Friday, August 29, 2014

Makeup 101: What is a Dupe?

While watching or reading reviews by many internet beauty gurus, you might have come across the word "dupe." For example, while talking about some new makeup brushes the reviewer might say, "these brushes are a dupe for the Mac brushes," or with lipstick: "this lipstick is a dupe for the Lime Crime Velvetines." If you're new to makeup and its slang, you might be asking, "what the heck does dupe mean?" Well, I'm here to write a very quick post about what it means when something is a dupe.

Since the title of my blog is Beauty on a Budget, I am going to be using the term dupe quite often. Many drugstore makeup products are designed to be the more affordable version of the higher-end beauty products, therefore making many items fall under this dupe category. I will be writing reviews of products that are claimed to keep up with the big leagues: like Mac, to name the most commonly known makeup company.


If you look up the definition of dupe on Google, this is what you get:

dupe: verb 1. deceive; trick.
noun 2. a victim of deception

Now, these two definitions aren't quite accurate to how we use the term, but it's still close to the same idea. A dupe is basically a duplicate of another product. (Duplicate. Dupe. you see?) Dupes will not be 100% accurate to the performance of the higher-end product, and that's where reviews come in to inform you on what to expect when purchasing a dupe. To know how well a dupe works, you do not need to test the higher-end product. A lot of times it is safe to assume that where the dupe product lacks, the professional product probably doesn't.

Many brands that carry dupes for other companies include: Covergirl, Maybelline, Revlon, NYX, even Wet 'n' Wild and NYC. These companies do not only carry dupes, though, so just remember that; they do have their own lines of different formulas that were not created to compete with a specific product from another company. Just like in basic economics, companies are always trying to compete with one another - sometimes they target a specific formula or line of products, but sometimes they just create their own version of something.


NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream is a dupe for Lime Crime's Velvetines. I got this image from Project Vanity. She also has a quick review of the two products on her blog, check it out.

Benefit Bad Gal Lash's dupe is Maybelline Great Big Lash. I found this image from Worn This Way, where she talks about several different dupes in detail.

I hope this helps you to understand what a dupe is if you didn't already know! Let me know if you have any questions or anything in the comments. Thanks for reading!


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