Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

Temptalia Asks You


How much does the price affect your willingness to buy a product? Does it depend on the product?

Temptalia's AnswerIf it has a high price, it better be high quality. Nothing agitates me faster (in regards to beauty blogging) than a pricey product with shoddy quality–there’s just no excuse for it.

Thanks to Liz for today’s question! Do you have a question idea? Submit yours here.

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56 thoughts on “How much does the price affect your willingness to buy a product?

  1. Avatar of rebecca blueraccoon

    I try not to spend over $100 on a single item, unless it’s like completely rock my socks something I can’t live without. (I haven’t come across said item yet, although Wulong came close!) But the more I spend on an item, the better I expect it to perform. I have better expectations for, say, my Burberry lip velvets than I do for my Maybelline Baby Lips. (Random comparison based on what’s on my desk.)

    I don’t think price = quality; you can get some really good quality products for not very much, and drugstore brands are stepping up their game these days. But if I’m buying high end products, I expect them to be quality products, and be worth the money I spent on them.

  2. Avatar of Amy xamyx

    I won’t stray from DS products, at all, when it comes to mascara & liners, as they have such short shelf-lives, and I don’t need a mascara to do more than just darken/define my lashes a bit. I can also get by with DS foundations, and unless I find one that *completely* eradicates my pores, I see no reason to go HE. I also go DS for lipstick & nail polish, unless a particular shade absolutely floors me.

    When it comes to eyeshadows, I will indulge in HE products. I’ve come to the point where I keep a list, so depending on my budget for the month, I may pick up something with a lower priority if it’s less expensive, but the following month I’ll pick up something higher on the list if I can afford it. I also pretty much stay within a handful of brands (NARS being the priciest), but that’s only because they appeal to me. I did just pick up UD Naked Basics because it cost so little to begin with, plus I still had $6 left on a gift card, which I felt “justified” the purchase, even though I didn’t really need it.

    I have allowed low prices/sales/discounts to get me to buy things I already have too much of, but I’ve realized if I add up what everything costs, I could have put that toward something I really wanted, so now I’m sticking to a list I “update” every couple of weeks.

  3. I agree; it totally depends on the quality – in terms of ingredients, formulation, packaging, customer service, etc.

  4. Avatar of Rachael Rachael

    I agree, Christine. If the product is expensive, but the quality is excellent, I’m willing to pay the big bucks. Better to have a few expensive but really amazing products that you really love than a whole lot of cheap stuff. That’s not to say that there aren’t cheap products out there that are great, because there certainly are!

  5. Avatar of Precious Precious

    I agree with what you said, Christine. Guerlain, for example, is quite expensive when compared to other brands, but the products they put out are spot on, they are of high quality when it comes to packaging, pigmentation, and wear. Definitely worth every single penny consumers shell out for them. :)

    • I totally agree, specially about long lasting lipsticks quality: the Rouge G is a tad more expensive than the other high price brands (Chanel, Lancôme, etc…), but as have to touch up my lips 2 to 3 times a day with a Chanel one, compared to the Rouge G. which doesn’t move, in the end the Guerlain is actually LESS expensive, as this lipstick will last several more months… And the packaging is sooooo to die for!!

  6. It highly depends on whether I think a product is worth the price or not, and whether any consequences and sacrifices I may have to make after forking the cash is going to be too much to bear or not. If it’s something I really need or really blows my socks off, then I may try to save up for it, or if I have no choice but to use a credit card, I have to be sure I can afford to pay it off before interest hits — I love make-up but there’s no way I’m letting myself drown in debt for it!

  7. Avatar of Mariam Mariam Shah

    You wouldn’t believe me, but when you say it’s good quality, I don’t think about the price. That’s how I have bought the Guerlain meteorites Wulong compact. Good that I won it and the other items on ebay from the same seller at less price than the retail in the US. Btw the Wulong retails for $280 in Australia!

    • Australia (among other countries, like Singapore) reaaaaally need to review their prices, since their currencies have strengthened by a large margin in the recent years. This means the AU$280 price tag for Wulong would have made sense when the Australian Dollar were worth half to two-thirds of an American Dollar, but NOT when the currencies are at parity!

      The weirdest thing I find is that cosmetics tend to be more expensive in Europe than in the US, despite many of them being European brands and were produced in Europe as well (Guerlain is one example). It makes so little sense, and end up putting non-American consumers at a major disadvantage. :/

      • Arrow

        Absolutely right re: Europe
        I also lived in the USA for a long time, and when I moved back to Europe, my first reaction was: holy ****, everything is 30-50% more expensive here.

      • Avatar of Mariella Mariella

        The same applies in Canada. When the Canadian dollar was way below the US dollar, I could understand the price disparity. But for a long time now, the CDN dollar has been at par with the US or above it and we are still paying a LOT more for the same product and there isn’t even the excuse of “distance” to use. Some of the products are even MADE here and still we are paying a lot more…not just a buck or two but often ten dollars or more on a 30 or 40 dollar product.

        • I find the mark ups to be around 20% to 40% one products and it boggles my mind how some brands are 40% while other chose the 20% at Sephora. I mean Physicians Formula is the same price as MAC products…

      • Avatar of KaseyCannuck KaseyCannuck

        This is my biggest pet peeve about MAC…its a Canadian company and the prices are 20% higher than US prices, and the Canadian dollar has been at par for quite some time now.

      • Leila

        I completely agree about the Australian prices it’s ridiculous(I’m not familiar with the other places). I noticed the huge disparity too.
        When I convert prices from the old exchange rates, from before the USD crashed to such low levels with the new USD/AUD rates, the prices make sense, but not with the rates from the past couple of years (the other currencies haven’t really strengthened, rather the USD, EUR and GBP have all fallen so low in value, it looks like the other currencies are stronger).
        If the companies won’t cut prices, they should just freeze the prices for those countries until inflation eventually catches up to them.

        Prices here in Europe are high (whether you are in UK, France, Germany, Sweden etc.) because our VAT is so high. By EU law, VAT cannot be less than 15% and in the vast majority of EU countries it hovers around 20-25%. As I understand it, the highest sales taxes in the US don’t even hit 10% and that’s only the extreme end.

      • Thank you for this kind thought about us, poor exploited europeans!

      • Avatar of Amy xamyx

        In most cases, it has absolutely nothing to do with pricing set forth by the cosmetic companies, but rather the taxes added to “non-essential” goods, which has to do with the government of said country. Instead of blaming the cosmetic industry, perhaps petition the local governing parties to lower the taxes?

        • Also Mexico, the taxes here for makeup and beauty products are outrageous almost the double of what you pay in the U.S. !!

          • Monica!

            Not to mention that in Mexico there are NEVER sales on makeup (maybe in some supermarkets but those sales usually suck), and we have a no return/ no refund policy

        • Avatar of Ruca Ruca

          When discussing Canada/US/Mexico inequities, this is untrue as of 1994, the year I married my 1st husband, due to the NAFTA agreement. The price inequities may be more in part to America’s increasing export deficit, and we have actually lowered prices to try and help fill the void. NAFTA appeared to be a brilliant idea for us in 1994, but long-term consequences were not forecast fairly, and it has had a lot to do with the 2006-2008 US recession, and we all know where that went.

          Sadly, most of these price hikes around the world have to do with the equations of supply and demand, which can really screw countries like the UK and Australia. China pegs there Yuen to our USD for a reason, and it works.

          (I knew my MBA was good for something…)

          Joking aside, I can make these statements because I’ve been watching it happen for over 20 years while my nose is stuck in politics. That, and I used to trade FX.

          Who know a conversation about makeup might turn into world economics? Interesting.

          • I have a feeling that a lot of it is simply “because they can”. Guerlain is sold in Indonesia very close to the US retail prices, while MAC and NYX are doubled, for example.

        • In some cases, yes; but I live in Indonesia where MAC prices is all over the map really. A lipstick is double the US price while powders got 15-30% increase. Even if you do count for taxes, AU$62 for a NARS blush is beyond ridiculous, considering it retails for $26 in the US.

  8. Avatar of Melissa Melissa

    I agree with the mindset of having a few good quality items instead of a bunch of cheap price/quality items. I HAVE spent a bunch of money on cheap makeup that was cheap quality. I’ve stopped because it’s just a waste. If the quality can justify the price, I’ll be tempted. That said, I just ordered my first Guerlain products. I’m so excited! I don’t really feel the need to buy expensive mascara though as it has such a short shelf life. I won’t, however, buy expensive mineral eyeshadows as I make my own. I also have a hard time justifying the price of lipsticks because I have made my own so I know how cheap they can be to make. I have extremely dry lips though so if the right product comes along, the price isn’t an issue to me.

  9. Avatar of Quinctia Quinctia

    If something is more than a few dollars, I definitely read a review first. And I’m more willing to shell out for a brand I’ve had good luck with, just in general.

    And if something gets reviewed highly (or I try a product in a line and love it) and it’s very affordable, I get very excited to buy it. That’s why I have a bunch of Jordana EasyShines. They’re like $2, and I really love them. Why would I not try to get all of them?

  10. A very low price can put me off a product. I know that low price doesn’t necessarily equal low quality but I still think that way, hence I don’t buy much drugstore. I’m trying to branch out but it’s not going well! When I have a drugstore product that under-performs I get really annoyed that I bought it – sort of like “You should know better than to think it would be good!”

    A very high price, at the moment, prohibits me from buying. I would LOVE to buy Meteorites in some form, but I just don’t have the budget. It’s true that a well edited collection can be a better investment than lots of cheaper things, but there is always something else I need – new foundation, or mascara, or skincare, or haircare, or I need waxing done, or something! And there goes my grooming budget.

    The result is, I tend to buy mid-end!

  11. I’ve never really been compelled to buy anything high end. Firstly, since I only wear make-up for work or special occasions, I think it’s a waste to get something so expensive. Secondly, I find that the sales assistants at high end counters are always trying to force me to look at or buy more than I need. Case in point, I went to a YSL counter once to look at foundation, and they ended up trying to get me to buy Touche Eclat, setting powder, foundation and blush. I like shopping in pharmacies/from shelves because I can wander in, look at what I need/want, then walk out without any pressure to buy.

  12. theglitterydragon

    It really depends on what the item is. Like what many others say, if the quality is there, than paying a little more really is worth it. Take NARS blushes, they are the priciest blushes I own. But, I only have to tap my brush so lightly to color my cheeks and I know that they are going to just last so long. So for me, it was worth the money.
    On the other hand, there are some brands out there that I feel just based on the name alone they charge a ridiculous price for their items and the quality is generic at best. For those, I would not pay.

  13. Avatar of Mariella Mariella

    Yes, it does. There are some things I just consider “too expensive” or “out of my price range”. I love makeup and have spend a LOT of money (as my kids delight in telling me) amassing the amount of stuff I already have but with children in university, a wedding to pay for next month and other priorities as well (travel, our home, etc.), there is a limit to what I will spend on makeup (though that amount seems a bit “elastic”, depending on the product!).

  14. Avatar of Dominique Dominique

    I never think about the price whatever the product may be : budget, middle or high end. When pigments are good, I always purchase the product. Yesterday I bought a matte lipstick from Rimmel ( deep raspberry colour ), it was around 9 € but I found the quality was very good, the packaging ok etc… I FIRST pay attention to colours and pigments, that’s all that counts to me before purchasing even if I often go high end ( but not always though ).

  15. Avatar of Jill AnGeLwInGz

    It definitely affects it. I won’t spend more than $60 on any cosmetics product. With the exception of the UD 15th Anniversary eyeliner set but that’s because it was for the actual amount of product, not the packaging. I can’t justify spending $80+ for a measly 4 color eyeshadow palette just because it has pretty packaging.

  16. Price is a major factor in whether I’ll try a product. If it’s pricey, I tend to research the product extensively to find as many reviews on it as possible. I also sample it out a couple times to make sure that out works for my needs. If I do purchase it, and it fails to meet my expectations, it’s immediately returned!

  17. It depends on the product. There are some things I’m NEVER going to pay a lot of money for. Others, I just might if I can’t find a cheaper alternative.

  18. Leila

    I’ll save up for high priced cosmetics because I enjoy them and the experience associated with them. By that I mean the enjoyment I get from having a beautiful product, it’s just the experience really and purely subjective.

    Honestly, if I didn’t enjoy makeup, I could survive on DS for the most part except maybe foundation since shades don’t run pale enough, but the enjoyment of it is why I pay the prices.

    That being said, high price must be high quality, otherwise there is no point especially since the markup on cosmetics is so outrageous! I buy the higher prices without any illusion that expensive=quality and I will only buy when that is true. If expensive isn’t quality, there is no point.

    Inexpensive can also be quality, it’s important to remember that, so I only buy expensively when I know the type of product is either unique or I’ll just enjoy it so much more.

  19. Avatar of chris chris

    I have a hard time buying products that are too inexpensive (i.e. $1.99 beauty supply anything. I shied away from lines like Wet & Wild, etc. – until I started reading your reviews :)

  20. Avatar of Hana Hana

    As long as the product really is high quality, I don’t mind spending a decent amount of money on it. Especially for things like foundation that cover the whole face, I want to make sure I’m getting a quality product. I use several Guerlain face products and tend to go with Urban Decay for eyeshadows. I’ve recently tried Le Metier de Beaute eyeshadows and those were very nice too.

  21. Dawn Reed

    I’ve spent a lot of money on both high end and drug store products. I always end up leaving the cheaper items lay after a couple of uses and pick up the high end items. I don’t know if it’s the packaging or formulas or what….but they are more of a pleasure to use and I feel like I look better. Even if it is psychological….it still makes them a better value.

  22. Avatar of Kendra Kendra

    As a college student I am always conscious of cost. However I am willing to spend more for high quality, for example I am willing to spend for Lancome foundation, ($50 CAD) since it works so well for me, plus each bottle lasts me a very long time. But I am slowly getting into drugstore brands (like NYX) to save some money, but I have found that drugstore products tend to have smaller sizes of products (obviously to keep cost down), but when I do the math and compare prices of HE vs drugstore and their quantities, sometimes it ends up being that the HE does not actually cost that much more. For example I used Sephora Powder foundation, it lasted me about 8 months, when I finished it I bought Maybelline Fit Me powder and it lasted me only about 2.5 months. I used both daily, in the same quantities and so when I compare prices ( $28 vs $8 CAD) the prices end up being very close ( $3.5/month vs $3.2/month). So I usually think my purchases through about how often I use a product and such and if I would pay that little bit extra.

    But obviously some products I think it definitely is better to save, for example mascara, I never actually use it all up before it drys up or I should throw it out (before I get an eye infection).

    Overall I just like to think things through about whether a product will be worth it. Although price can be an initial shock, once you break it down about how often you use it, how long it should last, and whether it’s a quality product, then it may not seem so bad)

  23. EB

    i have a large makeup collection, aside from the one i use for work. i don’t think i’ll ever finish anything, so it makes me feel pretty guilty when i want an expensive makeup product because i know it’ll probably go bad at some point before i’ll be able to finish it. this is why i’m on a no lipgloss, no eyeshadow, no foundation buy. i can’t control my urges when it comes to highlighters, lipsticks, and especially blushes, though.

    • Monica!

      Oh! I am in a foundation, eyeliner and concealer no buy too, cuz I have just what I need, but highlighters and blushes OMG I just cant get enough of them! I am sure Freud would have had something to say about this madness LOL

  24. Alexa

    For me personally, I invest in more expensive products when I know the quality is great and I will use the product on a consistent basis (foundation, concealer, neutral shadows and lipsticks).

  25. TrippyPixie

    Since I’m a college student, if a product is very expensive, I am not likely to buy it at all. Even if the product is good quality, I just wouldn’t be able to even afford (or justify buying, if I can afford it) that product when I could be saving my money instead.

  26. Avatar of Anne Anne

    I’m very picky when it comes to the quality of the product I purchase. I’ll admit I have expensive taste, but I’m really, really careful with the money I spend. I’m a saver. I can’t afford to buy much so the price obviously affects my willingness, but it’s also rewarding to be finally able to splurge after saving up! If a product is on the cheaper side, I’ll be a wee bit less regarding concerning quality – but not by much. I feel like, say, five euros is by no means a neglectable amount, and you can lose a lot when spending such amounts on cheaper products you may end up using less.

  27. CC

    I’m a college student and I am pretty happy with drug store make up. I am very fortunate to have neutral and non-sensitive skin so I don’t have any allergic reactions. I have recently started loving make up, and since I have a limited budget, I better do some research if I want to spend my money on HE. I usually buy HE skin products (like eye creams) and I buy my sister HE products because she has really sensitive skin. If I go HE the price better match the quality. Although to be honest I would buy more HE if the people at the counters were more friendly and would stop following me around as if I stole something.

  28. Price yes but mostly lack of shipping options or rate that are $40 to $60 shipping rates for a single item from the US turn me off like nothing else.

    Look at you Kett and Luminess Air, there no excuse for that rate to Ontario. Are the shipper running gold plated vehicles?

    High end brands turned me off years ago because the product where just ok, and when I could get products that far out last and preform in the theatrical and photo ready lines for half their price.

  29. Avatar of Lauren Lauren

    I am far less price sensitive than I used to be. I used to strongly favor drugstore but I could never find a foundation that stayed on my oily skin, didn’t break me out, and matched my warm, medium complexion. So I started trying high end foundations and have found several that meet my needs. Drugstore just couldn’t cut it.

    Nowadays, I don’t buy many drugstore products. I prefer higher end, more durable packaging. I’ve had to throw out many drugstore products due to pigmentation issues as well as issues relating to packaging breaking while the product was still fairly new. I know you can have issues with higher end products too, but I’m far less likely to be disappointed (especially since it’s easier to do my research with higher end products). With HE products, I am more likely to research and be satisfied whereas with drugstore products, I was impulse buying more and therefore getting disappointed a lot.

    My preferred price point is mid-range. I don’t like to spend more than $50. I don’t buy super high end. I also try and shop sales when I can. I’m also more likely to spend on foundation, eyeshadow, powder, and blush compared to eyeliners and mascaras. I like to buy UD liners, but I wait for a sale. As for mascara, I have enough samples to last me for quite a while of products that I really like. I never ever buy mascara (except I bought 2 tubes of UD Big Fatty Mascara for $5 each when they changed the formula).

  30. Gao

    For me, I definitely don’t buy high-end mascara’s or eyeliners. I’m good with my Dollywink or $1 one from Walgreens that beats a lot of eyeliners. I definitely pay more for lipstick since I’m a huge junky on that, the most I’ll pay for a lipstick would probably be $50, which I haven’t yet but thats my deal breaker right there. Foundation-eh, I know I won’t pay more $50 for that, maybe even $40 is too much.

    I once saw and indie nail polish for $160! It wasn’t even that special! I would definitely NEVER pay that much for nail polish. $25 would be max for nail polish.

  31. Melissa H from So. Fla.

    Foundation – Yes, I tend to spend a lot more money. I’m loving my Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation.

    Powders – I love the Guerlain Perles du Dragon

    Eyes – I tend to meet the middle of the road price line. Urban Decay and MAC are my go to products for shadows. Clinique for Mascara.

    Lips – I don’t do much lipstick, but I’ve been into Revlon Lip Butters recently.

    I’ve always like pricy-er items…made me feel like I was getting something of good quality, but I’ve found these days that some of the Maybelline and Revlon products are just a good…if not better.

  32. L

    I have to be careful with what goes on my skin. As long as it works for me I could care less about how much it costs, cause I’m not too much of a horder, so everything I buy, I get my money out of. I have really sensitive and sometimes dry skin, so I have to be careful they don’t break make out or make my dryness worse!

  33. JRM

    I started getting into makeup at the age of 28 and was constantly put off by the poor quality of DS makeup so much that I would turn up my nose at the makeup section whenever I had to go into the beauty supply store for other products, that was 2 years ago. I have found recently that DS brands have really stepped up their game. I am now off my high horse and experimenting with DS items much to my delight. I guess most of us go through that.At my age I can say that I am pretty settled and dont mind paying for a good product (not just a fancy brand). You just have to know your pocket and your own situation. Dont let anyone put you down for buying what you love.

  34. Liz

    As of right now, there are certain prices that I’m not willing to pay. I stay away from the brands that some call luxury brands (Chanel, Guerlain, Tom Ford to name a few). I just don’t feel comfortable paying those prices. I’d say I’m at the point where most of my makeup is HE, with a little bit of drugstore mixed in. I am actually surprised at some of the prices I’ve paid recently (a BB shimmer brick and Nars bronzer comes to mind).

    Also, it is much better to spend on something you will use a lot than a lower price on products you won’t really touch. I bought a Nars eyeshadow Duo for $33 and I use it all the time. I’m probably going to hit pan soon. I also bought a L’oreal Project Runway blush for around $12. I’m most likely going to throw out the L’oreal blush, so that was a complete waste of money.

  35. charlotte

    I’m right there with Temptalia. Price is not an issue (to a point, some things are just insane), but quality is… and to be honest I’ve been burned just as much by high end brands as I have with drugstore. Price does not equal quality, I’ve tried enough products to know. Nothing burns me more than spending $20-50 on a product that performs exactly the same as one I have that cost $5-10…. or even worse having a drugstore product that performs better. I feel taken advantage of.. and it happens more often than not.

  36. It’s everything. I can’t buy something over $6 unless I know I will like it. I just can’t force myself to do it.

  37. VickyM

    It affects me. I have had some very nasty experiences in the past with drugstore makeup, and I´m not allergic to anything. A jordana mascara I used when I was twelve ended up inside of my eye on the form of rock hard painfull pieces. A NYC lipgloss I bought would cause painfull stomach pains it took me about half a month to realize it was the gloss and I was right, I know it was because I would use it everyday, and the day I skiped it I had no pains. A revlon long lasting lipstick plus lipgloss product left my lips so damaged I had to go to the doctor to get a cream that would heal them faster and calm the pain. I only had the revlon product on for like five minutes. Either they underperform or they hurt me, so I tend to avoid DS products in most cases and just go High end instead, allways good experiences there :) .

  38. Price doesn’t effect my decision at all. I only shop cruelty free brands and care more about knowing my products are not tested on animals than the price. That being said I certainly expect a good quality product, especially if its costly. Drugstore makeup used to be awful. Ill admit there are now a few brands worth buying, but I know I am in the minority. I think now good makeup is available at all price points and people should buy what is comftorable for their budget.

  39. Avatar of Jenn Stylediva80

    Price doesn’t affect my decision, quality does. Ideally, a product should live up to its claims and strive to exceed the expectations of its consumers. I do believe, a more expensive brand should do more than just slap a designer packaging on its product to earn the $$$$$ it charges its consumers… however, that’s not always the case. Conversely we shouldn’t expect less from a product just because it’s relatively cheap. Quality is available at any price point. Whether you spend $1 or $100 on a product of poor quality, it’s still throwing away money.

  40. Clara

    Price is very important to me in that way that I don’t buy DS-stuff but neither would pay for tom Ford stuff, i.e.
    Make-up is my hobby so i enjoy spending money on it. It makes me feel good and i love my mid-end and high-end stuff.