Crisis Alert: Makeup Is Too Expensive for Teens

Crisis Alert: Makeup Is Too Expensive for Teens

Is Australia in the middle of a "makeup" crisis for teens? We asked our members. Here’s one great response.


Picture this: It’s the day of my school formal, I’ve just had my makeup professionally done at Mecca, I look and feel like a boss, and I’m about to get some goodies in return for the appointment.

But before I know it, the assistant is telling me to get the $60 lip gloss she used for my look. I’m startled; as if I would pay sixty whole dollars for a semi-clear gloss! No way, that’s ridiculous. Surely I don’t need this gloss for my look to be perfect…

About ten minutes later, I’m rushing out of the store with that lip gloss. Formal is stressful enough as it is.

Like most teens, I’m enchanted by makeup stores. They sell us what are essentially a bunch of liquids and powders, but those very products can be a creative outlet that bring so many people joy.
However, it seems that purchasing makeup is becoming less fulfilling in the modern day. You know there’s a makeup crisis on our hands when we laugh at memes of spending $200 in Sephora and walking out with one lipstick and an eyelash curler, knowing that those memes are one hundred per cent accurate.

When did makeup become so expensive? Even makeup sold in pharmacies has me second guessing whether it’s really necessary.

This is not to imply that low-end makeup has a ton of variety either. For most teens—especially POC teens like myself—quality makeup that comes in the right shades and tones is mostly found in brand stores. There, a tiny tube of product will almost always cost about twenty dollars or more. For some adult consumers that’s alright, as it’s within their budget. But a large proportion of makeup consumers are not adults who are working full-time. They’re teenagers, looking to find their ideal products using the bit of money they earn through part-time jobs or pocket money.

It seems only fair that makeup should be available to these teens, with a more accommodating price range. We deserve to pay an amount proportionate to the quantity and quality of the product, and our own small income. And we can see when companies aren’t considering our desires.

Reduced makeup prices would give youth more opportunity to express themselves through the kind of art that happens on your face. And it makes you feel like a boss on school formal day and every other day.