How many times will you try a product before you know it won't work for you?

It depends on the why it’s not working, but for most products, if it doesn’t work after trying a handful of times with different techniques/brushes (e.g. using a lighter hand, heavier hand, different type of brush, wet), I usually just move on.

— Christine


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Seraphine Avatar

I’ll give it a couple of tries, then if it doesn’t work, it gets relegated to a drawer of makeup I don’t use. Then I usually revisit it months or even years later (depending on product). Sometimes I’m pleasantly surprised and sometimes I give up on it. This tends to happen mostly with eye palettes and highlighters. I just can’t seem to get rid of them, though.

Nancy T Avatar

It depends. Sometimes, just a a change in application method like applying a looser packed or more glittery eyeshadow with my clean fingertip, or using a different primer, can make all the difference in the world. But, that’s just eyeshadows. Other products may just be fails no matter what I try. And, if it’s skincare and I have an allergy or reaction to it, it goes back immediately!

Genevieve Avatar

That depends on the product. Bite Beauty’s Nori lipstick is one I knew straight away was not going to work well – the shade was too dark and the lipstick tugged across my lips, leaving a very dry feeling. It got tossed pretty quickly.
As for eyeshadows, it;s quite rare that I have a dud these days, but if it is just one shade in a palette, I will substitute it, but if it was the whole palette – I would toss that too after a couple of goes.

Jen Avatar

I give it a few chances so that I can try to get better results with different techniques or with other products, but not much beyond that. If I can’t make it work I’ll be disappointed but I’ll move on.

Ana Maria Avatar

A very “it depends” question indeed.
A mascara only has to smudge on me once to be out, I’m not giving second chances. A foundation or concealer I might try a dozen times in different combinations until deciding if it’s good or not.
But generally I’m quite willing to make things work… unless they give me an immediate rash or severe allergy… or raccoon eyes. 😅

Nina Avatar

I’ve had super bad luck with the reformulated Lancôme lipsticks that have come out this past year. I’ve bought three and each one looks great for a few tries then they seem to oxidize. Given that, I’ll say with any never bought before product I’ll give it a good drive around the block before tossing it. The Lancôme’s went in the trash after six weeks. No room for oxidation here. No need for it.

Lacey Avatar

One to three times. I usually know right away if a product is going to work for me enough to be a keeper. Then it’s given away with explanation of why it didn’t work for me. Occasionally I’ll use a product differently (the facial oil that made my face breakout is usually fine for manis/pedis until It’s gone) 🙂

Mariella Avatar

Thanks to this site, I’ve rarely had to return anything (I can only think of 2 products in recent years, though there are probably 2 or 3 others I ought to have returned but it wasn’t worth the trouble). Anyway, with the 2 things I did return (a MAC Paint Pot and Marc Jacobs eyeshadow palette), I tried each 3 or 4 times mostly to try to convince myself they were worth keeping – I sensed right away that neither was something that worked well for me – but they weren’t!

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