Guest Post | Tips for Buying Makeup Online

Hello everyone! I have only been up for a couple of hours after my cousin's wedding last night...we really had a blast and it was all so elegant and chic! I have a blog post for you today by Marcela de Vivo who has already contributed guest posts on this blog in the past. She always comes up with interesting subjects and I hope you enjoy her posts as much as I do!


Buying cosmetics online can save a lot of time, especially for women with hectic schedules that don’t allow them to go to the store every time they need to replace eyeshadow or lipstick. If you run out of a favorite beauty product and don’t have the time to drive to the store and deal with the crowds and lines, shopping online for your makeup replacements—and new items as well—is an easy solution.

However, online shopping has it’s own pitfalls as well, therefore, you should pay attention to return policies and-- if you’re buying from an unknown vendor or trying a new product-- be sure to do research thoroughly before plunking down your hard earned cash.

Here are some things to pay attention to when shopping online for cosmetic and beauty products:

1) Pay attention to return policies. This is particularly true if you are buying colored cosmetics that you’ve never used before. In most department stores or large beauty retailers, you have the luxury (or sometimes the onus) of trying every shade until you find the right match. Or there will be able salespersons happy to assist you in finding the right color.

Regardless of how much the websites try to represent the a particular shade correctly, sometimes the color is not the same as you would see it online. What you thought was the right shade for your skin may be off by one or two tones. If you don’t research the return policy prior to purchase, you may end up stuck with unopened makeup that doesn’t meet your needs. Look for beauty websites that offer 100-percent satisfaction guarantees, regardless on whether or not the package has been used or opened.

2) Buy beauty products through websites that offer multiple brands. Instead of buying through just a company site, use larger retailers such as Ulta.com or Sephora.com. You may find a better price, a percentage off total purchase or free shipping through these beauty retailers more often than at the brand’s website. These sites also often offer gifts with purchase as well. Unless you are shopping for one specific brand, these sites are an excellent place to compare products across multiple brands at once.

3) Reviews are your best friend
. If you’re looking for a new cosmetic and you’ve never tried it before, but want to buy it online, read its reviews! Beauty retailers often allow their customers to review the product. There are entire websites and forums dedicated to the review of cosmetics and other beauty products. Beauty bloggers are often excellent sources of information about the latest and newest products as well. Read reviews from several different sources before deciding to make the purchase as these experiences can serve as your “testers.”

4) Be careful of purchasing untested or unreviewed retailers or individuals. Quality control is a problem when buying from an unknown entity—you don’t know how old the product is, if there’s a guarantee backing up the product, or whether or not the item is the genuine article. Unless the retailer has solid reviews (and not just a handful of anonymous comments) and a generous return policy, you should avoid buying cosmetics from them.

5) Steer clear of opened cosmetics
. Sites like eBay list a plethora of mixed cosmetic items, some used and some unopened. Many cosmetics have short shelf lives, made shorter once opened, therefore, there’s no way of knowing how long that item has been opened. Additionally, it’s not hygienic to share certain beauty products. Once the packaging is opened, the product can be adulterated. For example, you may think you’re getting 100-percent tea tree oil, but you’re really getting 10-percent tea tree oil and 90-percent mineral oil; however, there is exception to this: reputable makeup swap sites. On these sites, the members are often familiar with each other and vetted for membership, so it is slightly safer on these websites, you should still exercise caution and common sense when considering used beauty products.

For the busy woman, online shopping is a boon. Replacing that foundation or lipstick is easier than ever—with a few clicks of a mouse and a credit card in hand, you have the makeup, skincare line, cleanser or any other cosmetic tools you need shipped to your doorstep. Keep in mind these tips while you’re shopping online to help save you money and optimize your overall experience.

Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer from the Los Angeles area who writes on everything from health and beauty, to travel and dining, to gaming and technology. While working with Miami spa, Bellezza Spa she learned that the key to purchasing great beauty products online is to purchase from reputable sites.. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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