An Argument in Favor of Drugstore Makeup Testers

Consider this a PSA for drugstores everywhere.

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A handful of my favorite drugstore makeup products.

Makeup testers aren’t new to the makeup world. Brands at department store makeup counters and beauty stores (Nordstrom and Sephora to name two) allow sampling of nearly all of their makeup and beauty products. Those testers are extremely useful, because they give you a chance to try out a product before you commit. They’ve definitely stopped me from making some serious makeup mistakes!

Unfortunately, these wonderful testers have yet to make their debut in one vital makeup market: the drugstore. With all the hype currently surrounding drugstore brands, I’m constantly surprised at the lack of drugstore makeup testers on the shelf. The drugstore is a huge makeup market! 

Bask in the glory of these beautiful makeup shelves.

Each and every time I set foot in a drugstore I find myself wishing there were testers so I could test out that exciting cobalt blue eyeliner or swatch a foundation before committing my money to it. Sadly, my wishes for such things have not been answered, so I decided to take a more forward step with a post. 

Here are two reasons why drugstore makeup testers need to become a trend, stat.

1. Contamination

First, there’s the issue of contamination. If you’ve ever looked through makeup at the drugstore, you’ve inevitably come across an open container or two. During my days working at a drugstore, I can’t tell you how many times people opened up foundations and lipsticks and just left them sitting on the shelf. 

I know most people do this with the intention of testing out a product, but that doesn’t make it any less gross. Just think about it. Every time you open up a foundation bottle for testing purposes, you expose that product to contamination. All of the bacteria and germs on your skin and in the air have the opportunity to ruin that product.

We should all make more of an effort to respect the seals on drugstore makeup products. No one wants to buy previously used makeup – the store is forced to throw these away. That’s why testers are so useful. Offering makeup testers to customers would prevent people from opening up the products on the shelf. More clean makeup for everyone!

Maybelline lipstick and Almay foundation straight off the shelf. Yuck.

2. Buying makeup without testing is a coin flip.

Let’s face it, makeup is complicated. Regardless of our familiarity with makeup, it’s near impossible to grab a product at random that fits every quality we want. (If you’re able to do this on command, please contact me immediately.) Most of the time, it’s a process of trial and error to find out which product has all the right qualities, like the right texture, color, and longevity. How can we expect to have any idea about these qualities if we can’t directly test the product?

Testing out makeup is actually quite similar to trying on shoes. Sure, a pair of shoes can look great when you first lay eyes on them, but just looking at them doesn’t tell you much about the quality. You need to physically try them on to see if they feel comfortable and if they fit the look you want to achieve. The same goes for makeup.

Overall, I hope to one day see testers available in drugstores across the country. Though it would take an overhaul of current store policies, I think it would be simple to implement and would lead to more sales and happier customers. Win-win, right?

What do you think?

Do you agree with me? Have you ever found yourself wishing for a makeup tester at the drugstore? Have you opened products at the drugstore to test them? What do you think about people who do this? Let us know below!

3 thoughts on “An Argument in Favor of Drugstore Makeup Testers”

  1. I 100% agree that drugstores need testers! It would make buying foundation on much easier! I hate going back to stores to return a foundation that didn’t match correctly cuz it all could’ve been avoided if she drugstores offered testers.

  2. google swatches on your smartphone!! if you’re skeptical of something, google it! look for reviews! and then make the choice for yourself. I’m constantly googling lipstick and nail polish swatches while I’m in the makeup aisle, also worth looking into if a store will let you return used makeup if you’re not satisfied.


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