Smart beauty shopping: three questions to ask yourself before you buy

Visiting the cosmetics section of department store is sort of like running the gauntlet (an ancient form of punishment wherein one must run between two rows of assailants who repeatedly strike at one’s person).  A useful analogy, considering the crap women have to put up with from beauty retailers, who are coming at them from all sides with the latest products.

One way to stop overzealous sales people in their tracks is to pretend that they are, for example, your husband, your child or a pet.  “No” should be much easier using this simple visualization tool.

In addition to growing a pair, here are three questions you can ask yourself before you lay out your hard-earned cash on a new beauty product:

What’s my budget?  Don’t get sucked into the vortex of luxury cosmetic brands if you can’t afford it –  expensive products aren’t necessarily better and if you believe that they are, then you should be able to support your beliefs financially.

Do I like the scent and or/ texture of this product?  This is an especially important question when buying skin care products, which only help you if you’re consistent with them.  You should like the way a product smells and how it feels on your skin so that you’ll actually use it.

Do I like the packaging?  For some, packaging is a major factor when making a cosmetic purchase.  Will it be on display, or tucked away in a cabinet, and if the former, do you care what it looks like?  Maybe not, but a poorly designed compact or palette, the kind that break almost instantly, get scratched up, and/or become a crumbled mess kind of bum me out.  I look for packaging that suits my simple aesthetic and that delivers a satisfying “click” of quality, like the seat belt of a fine German automobile.

Now go get ‘em, tiger….


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