Make Up Bargain Shopping: Do you buy out of season or discontinued make up?

People buy discontinued and out of season make up for all kinds of reasons. It could be that you:

a. Want a specific product that has been discontinued by a manufacturer/brand.

b. Want a specific shade that has been discontinued by a manufacturer/brand.

c. Want to try a range that has been completely discontinued

…and so on…

Being a bona fide bargain hunter (no matter what it is I’m buying!) I find myself buying a lot of out of season, limited edition products from sites like Strawberrynet and eBay.


Limited Editions

When it comes to Limited Edition and seasonal products, there are some huge savings to be had from ranges like Lancome and YSL (Chanel and Dior don’t appear very much in comparison) if you are willing to wait a season or two after the original launch date (so for example, at the current time of writing, July 2010, you’ll be able to find last year’s Christmas releases with a 70% discount or so).

So for example….

I recently bought the Lancome’s Maharani Jewels Elephant Bronzer. That was from Fall/Autumn 2008 and I wanted it as a collectors item. I also bought YSL Red Muse lipstick (repromoted as part of the Winter 2009 collection) and the Shimmering Lip Glosses.

Change of packaging, new ranges

This is a very common reason for selling make up at a discount – ranges are being repackaged all the time and items are discontinued to make way for a newer version of a product (for example with foundations).

If you have a formula that’s been discontinued, it’s definitely worth looking online to see if you can find it at a discount.


Overstocked colours….

You will also find that certain brands sell off their overstock and less popular colours to wholesalers, who in turn sell on eBay.

An great example is YSL’s Rouge Volupte – the reds and browns from the range can easily be found on eBay for around £10 (the retail is £21) no doubt because these are far less popular than the nudes, peaches and pinks (which you’re not going to find for £10 brand new in their boxes!). *

*I do find the fact that you can easily buy some of these colours for half the price online weird, since YSL haven’t actually discontinued these colours – they are still on sale at my local department stores for full price!

Discontinued Ranges…

There are also make up ranges that disappear altogether – for example, Pout. When Pout went bust their range was heavily discounted and sold on discount outlets and eBay.

Calvin Klein Make Up (which I recently hauled – review coming up!) was relaunched in 2009 then discontinued not long after. Their make up is now starting to appear on eBay also heavily discounted.

Obviously, there are some important points to be made here!

1. Buy from a reputable seller

Fakes of all kinds of make up exist but I have had far more good experiences than negative ones. One good way to check is to buy from a seller with at least 1000 feedback, at least 95% positive. Most of the sellers I buy make up from on eBay are POWERSELLERS and easily have 10,000 feedback or more.

2. Check how old the collection is online

Obviously make up expires and you want to make sure you’re not buying anything too old. I tend to stick to powder products anyway which have a better shelf life and a lot of products are factory sealed.

Don’t buy opened make up – buy brand new, boxed items if possible (although it doesn’t NEED to be boxed!) – BNIB or BN items.

Hope that’s useful if you are a bona fide bargain hunter like me, and don’t mind looking for beauty products that are a season or two old, or has been discontinued!

Do you buy make up that’s from older collections? Or do you only go for new releases?

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  1. baby in a corner says

    part of buying make up is the department stores experience but i would buy online, the only reason i don’t is that i don’t have a credit card. (they don’t give them to students since the recession y’all) I generally use the same foundation and would buy this online.

  2. says

    I buy discontinued stuff on Strawberrynet and Ebay too!! :) We don’t get that many brands here in Greece (for example we don’t have Rimmel, Milani, NYX, NYC etc), so a product that I’m watching a youtube video about might have already discontinued in other countries, but if I can find it on Ebay I’ll definitely get it!

  3. Harpreet says

    i buy my hair dye from ebay, its been discontinued but theres loads of people selling them on ebay, i tend to stock up on them.

  4. says

    I do the same thing you do! Sometimes, I can’t bring myself to pay full price for the product when it first launches so I take my chances and wait till it goes on clearance as happens with seasonal collections.

  5. nia says

    oh i definitely do! especially on websites like strawberrynet

    1. its cheaper than retail
    2. i do not need to face the sales assistant

    the only downside that the age of the item. the only assurance i can give myself is from google, research if the product is in new or old packaging, if LE items, see when it was released, if its too far back, i don’t buy 😛

  6. stefania says

    I bought some LE mac product from ebay, sometimes in italy is difficult find them, but now on ebay I can see only fakes_