Chitchat: My expectations and ‘ Non expectations’ from products; High end Versus Low End- Do I love foreign brands? All your answers are here.

A couple of days back; I met two amazing PR persons from Lakme  one of whom is a brand manager  and the other sales manager. She wanted to meet a few bloggers from Kolkata and have some feedback. There were two other bloggers from Kolkata as well and their idea, as I found were pretty intriguing as well.
 I was pretty excited about the meeting and I got the chance to ventilate my thoughts about my expectations from a brand which I am assuming is your thoughts as well (as I had observed). 

I have actually been asked my friends and readers why I do not purchase or boast about MAC?
Let me begin by saying that if you have noticed I do not feature high end brands because, first, I can’t
afford. Second, I feel happier buying good quality products in greater number and variety in the same budget (I am not judging. Please). So, I avoided talking about brands like MAC. I can definitely spend 2000 bucks on cosmetics, but I would rather buy a mixed bag of Faces, Lakme, Maybelline than 2 MAC lipsticks (unless somebody gifts it to me LOL).
I honestly feel that once I put on a lipstick all people are going to say is either ‘How it flatters you!!’ or ‘ It’s not that good on you!’. Besides that, all I care is if it feels comfortable on my skin. I have actually received plenty of compliments for various shades of red lipsticks none of which was remotely Ruby Woo or RiRi Woo or anything from MAC.
What about bragging and page views? Honestly, in my kind of circle, nobody cares if I even wear makeup. Besides, I do beauty blogging because it gives me the opportunity to explore my love for colors, share my experience of skin journey since I am genetically blessed with bad skin and take a break from the serious academic life.
I would rather find it silly to say I own this many YSL products or MAC products unless it’s a shade to own; a shade which you can readily recognize ( Read Ruby Woo, Girl About Town).  So, even though I love the fact that Beauty At Times Is Skin Deep is going stronger each day, I am not really perturbed about my page views or how many hits I get around the world ( my blog doesn’t even bring in money enough to make it that worthwhile. I feel it would be rather valid and worthwhile for full time bloggers who work really hard and take this as a profession. No kidding, it’s a 24X7 tough job).  For myself, I really won’t lose my sleep.
My expectations: This is what I normally expect from any brand.
  • ·        I expect a product to be of good quality.
  • ·        It should be available everywhere.
  • ·        It should have a wide variety of shade options.
  • ·        Above all, it should be affordable. I have featured plenty of Indian brands before they became huge hits. In fact, I think quality and affordability if the key factor. I think this is true everywhere. For example, in the US Wet N Wild products are in the line of ELF. They are pricier than ELF, but still more inexpensive (mostly) than even Maybelline!! I for myself, I am quite fond of Lakme Satin Finish Lispticks and I like them more than NYX round lipsticks.
What about boring Packaging then? As long as it does not interfere with the usage and does not affect the product quality, I am fine with it! The fancier the packaging gets, the price goes up alongside.
I have heard complaints “ Lakme is so boring! Same old packaging every time… you know we are tired of it”. If you have noticed, MAC doesn’t always come in exotic packaging as well; at least, not always when the lipsticks are concerned. Even then, most of the times the limited editions have golden casing instead of silver ones.

My Non expectations:
You can’t expect a 200 INR product to be equally enthralling in packaging, in huge quantity and as effective as a high end product worth 2000INR ( even though at time they are). I won’t spend even 500 INR only for a toner unless I am targeting a specific major skin issue. A combination of pure coconut oil and a decent makeup remover would remove every trace of makeup you wore.
 I am sure, if I don’t sound condescending not even 10% people would spend or afford to spend or should spend on high end products.
 We ACTUALLY DO have plenty of options. I would rather have a useful packaging, good quantity and effective product; which is the reason you find plenty of drugstore options over here. Fancy casings are welcome, but shall I be hoarding empty containers for life time?

If you watch youtube, drugstore products are the most requested ones in the videos.

Am I a sucker for foreign brands? I really do not purchase products only because it’s ‘Foreign made’. In fact, even a couple of my blogger friends who have known me for a long time know how I talked to them about the unsung heroes in the Indian market.  Not skin care, but colored cosmetics, these days mostly come from the same manufacturers. (Read my Sleekand Lakme post ). As long as a product works for me, it’s good for me.
What about my international hauls? Well, more often I buy them at discounted price and when the shipping cost is low, if the products are really value for money. E.g. I love NYX blush (review soon). I bought a Milani and a NYX blush which costed me, inclusive of international shipping, about 700 INR. So, on average, each blush is around 350? This is cheaper than even most of the Indian good quality brands. Plus, there would have been cost of commutation etc.But I won’t spend 650 INR on a single NYX blush.., I would never buy say, NYX grinding powder which is around $25 or 1500 INR ( approx) on cherryculture at the exorbitant price of 3100 INR ( medplusbeauty) which is approx around $51.5

So, these are the things I have in mind and these are the issues I have while making a purchase. What about you?

PS: This post is not really directed at any brand or even touting any brand or anything. It’s just my exclusive observation and opinion.