Top 10(ish) Drugstore(ish) Products Under $20(ish)

We've all been there - we're watching a YouTube tutorial on how to do a bomb smokey eye and then realize all the products being used add up to the down payment on a house. Now what?! 

I have 3 dollars.jpg

I've come up with a list of my favorite products for under $20! But I gotchu, most of these are even under $10! The majority of these you can find at Target/Walmart, Ulta, and a couple you'll need to order online, but trust me when I say it's worth it! 

When people talk about makeup they often forget one of THE MOST IMPORTANT PARTS - skin prep! A hydrated, healthy base is going to make your foundation wear so much better throughout the day. Now let me preface this by saying I think if you're going to splurge on something, it should be skincare products. I would choose a solid skincare routine over the newest eye-shadow palette any day of the week! I also understand that sometimes that just isn't an option. I chose the brand No7 for several reasons but one of the things I like the most about it is they have different options depending on your skin type and what your skincare needs are. Everything is clearly labeled so it takes the guessing-game out of it. Here are my top 3 recommendations for skincare products:

1) $10 - No.7 Beautiful Skin Melting Gel Cleanser - the reason I love this cleanser so much is because it starts as a gel and turns in to a milk cleanser once you start rubbing it in to your skin. It does a great job of taking off makeup and gunk that's built up on your skin throughout the day! 

No7 Day Cream.jpeg

2) $15 - No.7 Beautiful Skin Day Cream - They have several different formulas depending on what type of skin you have. These day creams have SPF 15 which is really important to remember in your skin care routine! SPF is SO SO important to prevent wrinkles and protect your skin!  

No7 Night Cream.jpeg

3) $21 - No.7 Early Defense Premiere Defense Night Cream - This product is meant to help protect youthful skin. I love night creams because your skin cells regenerate when you're sleeping. It also doesn't hurt to get a little extra moisture as the air gets colder and dryer! Again, depending on what your skincare needs are they have several different types of night creams to choose from.

Sticking with the face let's move on to foundation! L'Oreal has a line called Infallible that a lot of people love! 

Infallible Pro Glow.jpeg

4) $13 - L'Oreal Infallible Pro-Glow Foundation - This formula is great for those of you who love that healthy glow! It's ideal for people who tend to have skin that's more on the dry side of the spectrum.

Infallible Pro Matte.jpeg

5) $13 - L'Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte 24HR Foundation - The matte formula would be ideal for those of you who get oily throughout the day. 

Once you have on your foundation you'll want to add some dimension back in to your face which is where your bronzers, highlighters, and blushes come in! 

NYX Matte Bronzer.jpeg

6) $9 - NYX Matte Bronzer - When you're looking for a bronzer you'll want to get something that's matte. If it has shimmer in it it's going to make you look weird, trust me on this one. 

Benefit Hoola Bronzer.jpg

7) $15 - Benefit Hoola Matte Bronzer - If you're willing to spend a few more dollars, Benefit has a great bronzer! This shade works on most skin tones and goes on beautifully. You can find this at Ulta & Sephora.

Makeup Geek Blush2.jpg

8) $10 - Makeup Geek Blush - You have to order Makeup Geek products online, but trust me when I say it's worth the wait!! In my opinion, you won't be able to beat the price for the quality of products they provide. Think MAC, but half the price. 


Maybelline Master Strobing Stick Highlighter.jpeg

9) $7 - Maybelline Master Strobing Stick - Okay, I'm going to be honest and say I haven't actually used this product BUT I love cream highlighters and this one got great reviews. Creamy highlighters wear beautifully and have a more natural look vs a powder (in my opinion). I like to rub some on to my finger and then pat it in to the high points of my cheekbones. 

Moving along to the eyes! I'm incredibly picky when it comes to my eye products! I mean, the eyes are the window to the soul so they better look good! :P Ain't nobody got time to struggle with blending their shadows and crusty looking eyeliner. 

Makeup Geek eyeshadows.jpg

10) $6 - Makeup Geek Eyeshadow - YOU GUYS! These are my favorite eye shadows, hands down. They blend beautifully and are seriously pigmented. Remember when we were talking about those amazing blushes? Same brand. You truly cannot beat the price for the quality. Just don't forget to order a Z-Palette with them. They comes as singles so you can create your own eye shadow palette. 

Maybelline Eyeliner.jpeg

11) $7 - Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Eyeliner - This is actually my first choice of eyeliner that I use on clients. It's smudgeproof, waterproof, and super black. The formula is nice n' creamy so it glides on nicely!


12) $10 - L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara - This is an oldie but a goodie for me! I've used this since high school and it's never done me wrong. 

Lipsticks can be tricky. Some people want matte lips, some people want hydrating lipsticks, some people only like lipgloss, so I chose NYX as my product of choice for this category. I really like all 3 of their formulas!

NYX Lipstick.jpeg

BONUS! I'm going to do a separate blog post about brushes because there is a LOT to talk about but the tools you use to apply makeup makes a HUGE difference! Relatively speaking, on a budget, Sigma & Real Techniques would be my go-to brands for the basics. 

Sigma brushes.jpg
real techniques brushes.jpg
Real Techniques Blender.jpg

I hope this brings back some hope that you can achieve beautiful makeup looks without totally breaking the bank! Don't let the YouTube beauty bloggers fool you in to thinking you need the latest and greatest, most of the time they're paid to promote those products anyways.

If your makeup budget is a little bigger, I'll be doing another post soon about products that are more commonly found at places like Sephora or Nordstroms!


xoxo - Laura

My Newest Adventure - Nerium!

Hello! Exciting things have been happening lately and I'm so excited to finally share it with all of you! I had a big long post I was about to make, but as the saying goes, a picture's worth a thousand words...and I have several! Nerium is a breakthrough skincare product that was discovered accidentally while doing research for cancer patients, but has had unbelievable results on people's skin. I'm very, very, very skeptical about these kinds of products and I'm extremely picky about what I put on my skin. After meeting people who have been using it for months & years and seeing their results, I had to try it for myself - I've always struggled with large pores and redness in my face. Nerium has a 5 Day Challenge where you get to try the product for free for 5 days and see the difference for yourself, at no risk to you. If you know me, you know I'm a go-big or go-home type of person. Since I knew I could return it and get all of my money back if I didn't like it, I ordered the combo pack which included all 3 of their products - night cream, day cream, and body firm (we'll get to that later!).


My 5 Day Challenge experience: By the second night of using it, I could see and feel and difference in the texture of my skin. The third night, my nose was completely smooth and my makeup went on flawlessly the next morning. I can't even explain to you the difference in my skin within a week. I didn't think an anti-aging cream would do much for me since I'm 23 and wrinkles aren't a concern of mine at this point, but my skin is GLOWING and my foundation lasts all day. I'm also using the Body Firm cream and will post my 30 day results next month. I've already seen results from this, but I want to give it the full 30 days recommended before giving a review.

After experiencing this product for myself, I wanted to tell all of my friends about it. It doesn't matter if you're young, old, male, female - everyone has had, currently has, or knows someone experiencing issues with their skin whether it be....



*fine lines*

*uneven skin texture*

*razor burn*

*loose skin from losing weight or pregnancy* (Nerium Body Firm)

*cellulite* - ladies, put me in a bath of Body Firm, amiright

If you want more information about the product and Nerium as a company, I'm not an expert but here's a short video that breaks it down for you: 

I'll be posting another exciting announcement here soon (OH BOY OH BOY!), but for now I just wanted to update everyone on my new adventure! Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions or want to try Nerium for FREE for 5 days. I have a limited number of bottles on hand so first come first serve :) For all of you young entrepreneurs out there, you can request more info through


xoxo - Laura

Jes & Dean | Wedding

Hello! I am so excited to share these photos with you! Jes had a beautiful autumn wedding at King Family Vineyard in Crozet, Virginia and Nick & Erin Photography captured it perfectly. Her whole bridal party was such a delight to work with and I am so thankful I got to be a part of such a special day. Jes' energy and love for life is contagious! To see more amazing photos, check out! Hair for the bride and her bridal party was styled by the very talented Kirsten from Kirsten Marie Design :) 



Fall Favorites ♥

Happy Monday! I don't know about you, but fall is my absolute favorite season. There's something about the cool crisp air, scents of pumpkin spice, snuggling up in oversized sweaters, and trees painted orange red & yellow that makes my heart happy. 


I've had several requests for my favorite fall makeup looks, so here are two different easy styles that will go with pretty much any scarf, sweater, or hat you choose :)

#1 is a very natural look, focusing on your skin. As the weather changes, your skin is more prone to dry spots. Dry skin will cause your foundation to get flaky or break apart throughout the day, which isn't a cute look on anyone. To help avoid this, make sure you're using a moisturizer before bed and in the morning after washing your face. My favorite is Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel from Clinique. I also like to use my Clarisonic Mia 2 at night, then apply a special night cream meant for deep moisturizing. 

Laura - fall 3.jpg

I prefer a luminous foundation, especially during these colder months. It'll give you a natural looking glow and make your skin looks fresh and healthy. Add a highlighter to the tops of your cheek bones, under your eyebrows, and across the bridge of your nose. I use Laura Mercier's Matte Radiance Baked Powder - goooorgeous! I added a touch of MAC's Matte Bronzer under my cheek bones, but use a light hand. Remember, we're going for a fresh, natural look! For my eyes, I used warm and neutral browns from my Morphe warm palette to add depth paired with either brown or black eyeliner. For this look, I used a black eyeliner pen and smudged it out to keep everything looking soft. I added a nude lipstick and clear gloss for my lips, then sprayed my whole face with MAC Fix Plus to set everything.

Laura - fall 4.jpg

#2 I wanted to add some color, so I did a darker smokey eye with a bright red lip. I used the same face prep as described in look #1 as well as the same browns, but added a little black in my crease & lower lash line and used a gel liner. I know black can look scary on your brush, but use a light hand when applying and blend it out for a dramatic crease. The key is to keep it in the outer corner of your crease and blend, blend, blend. Then blend some more.

Laura - fall 1.jpg

I recently discovered Revlon's Colorstay Overtime lip color and have mixed feelings about them. Some colors are perfect and stay put for hours and hours and hours. Others tend to break apart and get flaky. I think the key is having moisturized lips, but not to the point where if you kiss someone, they'll slip right off your lips. BUT, if you're trying to save money and get a long-wearing lipstick, I would recommend them. Well worth the money ($8.00), but may take trial and error to find what works best for you. I've started using Mary Kay's Lip Mask to smooth out my lips then applying the Lip Moisturizer before starting my makeup to give it a chance to hydrate my lips. I'm wearing Ultimate Wine for this look - perfect shade for a warm deep red. 

Laura - fall 2.jpg