Budget Makeup For One Pound – Poundland Has Launched It

Poundland Gallery make up
When I heard that good old Poundland was going to launch a brand, spanking new makeup collection I can’t say that I was jumping up and down in anticipation. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no shopping snob – I’ve found many a bargain amongst the cleaning cloths and bric-a-brac that line the seemingly never-ending shelves of this ‘everything’s a quid’ shop. I just couldn’t see how, unless it’s end-of-line-sell-it-cheap, a makeup could be any good at such a ridiculously low price.

Yet last week found me clutching a bag full of Poundland’s Gallery makeup, determined to put together a review but feeling more than a little bit trepidatious.

Close up of Poundland make up collection

First Impressions

I must admit I had an image in my mind of how Poundland’s budget makeup line would look, and boy was I wrong! It’s a just a tiny bit sleek and sexy. The packaging wouldn’t look out of place nestled inside *insert high brand bag of your choice here*. There’s an unexpected solidity about the containers, some of them are just darn good looking. I did find the lipstick case a bit of a letdown – an opaque or black lid would have just upped the look a little.

I love that fact that a lot of thought has gone in to not just the packaging, but also the naming of the products – Good To Glow Bronzer, classic!

I found the choosing process a bit frustrating, I do understand that Poundland is a busy place and they don’t necessarily want their aisles filling up with women testing makeup, but without testers it was nigh on impossible to get the correct foundation, concealer, etc. The only testers I saw on offer in the store I visited were for the lipsticks – this needs a rethink Poundland.

Close up of Poundland Gallery make up collection
So want to know what I bought and what I thought? Read on dear reader, read on.

Gorgeous Flawless Foundation

Went on like a dream but ‘sat’ in my pores and made them look the size of golf balls. Transfer wasn’t too bad, and it lasted for around three hours before my face ate it.

Score: 5/10

Verdict: I think you get what you pay for when it comes to foundation so not for me.

Bin it or bag it? It might, and I do mean might, end up in my emergency overnight bag.

Good To Glow Bronze Shimmer

Actually, not bad if you’re looking for a light glow. You do need to dip in quite a bit to get enough on your brush though, sending puffs of bronzer everywhere.

Score: 6/10

Verdict:  Messy but OK if you’re not in love with your carpet.

Bin it or bag it? This may make it into my bag, but only if I’m applying away from the sanctity of my cream carpets!

Smoothly Does It Pressed Powder

Application was fairly easy and it brushed over my skin without dragging. However, this may be more suitable for women who prefer a matte rather than a dewy finish. I’d rather glow than cake so it didn’t suit me.

Score: 4/10

Verdict: Not the best – it left a chalky, tight finish to my skin.

Bin it or bag it? I prefer a more natural finish so this certainly wasn’t my cup of tea.

Hide And Chic Concealer

This went on about as smoothly as setting concrete! Other than draw attention to them, it did absolutely nothing for my blemishes. No amount of swearing coaxing would make the darn stuff blend. The only positive thing I can say about this twist-up concealer is that the coverage is potentially good.

Score: 1/10

Verdict: Not great – it dragged my under-eye area which just made me want to throw it through the window.

Bin it or bag it? There is no bin large enough or deep enough!

Feeling Blush Blusher

Again this took a bit of wrestling to apply, it tends to just puff everywhere. However, when I managed to apply it I really loved the colour.

Score: 7/10

Verdict: Despite the wrestle I found the colour really flattering.

Bin it or bag it? This is a definite keeper.

Colour Story Eye Shadow

What can I say – wow! The pigmentation of these eye colours is amazing: a little goes a long way. Easy to blend and lightweight, I’m a fan.

Score: 8/10

Verdict: Although I wasn’t expecting it, I loved the slight sheen to these shadows. Be warned though, they do tend to ‘sit’ in any crepiness.

Bin it or bag it? I may buy one of each colour.

Pro Liquid Eyeliner

This – – – wait for it, absolutely blew me away! I am useless at applying liquid eyeliner – think of a chimp using tools for the first time and you’ll have a rough idea of my liner prowess. But this, well this was a breeze. The brush is tiny and the liquid is thin, which makes it far easier for the eyeliner-challenged to work with.

Score: 9/10

Verdict: This has now become my liquid eyeliner of choice – enough said.

Bin it or bag it? BAG, BAG, BAG!!

Never-Ending Story Lengthening Mascara

After the success of the eyeliner I was expecting great things, alas for great expectations. This was a complete and utter flop. It was easy to apply but it made hardly any difference to the length or thickness of my lashes. After an hour it also crumbled off my lashes and left a mass of black speckles under my eyes. Epic fail.

Score: 3/10

Verdict: The only upside to this mascara was how it applied to my lower lashes. I do find that mascara that looks great on my upper lashes tends to make my lower lashes too spidery.

Bin it or bag it? I may keep it just for lower lash application.

All About The Pout Lipstick

A rich, generously pigmented, non-drying lipstick with excellent staying power. It lasted for over 3 hours of eating, drinking and talking before I needed to reapply.

Score: 9/10

Verdict: If the packaging had been just a little bit nicer this would have walked away with a big, fat 10.

Bin it or bag it? My bag may well runneth over with every colour.

Dare To Bare Sheer Lip Gloss

This took a bit of careful application as even a gentle squeeze releases enough product to cover even Miss Piggy’s pout. A nice, non-sticky lip gloss that lasted as long as some of the more up-market brands.

Score: 7/10

Verdict: When you master the squeeze this is a winner.

Bin it or bag it? Definitely bag it, just make sure the lid is on really tight!

Time To Shine Nail Colour

This classy looking nail varnish gives plenty much bang for your buck – or in this case quid! The brush is a good size, the consistency is somewhat watery but it still covers well with two coats. It dried in minutes and, with a good quality base coat and top coat, lasted for three days before chipping. Epic win.

Score: 8/10

Verdict: Go buy it! I rest my case.

Bin it or bag it? I have a weakness for nail varnish so I’m absolutely bagging this – in every shade.

Close up of one pound coin

Overall Verdict

Let’s face it, you don’t get much for a pound these days. To think that you could, in theory, purchase a full face of cruelty-free makeup for around a tenner is phenomenal. I know I’ve pulled some of the products apart, but I have to hand it to Poundland – no woman now needs to go lippie-free no matter how small her budget.

I’m not suggesting that you abandon your top-end products, but just think of the fun you could have experimenting with new looks without breaking the bank. Or know any young beauty fans? A selection of these products would make a great first makeup kit.

I do see a lot of these products making it into my emergency overnight bag. I really like the idea of being able to pop brand-new makeup in there and not the makeup dregs that currently inhabit it.

All I can say is, way to go Poundland!


  1. Erica
    March 30, 2015 / 9:39 pm

    huh, I had never thought that Poundland might have had their own beauty brand..The Pro liquid eyeliner sounds good, will pick one up next time i’m in town, thanks! 🙂

  2. Lora
    August 25, 2015 / 4:58 pm

    I tried a couple of products today. The lippie went on smoothly and although it looked bright in the tube was quite flattering on. I wasn’t wholly sold on the way it fet on my lips but that’s a very personal thing and in its favour it didn’t have a weird taste or smell, which I sometimes notice with cheapo brands. The eyeliner is good although my application isn’t perfect – that said I am (ahem) getting on a bit and may be better off with a smudgeable pencil liner so I might just give theirs a try next time I’m in there.

  3. October 12, 2015 / 8:09 pm

    OOh I sort of want to try this and I sort of don’t now! Think I’ll definitely see if I can bag a few of the eyeshadows, can never have enough eyeshadows! Skin products I might steer clear of because I have dodgy skin at the best of times 😉 Great honest review 🙂

    • October 13, 2015 / 9:44 pm

      Thanks Michelle. I’m still using the eye shadow, and I’ve added a few more colours. I think they’re great for trying new looks 🙂

  4. Lora
    May 13, 2016 / 11:48 am

    I’ve tried several of their products now because hey, they’re a quid so why not? I tried two of the khol pencils, the navy and brown. Both are fine – not the softest but don’t irritate or melt. Brown goes on more smoothly for some reason. I have only tried the top & basecoat nail polish but so far, so good. Shine on lip gloss is too sticky for me but I usually only wear balm so am not used to the feel. Good colour (I tried cranberry). Agree with you totally about the liquid eyeliner, it’s as good as most I’ve tried. The one dud for me was the mascara in the red tube, which smudged badly after I used some on lower lashes, so that went straight in the bin. My latest buy is the matte bronzer in light 1. The colour is understated but works well with pale skin and I had no issues with powder making a mess.

    • May 17, 2016 / 9:50 am

      Good to hear your thoughts Lora. Interesting that the powder didn’t make a mess for you. I did trial Gallery when it first launched, so I wonder if they’ve changed the formula?
      Michelle xx

  5. Claire Bingham
    February 21, 2017 / 4:15 pm

    I’ve have recently purchased the define and conquer contour kit. I also purchased the bare minerals range the same day. You could say I was just having a laugh trying the Poundland range. To say I’m impressed is an understatement. The litttle contour kit is fab. The light is a brilliant concealer for under eye shadows and doesn’t crease. I’m in my 40s and it looks fresh and young. I am quite fair, so wouldn’t be suitable for everyone. It does work better than bare minerals concealer which does crease and look loaded. It’s a great buy and definitely will pick up some more.

    • February 24, 2017 / 12:12 pm

      I haven’t tried that Claire, but I’ll certainly now give it a go.
      Michelle xx

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