for at least a decade now. The range of both warm and cool color options is unbeatable and the texture is super smooth,” she says. “Versatility in any product is very important to me so the buildable coverage from light to medium is also a key factor in why I love this foundation.” Each of the 32 shades is packed with vitamins A and C to provide a flawless, light coverage that moisturizes.
Although L’Oréal’s foundation certainly creates a complexion you won’t want to wash off at the end of the day, makeup remover is a must (even if you’re a celebrity). Maulawizada loves gentle giant Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes & Face Wipes ($5). “They are a great makeup remover and very effective. Plus I can find them easily at any pharmacy.” A single swipe with this alcohol-free, award-winning wipe is mighty enough to take down the toughest waterproof mascara and long-wearing lip stain.
Speaking of supreme drugstore sorcery, a quick google search for Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream ($37) will yield a world of wonder and odd anecdotes from committed buyers. This supernatural, yet seemingly simple product—it has just six ingredients listed—claims to rectify everything from surgical scars and tangled tresses to a lack of lube. Aharon chooses to use Egyptian Magic as a highlight along cheekbones and lids for a bewitching makeup look.
“This is one of those super products that can be used from head-to-toe and for a number of concerns like dry skin or eczema,” she says. “The natural ingredients are super healing and hydrating. Along with being great as a moisturizer, it’s amazing for achieving glossy, wet makeup looks,” she explains. “A little dab on the eyelid gives a sheer shiny pop of light which is fantastic for creating dimension.”