Why High End Isn't Better.. But I Buy It Anyway

Seven corporations dominate the beauty industry, providing the majority of beauty products you see on the shelves. Knowing who owns whom is incredibly important; often the same formulas are used to produce both high-end and drugstore products and they are often made by the same manufacturers.

When you know L'Oreal owns both Maybelline and Yves Saint Laurent, and LVMH produces both Dior and Sephora's own range, it makes it quite clear what you pay for isn't always what you get. If paying more doesn't guarantee higher quality, why buy high-end beauty products?

I have regularly reinforced the idea that there is a great wealth of quality products available from both ends of the spectrum and even advocated saving money on certain products to spend elsewhere. So why do I almost always buy high end? Is it ever worth it?

I spend very little money on cosmetics, I spend only a small amount more on my skin care, and I very rarely double up on products. Rather than spending small amounts on a lot of items, I spend more money on fewer items to create a capsule collection that consists of effective, functional, and high quality products. What matters the most to me is quality followed by aesthetics; I want my collection to work well but also look nice on my shelf. If you have the budget, I don't see anything wrong with that.

What I am completely against is the beauty culture of feeling you must own high-end products and the pressure to "have what everyone else has." I have frequently reinforced the idea that high-end does not always mean high quality and while I buy plenty of high end products, I also support independent companies and brands whose products fall in between the high-end and drugstore categories. I buy what works and what looks good, those are my only two rules.

Some advice:
- read these books
- decide what you think is worth paying money for
- read reviews, compare products, make informed decisions
- don't feel pressured into thinking high-end means high quality
- buy the best your budget will allow
- avoid cheap impulse purchases
- build an effective capsule collection