How to save money on branded make-up
I was asked on Facebook by Sarah Frankel how to save money on branded make-up. YSL, Dior, Chanel etc.
I thought it would be interesting to see where these brands are made, and whether it's the same manufacturer as cheaper, more affordable brands.
- L'Oreal owns Yves Saint Laurent, Giorgio Armani, Kératase, Lancôme, Ralph Lauren, Kiehl's, Diesel, Guy Laroche, Maybelline and The Body Shop (among many more).
- Estée Lauder owns MAC Cosmetics, Bobbi Brown, Clinique, Jo Malone, Donna Karen New York and manufacturers the Topshop make-up label.
All these brands are owned by the same people and are made in the same factories.
L'Oreal has 41 factories globally. These are split into 5 continents, with approximately 8 categories in each. Of these 8, it also includes packaging as well as research and development. The same brands are made in the same factories around the world.
Are the ingredients the same?
Many argue the ingredients between the luxury brands and the cheaper brands are not the same. And they'd be right - by 8%.
In the UK, ingredients are listed on the back of the packaging in descending order. From what the product contains the most of, to the least.
Anything under 1% can be listed in any order.
Various cosmetic experts - and you can read this online - state that if the make-up is a liquid product, usually about 80% of it is water, then constitutes 5 main ingredients.
When comparing a luxury product to a lower-level beauty product, you should pay attention to the first 6 ingredients. These, they say, constitute 92% of the product (on average).
But I swear it doesn't feel the same
Having read dozens of product comparison reviews, it does seem that the luxury products have a few more ingredients that influence how they feel.
In other words, a cheaper make-up or beauty product may not feel as luxurious but does the job just as well.
- L'Oreal - Map of all the L'Oreal factories, research centres and headquarters
- Cosmetics Info - tells you all the ingredients normally found in beauty products. US-based, but generally the same worldwide.
- Beauty With Brains - Read who owns what in the beauty industry, and a look at the chemical structure of a luxury and home-brand product.
- Investopedia - Read top 5 companies owned by Estee Lauder
Example YSL vs L'Oreal Paris
Yves Saint Laurent Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation 30ml, £32.50 at Boots
L'Oréal Paris True Match Foundation 30ml, £9.99 at Boots
How to save money on branded make-up?
If you want to save money on branded make-up, I suggest researching who owns or manufactures it, then finding a cheaper company under the same umbrella. Compare the ingredients and if the first six are roughly the same, you can be confident it'll do the same job for a fraction of the cost.