PB Asks: Are you a brand snob?

by Paris B on · 47 comments

in Discussions


Hehe… it doesn’t sound as bad as all that but its catchy :)

But are you a brand snob when it comes to cosmetics and skincare? I don’t mean a brand snob in the sense of buying more expensive department store brands as opposed to cheap drugstore brands.

I’m asking if you prefer to buy a product from an established brand or do you choose a product based on how it performs regardless of whether it is from an established brand or from a no-name store/brand?

I confess to being a bit of a  brand snob.

I personally rather buy products from a brand thats more established (whether drugstore or department store) rather than one from a no-name generic store or brand, no matter how good people say it is. This way, if something goes wrong, I have a company to hold liable and responsible. Also, if its something that goes near my eyes or lips, I stick to established brands with a market presence for quality control and potential liability if nothing else.

As an example, (and I know some people are wondering) this is the reason I will pay RM80 for Make Up For Ever’s Eye Seal as opposed to a RM5 similar product from Daiso. I’ve read that it performs the same function at a fraction of the price and I’m happy to hear that; but I guess I’m just picky because its my eyes.  If something went wrong with MUFE I could potentially sue their pants off… I’m not so sure about Daiso :)

I would however, buy Daiso’s embossed facial cotton which looks to be about the same as that from other Japanese brands and substantially cheaper! But that isn’t a cosmetic or skincare per se ;)

I’m also fussy when it comes to skincare so I’m more wary about generic or unfamiliar skincare than if I have to use a skincare from a more established brand.

What about you? Do share in the poll or leave a comment with your thoughts.

[poll id=”15″]

Stay beautiful,

Paris B

p/s This is not an April Fool’s joke :)

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[ 47 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

prettybeautiful April 1, 2009 at 9:09 am

actually i dont really mind buying cheaper products as long as it works. but i am very anal about skincare tho, dare not try out wats unknown


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 9:43 am

Hiya prettybeautiful

I guess I’m just a little bit more anal about everything hehe… but for skincare I’m definitely more particular.


Adeline April 1, 2009 at 9:38 am

I definitely prefer products that are established. I dislike anything mineral makeup or BB creams or all those cult products that keep popping up. And coastal scents AND daiso etc. I LOVE high end makeup. I like drugstore brands like Majolica Majorca or Lavshuca though.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 9:44 am

Hi Adeline

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I’m not all about high end makeup although I’m more wary of the unknown brands that pop up in some discount shops. If its a low end brand in an established group I’m more likely to want to try it.


Shay April 1, 2009 at 9:59 am

Yeah, I don’t buy no name makeup or skincare.

I even had problems with branded skincare! Nowadays, not only do I select the brand but I also check the ingredients and also see if they are derm tested. So, currently I only use skincare products which I’ve used before or recommended by my beautician. The only drugstore brand I use is La-Roche Posay, a derm tested line from Lorael.

Learnt my lesson from adventurous ventures into the skincare unknown.

Make up wise I use brands like MJ, NARS, Benefit, The Face Shop, Skinfood, etc. Surprisingly I have no problems with more branded or less branded makeup. But I only buy when I see adverts or reviews. So, I won’t really touch Daiso products as they have not much adverts or reviews.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:42 pm

Hi Shay

Ooh I’m trying to get my hands on La Roche Posay’s sunscreen. I’m not sure if we have it here in Malaysia – I’ve never seen it. I’m wary about Daiso not because its cheap but more of because its another brand carried in Daiso and so Daiso really could wash their hands of it!


April 1, 2009 at 10:11 am

I buy foundation and concealer from the department store because it’s your face, cannot mess with that too much.

The “colour” stuff (blush, eyeshadow, etc), I go for drugstore brands.

I don’t dare buy cosmetics, etc from Daiso or the 100 Yen Shop.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:39 pm

Hi synical

I’m a mix of high end and low end for everything but I’m still not going to buy from Daiso. I must admit though that I’ll be ok with trying the blush from Daiso because its not on my eyes or lips :)


Nikki April 1, 2009 at 10:29 am

It really depends, for foundation, I am a bit of a brand snob, but for lippies or e/s it really depends if they really perform well, I’ll be ok :)


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:38 pm

Hi Nikki

I noticed many are picky about their foundations… and I’m less so! I wonder why hehe… I guess colours are easier to duplicate and they are fleeting unlike foundations where its important to get the right shade and texture.


April 1, 2009 at 10:36 am

it really depends on what i use them for. sometimes i dun mind no name/ cheap products, as long as it works, but sometimes i prefer using an established brand~ feels much safer :)


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:37 pm

Hi Plue

Yeah I guess most of us are of the same view.


xisa April 1, 2009 at 10:36 am

I admit that I dont really care about brand, but I dont buy unknown brands either. Unless their products are highly raved about. I tend to buy from brands that seems could be trusted, and if the greatest *item* came from this particular brand that I felt vary of using on my face, then I will find the second alternative. :D


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:36 pm

Hi Xisa

I’ve been disappointed by many raves so I’m less swayed by raves these days but I guess brands do play a part for me.


beetrice April 1, 2009 at 11:03 am

I’m on the fence here – I’d spend on things like skincare, but for quick colour obsessions the cheaper ones will do just as well.

Sometimes though…nothing ventured nothing gained? :)


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:35 pm

Hi beetrice

I’d try a cheap brand, just not one that’s not a “brand” … which seems rather circular eh? :)


April 1, 2009 at 11:58 am

I’d spend money on reputable brands, whether it’s high-end or drugstore. This goes for skincare and makeup. I’m more particular about makeup, in the sense that I would not buy from never-heard-before brands (I’m picky like that), especially for products that go on the face and eyes. Needless to say, I would not use skincare products which brands I’ve never heard before.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:35 pm

Hi Tine

I guess we are the same. :)


sesame April 1, 2009 at 12:43 pm

Yes I am! I snub certain counter brands. Actually at one stage, I used to snub at all of them and think that only salon products are better.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:34 pm

Hi Sesame

I find salon products more expensive… but thats about it LOL… Some are better I must say, but I usually snub a brand only if I’ve had bad service there ;)


giddy tigress
April 1, 2009 at 12:57 pm

Yes I am picky when it comes to brands, but I don’t fork out obscene amounts of moolah just because it is A BRAND. And I do buy cheap no name brands sometimes too, but then it has to work!


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:34 pm

Hi giddy tigress

Yep I have to agree – I won’t pay bags of money simply because its a “brand” and I’m very wary about no name brands but sometimes, one does find gems in those “no names”


Synaesthesia April 1, 2009 at 3:42 pm

I’m agreed with you ParisB… I’m not very particular about which brands to use but at least it must be an established or reputable one. I understand it may not necessary they’ll produce highest quality but at least I know who to find and what to do with it…


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:33 pm

Hi Synaesthesia

I guess a lot of us are swayed by the “reputable” element whether cheap or expensive. I’m more concerned about accountability :)


Amanda April 1, 2009 at 5:36 pm

I’m that type of person who will never buy no brand skincare and makeup. I’m picky and I don’t trust those no brand cosmetics… it always makes me wonder what ingredients they’ve used and how they can be so cheap :)

Most of my makeup are MAC, Too Faced, Nars and Urban Decay. I love drugstore brands like Rimmel for the Moisture Renew Lipsticks. Maybelline for the mascaras, Gosh for the waterproof eyeliners.

I’d love to try Majolica Majorca but I’ll need someone to ship me some from Malaysia.


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Hi Amanda

Ooh the next time you come back, you’re going to have to hit up a Watsons – KLCC has one with a good selection of Majolica Majorca. Personally I’m not so into it, but a lot of people are.


Joyce April 1, 2009 at 6:13 pm

i admit im a brand snob when it comes to base makeup, but things like blush and e/s i don’t mind using drugstore brands, as long as they last on my face until the end of the day


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:17 pm

Hi Joyce

I’m pretty happy with drusgtore brands for all makeup – I’m just a little wary of those that have “no names” nor have much of a presence.


Reeka April 1, 2009 at 6:27 pm

Oh yes, I am. It’s about your one and only face :D.
Branded is not always be expensive IMO.
I use loccitane nite cream, clarins sunscreen as the same time i use neutrogena toner and olay facial foam.

and eventho i love my chanel l/s bery much, i do love my kanebo media l/s as well.

it’s better for me to tighten budget in fashion than in skincare/make up. in this recession, better i minimize quantity of my impulsive-buying-make up rather than downgrade the quality :D


Shay April 1, 2009 at 6:31 pm

My auntie worked in Guardian pharmacy and Robinsons in Singapore before.

In Guardian, the branded vitamin pills e.g. Redoxon for Vitamin C and some “no brand” or house brand vitamins actually comes from the same manufacturer or supplier. The products actually are made similarly. But just re-package for market segmentation to catch those customers who are not willing to pay for brand names.

Similarly for clothes. She saw that branded and non-branded clothes might come from the same manufacturer.

I suppose that’s the same for makeup/skincare as well. Like Lorael will have several lines e.g. Lancome and Vichy, etc. I have no doubt that some “no brand” skin care and makeup comes from contractors/sub-contractors for those big name companies.

But well…I’m a sucker for advertising and brand image appeals to me. So, yeah… :D


ParisB April 1, 2009 at 6:49 pm

Hey Shay

Yeah I know that many “house brands” are actually made by some reputable places. The main issue I guess is accountability. Many of the “no name” brands may come from the same factories – so many brands come from the same factories its the formulation thats different depending on how much they are prepared to pay I guess – but if something goes wrong, you can’t really hold them to anything. Now try that with a major brand and most times, you get some form of action :)


jojoba April 2, 2009 at 1:17 am

i have to say that i am a snob. i can try d/s but mostly not very interested UNLESS something has been talked about a lot or rec by someone I trust. otherwise, i don’t really look into d/s stuff as they normally don’t work for me. Of course, there is this Maybelline WP Liqwuid Eyeliner that I have to call a HG. otherwise, the rest are just mostly a big MEH.


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:58 pm

Hi Jojoba

I guess sometimes its expectations as well. There must be a reason why cheap products sometimes don’t work as well. :)


JackieA April 2, 2009 at 8:10 am

Hey PB! I believe that everyone’s skin has a mind of its own and hence what works for some people will not work on others….regardless of how wonderful the product is! I grew up watching my mum take care of her skin and I have followed her footsteps. I will not compromise on moisturizer, eye cream and foundation however, I love to experiment with eye, cheek and lip colors and besides, who can resist the cute packaging of these things?!


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:57 pm

Hey JackieA

I do agree with you that we are all different, hence the many many types of products in the market! For me, very expensive products have killed my skin too so I”m always wary of all products. I do experiment with colours, just not every cheap colour I come across but as I always stress, its a matter of preferance as we all have our own likes and dislikes and different tolerance levels :)


jennifer April 2, 2009 at 9:37 am

in malaysia can sue ar? if use aledi went wrong? i thought the most is like korek own pockets go see skin doctor T.T is can sue like USA good lor …….


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:55 pm

Hi Jennifer

I don’t see why you can’t take legal action if it turns out bad for you and the company does not want to take responsibility for it. Its true everywhere in the world – just whether consumers really bother to enforce their rights.


abby April 3, 2009 at 11:49 pm

I’m a big bad brand snob!! But with good reason. I am very fussy about skincare. Don’t want the risk of anything going wrong. makeup, don’t use much yet but so far, still a snob with big brand names.


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:43 pm

Hi Abby

It looks like most of us are pretty fussy about skincare but less so about cosmetics. I’m not that fussy about big names so long as they are established :)


a.min April 3, 2009 at 11:54 pm

well…brand snob is kinda mean…but i m 1 of them too. but mine is towards the established or famous for typical product kind. so if this brand is famous for this, i ll definitely go this brand for the product!


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:42 pm

Hey A.min

I guess this is what most of us are like too – we gravitate towards certain brands for certain things but I mean brand snob in the sense of whether you would opt for an established brand or be happy to try anything including non-branded stuff.


Farah Lily April 4, 2009 at 8:19 pm

I have sensitive skin resulting in me being awfully picky as to what do i put on my skin. I was a sucker for everything sold at the drugstore until a bad encounter with Olay’s facial cleanser resulted in a huge ass disaster! And don’t get me started about Maybelline’s foundations – breakouts galore!

Sometimes I do wish that I can go back to buying drugstore brands, but after those bad experiences, I’d rather not.


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:39 pm

Hi Farah

If you have sensitive skin, the best thing is to stick to something that you know works well for you – sometimes, its a curse not to be able to buy cheap but if its going to kill your skin, don’t risk it eh?


Yvonne April 4, 2009 at 10:23 pm

I will never slather on my face anything that comes from the night market. I know some people can take it(those who are blessed with great skin) but definitely not me. I’m a brand snob when it comes to clothes too, so of course that translates into my makeup and skincare taste. Which basically, translates into being broke half of the time. :(


ParisB April 6, 2009 at 2:37 pm

Hi Yvonne

LOL… I’m less fussy about my clothes but I’m fussy about my bags so I guess we are in a similar boat :)


Ja May 16, 2009 at 12:09 pm

Yes, because I don’t want to buy anything that kills or harms any sentient being.


Andreea November 6, 2009 at 7:40 pm

I am a brand snob! I never buy drugstore stuff unless organic brands, which are only in drugstores here in Germany.
Otherwise I stick to Dior lip stuff, NARS for eyes+cheeks (and it is horrendous expensive in Germany!) and whatever gets my way.

Also for skincare, I stick to Dr. Hauschka, but this has been the only brand to help my with my acne prone dry skin. Otherwise I’d be happy to find something cheaper…


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