You Don't Have To Spend a Fortune on Makeup. Here Are 5 Ways To Score Free Beauty Samples

Woman hands neatly organising makeup and cosmetics in the drawer of vanity dressing table


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Colorful lipstick

Makeup Freebies

Looking gorgeous doesn't come cheap. One example: Upon perusing the top-reviewed makeup items on, I discovered that Dior Lip Glow Oil, one of the site's most popular products, costs $40. We can't be the only ones who think that's outrageous for a tube of lipgloss. That's literally one product for your face — add eyeshadow, foundation, mascara, and everything else, and you're easily in the hundreds. 

You could go broke trying new makeup, or you could be smart and build up a collection of free beauty samples. Here are the best ways to do it.

Related: 8 Genius Ways To Get the Most Out of Your Toiletries, According to Redditors

Ulta cosmetics bag

Gift With Purchase

Admittedly, getting a gift with purchase requires you to actually make a purchase. But it can be a worthwhile way to try new products while stocking up on items you use regularly. Department stores like Nordstrom, Macy's, and Bloomingdale's are well known for offering "GWP" both in-person and online. Additionally, you can often get freebies when you buy products at Sephora or Ulta. 

Related: These Are My Favorite (and Least Favorite) Picks From Dollar General’s New Makeup Line, Believe Beauty

Ulta Beauty Logo Sign on Front of Store

Rewards Programs

When you sign up for a rewards program, the more you shop, the more you'll get free. Which is, again, a great way to try new products. The programs are free to sign up for, so you're not spending any money on that. Ulta offers the Ultamate Rewards Program where you can earn points towards freebies. Sephora has the Beauty Insider Program that allows you to earn exclusive rewards. 

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A nude eyeshadow palette and makeup artist's tools on a marble vanity. Brushes for powder, blush, eyebrows, shadows and sponges for concealer and foundation.
July Ko/istockphoto

Product Testing

Another way to get free makeup? Get on the list to test products out. For example, L'Oreal offers a VIP testing program, and there are a number of other sites where you can sign up to try cosmetics. Well-known ones include Influenster and PinchMe.

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Makeup Counters

Yes, this is an old school way to go about getting freebies, but you can't deny that it's legit. Most makeup counters at department stores are willing to give you samples of products to try if you show interest in the brand. 

Survey on Tablet

Online Surveys

Take a survey, get a reward. Swagbucks offers gift cards for a number of different popular stores, including Ulta and Sephora. Keep in mind that going this route may take you a while to get enough points for any sort of significant card amount. But hey, if you have time to kill, no harm done.