Drugstore dupes are big business. There's nothing quite like the smug satisfaction of stumbling across a high-street makeup buy that doesn't just look like your favourite high-end product but acts like it too. And thankfully, as affordable brands clock on to the fact we want harder-working products at lower prices, brilliant dupes are becoming more and more common.
Know where to look and you'll find foundations that are just as dewy as the best-selling beauty hall brands. There are liquid eyeliners that swipe on just as smooth as even the most expensive alternatives, and highlighters that impart a very similar kind of lit-from-within glow as ones with a price tag twice the size.
But to find them, you're going to need a hand: We've compiled a list of our favourite drugstore dupes that live up (and in some cases surpass) their idolised luxury cousins. Click through to the gallery below to discover the affordable alternatives that fill the makeup bags of the Byrdie editors.
Social media editor Alyss swears that this concealer is just as good as the kind of wands you'll find at luxury beauty counters the world over. It's light and creamy, and it stays put. The only downside? It comes in just four shades. Collection, consider this our plea to make some more.
It took losing her favourite MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Groundwork (£16) for deputy editor Shannon to discover this near second. It's not as hardy as the real deal and creases a little quicker, but is the perfect chestnut-y shade that makes a great base for a russet shadow. Worn alone, it gives eyelids a really modern tea-stained effect.
We've said it once and we'll say it again: These highlighter drops are seriously impressive. They're just as glowy as any luxe alternative you will find, and you can add them to your moisturiser, foundation or even cream blusher for skin that looks like it's in front of a permanent Lumee selfie light.
You could spend a fortune on liquid lipsticks these days, but you really needn't: Nyx's are so, so good and so, so affordable. The colours are just as vibrant as their more expensive peers, and the formula has none of that weird dry, cloying effect on lips.
The entire Byrdie team swears by drugstore mascaras anyway, but according to Editorial Director Amy, this one is especially noteworthy. It's powerful enough to scaffold even the most fragile of lashes extends far beyond the duty of its £11 price tag and leaves each individual hair looking long and glossy.
Serum foundations have become big news of late, partly down to our eternal search for glowier skin. And while the luxe beauty heavyweights have all had their fair go at cracking the ultimate formula, this affordable option from The Ordinary surpasses each and every one of them. It's dewy but not sticky, liquid but not watery, and it blends like every good foundation should—well.
It won't come as a surprise to hear that Beauty Pie's nail polishes are just as good as the ones your local nail salon keeps in stock, as like all of the brand's other products, they're made in the same factory as some of the top name brands. The polish goes on in thin (but opaque) layers and has the kind of tenacity that just can't be broken—even by the clumsiest of hands.
Our resident liquid eyeliner connoisseur (and Who What Wear UK's assistant editor) Elinor is a massive fan of this high-street alternative. It slicks on just as smooth as pricier versions, and as it sets to skin like glue, it doesn't budge. Well, until you want to remove it, that is.
Setting sprays are something you don't particularly want to spend your money on–but you need them to deliver. This one from CYO does the job like it's spendy rivals but won't break the bank.
Search in any beauty Facebook group or forum for a cheaper alternative to that cult eyebrow pencil everybody raves about, and this one is bound to come up. The nib is super tiny, like mechanical-pencil kind of tiny, meaning it draws on fine strokes that really do look like brow hairs.