Makeup is always a constant struggle here. Either everything's expensive, or the cheap brands we have on the shelves are an absolute nightmare for South Asian skin. Or, you know, nothing matches our skintone. Buying the original stuff means spending a whole lot of money, or settling for random resellers on Instagram/Facebook. Buying the shelf-stuff means breakouts, rashes, or even horrific allergic reactions. Yikes.
But then, Essence decided to launch a range here and although their range of foundation tones was highly limited to fairer skin, they still made up for the severe lack of quality on the shelves. Their formulas were, in most cases, mild and suitable for (lighter skinned) Lankans. Products like their eyeshadow gels, eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks would sell like hotcakes once stocks were replenished. In fact, the Essence Brow Gel was one of the best brow gels available for easy purchase.
However, all good things must come to an end. And so, it shall be with Essence Cosmetics. As of last month, they've officially withdrawn from the Sri Lankan market with a new Turkish brand as a replacement. All of their products were going for 40% off, so if you spot a few cosmetics here and there, you can bag it at a discounted price. We dropped into the outlet at Lauries Road and truth be told, their shelves were scant with mostly only damaged products and testers for sale at the time. They also flat out refuse to let you test any foundation or whatever on your skin, so you'll have to rely on your instincts. By now, most of the shelves are probably cleared out, so farewell and adieu.