Beauty Guru: How I Save Money on Makeup

I love shopping for makeup and beauty products. It doesn't matter whether I'm at the mall, the drugstore, or shopping online. I love it all, and I seriously adore trying new products. On the other hand, I don't like to spend money, so I'm always seeking a better way to get a better deal on the things I love. Here are three tricks I use to stretch my beauty budget even further.

Stock up and save by shopping online. Sephora is my favorite place to shop for makeup. But anytime I walk in the store, I am tempted with one beauty impulse buy after another. I am less tempted to buy frivolous, pretty things online than I am in person. Shopping at Sephora.com means free shipping with any $50 order. I signed up to be on their email list, so whenever my favorite Urban Decay eye shadow, Benefit mascara, or Sephora Nano eyeliners go on sale, I stock up! I save both on shipping and on the cost of makeup.

Use drugstore brands when possible. Niche market products, like Urban Decay Shadows, are definitely different in quality than drug store brands. However, mass market companies like Neutrogena, which are large and have superior market and research departments, are able to produce excellent skin care products at a fraction of the niche market price. So I prefer to purchase Neutrogena Acne Face Wash for $6.95 over Clinique's acne face wash for $19.50. The difference in results is pretty negligible. Maybelline Great Lash mascara is a classic favorite, used by makeup artists and fashionistas alike, in place of higher-end varieties. Urban Decay and Tarte make excellent eyeliners, but Sephora Nano's come in a great variety of seriously smudgeable colors that work perfectly for most applications. And at $5 a pop, you'll save big over its pricier counterparts.

Become a distributor. Maybe you never wanted to be an Avon lady, but by becoming a distributor for companies such as Avon, Mary Kay, Arbonne, and the like, you'll be able to receive a discount on your own products, as well as earn money by selling to your friends and family. Markup varies from company to company, but Mary Kay consultants can receive a 50 percent discount on their products when they make the small monthly quotas. I've been an Avon lady, a Meet Mark distributor, and a Mary Kay consultant. I found that they each have their pros and cons, so choose the one whose products you love the most.

With just a little creativity and persistence, you can make your beauty budget stretch just a little bit further, helping you become your most beautiful self.

Amanda Furbeck is a Yahoo! Shine Beauty Guru, cosmetologist, and blogger at thebeautifulblog.com. Read more of Amanda's articles at Yahoo! Shine.