The Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers of 2020

makeup stocking stuffer

I'm Natalie. No matter where you are on your makeup journey or hustle, I'm so glad you're here! I truly believe that makeup, when applied well, it can transform us in so many ways. My page is a space for inspiration, education, and advice. Thanks for being here & I'd love to connect with you!

HELLO beautiful!

Ask Me

Do you have a beauty or makeup question? Tap the button below and get advice from a pro. Your question may even become a future blog post!

Sign up to receive an email when new content hits the blog!  (And nothing else, I promise!)

you have questions. I have answers.


Inside the brand

beauty tips

personal posts

ask setareh

education & business

Never miss a post!

Learn how to wear makeup with this inclusive book for beginners!

buy now


makeup stocking stuffers cover

I love big gifts, but makeup stocking stuffers have a special place in my heart. If you’ve read my Holiday Gift Guide for Beauty and Makeup Enthusiasts, you know that there’s something for everyone on your list, from a great book for makeup beginners to a little something for trendsetters. But, if you’re looking for something a little bit smaller to stuff into a stocking, the drugstore makeup aisles are the perfect place to go!

The problem is, there are soooo many options available at the drugstore that it can be really confusing and overwhelming. That’s why I decided to create this list, to help you on your gift-buying journey. In this list, you will find my current drugstore makeup faves… I hope it helps!

be your own makeup artist book

Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers: Foundation

Revlon Color Stay Foundation & Loreal True Match Foundation

Makeup Stocking Stuffers revlon loreal

I used both of these foundations in the early days of my business because of their high-performance and low price point. If you can’t find an exact color match (and you can afford it), pick up a few shades so the recipient can custom blend their own foundation! I like applying these foundations with a brush, and my favorite is Senna’s Foundation Brush.

Looking for inclusive makeup no matter your genre and lots of foundation shades?! Then check out this post where we listed 10 of the most inclusive makeup brands out there.


Almay Tinted Moisturizer

Makeup Stocking Stuffers allay

Almay Tinted Moisturizer is perfect for the person on your list who doesn’t want or necessarily need full coverage. I like this option because the camouflage color technology in these bad boys is out of this world and actually does “blend” beautifully into your natural skin tone. You can always wear an additional layer if you want a little more coverage. 

By the way, some of the leading and top makeup artists in the world rave about Almay –– their tonality is pretty great.

Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers: Makeup Brushes

Real Techniques Beauty Sponge

This sponge has nearly the same performance as its famous “pink” older sister but at half the price. Remember to take care of your makeup sponges and they’ll take care of you! 


Real Techniques Setting Powder Brush

This brush has made it into nearly every gift and product guide I’ve ever produced. I love this brush so much – its shape makes it great for setting powder in small areas but you can also buff the foundation in with this brush, contour/shape, blush, and highlight with it, too. I have five on hand at any given time. 

If you want to learn more about makeup brushes, check out this post on makeup brushes and get my free Makeup Brush Guide.


Oh and, by the way, these are some of the makeup tools I recommend in my complete Essential Makeup Tools Guide.


Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers: Lips

EOS Lip Balm

Makeup Stocking Stuffers eos

These little lip balm balls are just as cute and fun as they are practical. They give your lips this really light shine effect, but it’s not glossy. EOS Lip Balms are perfect for those who like a soft and organic lip balm.


NYX Lip Liners

Makeup Stocking Stuffers nyx

I am pretty sure I have every color of the NYX lip liners in my pro kit. They are staples and you don’t have to feel bad using them every day because the price point isn’t painful like some of the high-end brands. Plus, they are wood so they sharpen easily!

Maybelline Super Stay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick

Makeup Stocking Stuffers super stay

You know I’m not a huge fan of liquid lipstick because the formulas are extremely drying and can be, with use over long periods of time, damaging to the lips. This particular formula is one that I’m happy to recommend mostly because Maybelline turned to pro makeup artists to help formulate and create this particular product line and a color story –– so you know you are getting a well-thought-out and executed lipstick at a fraction of the cost of a department store or prestige brands. 

Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers: Blushes and Bronzers

Milani Baked Blushes & Milani Lip Glosses

Makeup Stocking Stuffers milani

These baked blushes rival some of the top-dollar baked blushes I’ve used over the years and the color pays off is amazing. The finish is also so gorgeous and flattering. A definite must! And their lip glosses offer a perfect, dynamic top coat that isn’t too sticky or too glittery — flattering all the way. I’m glad the big influencers haven’t ruined this cult-favorite for makeup artists brand…yet.


Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer (for light to medium skin tones)

Makeup Stocking Stuffers physicians

I did an entire drugstore bronzer haul years ago (read here) and years later, when I think about drugstore bronzers, I still haven’t forgotten about this one! Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer adds some warmth and sun-kiss to your skin without harmful rays and it smells like a tropical vacation!


Cover Girl Queen – Ebony Bronze (for deep and melanin-rich skin tones)

Makeup Stocking Stuffers covergirl

Want to shade and bronze your gorgeous melanin skin tone? This is your girl. Cover Girl Queen – Ebony Bronze is a really good bronzer for deep skin tones. Affordable, simple yet effectively packaged, pigmented and it blends nicely. 


Best Drugstore Makeup Stocking Stuffers: Eyes 

Essence Mascara

Makeup Stocking Stuffers mascara

I’m always saying that you are mostly paying for brand recognition and packaging when you buy mascara. The actual quality is hardly ever reflected in the price –– and this mascara is proof of that. I carry many drugstore mascaras in my pro kit and this is one of my faves!

Did you like this list? Don’t forget to save the image below on your “Makeup Tips” Pinterest board to go back to it whenever you need to. While you’re there, follow me on Pinterest to get even more makeup tips just like this!

drugstore makeup stocking stuffers gift guide

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

114 gorgeous full color pages for visual learners

Self-funded aka no sponsorships or brand bias

Age / Gender / Race / Brand neutral because makeup is for everyone

Available in hardcover and paperback

Be Your Own Makeup Artist, THE Book

learn how-to wear makeup

shop now!

Also offered at these retailers:



Beauty is about perception, not about make-up. I think the beginning of all beauty is knowing and liking oneself. You can't put on make-up, or dress yourself, or do you hair with any sort of fun or joy if you're doing it from a position of correction.

kevyn aucoin