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NYX Cosmetics Review 2019: Affordable Makeup, Professional Products

Assortment of NYX cosmetics laid out.

If you were a kid growing up in Colorado and spent more time riding horses and skiing than playing with your mom’s makeup, you’ll understand why the first makeup I bought was made by NYX Cosmetics (pronounced like the New York Knicks). The eyeliner and lip glosses I bought were $10 altogether and left plenty of babysitting money to buy more scrunchies and candy, or whatever I was wasting my money on back then.

Everything in this brand is super cheap, which is perfect for a budding tween trying to fit in with her friends who are already ahead on the makeup train. My mom was more focused on teaching me to eat right and exercise, and I didn’t have any older sisters to teach me anything about the world of makeup.

However, an introduction with NYX is not bad. There are other cheap brands out there that are far less impressive. I recall owning a mascara tube that just put chunks on and around my eyes and that’s the best that it could do.

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NYX’s new white and black mascara that I used at the first big Middle School Winter Dance lasted all night and didn’t even clump! I was elated. I had found my brand.

This company has hundreds of beauty products, from your lips to your nails and everything in between. It’s known for its department store quality with drugstore prices. I saw the tagline on its website and I took a look.

The most expensive product is a $45 palette with over 50 colors of eyeshadow and three different pressed powders for contouring! With most companies, you can get just two lipsticks for that amount of money. Although I don’t often buy NYX products anymore, I do feel a jolt of nostalgia every time an old eyeliner or powder rolls around the bottom of my overly packed makeup bag.

However, although it claims department store quality, now that I own makeup by other name brand sellers, there is a clear difference of how long the makeup stays and the vibrancy of the colors. Still, as far as drug store makeup is concerned, NYX is way better than any makeup you’ll find in the Walmart aisle.

NYX Cosmetics Company History And Background Explained

Woman smiling.

Toni Ko.

I did a little research and was delighted to find that making this company was built by a South Korean immigrant named Toni Ko. She founded NYX in 1999 at the age of 25 in LA, where she lived with her parents. It’s named after the Greek goddess of the night, which sounds fun and mysterious and alluring. She bought the work-space for the company by taking a loan from her parents, before selling it in 2014 to L’Oreal.

Toni Ko grew up in South Korea and moved to California with her family when she was 13 years old. Her business was successful, which is impressive because she started out by only selling to makeup professionals. Her first product was jumbo eye and lip pencils which sold for just $1.99 apiece. She did all the research and development herself, as well as paying the bills and lugging boxes to new customers.

Her company had its big break in 2008 when the economy crashed and people could no longer afford name brand makeup. After collaborating with influential vloggers on YouTube, Ko was able to build a business that sold for $500 million in 2014.

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NYX Cosmetics Product Overview – Lips, Face, Eyes And More!

Most of the products sell for around $4-$5 and are even cheaper if you buy three or four at once. Unlike professional makeup, you can buy two or three lip glosses, eye shadows, and powders at the same time. These products are available in various stores or online, and the NYX website offers free shipping on any order that costs more than $25. That’s like, a full face of makeup with free shipping!

Assortment of NYX makeup products laid out.

NYX Cosmetic Products.

There is a huge amount of choice when it comes to makeup. NYX sells products for your lips, face and eyes, including makeup brushes, sponges, sharpeners, blotting paper, makeup remover, nail polish and makeup bags. I’ll go more into detail for each product, but here’s a breakdown of all the products available:

  • Lips: There are lip glosses, liners and lipstick, available in pencil or liquid form.
  • Face: There are blushes, bronzers, concealers, foundations, contouring palettes, primer, and setting spray. The concealer and foundation come in twelve different colors, covering every skin color.
  • Eyes: There is mascara, eyeliner, (both liquid and pencil) eyeshadow, eyebrow pencils, eyebrow gel and eyebrow cake powder, and false lashes.

A special addition you can add to some NYX products is to engrave your name on your makeup products. While I am writing this, there is a 24-hour sale giving customers free engraving for specific products. However, it is only an additional $2 after the sale ends.

This is a fun way to individualize your makeup that other makeup companies do not provide. I don’t know if I’d spend an extra $2 on a lip gloss, but it would make a perfect gift for your little sister or niece.

Some of NYX’s best-selling products are liquid lipsticks, (Lip Lingerie) eyeshadow palettes, and liquid highlighter to use as you contour. Most of these best-sellers come in tons of fun colors and shades. Unlike other makeup lines, NYX has most of its products infused with glitter to add a pretty glow to finish your look.

Still, it might come off looking a little less mature than other makeup brands, so that’s your call to make. I own less sparkly makeup now and more concealer to cover under-eye bags because, well, that’s my life now. But that shouldn’t stop you from applying some subtle sparkle to your look.

Is NYX Cosmetics Cruelty Free?

I love a company that cares about animals, and I am pleased to say that PETA proudly announced that yes, NYX is cruelty free. NYX became cruelty-free in 2010, and even though it was sold to L’Oreal which admittedly tests on animals, it still stayed cruelty-free.

As for vegan products, a quick Google search showed that there are hundreds of NYX products that are vegan. Animal byproducts provide rich colors to a product like a lipstick. They can also  be found in makeup brushes made from their hair. Because I keep kosher, I have to be especially careful about red pigments in lipsticks and glosses, because they’re usually made of carmine, or crushed up beetles.

NYX has all vegan brushes and makeup sponges. It is unclear why NYX does not state this on its website, as more people would be willing to buy their products if they knew this. Although there is a list of all the ingredients in each product available on the website, you can find a full, updated list on websites that check for vegan makeup products on the market.

Where To Buy NYX Cosmetics

A very helpful store locator on the website allows a user to type in a city, state or zip code in order to find NYX cosmetics in different drugstores. One setting allows the user to look for a NYX professional makeup store, but this isn’t available in every state. I could only find these special stores in New York and LA. I’m guessing it’s not like the fun look you get when getting made-up by someone at a MAC store or something, but hey, I’m stuck in Colorado so I’ll never know.

You can buy NYX products in many different stores available across the US, including:

If you are a lover of online shopping, you can also purchase NYX products through their website. There are usually coupons or sales available that you can take advantage of when looking to replace a new lip gloss or find a better concealer. The advantage of buying online is that you can read the product description and compare prices; but buying in person allows you to determine if a color looks good on you.

NYX Cosmetics Makeup Setting Spray Review

There are two different kinds of setting sprays available from NYX:

  • Spray with a matte finish

After finishing your makeup look, you can avoid running, smearing or fading with a finishing spray. The matte finish prevents your face from looking shiny or oily, which is helpful especially for those who have naturally oily skin. Available in both mini and large bottles. The mini bottle contains just 18 mL; the large bottle contains 60 mL.

  • Spray with a dewy finish

For a more dewy look, there is a finishing spray for those with naturally dry skin. This too is available in mini and large bottles.

NYX Cosmetics Studio Finishing Powder Review

NYX Studio Finishing Powder open packaging with powder spilling out.

NYX Studio Finishing Powder.

Among the eight different finishing powders available, studio finishing powder is a couple dollars cheaper than other powders. It is made of mineral silica, which helps the powder dissolve and settle onto your face. It is a glowing, white color which is supposed to work with all skin tones.

NYX Cosmetics Soft Matte Lip Cream Review

A mix between a lip balm and a lipstick, soft lip cream combines two lip products for your lips to remain soft and moisturized. I’ve honestly never tried this product, because I wasn’t sure if it was a gloss or a lipstick, so I just avoided it. I’m sure there are more adventurous people out there to try it, though.

There are two different kinds of lip creams available: a standard matte lip cream and a metallic color. Each color has its own distinct scent, but what the scents are is unclear as they are not listed on the website. One matte cream tube is available in 46 different shades named after different cities, ranging in shades from a standard bright pink (Tokyo) to a zany peacock blue (Moscow). Each tube includes the option to add a personal engraving on the tube as well. The metallic lip cream only has 12

Swatches of close up of lips with different shades of lipstick.

Soft Matte Lip Cream.

different colors, and it’s for those more adventurous people at there. Alternatively, it could probably work for a dress up party or Halloween.

There are also different sets that contain three bright colors, saving you almost $10 for all three. Set 15 has a trio of unique colors: pink, brown and purple. Set 13 is a more workplace appropriate shades with neutral tones of tan and pink. Set 12 contains jewel tones of red, burgundy and peacock blue. These sets were launched in the wintertime for the perfect Christmas present, but they seem to be a great bargain at any time of the year.

NYX Cosmetics Honey Dew Me Up Primer

This golden honey hue softens and hides redness on your face. Like most products in NYX, it has an added golden glitter to help your face look dewy and fresh. It’s not too glittery; plus, you’ll likely be covering it with your foundation and concealer, so it’s unlikely to be a shimmer overload.

NYX Cosmetics Pore Filler Review

A unique product, you can feel confident that this pore filler works well and can be used in emergencies. This cream minimizes your pores and you can put it on before or after your foundation to cover up problem areas. It also contains vitamin E, an essential nutrient to keep your skin supple and full of moisture.

NYX Cosmetics Concealer Wand Review

Assortment of nude concealer sticks.

NYX Concealer Wand.

This liquid concealer comes in a portable tube and has its own doe foot applicator brush. It can be used to cover up blemishes, under-eye bags, or other problem areas without giving a cakey finish. There are 23 different colors to help you find the perfect shade to match your skin tone. Because it is one of NYX’s best-selling products, perhaps this will be better to buy in-store as some shades are sold out on the website. I use this every day before I go to work. On days that I don’t have time to do my makeup, I am often asked “Are you feeling okay?” at the office, so I know this works!

Conclusion

NYX is a company that provides affordable cosmetics without sacrificing quality. These products are not long-lasting, and generally need to be reapplied, but compared to other cheaper brands, NYX stands tall.

Started by Toni Ko, a young immigrant from South Korea,  NYX has become a hugely successful company, which has grown since its small warehouse in south LA.

Their cosmetics are perfect for when you feel like buying makeup but don’t want to splurge. Using these products definitely brings me back to my tween years, when I was learning the ins and outs of using makeup. Now I can feel more confident after years of makeup use, but it all started with NYX!