An Endless Loop: Identical Products & Unnecessary Spending in the Beauty Industry

How do you make a decision when to spend on luxury items and when not to? 

  • Everything looks the same
  • Everything looks the same
  • Everything looks the same

Thanks to the beauty boom there really is no remarkable product left anymore. Maybe this sounds like the guy who said back in the day that “the TV was the last technological invention the world would ever have”, (or was that radio?) but hey, for a while now, it feels like everything looks the same.

When the industry has become so homogeneous, it is baffling how companies feel perfectly comfortable putting out yet another nude lipstick that looks exactly the same as 15 others already out there. *Newsflash* Nude lips aren’t a new thing! We’ve got them in every damn colour and undertone out there!

Going on a spending ban as of about mid-last year has saved me hundreds of dollars in useless products. Now, I wait until my product has completely run out before replacing it. These companies will do anything to get you hooked. Shopping is addictive and most of us have at least one area that is our weakness.

Breaking this chain is difficult, but something as simple as putting yourself on a ban of buying any cosmetics (or skincare, or whatever your vice is) for a month can help. Then after you have completed that successfully – extend it to two months, keep extending it until you don’t want it anymore. Marketers and advertisers have one goal: to keep you spending. A loyal customer is easier to gain new profit from than a new one.

Once you don’t care, you can look at the endless amount of new products being released and the thousands you would have spent and it is just so eye opening.

There are also many factors of the cosmetics industry that are shady and not to be trusted, such as:

  • Cruelty free doesn’t mean vegan – an item can be not tested on animals but also have carmine or lanolin in it.
  • Vegan doesn’t mean cruelty free – this is crazy but true, an item can contain no animal products but still be tested on animals. This essentially means the product is not vegan, however.
  • More and more companies selling out to the man – Too Faced selling out to Estee Lauder was incredibly disappointing.
  • Why does a lipstick need 1200 ingredients? Try to pick products that are as organic as possible. They’re more expensive, yes, but they’re usually more multi-use and last a lot longer.
  • Huge monopoly on industry – Estee Lauder, L’Oreal, Kose, Unilever, P&G and a few other companies basically own all the cosmetics you probably have in your drawer. These companies are opaque and we do not know everything that goes on with them.
  • More and more companies re-releasing the exact same product year after year simply in different packaging (MAC are repeat offenders of this).
  • Online companies (such as Kylie and Jeffree Star) doing as much as humanly possible to secure your money, when honestly? Their time as innovation leaders ended about a year ago. Releasing a nude lipstick as a collaboration is not innovation hunny.
  • Social Media – it exacerbates everything. It also puts a spot in your mind “Oh this average looking girl does really good makeup maybe that could be me” – it literally won’t be and you know it. Don’t buy liquid lippy in a crazy colour and say “omg I’ll use it as eyeliner!” – you’ll do it like once. It’s not worth the 50 buckaroos. You could have bought groceries for three days with that money.

Breaking free of the shackles and stopping the spending cycles on all of these unnecessary and just downright bizarre items (Just put a sheeps placenta on your skin! Go on your pores will bloody love it!) will keep your finances safe for important stuff like paying off debt. Don’t let these companies own you! This kind of rampant consumerism, if not kept in check will just change into other obsessions if you let it.


Hunny you do not need this many eyeshadows you are not in the theatre 

Things will not make you happy. Things will, however, drain your poor credit card that you’ve been trying to pay off for years! Girl put the new lip balm DOWN you have four in your handbag already!!!!

Things to remember when going on a spending ban:

  • The new palette will not change your life.
  • That crazy colour lipstick that the girl in instagram rocks will likely look beyond stupid (yellow lips look good on no-one).
  • That new technique that you need 16 products for will make your face look like a freshly baked Victoria Sponge, complete with icing sugar.
  • You are not a makeup artist, you do not need those gigantic concealer palettes with 14 shades of concealer! Check out Kimberly Clark’s Channel on YouTube to understand why we do not need so many products we end up buying. Seeing real benefits to lowering our purchases of unnecessary products will make us happier and more grateful of what we already have.

Of course, if you love makeup and beauty and have the disposable income, no one is judging you. I love it too, I just found myself spending too much on it. If you’re truly ready to pay off your credit card for more than 2 weeks, take the plunge and ban yourself from spending!

4 Comments Add yours

  1. unsettleddown says:

    I feel this so hard. I grew up with a big shopping culture, then eventually moved abroad to Germany and lived on very little money for awhile. Now I’m not sure why I ever needed so much stuff, I just couldn’t see that while I was in the middle of it. I have one eyeliner now, a moisturizer, some glitter, and that’s it!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. myjoyfulsource says:

    This is so real! I got a lot of expired make up some I can’t remember how I got them lol! Seriously, I dunno, why a lot of ladies are going gaga about every new, make up coming out on the market! Well, I guess for one is that we always seek what’s best for our skin but yeah it’s so addicting! Great post!

    Pammy –


  3. Yes! I am all for spending bans. I actually just went through all of my facial products, samples, etc. Threw out ones that were over a year old, and put all of the rest in a (giant) basket. I found unopened shampoos, eye creams, all sorts of stuff. So now I have a year’s worth of products and am not buying new ones until these run out.


  4. Anastasia Nicole says:

    I’m not a big beauty spender but I for sure spend money on the same apparel items over and over. Going on a spending break is the best way to manage that so you can take stock of what you have and need.


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