drugstore product i can't live without

There’s one thing we all have in common, and it’s our unique makeup routine we do every day. Like, I always do my brows before foundation, and I always do my mascara after eyeshadow, but I know so many people do those the other way around. Regardless of my makeup phases, the different products I use, and all the unusual techniques I try, there’s one product that I literally can not do my makeup without, and it’s something you can pick up for literally $2 at any drugstore.

My life-saving beauty essential? It’s Q-tips, but more specifically, Muji’s Thin Cotton Buds – they are so super fine, about half the size of a normal Q-tip. I mean Q-tips, in general, are a lifesaver, but these super-fine-ended Q-tips are ahhhhmazing; they’re really really precise, so they’re perfect for cleaning up my brows and getting rid of any lash glue that ends up on my lids.

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But really, there’s so much more to a Q-tip when it comes to makeup. Here’re some awesome hacks that will not only make your makeup routine quicker and easier, but cheaper too:

Hide a Pimple: Instead of buying a tiny, dense concealer brush, a Q-tip can do the job just as well, if not better! Not only will you get a precise application, but because it’s disposable, it means there’s no risk of spreading bacteria, so you don’t need to wash it every time like you should with a brush. Once you’ve applied concealer, you can dip the other end in powder to set your cream concealer.

Perfect Your Varnish: The smaller the Q-tip, the better. The skinny Muji cotton buds are literally a dream when it comes to cleaning up messy nail varnish. Your left hand might look neat and tidy, but when it comes to painting your right hand, well, it can look like you let a six-year-old loose on your nails (trust me, I know what that looks like!). Just dip the Q-tip in nail varnish remover and wipe it around your cuticles to get rid of any smudges.

Get Flawless Eyeliner: We all know getting the perfect cat-eye is something no amount of years can perfect, it’s one of those things we’ve accepted we’ll only ever be able to do on a very rare occasion (except if you use the Vamp Stamp). Enter the Q-tip, your best friend for wiping away your liner mistakes. Dip the Q-tip in a little moisturizer or micellar water and gently neaten up your liner.

Save on Makeup Brushes: Avoid shelling out for pointed makeup brushes and use a Q-tip for smoking out eyeliner along your lower lash line. Q-tips are also perfection for adding eyeshadow to your crease – especially in the corner of your eyes – and applying glitter, so you’re not forever washing your brush to get rid of left over glitter.