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by Nitesh Sharoff | 1 min read | Jan 9th 2018

No doubt you’ve popped into H&M or added a few basics to an ASOS basket of late, but if you’re still sticking to traditional beauty territory to pick up your makeup staples, I urge you to roam free on the great British high street (or online equivalent). There are absolute gems to be had that outperform premium alternatives, and if you think that spending less means making sacrifices when it comes to packaging, ethics, colour payoff or longevity, think again. Granted, not all supermarket sweep style products deliver the goods, but there are standout options in almost every line that exceed expectations and leave you with pocket money to play with. Here are the ranges that impressed us the most, with an industry-first wildcard thrown in to hint at the future of inexpensive yet top quality makeup to come…

While ASOS doesn’t yet have an in-house beauty range (although I feel in my waters that it’s only a matter of time), the online megastore clearly has some seriously clued up beauty buyers on its books, both from an economical and cosmetics calibre perspective. As to be expected with ASOS, the brands on offer have a sartorial edge, with quirky colour palettes and trend inspired products coming to the fore.

Products are also photographed comprehensively, as is the ASOS way, with clear swatches on a variety of skintones for many cosmetics, reducing the risk of having to return items that didn’t live up to their glossy or slightly deceptive online appearance. The selection is more premium in feel and price than many high street outlets, but it’s too good to bypass in terms of what’s hot in beauty.

The makeup highlights: Creatively innovative brand 3ina recently made its debut on the site, and with a commitment to diversity and making colour cool again, it’s one the of most exciting makeup specialists out there. The pencil eyeshadow, now £5.56, and liquid liner, £7.95, deserve particular kudos. Other brands to bookmark are EX1, base and blusher experts that pride themselves on blending shades tailored to the often ignored southeast Asian market, and the cult NYX, whose soft matte lip cream, £5.50, is revered globally as a superior dupe for the sellout Kylie Lip Kit.#

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