I Tried Dollar General’s New $5 Makeup Line… and Here’s My Honest Review
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Wait… did I really just replace my mascara with a Dollar General cosmetic?
Budgets and beauty are two topics I love, though it gets a bit dicey when they’re in the same sentence. When I heard Dollar General was breaking into the makeup game with their own Believe Beauty line (with all products priced at $5 or less), I HAD to check it out for myself.
If you’re a clean beauty aficionado, this makeup line likely isn’t for you. The ingredients list is hidden under the barcode tag and is filled with words I can’t pronounce – but since my makeup bag is open to anything and everything, I tried out a full face of the new Dollar General products anyway. Here’s what I thought.
There are three primer options available from this line, and I was excited to see the slightly tinted formula. It glides on fairly smooth but doesn’t leave a super silky feel, which I’m guessing is so that the primer can make the following layers of makeup cling to the face.
It did a great job setting up a smooth base for my foundation and kept all the contour lines where they should be, though it probably works best with a setting powder or spray to lock it all in.
This foundation is marketed as medium- to full-coverage, even though it has a thinner viscosity. While the foundation does feel slightly heavy, it doesn’t dry cakey or flakey. In fact, it really does have a natural skin-like finish.
I’m very impressed at how well this foundation blended with just my fingertips without any color oxidization. That said, if oiliness is an issue for you, consider finishing your makeup with a mattifying powder to cut down on the dewiness.
At first glance, this concealer looks much darker than what’s in the bottle, so I was worried I chose the wrong color. Surprisingly, it actually ended up matching somewhat decent (plus, I’m tanner than usual, thanks to some beach time this summer).
That said, I would have liked going just a shade lighter since I primarily use concealer under my eyes and want to lighten my dark circles.
Performance-wise, it’s medium coverage and does a spectacular job against creasing. Better yet, there’s no flaking or dryness as I’ve seen in the past with other undereye concealers.
Full disclosure: I’ve never used a contour stick, but after trying my hand at it testing out these DG products, I’m adding it to my permanent makeup rotation. I used the light end on the tops of my cheeks, brow bones, bridge of my nose, and under eyes (to brighten that aforementioned concealer) and the dark end underneath my cheeks, hairline, sides of the bridge of my nose, and jawline.
The jumbo crayon-like application glides on super smooth and blends out with ease. It would probably be best to use a blending sponge, but I used my fingertips with no problems whatsoever. The result is subtle (I’m not trying to look like a Kardashian here), but it provides just enough definition to give a professional makeup application effect.
I love highlighter, especially for bright, dewy summer looks. With the Believe Beauty line, there are multiple colors available, so I went with Champagne Kiss to be neutral against my skin tone. Application is as easy as running the chubby stick over the tops of my cheeks and eyelids and blending with fingertips.
While I knew this shade would be subtle, the shimmer is very minimal. It would take a few strokes to get the highlighting pop I’m used to, though this would be a great option for anyone just starting out with highlighting.
This pencil combines the ultra-pigmented qualities of pomade in an easy pencil application, but you’ll want to use a very light hand when applying because a little truly goes a long way. The spoolie end is perfect for blending, especially if the strokes are too harsh when first applied.
While I really love how well this product glides on (without the flat brush typically needed for pomade), I wish the tip was narrower to create really defined, hair-like strokes. I also wish it was a twist-up pencil instead of a stick that requires a sharpener.
I didn’t realize this was called metallic when I purchased in-store, but luckily it’s not shimmery at all. Upon the first stroke, the liner works fine, but it loses its luster very quickly. It’s only pigmented when the entire tip is placed flat on the eyelid, and it doesn’t distribute product to the very tip all that well.
This liner also doesn’t create that tiny crisp line that I can achieve when I use my favorite liquid liner. I’ve compared drawing the lightest stroke possible above and you can see the Maybelline line is thinner.
It does seem to work better if you stop and shake the liner between strokes, but that’s way too much effort in my opinion.
WOW! That’s all I can say about this mascara. I picked it specifically because it looked like the Maybelline tube I always use and was intrigued by the “tiny fibers” inside. You guys… with each swipe, my lashes seemed to grow in length. Then upon a second coat, they filled in with volume. It seriously looks like I’m wearing a set of false lashes. 🤯
I’ve used The Falsies by Maybelline for so long and have never found a mascara to compete with it, but (and I can’t believe I’m saying this) I’m giving it up in favor of this Dollar General mascara!
My go-to method of applying (for all mascaras):
- Curl lashes with a lash curler
- 2 zig-zag strokes from the root to tip
- 2-3 swipes straight up
- Let dry for 60 seconds
- Quick re-curl
- Finish with 2-3 more swipes
Dear DG, can you please make this in a waterproof formula and send me a case of it? Thanks!
As much as I would love to spare you all from my non-makeuped face, here’s my before and after with ONLY Dollar General Believe Beauty makeup. I normally wouldn’t wear this much makeup each and every day so it started to feel a bit heavy.
I’ve even worn this makeup through a barre class (so not a ton of sweating but my face heating up definitely puts some wear on the cosmetics) and it held up well! I started to notice a bit of creasing after the class and my blemishes were slightly more noticeable but that’s not uncommon for me with my other everyday makeup.
As I said in the beginning, it’s not clean beauty that’s becoming a huge trend in cosmetics, and the product origins vary between the US, Canada, Germany, Italy, and Taiwan. But for makeup that rings in under $5 with surprising performance, they’ve definitely made a believer out of me! 😄