5 Expert Tips for Buying Makeup and Cosmetics Online

From the crème de la crème to designer knock-offs, the digital world of beauty products is vast, tantalizing, and oftentimes, overwhelming.

We can all agree that ordering products online is ridiculously convenient, but shopping for makeup online is akin to a catwalk—not a cakewalk.

Searching for truly high-quality beauty products can feel like trying to hunt down vintage Gucci in your favorite thrift shop. And while it feels like “ain’t nobody got time for that,” when it comes to your skin, you’ve got to carve out that research time like you carve out those cheekbones with contour.

So, how do you narrow down the endless stream of cosmetics being served to you on Google’s silver platter? And what should you look for?

We’re glad you asked. Here are 5 tips to help you find the best makeup and cosmetics online—straight from the beauty guru himself—our very own Scott Barnes.

1: Start with best-selling products.

Beautiful Smiling Woman Model

There’s a reason best-selling products are, well, best-sellers. (Most of the time.) If you’re struggling with analysis paralysis over what to buy, start with items other people are raving about. If thousands of reviewers are gushing about how they can’t imagine life without their new favorite product, it may be worth a trial run. Start with one or two items from that brand, and see if it’s a good fit.

2: Be choosy about ingredients.

We all know we should avoid food products with hard-to-pronounce ingredients, but things get a bit trickier when it comes to makeup. That’s because unfamiliar ingredients (like “isopropyl isostearate”) aren’t necessarily harmful in the cosmetics world. But there are some ingredients to avoid, for sure, like parabens, oxybenzone, and triclosan.

How do you figure out what’s ok and what to steer clear of when shopping online?

Shop from a company that discloses their product ingredients, and get in the habit of checking ingredients before you buy. Choose an artisan makeup brand to ensure you’re getting a product with high-quality ingredients chosen by a skilled professional.

Also, of course, avoid ingredients that have given you trouble in the past. Choose makeup that has been created with love, experience, and knowledge so it’s safe and healthy for your skin.

3: Know your undertones.

We’ve all been there: You buy a jaw-dropping new lipstick shade only to discover it makes you look like a washed-out Cruella de Vil. Straight into the makeup reject drawer.

Knowing your skin’s undertones will help you avoid this tragic fate, saving you time, money, and some unflattering selfies. Your undertones determine which colors look best on you, and everyone falls into one of these basic categories: warm, cool, or neutral.

Your undertones can be determined by examining the color of your veins, your hair and eye color, whether you burn or tan, and other factors.

4: Read reviews and testimonials.

There’s no better way to uncover honest information about a brand than by hearing what customers are actually saying. Customer reviews provide insight into the quality, look, and feel of a product—so you can peek behind the curtain before you buy.

Read all the product reviews—the good and the bad—especially if you’re about to invest in a more lavish product. Reading reviews can give you a better idea of which cosmetics are the most highly-rated in the industry. This information is gold and can help you make an informed decision.

Testimonials and video tutorials are also great ways to learn more about a product or brand. This gives you the opportunity to see what the swatches look like on different skin tones and learn more about how the products can be used and layered.

5: Go with a trusted brand.

This one seems obvious enough, but how do you know if a brand is trustworthy? Here are some questions to ask:

Does the brand have experience? When it comes to formulating makeup, nothing can beat first-hand experience. Scott Barnes has revolutionized the cosmetics industry, impacted celebrity culture, and created a wide range of trends and signature looks.

Do people love their products? Again, reviews say a lot. If people are raving about a brand’s products—especially on multiple websites—this is a good sign.

Is the company committed to sustainability? What’s good for Mother Nature is good for you!

Are the products cruelty free? Animal testing is unethical and unnecessary. There are literally thousands of safe ingredients available today that can be used to create innovative products.

Can you actually contact the company? This is a biggie. Companies that make it difficult or impossible to contact them with questions or concerns aren’t worthy of your business. If you have questions, you should be able to get answers—straight from the brand.

Body bling trio- body bronzing shimmer lotion set

About Scott Barnes Cosmetics

Scott Barnes is a revolutionary makeup artist and creator of “The Glow”—his signature monochromatic palette featuring shimmering skin, bold eyes, and soft lips. Beloved by countless celebrities and A-listers, Scott set out to make an affordable luxury line for every woman.

Get luscious lips, cherubic cheeks, and luxuriant lashes with Scott’s sumptuous line of makeup and beauty accessories. Start your shopping adventure with Scott’s Faves or check out our new makeup releases.