High Street to Main Road

Morning Peeps!

I’m going to take you on a hypothetical shopping trip today along High Street and Main Road. High Street being the less budget-friendly street where one might find higher-grade products.  Main Road is where the cheaper and lower-grade products are found. Sometimes you can even find gems. Sometimes.

When it comes to purchasing cosmetics there is almost always going to be a budget that you are going to set for yourself. Some people think R190 is WAY too much to spend on a mascara, for others that’s their starting point. Some consider designer foundations to be broad-daylight robbery whilst others find they cannot venture outside without it. Maybe it’s their liquid confidence, maybe it was given as gift, maybe the price doesn’t even factor into their decision. The point being, people will spend as much or as little cash on make-up as they want and it is totally up to them. So don’t judge, don’t hate. Purchase as you wish :)

Right, so in this post today I’m going to compare two products, one High Street and one Main Road. Because shopping on High Street doesn’t always mean you’re getting your moneys worth, and Main Road can offer up some catches.

1. Essence Colour & Go in That’s What I Mint vs Essie Mint Candy Apple


Both colours are very similar. Prices…not so much. While Essie is considered a good quality nail lacquer that goes for around R89,99, Essence is a very affordable colour match at R19,99. So what are you paying for? Both look pretty much identical and the bottle sizes are pretty even too. Jodi took these polishes for a test drive and is happy to report that:

“ Essie was the first to chip and you can really see how streaky it is in certain light, Essence did a pretty good job but also chipped a tiny but and the tip has started to fade. ”

Left: Essie Right: Essence

Left: Essie Right: Essence

Top: Essie Bottom: Essence

Top: Essie Bottom: Essence

I personally don’t pay more than R30 for a nail polish. I’d rather invest in a more expensive top and base coat and pile on the cheap shiz in between. I’ve owned expensive nail polish and I’ve owned cheap nail polish, and they both have chipped within 48 hours, if they manage to stay on my hands for that long. I usually get bored with nail polish within the first 4 hours of wearing it.

2. NYX Runway Collection Palette in Caviar & Bubbles vs Urban Decay Naked Palette 2

Left: NYX Right: Urban Decay

Left: NYX Right: Urban Decay

NYX is a fantastic new edition to SA’s shelves (yay!). This gorgeous little palette can be purchased for R159.99 and includes a variety of natural mattes and shimmery nudes. The texture of the eyeshadows is smooth and pretty easy to apply, there’s a good colour selection and they transfer easily to the skin. This is why NXY can be considered the poor man’s MAC. The quality is great for the price. Not brilliant but good :)

NXY Runway Collection in Caviar & Bubbles

NXY Runway Collection in Caviar & Bubbles

Urban Decay Naked Palette 2

Urban Decay Naked Palette 2

Urban Decay’s Naked Palettes are  pretty much a cult product. They aren’t cheap ($50 = R500ish), but considering you get 12 shadows it’s an investment piece. The textures of the shadows are creamy and very pigmented. But that’s what you’re paying for. A higher grade product means you are going to use less product when applied and the staying power is impressive. So if you can afford it I think this product is worth the price, if you like and use every single one of those colours.

3. MAC Fluidline in Blitz + Glitz vs Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner 


These two products appear to be very similar in looks. The packaging is alike and the textures are pretty much identical. The prices aint. MAC Fluidline retails for R180, while the Maybelline goes for R85. When you compare swatches however, that’s when things get interesting.

Left: MAC Right: Maybelline

Left: MAC Right: Maybelline

The Maybelline gel liner is clearly much more pigmented than the MAC. It just looks that much better, and appears to be the more expensive product at that! After the swatches set, we smudged both lines twice. The MAC gel liner held up alright, but the Maybelline moved significantly. So the colour and quality are both pros and cons for each! The choice is up to your preferences.

4. Essence Brow + Lash Gel in Clear vs MAC Brow Set gel in Clear


Firstly, there is a huge price difference here. The Essence Brow Gel can be purchased for R30. The MAC Brow Gel sells for R160. So how different can a brow gel really be? Once applied they both are clear and set in about 1 to 2 minutes. The Essence leaves a slight residue, but I imagine that can be easily brushed away. Both applicators are great and the textures of each are similar, the Essence is slightly more watery and the MAC has a strong smell (not bad actually).

Left: Essence Right: MAC

Left: Essence Right: MAC

The results: both appear exactly the same. So I think if you just needed to set your brows for the day the Essence delivers. However by the time the day is finished most of the product is gone, yet the MAC gel could still be felt. The MAC gel also dries to a waxy finish, which holds your brow shadow/pencil for much longer if not the entire day. I wouldn’t consider the Essence gel if I needed my brows to be filled in and to stay put all day long.

Sooooo. Sometimes you pay the big bucks for the quality and lasting power. A major factor when buying make-up. Who wants their make-up melting off right? But sometimes you’re just paying for the label, and that’s not cool on any level. If  it’s important to you to have your make-up looking perfect you don’t need to take out a loan to do so. Shop smart. Get samples. Do your online research. This way you’ll live a life with less make-up purchase regrets. What a wonderful thought :)





  1. […] collection of nudes and browns. It’s my I-wish-I-owned-an-Urban-Decay-Naked-Palette palette (we even compared them here). I love the pale pink shade as a base all over my eyelid, and then build up colour using the […]

  2. Thanks Chante! Yeah the difference in price is insane when it comes to nail polishes and the aesthetics are pretty much identical :)

  3. Chante Leonard · · Reply

    Reblogged this on The Passionate Palette and commented:
    Think this is pretty cool, especially Essence vs Essie.

  4. Awe thank you so much!!! So is yours :) We will get on it asap xx

  5. afroditi · · Reply

    This post is wonderful!Your blog is lovely!!!! Would you like to follow each other on bloglovin’ ? xxx

    Gleaming Spire * Bloglovin’

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: