Beauty products are aplenty in the market, ranging from high-end products from fashion powerhouses to drugstore ones for the mass consumers.
I'm not a beauty guru, and my makeup collection ranges from mid-range to super affordable, which will usually set me back about $6 to $50. They are really basic beauty products, nothing fancy because I just don't have the skills to perfect a smoky eye or a doll-like face.
Most of the time, I'll leave the house with only a light foundation, blusher and my eyebrows drawn. My eyeshadow palettes, contouring stick, highlighting liquid and lipsticks only get the chance to shine when I have a function to attend.
To find out if there's a difference between expensive versus affordable makeup, I put Daiso beauty products to the test, and these cost only $2 a pop for each item!
I usually walk past Daiso's makeup section without even giving it a thought. Maybe I have the common mass consumers' mindset that cheap products are usually bad products. I'd also not heard of friends who have used them before. Hence, in the name of adventure and putting my skin to the test yet again, I decided to embark on another little experiment.
For a fairer evaluation, I tried to buy beauty products from Daiso that are similar to what I already have in my makeup stash.
I bought a total of 10 products, which added up to $20. They included a makeup base, a stick concealer, an eyebrow pencil, eyeliner, blusher, lip tint, pearl face powder, contouring powder and a silicon makeup sponge that has dual sides.
I skipped the foundation because there were few choices available in Daiso. Also, the foundation stick that I found wasn't close to the shade of my skin, so I didn't want to take the risk.
I got down to trying the Daiso beauty products the very next day. The makeup was worn for the entire day to find out if it could last without smudging.
Here are some of the makeup products I know I'll be adding to my stash and others that I will be avoiding.
The eyebrow pencil is definitely a keeper; it had the same brush and pencil at both ends as the brand I normally use.
The Daiso eyebrow pencil may not have applied on as smoothly as the brand I use, but it did a pretty good job at filling in my brows. The best part is being able to save $3.90, if I switch to Daiso's product.
If you're looking to experiment with different blushers, you'll probably find a colour of your preference at Daiso as it carries different shades of pink, red and even orange.
I've been looking for an orange blusher, even though I know it's so 2000-and-late. The orange blush was one of the biggest beauty trends in 2018, with girls ditching their saccharine pink blushers for a bolder colour.
The orange blusher I found at Daiso is pigmented and easy to blend, but if you're not careful you might end up with unevenly coloured cheeks, and it's difficult to wipe off. Our colleague who bought a blusher from Daiso Japan also said she faces the same problem with the blusher.
My only gripe is that it required a touch-up towards the later part of the day as it started to fade.
Tip: The blusher can also double up as a matching eyeshadow. This way, you get a uniform makeup look and you can save on buying another eyeshadow colour.
Contouring was a breeze with Daiso's contour powder but I could only find it in one shade, which was slightly darker than what I would usually pick.
I was pleasantly surprised that it goes well with my lighter skin tone and it helped defined my nose, more so than my regular contouring stick.
Moving on, here are the products I probably won't buy again:
I found out about lip tint and its magic about five years ago and have never looked back since, but I was slightly let down by Daiso's lip tint.
It was shiny and added an almost non-existent colour to my lips even though the liquid tint was in a fierce red shade.
Lip tints are usually a lifesaver for me as it normally lasts me the entire day without requiring a touch-up, but Daiso's lip tint just did not have that result, plus it had an off-putting chemical scent.
The makeup base is essentially a colour-correcting primer and came in different colours. There weren't any labels to tell you what colours they were. For someone who hasn't used a colour-correcting primer before, I only realised after buying it that the colour of the tubes was an indication of the colour of the makeup base. D'oh!
I bought the blue makeup base and it supposedly helps to treat sallowness (yellowish tint) of the skin. The only reason why I'm leaving it out from my next Daiso purchase is that it didn't do much for my skin.
The concealer was cakey, making it difficult to blend even with the silicone sponge and it wasn't breathable. It didn't help that I have dry skin and trying to blend it in made my skin flake. There was only one colour available, which was yellowish and didn't match my skin tone.
Applying the highlighter felt like I was just spreading a layer of white cream on my face, which didn't do much as it isn't reflective and has very little shine as compared to the highlighter that I use.
However, it was only after placing photos of my face side-by-side that I realised how washed out my face looked in Daiso's beauty products.
The eyeliner was rather faint too, as compared to my regular eyeliner brand which is also a brown shade. It did little to add life to my tired-looking eyes.
While there are hits and misses with the range of Daiso makeup products, one evident problem is the lack of options to cater to the different skin tones. As one would assume the products are catered towards Japanese consumers, they generally work better with fairer skin tones.
The pros, however, are obviously that it's cheap and the makeup stayed on throughout the day quite well and did not smudge. So, if you happen to need a quick makeup fix for an impromptu date or meeting, I'd recommend popping by the nearest Daiso without having to break the bank.