Beauty enthusiasts unite; the following advice will help you be kinder to your wallet while shopping online and in-stores. A simple, yet often overlooked, tip is be aware of the store’s return and exchange policies. If you’re transitioning to cruelty-free or toxic-free beauty products, Logical Harmony and The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database are useful resources.
Rewards: Sephora and Ulta Beauty are among the retailers who offer free rewards programs, which include perks such as annual discounts, deluxe samples, birthday rewards and special events. Drugstore shoppers can save, too with the CVS Beauty Club membership.
Stay social: Follow your favorite brands on social media to stay up-to-date on special offers and giveaways. If you’re not a social media fan, sign up for the company’s newsletter instead, which often earns you a discount or free shipping.
Earn cash back: Create free accounts on money-saving sites such as Ebates and Swagbucks to earn cash back on purchases or redeem shopping points for various gift cards. During holidays, Ebates often amps up its cash back percentage for many retailers. Also, it’s a central hub for checking all current promotions for your favorite stores. In the rare case a store is not listed on Ebates or Swagbucks, a search on Retailmenot.com may yield valid discount codes.
Discount sites: Groupon and Living Social are often the most budget-friendly options. Double your savings by going through Ebates or Swagbucks.
Blogger discounts: For brands made popular by beauty influencers, such as Morphe Brushes and Ofra Cosmetics, do a YouTube search for discount codes. Prefer drugstore makeup? YouTube is also valuable for reviews and product swatches. EmilyNoel83 has amassed a following for her in-depth, unbiased product reviews and tutorials. Follow beauty bloggers such as Nouveau Cheap who posts weekly roundups of the top beauty sales online and in-stores.
Recycle: M.A.C Cosmetics gives customers the option of a free lipstick in exchange for six empty containers of the brand’s products, their Viva Glam charity line of items is excluded. Also, in honor of Earth Day, April 22, certain brands, such as Zoya, offer recycling promotions.
Try before you buy: Ask for a sample of that new foundation or fragrance. At Sephora, you’re entitled to three samples per department. Makeup counters are often willing to give complimentary samples, too.