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We don’t mean to be overly dramatic, but when a beloved, holy grail status beauty product in our permanent collection becomes extinct, the particular type of heartbreak that ensues is uniquely distressing. Of course, mourning the loss of discontinued product that’s been a ride-or-die in your beauty lineup may seem a bit over-the-top, but we’ve all been there, and the pain is real.
Sure, you can try to find your beloved formula or perfect-for-you shade on Amazon or another reselling platform like eBay, but chances are, the product’s price will be triple what you paid for it retail value, thanks to its newfound collectors-status scarcity. Even worse than having to pay up to get your RIP-ed product, buying it from a third part vendor doesn’t always guarantee authenticity, so you run the risk of investing in a straight up knock off. Whether part of a limited edition capsule collection (we’re looking at you, M.A.C.) or just simply taken off the market without warning and for reasons we’ll simply never understand, the inevitable ebb and flow of product launches and product discontinuations is a fact of life when it comes to being a beauty consumer.
Of course, any informed beauty junkie knows that using expired makeup (discontinued or not) is not only gross, but it’s also bad for your skin and potentially harmful (especially eye products), so harboring your favorite discontinued product is not the best way to handle this situation. With some research and consulting the dupe-filled world of Pinterest, Reddit, and Makeup Alley, you can most likely find a similar dupe to your RIP-ed favorite. Here are some of the most missed discontinued products from over the years, accompanied with a comparable option to help fill the void without having to scour the black market or hoard bacteria-laden expired product.
Sunday Riley Cashmere SPF 30+ Advanced Sun Defense vs. La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra Light Mineral Sunscreen
Sunday Riley’s silky-matte finish sunscreen was titled “Cashmere” for a reason – not only is it infused with actual cashmere fibers, but it feels as luxurious on the skin as wearing a cashmere sweater. It held up seamlessly under virtually any makeup and its lightweight feel wouldn’t exacerbate an oily t-zone. Fortunately, La Roche-Posay’s best-selling mineral sunscreen offers a similar velvet-matte effect and works just as well under makeup, according to its impressive archive of positive customer reviews on Amazon.
Available at Amazon
Benefit Moon Beam Highlighter vs. Tarteist™ PRO Glow Liquid Highlighter in “Exposed”
While Benefit’s Sun and High Beam highlights are still available at select retailers, their Moon Beam shade – a subtle bronze luminzer with a soft pink reflect is no longer available. This not too warm, not too frosty O.G. liquid highlight complimented the full spectrum of skin tones and gave you the utmost buildability to customize your desired level of glow. Fortunately, Tarte’s liquid highlighter in the shade “Exposed” offers a subtle bronze-nude glow to the skin without looking too blinding for a natural sheen.
$29 at Sephora
M.A.C. Cosmetics Lipstick in Dressmaker, Dressmaker vs. Nars Barbarella
MAC’s limited edition lustre lipstick in the shade “dressmaker, dressmaker” has been dubbed a holy grail shade by fans of the universally-flattering peach hue on Makeup Alley to broken hearted beauty editors. Nars’ lipstick in Barbarella is not only a close shade match, but the semi-sheer formula glides on smoothly offering buildable pigment in the same way as dressmaker, dressmaker.
$28 at Nordstrom
Maybelline XXL Mascara vs. L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes Mascara
Even celebrities aren’t protected from the sense of loss brought on by the discontinuation of a Holy Grail product- especially when it’s super affordable. Khloe Kardashian once called this drugstore mascara “one of the best drug store cheapies around,” on her website, khloewithhak.com. Fortunately, she’s replaced this two-in-one mascara with L’Oreal’s best-selling Voluminous Millions Mascara that delivers intense volume without having to use a lash primer beforehand.
Available at Amazon
Benefit Georgia Face Powder vs. Too Faced Peach Perfect Mattifying Powder
Benefit’s O.G. Georgia Face Powder was a truly innovative and one-of-king product in the beauty arena back at the height of its popularity in the late aughts. The semi-sheer peach powder gave the face a subtle look of health for fair skinned fans. Fortunately, Too Faced Cosmetics launched their Peaches and Cream collection offering a wide range of peach-tinted bases and finishing powders that offer the same benefits as this old school powder. The Peach Perfect Mattifying Setting Powder is the closest match we’ve found.
$33 at Sephora
Chanel Double Perfection Fluide Matte Reflecting Makeup vs. Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation
According to research conducted on Makeup Alley, this old school matte foundation is one of the most missed in discontinued luxury beauty. Several reviewers claimed this was their Holy Grail foundation for its velvety-smooth finish and unrivaled staying power –even in humidity and extreme summer heat. Estee Lauder’s Double Wear foundation however a solid alternative, with similar reviews swearing by its buildable coverage and bulletproof lasting power. This one’s a cult favorite for a reason.
$42 at Nordstrom
Urban Decay Naked Palette vs. BH Cosmetics Essential Eyes Eyeshadow Palette
Urban Decay made headlines in 2018 when it abruptly announced that the brand’s best-selling Naked Eyeshadow Palette would be discontinued. This cult status palette is arguably, the gold standard that made palettes the phenomena (and vanity staple) that they are today. A perfect blend of both warm and neutral shades and matte and shimmer finishes this palette’s undeniable versatility and user-friendly formula is unparalleled. Fortunately, its popularity prompted plenty of dupes. We love BH’s Essential Eye Palettes, with an array of strikingly similar shades, but with more options to choose form than the original.
$18.75 at Walmart
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