For a long time now, the biggest difference between drugstore and department store makeup (besides the price, and sadly that is getting closer every day) has been the intensity and pigment of the colors. The difference has been most obvious on eyeshadows, but also on blush and lipgloss. Many department store brands are known for having a higher color impact in their products, most noticeably MAC, and Lancome, who just released a high-intensity eyeshadow line called Color Design, $14.50 each. Finally, drugstore brands are jumping on the bandwagon and producing highly pigmented products for a slightly cheaper price. I recently purchased a few products from the new L'oreal HIP (high intensity pigment) line, and I was VERY impressed. I am especially obsessed with the powder eyeshadow ($7.50), which has a super creamy application, and stays very true to the color. It comes very smartly packaged, in color duos, with a mirror and brush included in the bottom of the package. *
Also, the gloss is excellent. Very similar to Dior Addict gloss, my very fav. Lipsticks are all very glossy in appearance, $10.00. Use the cream blush ($10.00) sparingly, it is very strong. Or don't play it safe, go crazy!.
You may have seen the new Max Factor commercials recently. They are also producing a very bright, colorful line very soon, stay tuned for details.
*Does anyone remember Girl Cosmetics from around 5-7 years ago? It was really cute, all the packaging had a built in mirror and brush, and they did this really awesome movie tie-in with Velvet Goldmine. Creating makeup inspired by Glam Rock? Talk about a dream job! I was so sad when the company went out of business.