How To Shop For High End Makeup At TJ Maxx

Shopping for makeup at TJ Maxx reminds me a lot of thrifting because you usually have to sift through a bunch of junk but there’s a good chance you’ll stumble upon gold. TJ Maxx carries brands you’ve probably never heard of with a lot of high end makeup, but usually it’s in a complete jumbled mess. However if you take your time and carefully dig through, you can find a lot of great products for a much lower price than you would buy it for at Sephora. Here are some tips for how to get to the good stuff and make sure you don’t get ripped off as well.

Tip #1: Allow yourself plenty of time.

Usually when I shop for myself I like to give myself time anyway, but if you want to go bargain hunting in the makeup section of TJ Maxx I’d suggest doing it on a day where you’ve got plenty of time. That means don’t just quickly scope it out while you’re rushing in to get a new crock pot or something on your lunch break. The following tips I have will explain why you should be patient and careful when you are trying to strike makeup gold and why you shouldn’t be doing it in a rush.

Tip #2: Check every single product before you buy it.

As I’ve noted earlier, there is a lot of junk in the makeup section at TJ Maxx, as in empty boxes, crushed eyeshadows, smushed lipsticks, etc. People can be very inconsiderate and remove something from the box to check it (or try it on…gross) and then just throw it wherever instead of putting it back inside. There have been times I’ve reached for a box that claimed to contain a set of MAC lipsticks that turned out to be empty, lipsticks nowhere to be found (people will also take things out of the packages to steal them). If you watch Laura Lee on Youtube you may have seen her TJ Maxx makeup haul where she accidentally bought an empty box. Kids, don’t be like Laura Lee. Always check the box.

Aside from the product not actually being inside its package, random strangers like to stick their fingers in things all the time and then not buy them. This isn’t Sephora, so there are no testers available. It’s also a random assortment of stuff, which means there’s no organization of shades or colors, so people tend to open things and swatch them. Make sure you open the actually product and look for any finger prints or smears. If pressed powder or cream products appear perfectly in tact and untouched, you should be good.

All of these products I got passed the test, and were a steal!!!

You can easily tell if a cream lipstick has been used because the tip will be smeared. For a liquid lipstick, however, I like to reach for things where the package is sealed off, like this Anastasia lipstick I got in the shade Naked.


I checked both ends of the box to ensure that the seals had not been broken, meaning nobody has even tampered with this. If the boxes on these products appeared beaten up and opened, I wouldn’t take the chance.

Here’s another example of something that happened today: I found some Too Faced Melted liquid lipstick in this gorgeous coral shade. The box it was in had definitely been opened, and these lipsticks actually have sponge tip applicators, so you squeeze the product out. I went as far as completely removing the cap to inspect the applicator: It was stained and product was coming out, it definitely had been used. It was a good thing I checked or I would have paid for something that could potentially be unsanitary.

Tip #3: Make sure the price you are paying is actually a good deal.

Sometimes prices will be directly on the packaging of a product so you can compare that to the TJ Maxx price sticker. For example, this Bare Minerals foundation was originally $44 and I got it for $16.99.

Not every product has the original price on it however, and the TJ Maxx “Compare At” price isn’t always accurate. I would recommend looking up the product on your phone to see what the average retail price for it is. Some products end up saving you a whole whopping dollar, in which case I feel like you’d be better off just going to Sephora (where you have employees available to match your shade as well as fresh sealed products, more variety and a money back guarantee) for that extra dollar. The point of high-end hunting at TJ Maxx is to find great products for an unbeatable price, but this tip is also up to personal preference.

Those are all my tips, hopefully you find them helpful. While I was at TJ Maxx I also grabbed some cute stuff that I want to put in a Giveaway so make sure you check out my Instagram, @kendrakarenmakeupartistry, for more information on that. ❤

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