When I first moved to Berlin, I had no idea where to begin when it came to fulfilling my makeup shopping *needs*. Brands I’d never heard of replaced the familiar images of Duane Reade and Walgreen. I was definitely overwhelmed by the fact that everything was written in German (DUH), and had to take the time to experiment and learn more about my new home. Two years later, I have gathered a number of tips and some “knowledge” to share with you. Happy exploration!
1. The Drugstore Online:
Probably the most obvious place to visit first was the drugstore. My first experience was a little trip to Drogerie Markt (commonly called DM), where I was glad to notice a large selection of Maybelline and L’Oréal products. The rest was a blackhole. A makeup blackhole. The Eureka moment didn’t wait to hit me: the INTERNET! I figured online I could browse at ease, search for specific products and not have to worry about product being out of stock.
TIP: When purchasing makeup online, I enjoy being able to use discount codes found in all kinds of places on the Internet (see Tip 5). Additionally, most drugstore websites offer free to affordable and quick shipping. Some of my favorite stores are DM and Rossmann which carry amazing brands like Essence and Catrice, and Müller where the selection of drugstore makeup which in addition to popular drugstore brands also carries German brands.
2. Box subscriptions:
If you are on a budget, it is likely that makeup shopping is the last thing on your income distribution list. As a student, I quite enjoyed a favorite concept of mine: subscription boxes. In Germany, the selection is rather limited. However, if you want to receive a few products a month for less, then this is definitely something to try.
TIP: I would recommend Glossybox which offers great options, including a 15 euro per month box which contains a total of 5 products, out of which usually 2 are makeup products. Other boxes available in Germany include Pinkbox, Brigitte Box and Doubox.
3. Amazon for foreign brands:
Despite the large selection of makeup brands on the German market, some international favorites can be quite hard to come by. This is where I love to browse Amazon for good deals on brands like Milani, Wet n’ Wild, L.A. Girl Pro, and many, many more.
TIP: If you have an Amazon Prime account, you will enjoy the “Plus product” option, which includes products at the lowest prices possible, with free delivery. Almost perfect. The only bummer is that if you do find your rare pearl, it won’t be possible to test it before purchasing. It is however possible to filter by price ranges and find “deals of the week”, so I would recommend checking those, in addition to customer reviews and ratings, especially if you are unsure about a product.
4. High-end makeup:
For high-end makeup lovers out there, I find that the online options are far better than visiting stores. Germany has basically one famous High-end makeup and beauty store, Douglas, which is pretty much the local Sephora, except with less American, more European brands. The prices there however are generally high, and stocks can be very irregular, so again, I prefer the online store. There are also a couple of makeup online shops that carry some high-end brands such as Flaconi and Makeup-bestellen. Hanna from journelles.de made a wonderful list of 5 beauty online shops.
TIP: I prefer to shop online, since I can always find at least a 5-10% off code (see tip X) to use on my purchase, and always receive a free delivery (starting at 25e at Douglas, and 10e at Flaconi). Another thing that could perhaps be useful for some is the possibility to make a delayed payment (up to 14 days chez Douglas) on your order.
5. Gutscheine AKA Coupon Codes
A general good habit when shopping online for makeup is to try to always checkout with a promo code. The Internet is full of them and usually a simple Google search will find you just what you need.
TIP: Some of my favorite website to find promo codes are:
Youtube and Instagram are also great sources for affiliate promo codes. One last tip is to always check if there is a newsletter subscription coupon if you are using a website for the first time. We all hate those spammy emails but you can always unsubscribe once you’ve used your coupons 😉
If you’ve read all the way to the end, thank you and I hope you found this somehow useful! Leave me a comment with your favorite places to score makeup and if you tried any of the ones in this article! Oh and, happy shopping 😉
The Foundry girl.
Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored. My views are based on my own experience.